On Nov. 1 in Winnipeg, MB 98° Degrees kicked off their Christmas tour. Along with Backstreet Boys and N’Sync, 98° were part of the '90s and early 2000’s era of male vocal groups that ruled the charts and were a global sensation. Forming in 1996 with brothers Nick and Drew Lachey, Justin Jeffre, and Jeff Timmons, 98° went on to sell 10 million records and release 12 singles between 1997 and 2002, collaborated with the legendary Stevie Wonder on “True to Your Heart,” from the hit Disney film Mulan. 98° had two of their most successful years between 2000 and 2002 with the release of the Billboard #1 hit / Grammy winning “Thank God I Found You,” with Mariah Carey and Joe, a number two hit with “Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche).” In 2001, 98° Performed alongside Usher and Luther Vandross at Madison Square Garden commemorating 30 years of Michael Jackson’s solo career. In 2002 98° released the compilation album The Collection before going on a hiatus until 2012. In those years the Lachey brothers and Timmons all released a solo album while Jeffre moved to a political career and ran for Mayor of Cincinnati, OH.
What was said to be a one time performance on at the Mixtape Festival turned into the group being reunited to this day and in the last five years since reuniting 98° went on tour with Boyz II Men and New Kids on the Block, headlined a tour with O-Town, Ryan Cabrera and Dream, performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade (2017) as well as releasing their second Christmas album Let It Snow.
98° stopped at the Wiltern in Los Angeles on Nov. 19 performing Christmas classics as well as some of their hits not on their Christmas albums. This was my first 98° degrees show and it was everything I expected it to be. This tour gives fans the opportunity to hear their smash hits and songs for the Holiday season. 98° opened the show with “Season of Love,” followed by “Christmas Wish.” The 25 song setlist included Christmas classics like “Little Saint Nick,” and “Silent Night,” and covers including Chuck Berry’s “Run Run Rudolph,” Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
There a total of seven only non-Christmas songs performed were “Because of You,” “Invisible Man,” “I Do (Cherish You),” “True To Your Heart,” “Give Me Just One Night (Unca Noche),” “This Gift,” and “The Hardest Thing.” 98° ended their show with an encore of “The Hardest Thing,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Christmas.”
The tour concludes Dec. 21 in Appleton, WI at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center.