Tag Archives: Usher

Memorable Lines in Songs: Usher (1997-2004)

Usher debuted way back in early 1990s. But his breakthrough came in 1997 when he broke the charts worldwide with “You Make Me Wanna”. Since then, he’s became one of tge biggest R&B singer around.

You Make Me Wanna
“You make me wanna leave the one I’m with
Start a new relationship with you
This is what you do”
The guy is pertaining to his female bestfriend by which the guy has a girlfriend but he’s falling in love with his bestfriend because of her nice qualities. The guy seems he wants to leave his girlfriend and start to start a relationship with his bestfriend.

My Way
” She likes it my way,My way
You can’t satisfy her needs”
The guy is telling the girl’s ex that she loves him more and that the ex can’s satisfy the girls’ needs.

U Remind Me
” She even smiles, just the way you do.
So innocent, she seemed, but I was fooled
I’m reminded when I look at you, but,”
The guy is trying to move on after his ex cheated on him. He met this new girl and beginning to like her but what’s holding him is the similarity she had with his ex-girlfriend.

U Got it Bad
” Said you act like you’re ready
But you don’t really know
And everything in your past – you wanna let it go”
The guy is not into love but this girl makes him want to change. But something’s holding the guy which is his past.

U Don’t Have to Call
” U don’t have to call
It’s okay girl
‘Cause I’m gonna be alright tonight¬†”
The guy just broke up and instead of lingering in the house, he decided to go out and have fun telling the girl who hurt her he’s fine that night.

Burn
” Deep down you know it’s best for yourself but you
Hate the thought of her being with someone else
But you know that it’s over”
The guy and the girl already ended their relationship but the guy just don’t want to because he doesn’t want to see her with other guy.

Confessions Part II
” The first thing that came to mind was you
Second thing was how do I know if it’s mine and is it true
Third thing was me wishin’ that I never did what I did”
The guy almost don’t want to confess that he hooked up with the girl because of the three reasons mentioned above.

My Boo
” It started when we were younger
You were mine my boo”
This is just a simple story about your first love, which happened when they were still younger.

Lyrics from azlyrics.com
Credits to songwriters

Top R&B Hits 2000-2004

Since 2000, many R&B songs released were upbeat and it is common for rappers and R&B to collaborate and create good songs. Remixes are very common too. Here are the top R&B hits during this period I listed based on its impact and success.

Mariah Carey ft. Joe and 98 Degrees- Thank God I Found You
This song has become Mariah’s last chart-topper before successful comeback in 2005. The beautiful ballad also included R&B singer Joe and US boy band 98 Degrees. The remix version sounds good too, but excluded 98 Degrees.

Sisqo- Thong Song
One of the best upbeat R&B hits during the first half of 2000, Sisqo gained a fanbase through this song. Oh wait, you might’ve heard “livin’ la vida loca”, you heard it right, it was interpolated.

Outkast- Ms. Jackson
This is the first and biggest hit internationally by the hip-hop duo, the song was also one of the best hip-hop songs since 2000s.

Destiny’s Child- Independent Women Part 1
The group just became a trio and it played big success for their career as this ‘girl power’ themed song became one of the longest number 1 hits.

Janet Jackson- All For You
It was a huge comeback for Janet after a high debut and long weeks at number one with this danceable R&B tune.

Destiny’s Child- Survivor
One of the successful “I Will Survive”” songs, this R&B track became one of the biggest hits of 2001.

Alicia Keys- Fallin’
This remains the most memorable song for Alicia Keys for topping the charts. This soulful ballad was one of the best love songs of 2001.

Nelly ft. Kelly Rowland- Dilemma
How about falling in love with someone even committed with someone? This love song just became a 10-week holder at top spot in the US.

Mary J. Blige- Family Affair
This is one of the catchiest and most memorable upbeat R&B tune during the decade. Just hearing the beat, you will know what song is that. It is the biggest hit of Mary J. ever.

Beyonce ft. Jay-Z- Crazy in Love
This song brought Beyonce’s career to great heights as it became her first hit as lead artist. It has become a global hit in 2003.

Aaliyah- Miss You
This was released posthumously and remained one of the top R&B ballads during the period. It is also one of the most known song by Aaliyah.

50 Cent- In Da Club
50 Cent’s success can be attributed to this club hip-hop hit. It helped his LP to go multiple platinum.

Beyonce ft. Sean Paul- Baby Boy
Incorporating Arabic sound in its music, this is how this second chart-topper from Bey was known.

