Rolling R&B Thread 2017

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I'm starting this because it's more than halfway through the month and no one else did. Sad state of affairs

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 02:57 (three months ago) Permalink

A theory: this year a big R&B "mainstream" rises again in between tasteful NPR approved cred nonsense like anderson paak & scumbag lazy drake karaoke like bryson thanks in large part to Apple Music's R&B selection & increasing #s of A&Rs investing in its development as the industry shakes off the pre-streaming era

i like this

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 03:00 (three months ago) Permalink

Tricky Stewart's new project sounds good

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 03:13 (three months ago) Permalink

The guy behind Location comes up with a far superior follow-up single.

voodoo chili, Wednesday, 18 January 2017 03:37 (three months ago) Permalink


Curious what folks think of this song "Sprung" by Lucas Coly, kind of undecided what I think of him yet, seems talented but maybe a bit of a blank canvas

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 03:50 (three months ago) Permalink

Would be great if 2017 was the year prestige R&B finally shook those mellowed out subaquatic "Marvin's Room"/"4 AM" production tropes for good. The stray Tinashe track aside I don't think there's any life left in that sound. Time to move on to something new.

Would also love to see a commercial resurgence for R&B this year but I don't know that it will happen. Last year was a landmark one for great R&B albums, but the only ones that really got much attention were the ones with overt political subtexts. I don't see that halo effect helping guys like Kalin White or other '17 Omarion equivalents.

Evan R, Wednesday, 18 January 2017 16:12 (three months ago) Permalink

right, what i'm saying is, my prediction is that will happen

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 18:03 (three months ago) Permalink

people are already looking cynically at everyone marketing themselves "politically" after the election anyway

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 18:03 (three months ago) Permalink

Did this latest Jacquees single ever get posted? Has a vintage T-Pain vibe (without the T-Pain shtick obviously)

Evan R, Wednesday, 18 January 2017 22:06 (three months ago) Permalink

Yeah I dig it, feels like it could do something

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Wednesday, 18 January 2017 22:42 (three months ago) Permalink

"location" is kind of good. i wish he didn't sing like that but the production is pretty cool and a bit different. it sorta strikes me as the "caroline" of R&B.

"saved" is alright but it sounds vaguely british to me in a way that is off putting to me. very mercury prize core.

J0rdan S., Thursday, 19 January 2017 22:38 (three months ago) Permalink

that kalin track seems replacement level in a zayn-ish way to me but i'm interested in if there's any juice in that solo career or not. wonder what myles is up to.

J0rdan S., Thursday, 19 January 2017 22:39 (three months ago) Permalink

that thidaniel song is good. i kinda want it to break into a full reggae thing a la "rude" but as a baby's first do you like druuuuuuuugs it's pretty hot.

J0rdan S., Thursday, 19 January 2017 22:42 (three months ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Kinda curious what folks think of Kincy:

south side chicago singer, did some work on bj the chicago kid's album, has a full album up on streaming services right now called 20s.

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Monday, 6 February 2017 15:25 (two months ago) Permalink

any relation to gemini

r|t|c, Monday, 6 February 2017 16:03 (two months ago) Permalink

listened to his album. he's talented, i wasnt bored. more a studio lab ideas guy than concise solo artist maybe... songwriting is adequate and vehicular. kinda simultaneously over and under-focused as a producer; singles sound better out of context cos the dense tinkering comes off as interestingly offguard restless, on album the jodeci weighs too heavy and all its little creativities get blurry myopic. 'mo shots' is a good example, anchorless but great when it does coalesce

r|t|c, Monday, 6 February 2017 17:00 (two months ago) Permalink

Name one song that you wish you wrote?
Anything on the Diddy Dirty Money record.

r|t|c, Monday, 6 February 2017 17:01 (two months ago) Permalink

i also posted this in the mumble rap thread but in the event that there are some who dont crossover between both, RIP dinnerwithjohn aka john walt, a v talented singer

This is a Chicago classic:

he was still developing:

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Thursday, 9 February 2017 16:16 (two months ago) Permalink

some nice stuff on the jacquees & dej loaf valentine's mixtape,like "waves"

lex pretend, Monday, 13 February 2017 13:42 (two months ago) Permalink

and in the year of our lord 2017 did james fauntleroy finally release a dope ass masterful solo thing that didnt go in one ear and out the other. 10/10

r|t|c, Thursday, 16 February 2017 00:44 (two months ago) Permalink

wow, had no idea about john walt. very sad. kemo walk is infectious - the line "i pull up in origami" still cycles through my head all the time. RIP.

anza808, Thursday, 16 February 2017 01:18 (two months ago) Permalink

SZA's collab w/ kingdom on his debut record (one of 2 SZA collabs on the album) is gorgeous:

joshywinty (josh), Thursday, 16 February 2017 22:24 (two months ago) Permalink

here to register my deep unintellectual enjoyment of the new charlie wilson-ish charlie wilson record

the raindrops and drop tops of lived, earned experience (BradNelson), Friday, 17 February 2017 19:46 (two months ago) Permalink

Anybody enjoying the Sampha album? It sounds superb but it's not moving me at all

Evan R, Monday, 20 February 2017 17:23 (two months ago) Permalink

His singles put me to sleep.

