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> 50 Essential R&B/Urban Anthems, as picked by Davidson & ML Hammer95
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Davidson
post Mar 17 2016, 02:42 PM
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So over the coming weeks, ML Hammer95 and I will be offering you what we deem to be 50 of the most essential R&B and Urban anthem of the last ten years. We have both picked 25 of our favourites each so that both of our tastes will be given equal weight throughout and will be offering commentary on the each song to encourage discussion about the tracks!

To make it a bit more interesting we have decided not to just go with the biggest hits but also to include throwbacks, personal favourites and those tracks so critically acclaimed it was impossible to ignore their influence. Again, to try and not make it too obvious we have tried not to include too many tracks by the same artists (although admittedly there are a couple of artists who get a double mention).

All songs chosen will be from the period between 2006-present in order to celebrate the time that BuzzJack has been with us! Even if the tracks were not discussed back then, this gives us the perfect opportunity to discuss and revel in their greatness now.

What tracks would you like to see featured? What still has you dancing all these years later?

HYPE.
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ML Hammer95
post Mar 18 2016, 01:26 PM
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I'll kick things off...

MIGUEL - ADORN
2012
UK: #49, US: #17

One of my favourite R&B tracks of recent years, this manages to be romantic and warm without falling into the realm of cheese. Bubbling synths, a smooth mid-tempo beat and the honeyed vocals of Miguel combined here to create a new wedding dance classic. Released during a time where the big R&B stars were dabbling in dance-pop, this made quite a considerable impact at the time and has since become Miguel's signature song. He's been compared to the likes of Marvin Gaye and Prince and you can definitely hear the influence here.

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Davidson
post Mar 19 2016, 01:08 PM
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So my first pick is...

The Pussycat Dolls - I Hate This Part
2008
UK: #12, US: #11


One of my favourite R&B ballads ever and definitely my favourite song by the girls, 'I Hate This Part' will never get old for me. Rather gutting that it just missed out becoming another top 10 for the band in the two major territories but from what I remember it went on to sell rather well and became somewhat of a slow-burner. The song is just packed with so much melody and it is definitely my favourite Nicole vocal ever. The "I got to do it" parts still give me chills on occasion. The song just acted as the perfect contrast to the fierceness of the previous singles by offering some vulnerability, all be it PCD style.



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Cremey
post Mar 19 2016, 01:45 PM
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This should be good! Expecting to love the majority of these.
I don't envy you having to only choose 25 each haha, so many classics to choose from.
If Kanye / Cassie / Ciara / Future / Kid Cudi / Drake / Nicki / Azeaia Banks / Frank Ocean / Missy all feature I'll be very happy.

Love 'Adorn', can't say I've ever been a big fan of 'I Hate This Part' or PCD in general though really.
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AaronTM
post Mar 19 2016, 02:13 PM
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Both good picks so far, I particularly enjoy the Jessie Ware version of "Adorn" and "I Hate This Part" is one of my favourite PCD songs. Looking forward to seeing who else is in this countdown.
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UltraReputation
post Mar 19 2016, 02:16 PM
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Absolutely adore I Hate This Part, possibly my favourite Pussycat Dolls track and an incredibly beautiful ballad heart.gif heart.gif
Yeah I remember being annoyed it missed the top 10 but it did have a pretty long run!
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MerryFlynnmas
post Mar 19 2016, 02:46 PM
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Both of those really lush cheer.gif
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Dobservance
post Mar 19 2016, 02:47 PM
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Adorn is amazing, needs to be more midtempo R&B like that around.

Sorry, not a fan of that PCD song, one of their worst for me sad.gif
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ML Hammer95
post Mar 19 2016, 04:23 PM
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FUSE ODG - ANTENNA
2013
UK: #7


The first true Afrobeats crossover hit and probably the most enduring. 'Antenna' was originally released in October 2012, but when re-released the following summer became a huge hit. It's not hard to see why - it's three and a half minutes of unadulterated joy and sunshine vibes that sounded as good on the radio as it did out of car stereos, club speakers and house parties everywhere. Still a reliable party starter to this day too. Most thought Fuse ODG would be a one-hit wonder, but he went on to have four more top 10s to date.

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Dobservance
post Mar 19 2016, 04:31 PM
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Major bop dance.gif
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Davidson
post Mar 19 2016, 06:35 PM
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Was meant to give you one of my choices yesterday but was too busy so you're getting two from me today...

Cassie - Me & U
2006
UK: #06, US: #03


Going all the way back to the beginning of the time period allowed, we have what I would argue has become a bit of an R&B staple of the 00's. 'Me & U' was Cassie's debut single and remains her only massive hit, although maybe if she actually got round to releasing some music from time to time she could fix that! I think what is so great about the track is its simplicity; the bassline is one of the most basic I could think of but when layered with her softly delivered vocals it is just complete magic, it couldn't really be any more sexy if it tried. The great execution of again a relatively simple music video makes it even more iconic. Was definitely the song of Summer '06 for me and still remains a personal fav today.

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Mack'sXmasSack
post Mar 20 2016, 08:16 PM
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Good choices there so far. I was so annoyed when 'I Hate This Part' missed out Top10 officially.

