LISTS / EDITORIALS

List: The Best of September – Top 15 Records

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It’s that time of the month again, so you know we got you with some good ones! While September may be over as well as Summer, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t plenty of hot, feel-good music last month for us to reflect on.

Now, we know August was able to give you a taste of what the Fall would bring with the sounds of Tinashe, Elijah Blake, Usher, Luke James and more, but this past month we promise we had even more. From newcomers to the list such as Richard King and Kevin Ross, to repeat “Best Of” artists like Tinashe and Ne-Yo, we assure you that there will be something on September’s round-up that has you feeling like you dropped the ball when it comes to recent music.

So, open up the sliding glass door, pour your glass of wine, watch the leaves fall, and put the music on blast ’cause it’s time for our “Best of September – Top 15 Records“! I thought I told you that we won’t stop, I thought I told you that we won’t stop?! *Diddy Bops*

Check it out after the jump!

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List: The Best of August – Top 15 Records

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With summer unfortunately coming to an end and cooler weather around the corner, that means nothing more than a change of pace in music. While the hotter months tend to bring with it uptempo beats and plenty of songs to dance to, fall brings with it the songs that make you want to warm up close to someone special.

Although it’s not quite fall yet, a few of our choices for this month’s list say different. From the coo’s of Usher in his brand new single “Believe Me,” to the incredible sounds of Angie Fisher singing about the “I.R.S.,” our Best of August Top 15 list will have you ready for the cool out music that the new season is destined to bring.

Check out who made the cut this month below!

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List: The Best of July – Top 15 Records

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While July is known for record-breaking temperatures, trips to water parks, school shopping and enjoying the last few weeks of summer, it’s known to us in the ThisisRnB offices as another month of solid R&B releases.

Whether you were a fan of Usher and Tanks’s dance heavy tracks or went the more subtle route with either Adrian Marcel or Azekel, there’s no denying that July brought ThisIsRnB listeners some pretty soulful and sultry singles. Following suit of June, July had its slow moments, but as always, true music showed up and showed out! While there’s really no way that we can make everyone happy with our lists, we definitely do the best we can by pulling the tracks that we feel are deserving of being deemed “Best of”.

Therefore, kick off your shoes and relax your feet as we bring you the tracks that had us hitting repeat all month long.

Check out our Best of July – Top 15 Records” below!

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ThisisRnB Presents: Summer Playlist (’90s Edition)

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There’s no denying the evolution of R&B throughout the years. From the groovy disco sounds of the ’70s to the dance heavy synths found in the ’80s, R&B has had the power to take you through an emotional roller coaster decade after decade.

While to some the ’90s might be the era of bubblegum pop or alternative, but to those like us here at ThisIsRnB, it was the golden era of the R&B music that we still love today. Known just as much for it’s introduction of unique and progressive sounds, it was also that era that introduced the world to iconic artists like Toni Braxton, Mary J. Blige, Jodeci, Aaliyah, R. Kelly and many more of today’s most influential acts.

Delivering so many classic R&B hits, the ’90s also hosted the reign of many legendary producers such as Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Babyface and L.A. Reid, Teddy Riley, Dallas Austin, Timbaland and Missy Elliot, and even Pharrell Williams. It was also the decade that made film soundtracks filled with R&B singles even more anticipated than the films themselves. While the New Jack Swing movement was coming to an end by 1994, the new wave of R&B was far from doing the same. Bringing about teen sensations Aaliyah and Brandy, and pushing R.Kelly into the forefront of the genre with his 12 Play album, the 1990’s brought R&B music into the commercial mainstream and opened up a rarely traveled lane for many artists to cross over to a world that was previously closed to them. Although love songs, ballads and dance tracks were the staples of R&B, there were a few artists who changed the definition indefinitely.

