Verzuz is taking everyone to church this Sunday, as the queens of R&B and soul, Gladys Knight and Patti LaBelle will go head to head on the next Verzuz battle.
The last Verzuz installment set a new record for viewership, as over 1.2 million viewers tuned into Instagram Live to watch 90s divas Brandy and Monica dive into their hitmaking catalogs.
Previously, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott partnered for the viewership record, with about 750,000 fans tuning in for their contest on May 9.
Y’all gotta get dressed up in ya Sunday’s best for this classic affair.
— Verzuz (@verzuzonline) September 8, 2020
“The Master Class we’ve ALL been waiting for! Y’all gotta get dressed up in ya Sunday’s best for this classic affair,” Verzuz wrote on socials.
Fans can tune in on Sunday, September 13, at 5pm PST/8pm EST on Verzuz’s Instagram live or in HD on Apple Music.
Both R&B icons have decades of hits (and Grammys) to their name, both as solo artists and with their respective groups. R&B royalty Patti LaBelle has a deep solo repertoire to dip into, as well as her time with pioneering group LaBelle, and her early groups the Ordettes and The Blue Bells.
As for the Empress of Soul Gladys Knight, she’s amassed an impressive amount of solo hits since her debut Miss Gladys Knight in 1978 and was burning up the charts with her pivotal R&B group Gladys Knight & The Pips since the early 60s.
Since starting the virtual musical series, producers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland, have created a platform that celebrates Black producers, rappers, and singers across eras. What started as a friendly rivalry has no turned into a commercial phenomenon and cultural movement.
The “Verzuz effect,” can drive huge leaps in streaming and catalog consumption. Following the Brandy and Monica battle, the pair garnered 21.9 million U.S. on-demand streams for their song catalogs from Aug. 31 through Sept. 2, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data, reported Billboard.
In the three days leading up to the battle, the two artists experienced 6.3 million in the U.S. alone, a surge of 248%.
Outside of the biggest MCs and producers of today, Verzuz has also celebrated specific genres: from Dancehall (Beenie Man vs.Bounty Killer) to Gospel (Kirk Franklin vs. Fred Hammond).
Gladys Knight vs. Patti LaBelle will take place on Sunday, Sept 13.