Usher- Yeah!
Consider as Usher’s biggest hit, this helped his “Confessions” LP sell a million in a single week. This is one of the club-ready hip-hop songs during 2000s.

Usher and Alicia Keys- My Boo
Usher’s team up with the talented Alicia Keys has become one of the best and successful duets of 2004.

Some facts from Wikipedia.

Young R&B Artists who hit the R&B Charts during 1990s

During 1990s, there are some young R&B artists who broke the R&B charts with their singles or their albums. Here are some of the young R&B artist who made a mark in their genre.

Brandy
The young singer then made a mark with her debut album securing multi-paltinum status. Her biggest during 1996 was the upbeat “Sittin’ Up in My Room” featured as a single for Whitney Houston movie “Waiting to Exhale”. But her biggest break was in 1998 with “Never Say Never” album which scored two chart-topping tracks. A song with Monica “The Boy is Mine” was one of the biggest singles in 1990s. My favorite track fron her “Have You Ever” which draw similarity to British pop group All Saints’ hit “Never Ever”.

Aaliyah
Aaliyah started very young with her efforts “Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number” and “One in a Million” which gave her multi-platinum success especially in US. She had maintained her success in early 2000s though cut off due to her ttagic demise.

Monica
I never known Monica until her single for Space Jam, the lovely ballad “For You I Will” hit the radio. But prior to that, she already had success with single “Don’t Take it Too Personal”. Her biggest hit though, as mentioned above, was “The Boy is Mine” with fellow young R&B singer then, Brandy. After that, she scored another two number one singles. One of her memorable hits which charted strongly here in Asia (includes the Philippines) was “Angel of Mine” (a UK girl group original).

Usher
Usher has been in the industry when he was younger. But in 1998, his success went further and he even became one of the biggest singers in the US after three top 3 hits. His success continued until the recent years. In 1997, his song “You Make Me Wanna” was huge and I love how he do his choreography especially when he removed his shoes while dancing.

Top R&B Songs 1995-1999

During the second half of 1990s, R&B is slowly chnaging its landscape to more upbeat from the slow jams R&B lovers used to love. Here are the 15 R&B songs I listed that made impact during this era.

Montell Jordan- This is How We Do It
Going back to 1995, I used to hear this hip-hop R&B hit on radio and on MTV. It was very popular then as it became Montell’s signatue song.

Shaggy- Boombastic
The song was also popular as it waa used for a clothing/denim brand. It was very huge then and that one of Shaggy’s biggest hit ever.

Mariah Carey- Fantasy
This is one of the earliest rap-sung collaboration and remix hit, Mariah is slowly going to deeper R&B sound and this track was a chart-topper.

Whitney Houston- Exhale (Shoop, Shoop)
In this song, Whitney Houston showcases lower register of her voice which sounds so relaxing. It was a chart-topping song in some countries which of course included US.

TLC- Waterfalls
This is one of my favorite songs ever because of its simple melody and timely and relevant lyrics. It has become one of the most successful R&B track of the decade.

Coolio- Gangsta’s Paradise
This hip-hop song became Coolio’s masterpiece and was eventually a worldwide and one of the biggest sellers during 1990s.

Bone Thugs N Harmony- Tha Crossroads
The hip-hop group went spiritual this time and was a good formula as it scored them their biggest hit.

Toni Braxton- Un-break My Heart
Toni Braxton came out with another heartbreaking song which was one of the biggest songs of 1997. The song also was one of her best vocalled song.

R. Kelly- I Believe I Can Fly
This could have been R.Kelly’s most notable song with its nice R&B ballad melodies. It is also inspirational for many as it was used as winning piece for some singing competition contestants.

Usher- You Make Me Wanna
This has been one Usher’s earlier hits and the song was too tender and smooth with some guutar riffs on it.

Puff Daddy ft. Faith Evans & 112- I’ll Be Missing You
The song’s chorus was interpolated from The Police’s hit and helped the song become a big seller. It is also a tribute for Notorious B.I.G.

Boyz II Men- A Song for Mama
This is one of my favorite R&B hit during the period it was released as I dedicate it to my mother. It settled to a top ten position then.

K-Ci and Jojo- All My Life
This is a sweet song by a guy for a lady and one of the most favorited love songs in 1998. It went on to become a number one song for the duo.

Brandy and Monica- The Boy is Mine
Brandy and Monica was considered rivals and they fought for the love of a man via this song which was a worldwide smash.

