Mixtape Tour

When New Kids on the Block announced their “Mixtape Tour” would include Salt-N-Pepa, En Vogue, and Rick Astley, fans were super excited!...
Mixtape Tour : Live
Mixtape Tour : Live

When New Kids on the Block announced their “Mixtape Tour” would include Salt-N-Pepa, En Vogue, and Rick Astley, fans were super excited! Upon entry to the KeyBank Center in Buffalo on Sunday, July 17th, one could already hear the screaming fans. Wow! The crowd was probably around 80-90% women, so that excitement around their favorite boy band really wasn’t unexpected. The setup was quite interesting with a main “A” stage and a small “B” stage in the middle of the floor.

Early on, DJ KayGee, Vin Rock, and DJ Slugga together as Illtown Sluggaz were already getting the crowd all riled up. Between them and a couple of special guests, it was the perfect way to warm up the audience.

Next up was Egypt Criss, daughter of Salt-N-Pepa’s Sandra Denton, who provided a great set including a fantastic cover of “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys. 

Donnie Wahlberg

While New Kids on the Block were clearly the “headliner”, the show wasn’t a classic first opener, second opener, etc., and headliner last. New Kids actually took the stage first with nine songs including “Right Stuff”. Most of the lead vocals were handled by Jordan Knight and Joey McIntyre while Knight’s brother Jonathan and Danny Wood took a little more of a chill attitude but kept their fans entertained. The screams probably hit their apex when bad boy Donnie Wahlberg pulled his shirt up. Whatever you want to say about NKOTB, they do know how to please their fans as they actually entered the audience, engaged with their fans, and even took selfies.

En Vogue

The crowd were already in a frenzy by the time En Vogue, the trio of Terry Ellis, Cindy Herron and Rhona Bennett, entered with a great two song set of their hits “Never Gonna Get It” and “Free Your Mind”. No, they’re no longer a quartet and two of their original members are no longer with them, but it feels like we’re back in the early ‘90s because the band looked and sounded as good as they ever did! 

As En Vogue closed their first brief set, the spotlight shone on Rick Astley on stage B. Whether you were a fan of his stuff in the ‘80s or were rick-rolled in the 2000s, you knew “Never Gonna Give You Up”! His signature dance from the video is gone but his little bit of gray only makes the voice fit the face. The baby faced baritone can still belt out amazingly smooth vocals.

New Kids were then back with a set of their songs, covers, and DJ songs. They came out in matching “NYNUK” (the original band name from 1985) sweatshirts, which the crowd just loved!


Just when you were wondering where Salt-N-Pepa was, they took the stage. With their rapping and choreographed moves with their male dancers, this was fun, fun, fun! Just as their music, lyrics, and videos could not help but put a smile on your face in the late ‘80s/early ‘90s, you could the same smile on both Cheryl Renee “Salt” James and Sandra “Pepa” Denton as well as on many in the crowd. 

The various acts continued to switch back and forth on the two stages. Some highlights were Donnie joining Salt-N-Pepa for “Shoop” and En Vogue joining them for “What a Man”. New Kids continued to entertain with Jordan taking his turn shirtless. The final set included all four acts and began with “Bring Back the Time”, a new song whose video reenacts hit videos from the ‘80s. A very fun song so you should check out the video. They rick-rolled the whole crowd by ending with a group rendition of “Never Gonna Give You Up”! ‘80s mixtape indeed!

New Kids On the Block

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