When a group of old friends all showed up to Starr Hill, the singer knew something was up.
“JoJo finally came out with it. … It took me by surprise, and I was honored, because this man, he’s so selfless, he puts himself before others a lot of times,” Brown said. “It made me cry a little bit.”
It hasn’t been an easy time for Brown. A surgical team put in a pacemaker three years ago, and he still struggles with related heart issues.
“I went in the hospital singing,” he said. “The doctor looked at my wife and said, ‘He sings all the time? This man literally could be dead right now.’ She said, ‘He sings all the time, even when he’s sick.’”
He leaves gigs dead tired and sore, he said, but he would not miss one. At one show, he said, a young man said that he was contemplating suicide, but hearing Brown sing helped change his mind.
“That touched me,” he said. “When he said that, I knew I had something special going with these shows. I tell JoJo every time, we should never take for granted the chance that we have to sing and perform for people. Sometimes you never know what someone’s going through, but you might sing that one song that might help somebody or uplift them or change their day.
“Just by the way we act on stage and have fun, it changes somebody’s mood, and it makes them feel like, these guys are great. They help me feel better about myself. They help me feel better about my situation. And life goes on.”