Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Joe Thomas and Brian McKnight delivered unforgettable performances at the Stanbic Music Festival


Joe Thomas

After months of promotions, speculations, and anticipations, the time finally came for legendary R&B crooners Joe Thomas and Brian McKnight to grace Zambia with their talented voices.

The fifth edition of the Stanbic Music Festival was held at the Polo club in Showgrounds Lusaka, on two spectacular nights, Friday 5th and Saturday 6th October.

MC’s for the event were Dj, host, presenter and radio personality, Chishala Chitoshi AKA Gesh Groove and voice over artist, corporate communications specialist Kamiza Chikula.

On both nights the R&B legends were supported by Zambia’s top artists. Day 1 had gospel sensation Esther Chungu , Afro-Pop rising star Kiki, while Day 2 had Salma Sky ,Afro soul singer Wezi. Arguably Zambia’s biggest hiphop star Chef 187 was scheduled to perform on both days but had to pull out of the event due to a bereavement in his family. Surprise appearances by James Sakala, on day 1, and music legend Exile (Izreal), on day 2, stood in for the rapper.

After the opening acts had displayed their talents, the moment that many never thought they would see finally came to fruition. Joe Thomas came on stage first much to the amazement of the audience. He performed his greatest hits such as “Ride with you”, “Stutter” ,  “I believe in you” ,”If i was your man” among others. He had a splendid performance that left the packed audience screaming for more.

Brian Mcknight came up next and the crowd (mostly the ladies) went wild. He equally sang his greatest hits including “One last cry”, “Back at one”, “Anytime”, and many more of his seemingly endless list of hits.

Both entertainers gave out their very best and showcased why they are considered musical legends. It was an emotional night, couples reminisced about their youth, and for others it took them back to a time when they were kids listening to their parent’s or older siblings favorite songs.

This was a very memorable event, a magical experience that many will treasure for a lifetime.

Brian Mcknight took to social media to thank the fans.


 Stanbic Chief Executive Leina Gabaraane had this to say “We can only be very happy with what we have done and what we have delivered to Zambia this evening. It’s about developing and creating an environment of culture, and developing arts in this country, and an event like this really goes a long way in developing that for the country. It’s pleasing for us to say it’s Stanbic driving Zambia forward and we will keep them moving forward. It’s a great event,”

Minister of Tourism and Arts Hon. Charles Banda attended the event and called on the National Arts Council to engage with local artists to stage similar events regularly.
“This is a very wonderful event and I want to commend and congratulate Stanbic Bank for a job very well done. Through this event so many people have been able to gain a living out of it, because this is a big event where everyone has had an input in it: their competencies, their skills, their experience and their abilities. This is one way of making Zambia visible to the outside world,” he said.



Esther Chungu




Salma Sky


Salma Sky


Kiki performing


Joe Thomas


Joe Thomas


Joe Thomas


Joe Thomas performing


Joe Thomas


Joe Thomas


James Sakala


Fans at the show




Esther Chungu


Brian Mcknight on the keyboard


Brian Mcknight


Brian Mcknight


Brian Mcknight


Brian Mcknight performing for the excited crowd


Brian Mcknight


Brian Mcknight




  1. Joe Thomas or Joe Public as I remember him …these chaps decide to come to Africa now that they are old and can not move without Zimmer frame, your friend Akon has been telling you but you thought it was a joke.
    What annoys we is that our Promoters have been sleeping …imagine a fat cat bank is doing this in their backyard. Go to Jamaica and bring those riddim reggae love song singers next year!!

  2. Ka Jay Jay, why don’t you do it yourself if you can afford to promote such an event. What annoys you finshi? You go to Jamaica and bring them not just being an armchair critic!

    • Solye Ubwali, you are right. Zambia has too many know it all critics like HH. Can’t do anything but always in the forefront criticising. Sonta epo wabomba

    • I will do it but am not a promoter with network in music circles in Zambia…i can promise you just pretty faces like Salma Sky who can not sing wont be on my list.

  3. Guys thanks for coming, i have always adored your music especially the old school. I have more than enough in my collection especially for Joe Thomas and one of my favorite video track is ”More and more”
    Spread the natural beauty of this country and please don’t touch on the politics and debt burden, these are spoilers.

  4. I really wanted to attend this show..because I adore these two guys Joe Thomas and Brian McKnight….. but I failed to travel from Copperbelt to Lusaka because of fuel costs, accommodation costs, food costs etc etc
    good luck to the people living in Lsk everything happens right in your backyards…. Imwe ba Stanbic next time you pull such a splendid event please consider the Copperbelt too.. mwaumfya te???

  5. Stanbic Bank, we also need more fire from Jamaica next time consider us. Need more teachings. Jah bless your efforts..

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