In a world where hype rules everything around us, it’s easy to overlook (and neglect) lesser-known music gems. Some waaaay more slept-on than others, it’s only right that we celebrate essential R&B records that rarely get the praise they deserve.
Here are the ten most underrated R&B songs. Take a look.
Destiny’s Child “Get On The Bus”
Timbaland was light-years ahead of his time on this mind-bending single off the “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” soundtrack. Released 15 years ago, it could drop today and be a game-changer.
Co-Ed Feat. T.I. “Roll With Me (Remix)”
Sooooo many body-rolls and slow grinds were done to this. SO MANY. Not quite a “hit” nationally, this ATL classic embodies everything you LOVE about the city and late-’90s R&B.
Ginuwine “Only When Ur Lonely”
The lusty jeans intruder and his silky baby hairs were FED UP on this low-key classic slow jam. ’90s Ginuwine + Timbaland? Undefeated.
Solange “I Decided”
Always “Beyonce’s little sister,” never Solange—gorgeous style maven/refreshingly-eclectic artist—she proved she had “it” with her slept-on “Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams” album.
Tevin Campbell “Alone With You”
Tevin really wasn’t playing with this ’90s slow grind essential. The vocals, the hook, the mood? Timeless. In ’91, it was “hot” but never was the hit it should’ve been.
Dave Hollister “Destiny”
The criminally-underrated crooner sang for his LIFE, Halo, Angel wings, spot in Heaven—everything—on this record. “Chicago ’85…The Movie?” R&B/Soul classic.
Raheem DeVaughn “You”
Radio Raheem’s crowning achievement as a DOPE Neo-Soul artist-turned-cliché R&B zombie. Pure audio gold.
702 “I Still Love You”
This Neptunes-produced gem dropped at the wrong time on a widely-ignored album but will forever JAM. Without this, your music collection is incomplete.
When you say “R&B group Subway,” most people think about “This Lil’ Game We Play” but “Fire”—“FIRE”—that was thee jam on the lowest of keys.