Tuesday, 21 February 2012


OF ALL the places Bobby Brown may receive a hostile reception, Newark, New Jersey could well be at the very top of the list.

Bobby BrownBobby Brown performs with New Edition at Mohegan Sun Arena after ex-wife Whitney's funeral
It is, of course, the hometown of his ex-wife Whitney Houston, the place where she grew up, where she first sang and where today she was buried following her tragic passing last week.

Yesterday, it hosted the tragic singer's "home-going" ceremony and Bobby became the subject of controversy when he left at the beginning of the service over a seating dispute.

It's not the first wave of disapproval that's engulfed the 43-year-old R'n'B star, of course, as many people - including his ex-wife's family it has been reported - believe he was the cause or at least catalyst of Whitney's horrific downfall.

And so far it has seemed that this self-proclaimed bad boy from the Boston projects is tough enough to withstand the Dissapproval of Camp Whitney.

But tonight, and rather oddly, in the place where his ex of 14 years was raised, Brown finally admitted that he'd been going through a terrible time.

After looking to the sky and proclaiming his love for Houston as he has on previous nights, Brown delved a little deeper.

"The past few weeks have been terrible," he told the capacity crowd, 'but I was able to come back out with my brothers because that's where my strength is."

Yesterday the singer ruffled feathers by hitting the Moehegan Sun Casino at 2am this morning, after his show with New Edition ended at 10pm.

He had earlier stormed out of the funeral following a reported dispute over the seating arrangements and not being allowed to be with his daughter Bobbi Kristina.

Bobby had reportedly been chatting with some unknown female strangers and was followed up an escalator by friends and fans.

His large entourage together with the surrounding cameramen apparently made for a considerable crowd, and an on duty Connecticut police officer was called over when Bobby's people objected to being followed by the photographers.

According to the singer he left the service after kissing the casket of his ex-wife because "he refused to make a scene".

Just hours later Brown appeared upbeat as he performed onstage with his New Edition bandmates to a 7000-strong sell out crowd at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

The former rapper was seen onstage wearing a white tuxedo jacket, matching white shirt underneath a black satin vest, and black trousers.

His outfit was a far-cry cry different from the all-black mourning attire he had worn to attend Houston's funeral hours earlier.

Brown appeared in good spirits as he sang to the crowd, smiling at times and pulling quirky expressions.
He also did several energetic dance moves alongside his fellow New Edition members.

Brown arrived onstage a reported 10 minutes late after his band already started the performance, according to USA Today.

During the fourth track he was said to have strode up to the stage to cheers from the audience and addressed the crowd.

'I want to give blessings to my ex-wife, Whitney Houston, I love you. I want to give blessings to my kids, my fiancée (Alicia Etheridge), my brothers, and each of you," he said.

Before launching into his track Hit Me Off, he added: "And if you didn't already know, I go by the name of bad a** Bobby Brown."

After singing several of his famous songs including My Prerogative, he once again referred to Houston's tragic passing.

"I lost three great people in my life in the last year, but nothing makes me happier than to be here with you," he said.

Some concert-goers believed that Brown's onstage appearance so soon after today's funeral was insensitive.
"I grew up on New Edition, and want to see how Bobby responds,' William McGarrah told USA Today. '(It was) a little insensitive, and (it) shows how much he needs the money. I thought he would take time off to be with his daughter."

Brown it appears spent very little time with his daughter Bobbi Kristina today during and following the funeral for her mother.

Brown was cheered by fans as he arrived at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey, but according to a mourner at the service, family became "frustrated" inside.

TMZ reported he became angry after the Houston family refused to seat his entourage of nine people. He had apparently been invited with a plus two.

Insiders told the website Brown wanted to sit with Bobbi Kristina on the front row - but he wasn't allowed.
Brown has since released a statement, explaining his abrupt departure, saying he was moved by security three times.

In a statement put out by his representative, he said: 'My children and I were invited to the funeral of my ex-wife Whitney Houston. We were seated by security and then subsequently asked to move on three separate occasions.

"I fail to understand why security treated my family this way and continue to ask us and no one else to move," he said.

The statement went on: "Security then prevented me from attempting to see my daughter Bobbi Kristina. In light of the events, I gave a kiss to the casket of my ex-wife and departed as I refused to create a scene.

"My children are completely distraught over the events. This was a day to honour Whitney. I doubt Whitney would have wanted this to occur. I will continue to pay my respects to my ex-wife the best way I know how."

A mourner told the MailOnline: "He was frustrated about something, maybe somebody said something to him or he was in a mood."

Meanwhile, the outspoken Reverend Al Sharpton revealed he had spoken to Brown in an attempt to calm him down.

He tweeted: "I am at Whitney's funeral. I spoke with Bobby Brown trying to calm him down and not distract from the services. Today is about Whitney!"

He later spoke to reporters, sticking up for Brown.

Early reports suggested Brown, who became divorced from Whitney in 2007, was denied entry to the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey.

Shortly after the service began he was seen leaving the church with a grim expression on his face accompanied by a female companion.

They stood outside for a few moments before getting in to a waiting SUV and drove off.

Brown, who Houston's family blamed for her drug addiction, had reportedly been invited after her family put aside their differences and begrudgingly said he could come.

Moments after the drama singer Stevie Wonder arrived and was led up the church steps and through the front door.

As Brown was waiting outside the church an unidentified man stood next to him crying uncontrollably.
Brown himself appeared to be wiping away a tear as he got into his car.

Live coverage from inside Houston's funeral showed her daughter Bobbi Kristina and mother Cissy sitting on the front row.

They were yards away from Whitney's flower drenched coffin, which took centre-stage on the very alter where she sang as a child at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey.

Bobby Brown performs in Whitney's hometown hours after her funeral

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