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Monday, 20 February 2017 17:27 (two months ago) Permalink

yeah, his voice is an incredible instrument yet somehow the final product feels empty

Evan R, Monday, 20 February 2017 17:30 (two months ago) Permalink

can't stand his voice so the album is a non-starter

the raindrops and drop tops of lived, earned experience (BradNelson), Monday, 20 February 2017 17:44 (two months ago) Permalink

i love "timmy's prayer" but everything else hasn't hit me in the same way

joshywinty (josh), Monday, 20 February 2017 19:00 (two months ago) Permalink

Does anybody else's rap/R&B station play that Bibi Bourelly song all the time? I can't figure out what's going on; it's always prefaced with a spoken intro from Bourelly about the song, and packaged so that it feels like sponsored content. The song isn't actually charting from what I can tell.

My station did the same thing a few years back with Tinashe's "2 On," but that song was a legit hit. "Ballin" is just atrocious

Evan R, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 18:45 (two months ago) Permalink

Ack, so here's what's going on

Inactive since early in the fall, iHeartRadio’s “On The Verge” program is back.

Monday, iHeart identified Bibi Bourelly’s “Ballin” as its new urban radio pick.

In addition to branding support across the iHeart digital networks, “On The Verge” provides selected artists/songs with guaranteed airplay on the iHeartMedia network of stations. While not enough to automatically take a song to #1, the guaranteed airplay gives selections a legitimate chance to connect with listeners.

“Ballin” was up to #39 on this past week’s Mediabase urban airplay chart.

This is nuts. I understand giving a platform to an undiscovered artist to mix things up, but for nearly two months they've been giving constant, national airplay to a song that, as best I can tell, nobody enjoys. It's like they reactivated the program and forgot about it.

Evan R, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 18:57 (two months ago) Permalink

she is very much an industry plant

maura, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 21:19 (two months ago) Permalink

Yeah, like, every part of that song is so extremely cynical, even with out the irony of all those lines about working-class woes coming from a wealthy songwriter to the stars. And her vocal affect is just agony.

Anyway, turns out she's being hyped through the same machine that made Iggy Azalea happen.

But her failure to gain any sort of traction, even with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of free air time devoted to her, makes it all extra sad and obnoxious. Like, it's been eight weeks, maybe it's time to just move on to another artist or song or something

Evan R, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 21:28 (two months ago) Permalink

id like to observe that im actually not mad at the idea of this mechanism, i mean a kehlani record was semi-launched by it too, we all know it's a lot harder for radio to break records the way it once could & im not mad that they have some kind of panic button if it works on occasion

but of course its also just showing that they push some random ass shit

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Tuesday, 28 February 2017 22:42 (two months ago) Permalink

I mean, if they selected a new artist every week or even every other week, it'd be kinda great. A few dozen lesser known artists a year would have some fighting chance at making a name for themselves, and even in a worst case scenario there'd be some gems. Plus it's just always nice hearing new stuff on the radio.

Having the same shitty song force-fed to us for two-plus months though is dreadful, though. Somehow even with all the free airplay, Bourelly's song hasn't even cracked the charts, which tells the whole story. Like, it honestly feels like a clerical error at this point, like corporate decreed this song must be in hourly rotation but forgot to send out the memo saying it was time to move on

Evan R, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 22:55 (two months ago) Permalink

she also played on some awards show- i forget which- as an "emerging talent." (maybe it was the BET awards?)

maura, Tuesday, 28 February 2017 23:38 (two months ago) Permalink

yeah i heard a payola-spin of "ballin'" yesterday (my city's station had been playing it before it had been chosen for it) and ugh the chorus is really awful omg

it's currently at #26 on the r&b/hip-hop airplay chart, so technically it is charting. tho i find it super sad that radio playlists are now so tight that it is extremely hard for a new artist to break through w/o a mechanism like this (especially true at pop and country radio), i'm at least glad that at least some women are getting chosen for it at urban radio, since they've had it rougher than just about anyone.

dyl, Wednesday, 1 March 2017 18:14 (one month ago) Permalink

She's a Marylander and her dad Jean-Paul Bourelly was a guitarist involved with Black Rock Coalition bands, plus she wrote some songs for others first...

After attending Blake High School in Silver Spring, Bourelly moved to Los Angeles to continue pursuing her music career, and the City of Angels delivered on its promise. She penned one of last year’s biggest songs, Rihanna’s “Bitch Better Have My Money,” in addition to several cuts on Rihanna’s latest release, “Anti.”

