Music Throwback

What Happened to R&B Duets?

Toni Braxton & Babyface

Is R&B really dead? Not necessarily. 

I don’t agree with the term, “R&B is dead,” it’s more so that real R&B isn’t as appreciated or just simply overlooked. When I say “real” R&B, I’m talking from rhythm and blues to contemporary with gospel & funk influences.

Passionate, soulful music.

Tammi Terrell & Marvin Gaye

I still love collaborations such as, The Isley Brothers featuring R. Kelly & Kelly Price that had you dramatically acting out every verse, Tamia & Eric Benet, Avant & Keke Wyatt, Peaches & Herb, Luther Vandross & Cheryl Lynn, Donny Hathaway & Roberta Flack and more.

Whether it’s male & female, 2 females or 2 males singing with one another, it doesn’t always have to be romantic. They can sing about breakups or simply partying and having a good time. There’s just something about great artists coming together and collaborating to create something meaningful and memorable.

Today, some of the new music that people are calling R&B is not, in fact, Rhythm & Blues, more so Pop. What annoys me is that a lot of the mainstream artists you hear on the radio right now are not singing but just mumbling and just have no soul. And what makes it worse is that they are vocally “challenged.” (I’m being nice here lol)

Donny Hathaway & Roberta Flack

But that’s not to say that there weren’t any non-singers back in the day – because there were! It all just boiled down to who the producer was and who wrote the music. That makes a whole difference!

Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston

This is when I ask the question, “What happened to R&B duets?” It’s rare today, but I always love to hear a nice, classic love song. Recent songs like, “Say So” by Jojo and PJ Morton, who just won a Grammy for Best R&B Song and there’s also “Love Again” by Brandy & Daniel Caesar who was also nominated for a Grammy this year. Songs like those give me hope, but in the meantime, I’ve created a playlist on Spotify of my favorite duets from over the years. So hit shuffle and enjoy a ride down memory lane from old school to recent!

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  1. Great content! Super high-quality! Keep it up! 🙂

  2. DiAnn says:

    Great article ?? Keep them coming!!

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