MONTVILLE, CONNECTICUT — Hours after the world paid its final goodbye to Whitney Houston in New Jersey, ex-husband Bobby Brown paid his alongside bandmates New Edition before a sold-out crowd at Mohegan Sun Arena.
Brown sat out the night's first three songs, then took the stage for "Hit Me Off." He acknowledged the fallen icon before "Jealous Girl."
"I want to give blessings to my ex-wife, Whitney Houston. I love you," Brown said, pointing towards the sky. "I want to give a lot of blessings to my kids, my fiancée, my brothers, and all of you."
Brown and his New Edition band-mates powered through a set that lasted almost two hours, including hits from Brown's 1988 solo smash, "My Prerogative," to Bell Biv DeVoe's 1990 hit, "Poison."
"I lost three great people in my life, in the last year," Brown told the audience of over 7,000 before the sextet wrapped with "Home Again." "But, nothing makes me happier than to be right here, right now."
Some New Edition fans, like Lisa Pollock of Bridgeport, Conn., were simply happy just to see Houston's ex-husband in the building.
"[New Edition] just held it together. I can't imagine what today was like for them," Pollock said after the concert. "For them to come and do a show for all of us, definitely exceeded my expectations."
Serita Outlow of Norwich, Conn. also attended the show unsure if Brown would make it.
"I think he did an excellent job considering what he must have been feeling," she said. "I don't know what he went through with his voice today but I think he still pulled it off."