Throwback Thursday: Brian McKnight – ‘The Only One for Me’

Brian McKnight is a Grammy-nominated R&B singer, songwriter and producer. He is adored by many for his amazing falsetto and belting range. “The Only One For Me” was the third single released from his third studio album Anytime.

To date, Anytime is McKnight’s highest peaking album on the R&B Albums chart, where it held the No. 1 position for three weeks straight. On the single, McKnight sings about having “been around” but finally finding that special someone and opening their mind and heart to the idea of loving again.

Reminisce with the classic video above.

Throwback Tuesday: Betty Wright – ‘Tonight Is The Night’

“I’m nervous, and I’m trembling…… I’m trying hard to relax but I just can’t keep still.”

Betty Wright is a soul and R&B singer-songwriter, who gained fame in the 1970s. A pioneering artist and entrepreneur, she remains one of the few black female musicians to produce a gold record on her own label. She is also adept at using the whistle register. “Tonight Is the Night” was her most successful record off her Danger! High Voltage! album. Wright attributed the hit to her first sexual experiences.

The original version peaked at No. 28 on the R&B chart. Four years later she released a “live” version of the song. The remodeled version, which included a now-famous monologue and portions of Wright’s 1970 hit, “Pure Love,” peaked at No. 11 on the R&B chart in 1978. “Tonight Is the Night” has been sampled by many artists including Color Me Badd and DJ Quik.

Enjoy a performance version of the hit above and the original live version below:

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Throwback Thursday: Eric Benet feat. Tamia – ‘Spend My Life With You’

Eric Benét is a Grammy nominated R&B/Soul singer-songwriter, who released his debut album in 1996 via Warner Bros. Records. In 1999 he released his sophomore album, A Day In The Life, which spawned the hit duet “Spend My Life With You” featuring Tamia. The tender ballad spent three weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, peaked at No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100, and was certified Gold by the RIAA for sales of over 500,000 units.

The song has become Benét’s most popular single to date, and he celebrated its 15th anniversary back in June. The single is still being played at weddings, anniversaries, commitment ceremonies, and more. “It’s one of those songs that stood the test of time, and I think it’s going to be here for a while,” said Benet. When writing the song he really wanted to capture the sentiment of a person not being able to wait to wake up everyday to that special person in their life. The beautiful ballad is about finding the love of a lifetime and spending the rest of your life with them. Both Benét and Tamia express that they didn’t know their purpose or that they could experience such a love until meeting that person.

Enjoy the classic above. After the jump check out a clip of Benet reflecting on the single.

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Throwback Tuesday: Next – ‘Butta Love’

Next is a R&B group, most popular during the late 1990s. “Butta Love” was the first single off their double-platinum debut album Rated Next. The single became a top five R&B hit peaking at No. 4, and a top twenty Pop hit peaking on the Hot 100 at No. 16, in the fall of 1997.

Next was loved for their ability to swing between party anthems and tender ballads, as well as for possessing a bit of soulfulness. R&B fans seemed to be most captivated by the groups smooth and charismatic lead singer R.L., who led most songs including “Butta Love,” and possessed a distinctive sound.  R.L. has stated that it was Arista and J Records label head, Clive Davis, who encouraged the group to sing the notable vamp on “Butta Love.” As the lyrics go, “You’ve got those sexy eyes, enticing thighs, you make me rise / You’ve got that love I wanna try, send my tongue up and down your spine.”

The single was a sexy hit as the group expressed that a special lady had the love that they wanted and needed, and that very same love, like butter, was smooth and creamy. Enjoy the classic above!

Throwback Thursday: Joe – ‘The Love Scene’

” ’69 was a very good year do you remember, if you know what I mean my dear.” Remember when R&B was sexy and sensual as this?!?

Joe is a R&B singer-songwriter and record producer.  He had breakthrough success with his second album, All That I Am in 1997. The album, reached No. 13 on the Billboard 200 chart, and No. 4 on the Billboard R&B chart. “The Love Scene” was released as a single off of the same album.

The track is about having a sexy love making session alluding to those often shown in a movie. “Let’s make a love scene, steamy and blue, erotic memories for an audience of two, and we’ll make a love scene, let the foreplay begin, and replay each moment again and again and again,” croons Joe. The video, shown in black and white, features the singer as a film director trying to get the perfect scene for his actors until he, frustrated, takes a break to make a love scene of his own.

Enjoy the classic above.

Throwback Tuesday: Xscape – ‘My Little Secret’

The ’90s was soooooooo scandalous and we loved every bit of it! I’d have to say Xscape and TLC made cheating sexy lol.

Xscape was a successful female R&B quartet which began as a quintet. Sticking to the sound of real R&B paired with true vocals, the group had 6 top 10 hit songs on the Billboard Hot 100 during the 1990s including “Just Kicking It,” “Understanding,” “Who Can I Run To,” “Keep On Keepin’ On,” “The Arms of the One Who Loves You,” and “My Little Secret”.

Jermaine Dupri discovered Xscape in Atlanta and signed the female R&B quartet to his So So Def imprint. “My Little Secret” was Xscape’s second single, produced by Jermaine Dupri, from their third studio album Traces of My Lipstick. The song reached No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 2 on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles chart, becoming their last single to reach the top ten on both charts. The song talks about a sexual relationship on “the side” while cheating, with lyrics: everybody cheats, but you gotta know how, you gotta know when; turning into a “little secret” love affair.

This was the last official single by the group before disbanding just after the release of the album. Kandi takes the lead, LaTocha handles the bridge, Tiny takes the second verse and Tamika brings it home with the backing vocals. The song is often noted for Kandi’s high note as well. Directed by Darren Grant, the video with its late-night-special feel, uses dark colors and shadows (so 90s) to accentuate the forbidden nature of the lyrics. The soulful southern songstresses look stunning in what arguably is their best music visual piece.

Enjoy the classic above.

Throwback Tuesday: The Gap Band – ‘Yearning For Your Love’

Now, this is that feel good throwback R&B! Remember when R&B used to make you feel good through vocals, live instrumentation, and lyrics?!

The Gap Band was a R&B and funk band which rose to fame during the 1970s and 1980s. Composed of brothers Charlie, Ronnie, and Robert Wilson, the band first formed as the Greenwood, Archer and Pine Street Band in 1967, in their hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The group shortened their name to The Gap Band in 1973. After 43 years together, they retired in 2010. However Uncle Charlie Wilson continues to tour as a solo act.

“Yearning for Your Love” was the third release off the band’s fifth album, the 1981 The Gap Band III. The song rose to No. 5 on the Hot Soul Singles chart and No. 60 on the Billboard Hot 100. Charlie Wilson’s smooth baritone vocals on the song helped the single become influential to contemporary R&B. The song has been sampled by Nas, Raekwon, Heavy D and many more. The Gap Band has made an unique and indelible influence on generations of music makers.

Enjoy the classic above!

Throwback Thursday: 702 – ‘Steelo’

One thing that’s for sure, is the fact that ’90s R&B groups came out the gate debuting classics.

702, named after the area code of their hometown of Las Vegas, Nevada, was a platinum-selling R&B trio.

“Steelo” was the first single off their 1996 debut album No Doubt. The song, which features Missy Elliott, was premiered on August 27, 1996. The single peaked at No. 25 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and reached No. 12 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles chart. By February 1997 it was certified gold in sales by the RIAA. The group also rerecorded the record with altered lyrics for the Nickelodeon show Cousin Skeeter.

The song contains a sample of The Police’s “Voices Inside My Head.” Enjoy the classic above!