Tag Archives: r&b

R&B + CHRIS BROWN: TOP TEN SONGS YOU’VE (PROBABLY) NEVER HEARD

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After dropping a critically acclaimed self-titled debut album in 2005 that was deeply rooted in R&B, CHRIS BROWN was quickly given the daunting task of spearheading a new generation of a genre that houses such greats as Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson. In 2008, though, Brown released “Forever” – his first real venture into crossing over into the mainstream and the pop/dance/electro hit shot him into superstardom. Many felt this success signified the end of his career as an R&B artist and haven’t given him much acknowledgment in the genre since. I feel like this debate will always be relevant because Michael Jackson is considered one of the greatest of all time and he’s deemed The King of Pop yet his name is thrown in plenty of R&B conversations; Brown has traveled a similar path but is slandered constantly whenever he’s nominated at award ceremonies in the R&B categories.

God forbid he actually win an award, but he did in 2012 when he snagged the Grammy for Best R&B Album for 2011’s F.A.M.E. and beat out El Debarge, Ledisi, Kelly Price and R. Kelly. People said Chris hasn’t been R&B since he first came out and that he shouldn’t claim the genre at all; I think that’s extremely unfair especially considering his catalogue is full of R&B gems that are hidden for some reason – until now. With his sixth album, X, slated for a summer release Chris has said that this album will revisit the vibe his debut effort held and many are skeptical that he’s able to pull this off.

So much music has been recorded but the masses have never gotten to hear them for whatever reason. Industry politics are a bitch but I’m here to bring the best of the best from CB’s resume so you’re not so lost out there – here we go!

10.) “Submarine” (2010) – A song that has him recounting where he went wrong to make his woman walk away, Chris spoke his heart and he spoke it to a jazzy, shoulder bopping beat that, if performed live, would have his feet moving in some way. No rapping, no cursing – just a voice and a beat. That’s what R&B is and “Submarine” displayed just that.

9.) “Calypso” (2012) – This Polow Da Don-produced promotional single was released ahead of Brown’s fifth LP Fortune in the summer of 2012 and was the lowkey cookout song for the scorching months. With backing vocals that were strongly reminiscent of a Mike Jackson in his prime, Brown had no problem enticing young ladies to just give into him and his harmless advances. He just wants to find out what you like, girl.

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QUiRK TUNES: “LOOKING FOR LOVE” – SIERGIO

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This song … I can’t even put into words how good it makes me feel and it’s no mistake that it belongs to SIERGIO, the guy with the smoldering tone and outstanding range. I LOVE this guy! You can’t tell me shit about Siergio: besides being a talented singer, he’s a great person as a whole and that makes me want him to succeed more than anyone else I’ve come across while doing this blogging thing. No shade though – I still love all y’all.

“Looking For Love” speaks to every woman who’s dated dud after dud until she’s found Mr. Siergio. If you’ve been looking for love then you’ve been looking for me is a BOLD statement but Siergio sells it and forces you to want to take him up on his offer. Now all you have to do is track him down … go get him, girl!

Siergio – “Looking For Love” [DOWNLOAD]

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VIDEO: “DIAMONDS” – JADE NOVAH

Jade Novah and her camp that includes the incredibly talented Devin Johnson and director Theshay West are at it once again! Remixing Rihanna’s latest single “Diamonds” in such a beautiful way, here is the visual to go along with it which is so artistic and great! I always love that we get a song and video from Jade each time – they never disappoint.

Be on the look out for Jade’s album, In Search Of Me, which is coming soon and is sure to be an astounding contribution to R&B. It ain’t dead yet!

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ALBUM REVIEW: “KALEIDOSCOPE DREAM” – MIGUEL

How do I newly stan for thee, Miguel? I shall count the ways:

One: your hair consistently gives me life and I hope that one day you share your follicle regimen with me so that I, too, may have edges snatched easy like Sunday Morning and pillowy soft curls atop my head.

Two: though I’ve previously mocked your tendency to mumble through your songs, I enjoy and appreciate that you’ve given me something astoundingly great to mumble along with just as passionately as you do in your vivid live performances.

“Kaleidoscope Dream” is … it’s like when you were little, let’s say school-age: your mom (or dad, if you had the pleasure of him being present) would wake you up for school and you weren’t cranky for once. For this, your parent rewarded you with McDonald’s for breakfast on the drive to elementary and you were amped – kicked your day off ALL kinds of right.

You get dropped off and your classmates are super nice to you for some reason; you don’t question it because it feels good. You’ve been feeling good all day, but it doesn’t end there; your favorite cousin comes to pick you up early and y’all go riding in his/her car. They have a sunroof and it’s a perfect 77 degrees outside so you actually enjoy the air. You get to go to the mall – a place your parent never takes you because they know you’ll ask for something. This time, though, you don’t because you’re so happy to be out and about it doesn’t matter if you don’t leave here without a toy.

Because your cousin is so cool, you get a toy anyway. That’s it: you decide that this day cannot get any more fantastic – but it does because you’ve just been informed that you two are meeting up with the family at … Chuck E. Cheese.

THAT’S what “Kaleidoscope Dream” makes you feel; Continue reading

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ALBUM REVIEW: “CHAPTER V” – TREY SONGZ

Trey’s at it again, releasing his fifth studio album aptly titled Chapter V next week. iTunes managed to flip an unfortunate leak into a great thing by allowing listeners to stream the full standard edition of the album before they decide to preorder it. Having been given a chance to listen to the album from the Atlantic Records artist, I have a few things to say. I must say before I start that I am an avid Trey fan (member of his fan club avid – don’t judge me) and these are just a consumer’s “concerns”, which I’m entitled to so let me have this.

