With a string of platinum albums to his name and more Grammy Award nominations than any other artist without a win, Brian McKnight launched his Just Me Tour with his brother, Claude McKnight of the Gospel group Take 6, and his sons BJ and Niko of BRKN RBTZ (Broken Robotz).
When he put together his fourteen album, which was released July 12, 2011, he thought it was important to remember that people everywhere have problems that are difficult to overcome. It seemed to him a good time to combine new tracks with some of his old songs for the people who want to go back to something meaningful.
This tour is the first time McKnight and his brother have sung together since they were children. Growing in up a large, musical family in Buffalo, New York, they participate in church and school music programs. Claude, five years older, signed a record deal in 1987 and Brian followed suit in 1992. Along the way, he mastered nine instruments. When he is not playing one of them or singing in his express voice, he can be found composing, arranging or producing. He loves everything he does and when he goes to bed each night he thinks about what he's accomplished during the day and wonders what the next day promises. When he composes, he has no set pattern. The creation starts in his head. The moment something promoting materiales, he might be sitting with his guitar watching a sports program.
Several seasons ago, McKnight was one of the celebrities featured on the then number one TV show, “Celebrity Apprentice.” After members of Donald Trump's staff first approached him, he realized it was a win-win situation between the opportunity to earn money for worthwhile charities and the publicity the show provided for the various participants. When the men's team finally won a challenge on the fourth try, he recalls the relief they felt and the pride in that accomplishment. Best of all, he enjoyed getting to know some people he had met briefly or only heard about and establishing new friendships for life.
The Billboard Songwriter of the Year is known for its congeniality. Over the years, he has collaborated with dozens of the top musicians of our time, among them Quincy Jones, Mariah Carey, Justin Timberlake, Willie Nelson, Kenny G and Josh Grobin. His most meaningful partnerships, however, are with family members. His greatest pleasure is working with his brother and his sons. If possible, he would also include his 21 first cousins.
This current tour, he confesses, has provided more fun than any of the past. One of his favorite moments is singing the National Anthem, something he has done at baseball games and all his shows since 9/11. By looking around at his audiences and studying their faces, he realizes that the Anthem has taken on new meaning. Because he dislikes living in a day and time that is becoming jaded, he wants people to learn how to fall in love again and discover that life can be better.