Babyface Unleashes A Cavalcade Of Hits For NPR Music’s ‘Tiny Desk Concert’ Series

Photo Credit: Catie Dull/NPR

Babyface is a musical legend in his own time. In fact, you can’t name too many aspects of modern music that the singer/songwriter/producer hasn’t had his hands in over the past four decades. That’s why the “As A Matter Of Fact” crooner was an obvious choice for NPR Music to tap for a Tiny Desk Concert performance during their Black Music Month celebration. The multi-hyphenate answered the call and even brought friends Avery Wilson, Chanté Moore and Tank along as he went through his seemingly endless catalog at the titular desk.

Face started the set with a performance of two of the best known hits that he sang himself, The Deele’s “Two Occasions" and “Whip Appeal.” From there, he went into his songwriting bag as Chanté took the lead on “Superwoman,” “Take A Bow” and “Not Gon’ Cry” — all major hits he produced for Karyn White, Madonna and Mary J. Blige, respectively.

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It was the fellas turn after that, with Avery Wilson subbing in for Tevin Campbell for “Can We Talk.” Babyface then got into the pop/rock side of his catalog as he sang “Change The World,” which he wrote for Eric Clapton, alongside Tank. He wasn’t done, though, as he tapped into Fall Out Boy’s “Thnks Fr Th Mmrs” utilizing all his backing vocalists’ talents as he got his electric guitar on.

After taking that turn, he got back into his R&B feels with the back-to-back punch of Boyz II Men’s “I'll Make Love To You” and “End Of The Road” with assists from Tank and Avery. The two tracks, of course, had the crowd swooning with memories of the time the two songs dominated the charts. He then closed with one more chart-topper, Whitney Houston’s “Exhale (Shoop Shoop).” Babyface took the lead initially, while Chanté stepped in to round out the rest of the lead vocals.

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The song was a fitting end to the hit parade, though he probably could’ve gone for weeks if he had to touch on all the gems in his extensive catalog. A talent like his is once in a lifetime and we’re just lucky enough to be alive to witness it. Get just a taste of the greatness that is Babyface when you peep his Tiny Desk performance below.

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