Trey likes sex – no, scratch that. Trey LOVES sex. Between his mix tapes and the albums he’s released before, a fool would have had to miss that little factoid. He loves it so much that he wrote a song about it – like to hear it? Here it go *plays Chapter V* Just like Passion, Pain & Pleasure before it and Ready before that, Chapter V is dripping (no pun intended) in innuendos that will make the town jezebel blush and giggle. “Dive In” (pretty self-explanatory) and “Panty Wetter” kick off this sultry compilation of love, sex and party anthems. Sex is such a staple of Trey’s repertoire that I almost go numb once I figure out that I’m about to hear four minutes’ of him describing how he’s about to smack it up, flip it and rub down – oh no! That’s a Bell Biv DeVoe lyric actually, but if he’d put something in the album similar to that I wouldn’t have hated it at all.

Listen, if I’m going to listen to somebody sing about sex all the time, it’s going to be Trey because he’s high up on my favorite artists list. I admit that he sings about it very well, but it’s just happening too often. We all know that he’s getting pum-pum tossed at him left and right; this is a part of his everyday life. Here’s the thing, though; it’s not part of MY everyday life. It’s obvious that I’m not going to be able to relate to every single thing that a twenty-seven year old male singer is going to croon about because we have completely different plights but I’m his target audience and I feel like I know too much by now. Literally, if his next album is over seventy percent of sex…

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WHERE’S THE SOUL GONE? ONE PERSPECTIVE ON TODAY’S R&B

The current state of R&B is creating an ongoing discussion that has everyone asking, “where’s the soul?” With singers rapping, rappers singing and the production resembling Dubstep, we’re currently in a ball of confusion. There are artists who are trying to bring the sound back whilst infusing new musical elements that elevate the genre more than it completely changes it – Frank Ocean, Miguel, Janelle Monae, and Elle Varner are huge examples of that.

Many claim that today’s R&B is oversexed – these same people who cry foul are those who grew up on songs that had their nine year old friends singing about knocking boots, freaking people and seeking out that honey love. I grew up within this same time frame and I have to say that while I do have my artists that I enjoy regularly, R&B today is a bit out of pocket. R. Kelly lived that freaky life he sang about – and got caught up a few times over it but we won’t discuss that here – but he also made songs like “I Believe I Can Fly”, “Gotham City” (for the Batman & Robin soundtrack, which was and still is a pretty big deal), and did a duet with Celine Dion.

What’s this called? Versatility.

Singing about sex is fine; it’s a natural thing that humans take part in for pleasure or to do as God intended for it and populate the world. Somewhere along the line, people forgot that in R&B versatility is the key to longevity. Part of this is a societal issue, though; to put it plainly, if the consumer has a ratchet mindset, then they’ll only identify with ratchet things that coincide with said mindset thus supporting ratchet music and keeping it in constant rotation. It’s a cycle and the more people complain with no action, the cycle will continue.

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VIDEO: “SWEET LOVE” – CHRIS BROWN

What a hell of a gotdamn way to wake up *3 Stacks voice* – yowzas; CHRIS BROWN has shot about 1oo videos over the course of a week and the fruits of his labor is slowly rolling out. Okay maybe not 100, but the brotha’s been puttin’ in work. “Sweet Love” is his latest release and I’m SURE this will get some activity kicked up this weekend whether liquor is involved or not. Got damn, Breezy.

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#MONTHOFMAE: “ALL TIME HIGH” + WEBISODE FEATURING MID-ATLANTIC TOUR WITH TANK – LAURIANA MAE

LAURIANA MAE is at it again, dropping a new song and webisode as #MonthOfMae rolls on. She releases “All Time High” for the hip hop lover in us all and visuals from her Mid-Atlantic tour stint with labelmate TANK as they hit Baltimore and Virginia. Check it all out!

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MUSIC: “BREAK MY HEART” – LAMAR STARZZ

I like this; coming from the managers who brought Trey Songz to the forefront of R&B and debuted K. Michelle to the world comes a new talent looking to make an impact on R&B – LAMAR STARZZ. The Rochester, NY native is currently signed to Sean Garrett’s Bet I Penned It imprint and has a nice arsenal of material under his belt so far.  “Break My Heart” stands out to me almost immediately and that can never be a bad thing; check it out for yourself.

I’ll be keeping my eye on him as Lamar gears up to release his first project, R&B 24/7, in July.

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NEWS + UPDATES: BUDWEISER’S “MADE IN AMERICA” BOASTS PEARL JAM, RITA ORA AMONG MUSIC ACTS + PRESALE STARTS NOW!

The lineup for Budweiser and JAY-Z’s Made In America two-day music festival dropped yesterday and it’s nicely varied.  Pearl Jam and Hov himself will headline the festival that also features Janelle Monaé, Calvin Harris (maybe prompting a Rihanna appearance similar to Coachella last month…?), Santigold and Roc Nation sweetie pie fashionista Rita Ora – among others! More acts will be announced for this three-stage venue but if you’d like to cop that golden two-day pass for the low price of $99 (and a service charge), head over to Budweiser’s Facebook page for the presale code!

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