Music has always been my first love. I listen to it all from Motley Crue to 2 Chainz but my favorite is R&B. I’ll take some Bobby Womack, Dru Hill, Usher, Marvin Gaye and R. Kelly any day. This morning when I logged on youtube to play my morning gospel in the corner the Vevo promotional video was Robin Thicke’s “Get Her Back”. After I listened to it a few times I found myself pre-ordering his album Paula. While listening I started thinking about why I love it so much. Reflecting on my life R&B has always been there in the best and hardest times of growing up. Around the age of five my mother was in a world of trouble and I had to go live with my grandmother. The ride to my grandmother’s home is a distant memory, however one thing I can remember is the song she was playing when I arrived. It was Frankie Beverly and Maze’s “Can’t get over you” To this day even with having my mom in life when I hear that song I cry like a baby.
My first breakup I used Total’s second album to heal, when I had my first child I played “isn’t she lovely” by Stevie Wonder, the death of a close relative Stevie was there again with “I never dream you’d leave in summer” and when I became Mrs. Walton there was music again. I walked down the aisle to Charlie Wilson’s “You Are” and danced to “Could” by Brian McKnight. R&B can get you out of funk or let you live in it until you’re ready to let go. When I turn on the radio and hear bang bang, gucci gucci, or some crap about being a man’s mistress for a second I feel like music is doomed. It’s then I have to step outside of the commercial music. It’s an artist Randy Malone from Illinois my husband put me on (lol). He’s a really soulful guy he has events where he tributes real R&B artist, performed with Erykah Badu and Syleena Johnson but the thing that motivated me to follow him was his single “GPS”. In this song he’s trying to get to his woman’s heart. That’s what R&B is about to me love, touching someone’s mind, body and soul.
Of course R&B can get you laid but you run to it so it can speak to your current situation. I asked several of my music lovers why they love Rhythm & Blues here’s what some of them told me. ” What makes me love R&B is the personal connection of the words and sounds to emotions” ” it’s like the artist is talking right to you the essence of being able to feel what someone is saying while they’re singing it is just a pleasure” “It helps you channel your feelings, smile when you’re thinking about someone, and it’s just downright good, good, music especially from the artist back in the day” “I’ve never thought about it, but it sounds so cliche’ but R&B is music for the soul.” For me it’s like a soundtrack for my life from birth until God calls me home. I’ll never forget my first concert seeing Immature wearing airbrushed t shirts and windbreaker pants. The moments when you were at your family reunion and the Al Green “Let’s stay together” intro starts you instantly smile and say heyyyyy. Moments like being heart broken and Mary J’s My Life gets you through it all.
R&B speaks to your soul, it grabs you through the speakers, holds you tight, tucks you in and tells you a story at night. It can make you feel like the sexiest person walking the planet. Sounds so good to you that you’ll forget what was wrong in the first place. It’s universal! So I challenge you the next time you feel like music is doomed, your heart is broken, you can’t take another song your children are playing or you’re upset with your mate throw on some R&B and see how you feel afterwards. For me R. Kelly always does the trick if I need some inspiration or if I just want to make love.
What R&B artist touches your soul?