Beginning their reign as Hip-Hop and R&B’s most called upon, Timbaland and Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott helped with delivering genre-advancing sounds provided by Ginuwine and an all grown up Aaliyah. Teddy Riley, who contributed so much to the decade, was also grooming his protégés Pharrell Wiliams and Chad Hugo – known as The Neptunes – to create a distinguished sound used by Blackstreet, SWV, and more. By 1997 though these were changing again. The introduction of Neo-Soul began with artists Erykah Badu, D’Angelo and Maxwell, who all made their mark on the industry and added another sub bullet underneath the typical definition of R&B. Truly one of the moments that will forever reign supreme in the history of R&B, the ’90s has given us some of the best music to dance, cry, and make love to all at once!

Summer is always one of those times when we love to go back and play our favorites from the past.  Join us as we take a stroll back and remember the times that had us “All Cried Out,” getting “Hot Like Fire,” creating a “Fantasy,” and “Too Close” to R&B perfection.

Jump into our ‘Summer Playlist (‘90s Edition)‘ below!!

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List: The Best of June – Top 15 Records

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With June marking the official start of summer and the half-way mark of the year, it’s easy to anticipate what musical milestones we’ll hit as well. From debut and follow-up albums from many of our favorites artists to unexpected verses, we can’t help but be thankful for any sort of music that leaves a lasting impression on us.

Although June started off a little slow for new music, it seemed that as soon as the heat outside picked up, so did the the amount of hot records. From the retro sounds of Goapele to the raunchy and sexy singles provided by Usher and Kay Cola, the list of new sounds from June will have you saying that you’ve got “Options”.

So sit back, relax, and get your red cup ready as we bring you our “Best of June – Top 15 Records“!

Take a listen to all the tracks below!

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ThisisRnB Presents: Summer Playlist (’80s Edition)

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When we think of ‘80s R&B we think of legendary artists like Michael Jackson, Prince, Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston and so many other influential acts from that golden era. You hear groundbreaking mixes of Funk bass lines, Disco beats, revolutionary creations with Hip-Hop and Soul, which all came together giving Rhythm and Blues a more danceable and contemporary sound.

Today, so many people question the stance of R&B and the direction that it’s going in. As we’ve learned nothing stays the same in this ever-evolving industry. So, to help you remember some of the best feel-good R&B of the past we’re taking you back with our 1980’s edition summer playlist!

Ready to kick off your shoes, get out your seat and boogie on down?

Then get into the ThisisRnB Summer Playlist (’80s Edition) below!

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List: The Best of May – Top 15 Records

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With summer just around the corner, it’s only right that we bring you some real deal hits with this month’s roundup of tunes!

While we’re always prone to giving you that good good when it comes to R&B music, it’s just something about the month of May’s releases that set everything right in the world. Could it have been the re-arrival of superstar Usher with his hot new single “Good Kisser”? Or was it the posthumous release of Michael Jackson’s album Xscape? Although we really don’t have an answer for just exactly what it was about this month that shifted the world of R&B back on its correct axis, we do know that we like it!

From the seductive sounds of some of today’s hottest artists to the uptempo beats of the next wave of greatness, our “Best of May – Top 15 Records” will have you rushing through June to see what we come up with next.

Soak up the heat after the jump!

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Editorial: August Alsina and the Power of Sharing Personal Testimonies

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“I feel like God gave me the gift to do what I do, just because it’s so many motherf**kers like me that I can help. And show them anything is possible.” – August Alsina

Testimony, the debut album of rising R&B star August Alsina, is more than a feel good club banger. Instead, it is a musical manifestation of Alsina’s strength to carry the great weight of responsibility deliverance demands.

What is that great weight of responsibility? It’s having the courage to transparently share one’s testimony, with hopes that someone will be inspired by it. Thus in return, being empowered to overcome the obstacles they face in their own lives. This is no easy task for anyone, even Alsina. He mentioned on several occasions his apprehension about overly sharing the details of his life. His primary fear was that by doing so, he would be left vulnerable to harsh judgment by the public.

However, understanding that there were people in similar circumstances who desperately needed to know there was a light at the end of the tunnel, with raw honesty he chose to share his life on his album.

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