Hope to see 'Find Your Love' by Drake on here that was a tune and still is.

What happened to Cassie last time I saw her was in a music video for Chris Brown's 'Crawl'.?

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Davidson
post Mar 21 2016, 02:09 PM
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Usher - Climax
2012
UK: #04, US: #17


Felt like this really deserved it's rightful place here. This is the song that shows just how wonderful Usher could be. I remember when 'Climax' first came out and I instantly fell in love with it; it was so different from the generic dance-pop tripe he had been putting out the years previously and came as a complete breath of fresh air. Classy, melodic and with beautiful falsetto vocals, it really is just a fantastic R&B track and by far my favourite thing released by Usher. Ranking as the #1 best song of 2012 on Billboard and also #2 on the same list by The Guardian, it would appear it is pretty universally loved, and rightly so.

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Cremey
post Mar 21 2016, 08:14 PM
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QUOTE(Mack @ Mar 20 2016, 08:16 PM) *
What happened to Cassie last time I saw her was in a music video for Chris Brown's 'Crawl'.?

She released a(n incredible) mixtape 'RockaByeBaby' in 2013! She plays one of the lead roles in a film called 'The Perfect Match' which has just come out too.
She's my absolute fave, really wish she'd release more stuff :'(

'Me & U' is absolute jam, still sounds so fresh. 'Long Way 2 Go' will always be my favourite (in my top 3 songs ever..) though. She's my most played artist on last.fm by quite a margin heart.gif

'Climax' is great too, definitely Usher's best. Was so glad to see it become the huge hit critically and commercially. +Diplo production obvs means everything.
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ML Hammer95
post Mar 22 2016, 09:04 AM
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Love Me&U and Climax! Now for a huge song...

ROBIN THICKE FEAT. PHARRELL & T.I. - BLURRED LINES
2013
UK: #1, US: #1


What left is there to say about this song? An absolutly mammoth song that became the biggest selling song of 2013, outstripping even 'Get Lucky'. Surely that was in part due to the controversial chorus that engineered debate and think pieces aplenty at the time. Looking back now it's hard to deny the chorus comes across as leering, but the song being banned from certain universities for promoting rape culture seems overzealous. A typically infectious Pharrell beat, a memorable video and a fun vibe make this one of the defining songs of the decade.

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Davidson
post Mar 22 2016, 04:36 PM
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Kelis feat. Too Short - Bossy
2006
UK: #22, US: #16


Released all the way back in January 2006, I am really making use of the 10 year rule on this one. Although not one of Kelis' biggest commercial hits, 'Bossy' is an absolute jam and everytime I hear it it makes me so happy. The chanty chorus is just undeniable and everything about it is so much fun. So much love for the Bangladesh production as well, just has so much attitude and swag. Thinking about it, it kind of reminds me of what Beyonce is releasing recently with regards to the overall vibe and having so many quotable and iconic lyrics throughout. Will always be a fav.

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Dobservance
post Mar 22 2016, 08:04 PM
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Me & U is wonderful heart.gif one of my fave female led R&B tracks.

Climax was a nice change is sound for him but I actually preferred the more generic Scream which followed.

Ah Blurred Lines, whatever anyone says about it I still love it & reminds me of Uni nights out!
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ML Hammer95
post Mar 22 2016, 08:37 PM
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KANYE WEST - BLACK SKINHEAD
2013
UK: #34, US: #69


One of the most influential artists of the last decade, I had to include a Kanye song! When I first heard this, I kind of dismissed it but one of my close mates loved it and it quickly grew on repeated listens. So anthemic and ahead of it's time I think which is only testament to the genius that is Kanye West. There's a rock influence here, but my favourite feature is the drums and the shouting in the background in the chorus, slightly reminiscent of a gorilla in the zoo! Peaked surprisingly high in the UK charts considering its sound. People can hate on Kanye all they want, but when they do I smile and think of songs like these. smile.gif

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ML Hammer95
post Mar 24 2016, 07:42 PM
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Huge crossover song up next...

THE WEEKND - CAN'T FEEL MY FACE
2015
UK: #3, US: #1


One of the biggest songs of the last twelve months worldwide and the moment a star was born. For years, The Weeknd was a critically acclaimed artist, helping to create a more alternative version of R&B focusing on mellow, minimal beats and tales of heavy drug use alongside artists such as Frank Ocean and Miguel. Early 2015, his sultry song 'Earned It' blew up worldwide and significantly raised his profile. As a result, he teamed up Max Martin to create this pop masterpiece! Close your eyes and this could almost be a Michael Jackson song. Despite it's obviously more pop-leaning sound, this wasn't a complete departure for The Weeknd... the lyrics are about his cocaine use. laugh.gif

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Mack'sXmasSack
post Mar 25 2016, 08:56 PM
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Shame this doesn't get played much nowadays 'Climax' this was a fantastic tune.

'Blurred Lines' I echo that statement that this is the defining songs of this decade.

Bossy, Black Skinhead and Can't Feel My Face all ideal R&B/Urban anthems for definite.
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