A Musical Ecstasy with John Legend, Asa at THISDAY Awards

John Legend performs at THISDAY Awards

Vanessa Obioha

There were speculations for days about the iconic American singer and songwriter John Legend’s visit to Nigeria. No one could really verify if the rumours were true or false. Yet, those who had their ears firmly to the ground knew that his visit was for a special event even if they had scanty details.

With all the secrecy surrounding his visit, it  was not a surprise then that his arrival at the Eko Hotel Convention Centre in Victoria Island, Lagos where the silver jubilee of THISDAY Newspapers took place, caused a frenzy.

A standing ovation greeted the  Grammy-winning Legend as he waltzed into the elegant stage of the ceremony that was graced by well-heeled personalities from different sectors of the economy.

Legend opened his set with a snippet of  his collaborative effort with the late rapper Nipsey Hussle and DJ Khaled,  ‘Higher’. He announced to the delighted fans that he was excited to be back in the country before delving into another hit. Before he sang his popular 2012  hit ‘Tonight’, he also told the guests that he was going to give them the best night they ever had. And indeed he kept his word, serenading them with ballads that got quite a few swooning to the melodious sounds. He followed it with ‘Love Me Now’ and took the crowd back to his first song that launched his musical career, ‘Used to Love You’. Taking things a notch higher, Legend threw an open invitation to the ladies to have a dance with him on stage.  A female guest, Nicole was the lucky one to dance with the singer as he sang to her, even getting down on one knee. The romantic gesture elicited cheers from the excited audience.

Other ballads performed include ‘Save Room’, ‘A Good Night’, and ‘Ordinary People’. For the latter, he performed on the piano and engaged the audience in a sing along. To crown the night, he performed two all-time favourites ‘All Of Me’ and ‘Green Light’. With the backdrop of silver lights, not a few brought out their phones to capture the magic of the iconic artiste. He got a loud applause for ‘All of Me’ before wrapping up with the pop hit ‘Green Light’.

The celebrated Nigerian-French artiste Asa also graced the stage of the glamorous event,  performing some of her popular hits ‘Jailer’, ‘Bibanke’, ‘Fire on the Mountain’, and ‘The Beginning’ from her latest album ‘Lucid’. She closed her set with the emotional piece ‘Bamidele’ from her 2010 album ‘Beautiful Imperfection’.

The high-octane event doubled as an awards ceremony where exceptional individuals and brands were rewarded for their excellence in their various fields.