From a freelancer's Washington Post review

curmudgeon, Thursday, 2 March 2017 14:36 (one month ago) Permalink

Just more background, not defending song or the mechanism that is getting it airplay

curmudgeon, Thursday, 2 March 2017 14:46 (one month ago) Permalink

iheartradio has been doing this for a while...

J0rdan S., Thursday, 2 March 2017 15:05 (one month ago) Permalink

also that song is good

J0rdan S., Thursday, 2 March 2017 15:06 (one month ago) Permalink

lol yeah it's really nbd

r|t|c, Thursday, 2 March 2017 16:49 (one month ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

new chloexhalle mixtape is really nice

maura, Monday, 20 March 2017 01:00 (one month ago) Permalink

quite surprised by how good this single from terribly-named new british r&b boy band mic lowry is

lex pretend, Tuesday, 21 March 2017 12:52 (one month ago) Permalink

i've heard this song on the radio late at night a couple times now and it kinda caught me off guard both times. (yes, it interpolates the soul ii soul classic, but that's probably the least interesting thing about it.) embarrassingly i had forgotten who letoya luckett is but in my defense it's been quite a while since she last made any waves.

(there's a music video too but i didn't embed that b/c there's so much dialog in it)

dyl, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 06:55 (one month ago) Permalink

R.L.UM.R. "Frustrated" is excellent…

veronica moser, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:38 (one month ago) Permalink

whoa, has that guy done anything else? That's really great... savvy mix of modernist stuff and Showtime at the Apollo-wave

Evan R, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:50 (one month ago) Permalink

there's very little info on him… but I hear that song all the time on the radio…

veronica moser, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:56 (one month ago) Permalink

Great recommendations all around itt. That Letoya Luckett track is lovely and one of the rare times an interpolation like that doesn't pull me out of the song

And man that Chloe x Halle tape is a stunner, maybe the best R&B project I've heart this year, up there with Kelhani. They're Beyonce proteges? Love how fast the whole thing moves; such great movement and concision. Weird comparison, but since most of these songs are under two minutes it kinda plays like the alt-R&B answer to that Mannequin Pussy album from last year, just a splatter of brilliant ideas that never pauses. "Poppy Flower" and "Wonder"... man.

Lex, wasn't able to stream that song b/c SoundCloud wants me to have some sort of premium account (gross) to hear the whole thing. Preview sounded cool tho

Evan R, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:58 (one month ago) Permalink

that RLUMR single and the Chloe x Halle mixtape are really great! Went back to CxH's EP from last year too and that's terrific too - you can definitely hear a lot of the precision and detail of Bey's s/t in both.

lex pretend, Thursday, 23 March 2017 13:43 (one month ago) Permalink

i think i LOVE the khalid album

monotony, Monday, 27 March 2017 07:06 (one month ago) Permalink

No word on the new Trey Songz?

self-clowning oven (Murgatroid), Monday, 27 March 2017 22:52 (one month ago) Permalink

ILM's 2017 Rolling R&B Thread Spotify Playlist

Bobson Dugnutt (ulysses), Wednesday, 12 April 2017 03:39 (two weeks ago) Permalink

lol i came back to ilm after a week away and saw how many rolling threads were on new answers and actually thought there might be an interesting reason for that! never mind

lex pretend, Wednesday, 12 April 2017 11:42 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Hmmmm, Bruno Mars...

curmudgeon, Thursday, 13 April 2017 02:56 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i mean, it is an r&b album

the adult r&b station here has been playing his pop hit "that's what i like" a lot lately and it sounds perfectly appropriate right next to mary j. blige's "thick of it" et al so \_(ツ)_/¯

dyl, Thursday, 13 April 2017 16:45 (two weeks ago) Permalink

He is successful across many of the charts, true.

curmudgeon, Thursday, 13 April 2017 16:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Thanks to Lex for the tip-off on the Jacquees & Dej Loaf mixtape – it's very nice.

Mercer Finn, Thursday, 13 April 2017 22:18 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i'm really into this JHud song featuring Babyface and Ma$e from an adam sandler movie

flopson, Saturday, 15 April 2017 23:50 (one week ago) Permalink

Fun song!

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Sunday, 16 April 2017 14:22 (one week ago) Permalink

sounds like sukiyaki

mixed with mariah carey's 'honey' lol

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Friday, 21 April 2017 23:30 (one week ago) Permalink

ironically 'sukiyaki' was covered by ... a taste of honey

Listen to my homeboy Fantano (D-40), Friday, 21 April 2017 23:31 (one week ago) Permalink

This is great. Usually singles that double up R&B singers for added star power don't work at all, but here Jeremih and Chr*s Br*wn get a chance to actually harmonize a bit and they really nail it

Evan R, Tuesday, 25 April 2017 16:25 (three days ago) Permalink

embedded a screwy link up there, sorry about that

Evan R, Tuesday, 25 April 2017 16:27 (three days ago) Permalink

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