Durand Bernarr channeled The Proud Family in a vocal showcase performing for NPR’s Tiny Desk concert series, shared last Friday (March 31). The R&B singer delivered songs including “Leveled,” “Mango Butter,” “STUCK,” “Freefall,” and more backed by his band Tithe And Offering.
Boasting a range that includes soothing baritone moments and attention-grabbing falsetto notes, the 34-year-old talent welcomed himself as the “not-so-quiet storm.” Wearing the 1970s funk-inspired costuming of Uncle Bobby of the aforementioned animated series, he declared “I’m not meant to be understood, I’m meant to be experienced,” a message proven in the enchanting set.
“I came here to leave it all on the desk,” he expressed during the performance which lasted just over 20 minutes.
Speaking with VIBE on Sunday night (April 2) at Jayce’s Journey inaugural sneaker ball, a fundraiser for autism awareness, the vocalist shared more about his duty as an artist when performing and hinted at a big 2023.
“As Nina Simone once eloquently put it ‘as an artist it is your duty to reflect the times.’ So, now that I’m in therapy and I’m an advocate for mental health, I’m putting things that I’ve learned in therapy into my music and into my shows. Any time I have people’s attention, I’m trying to pour into them in some kind of way so that they can leave me better than they came,” explained the Cleveland native.
“Don’t even take your eyes off of me for two seconds, ‘cuz you’re gonna miss a lot, and that’s all I gotta say,” he responded when asked what fans can expect.
Bernarr’s latest album Wanderlust was ranked No. 16 on VIBE’s Best 25 R&B albums of 2022. Listen to the project below.