On Sunday night (Aug. 4), Drake’s OVO Fest returns to Toronto for its ninth annual festival, and night one will serve as a deeply nostalgic moment for avid R&B and hip-hop fans. B2K, Mario, Lloyd, Bobby V and Pretty Ricky seek to set the stage ablaze with their soulful throwback hits, while Ying Yang Twins, along with Chingy, look to keep fans enthralled with their club-rattling anthems from the mid-2000s.
Before this one-of-a-kind blast from the past takes place, get familiar with the Drake-approved acts of OVO Fest’s first night.
During the early 2000s, the silky R&B quartet had girls swooning to their undeniable jams. From “Uh Huh” to “Bump, Bump, Bump,” B2K knew how to get the party started with their sizzling singles and heartwarming ballads. Despite only releasing two albums as a group befire disbanding in 2005, earlier this year, they recently returned for The Millennium Tour, as U.S. fans came in droves to see them hit the stage one last time.
After his masterful re-working of Biz Markie’s 1989 hit “Just a Friend” in 2001, Mario joined the R&B circuit with his melodious vocals for “Just a Friend 2002.” His debut single soared to No. 4 on the Hot 100 in 2002, and the singer later went on a fiery run, releasing a flurry of singles including “How Do I Breathe” and his Hot 100 chart-topper “Let Me Love You.”
Though Murder Inc. was best known for Ja Rule and Ashanti’s unstoppable chemistry in the early 2000s, Lloyd carved out a lane for himself as a formidable third star to the label, courtesy of his dulcet vocals. The Atlanta crooner’s delivery wooed fans enough to power singles such as “You,” “Get It Shawty” and “Southside.”
Chingy’s penchant for club singles fueled his career in the mid-2000s. “Holidae Inn” and “Right Thurr” propelled the St. Louis star to mainstream acclaim, and when Chingy wanted to slow things down, he weaved his way into the hearts of women with slow-burning tunes such as “Pulling Me Back” and “One Call Away.”
Bobby V crashed into the scene in 2005 with the Tim & Bob-produced single “Slow Down.” The mesmerizing tune sailed to No. 8 on the Hot 100 chart, and was No. 1 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart for four straight weeks. Bobby V also dished out a slew of hearty bangers after “Slow Down,” including “Anonymous,” “Turn the Page” and “Tell Me.”
Ying Yang Twins
The ATL duo gained traction after teaming up with Lil Jon for his 2004 smash “Get Low”; because of their frenetic energy and thunderous ad-libs, Ying Yang Twins knew what it took to tear the hinges off a party. After “Get Low,” they continued to boil after the success of “Salt Shaker” and “Wait (The Whisper Song).”
After B2K was on the verge of a breakup, many looked to Pretty Ricky to fill their void. In 2004, they made a splashy debut with “Grind With Me,” and the tune slithered its way to No. 7 on the Hot 100. Their second single “Your Body” also caught similar success, peaking at No. 12 on the Hot 100.