I was thinking of what to write about next as I was conversing over the phone with a girlfriend of mine and she brought up the question...what's happened to R&B? It was a good point. Think about the R&B music of yesteryear compared to that of our "R&B" music of today and there is a distinct difference in sounds. First of all what happened to R&B artists like Boyz II Men, Brian Mcknight, Joe, and Maxwell?
Of course we do have artists today like R. Kelly, Anthony Hamilton, Mary J. Blige, Musiq Soulchild just to name a few. However, somehow they have flown way under the radar of music programming selections you hear on your radio. Instead we hear Usher, Chris Brown, Rhianna, Beyonce, and dare I say even...Justin Timberlake. Let's be frank here. Beyonce is not R&B. She's a pop artist. She has a beautiful voice and a strong falsetto but her voice does not have an R&B sound.
As decades progressed from the Jazz era to Motown, R&B music has facilitated a major influence in music that spoke to the soul for people of all races, and not just for Blacks. However, now it just seems like artists are selling their soul---so to speak just to make an easy buck. Or perhaps music for the soul is no longer what people want to listen to. I don't know, but I miss the old school R&B music of our time.