TLC- No Scrubs
After taking a long break, TLC broke the chart with this comeback by which the girls doesn’t want a guy who has nothing.

Some facts from Wikipedia

Memorable Dance Sequences in Music Videos

We rarely see singers nowadays doing their dance sequences on their music videos. A decade ago, most artists inserts dance sequences on their videos which was adorn by many due to the artists’ skills. This is to pay homage to best dancers and singers at the same time.

Beyonce- Run the World (Girls)
The video was known for its heavy choreography. The dance movements which starts with moving her shoulders and known for usage of tap dance inspired some artists performing on TV. The song may performed moderately in the charts but it played a big influence in music.

Backstreet Boys- Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
It’s horror theme was inspired by Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” had a extended dance sequence version. The steps are simple but it is well remembered.

Britney Spears- …Baby One More Time
She was adorn through her talent as singer and a dancer (some may disagree due to her frequent lip synching) and this video is her earliest hit. She’s really a good dancer if you have seen this video for the first time since it is loaded with dance moves.

Usher- Yeah!
I once thought Usher as to be the next Michael Jackson of his talent in dancing, however, his success was not sustained. In this video, we saw his skills and I love how laser light is flashing during the dance sequence.

Michael Jackson- Thriller
This is one of the earliest videos with great dance sequence. The zombie steps had a great influence on a Backstreet Boys video, and considered as one of the best videos of all time.

Jennifer Lopez- If You Have My Love
This is the first ever video of Jennifer Lopez and she had showcased her skills as in the video, where there’s extended dance sequence. She doesn’t even need dancers in the sequence as she did it alone.

NSYNC- Bye, Bye, Bye
The choreography in the video is iconic due to its steps like with strings on their hands being controlled. Such formula was taken for their next song “It’s Gonna Be Me”.

Janet Jackson- Rhythm Nation
The choreography makes it her most iconic in music and considered Janet Jackson as one of the best dancer-singer. It’s military theme, dancing with a chair and some steps influenced other artists in their music videos.

Beyonce- Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)
Considered as one of the best videos ever (became a Video of the Year awardee in VMA), it is just a simple video with plain background. What makes this video iconic is in fact is its simplicty. She danced from the beginning to the end of the video, only with three dancers and an amazing choreography.

Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson- Scream
I picked this as number one because it showcased the siblings’ great talent in dancing and not because it is the most expensive music video ever. It’s sci-fi theme is good but I love their dance sequence.

Top EDM Songs by a DJ

During the last 10 years, we heard how the trend in music has evolved. From late ’90s, pop music dominated the music scene. During the first half of 2000s, R&B music was popular as well as rock tunes (during the success of Linkin Park and Avril Lavigne). At the second half, R&B music was still huge but transformation gradually happened during the late 2000s to dance music.

Behind these dance hits were producers and DJ. They made hits for superstars. R&B singers even followed the trend with the likes of Rihanna, Usher and Chris Brown. However, these DJs and producers recorded their own album and hired other artists to provide vocals. Here are some of the biggest EDM hits from a DJ. The ranking was not made because of sales but by my choice.

Calvin Harris ft. Ellie Goulding- Outside
This was one of the big EDM hits this year. Ellie Goulding’s soothing voice is just perfect for this song.

David Guetta ft. Kelly Rowland- When Love Takes Over
This is one of the first EDM hits in this generation. It was also an entrance for Kelly Rowland to EDM until she went back to R&B. This was a huge number oen hit in UK.

Zedd ft. Foxes- Clarity
This was a big EDM hit from young DJ Zedd. This was a nice love song and even sang but some artists on TV as well as on YouTube.

Icona Pop ft. Charlii XCX
This sounds different from other EDM hits mentioned. It was huge million selling song, which is due to its catchy hook. Thanks to Charlii XCX who played a big part on the song.

David Guetta ft. Usher- Without You
Among in this list, this may be the catchiest but it’s not enough to top this list. However, it opened a way for Usher to sing EDM songs. It propelled to top 10 worldwide.

Avicii ft. Aloe Blacc- Wake Me Up
I love the inspirational lyrics of the song and Aloe Blacc’s beautiful voice is being showcased. So far, this is one of the most successful EDM songs.

David Guetta ft. Sia- Titanium
I may not be a big fan of Sia but he made some of the most beautiful EDM hits. Lyrically, this is the best song because of inspiring inner strength despite the negativity or falsehoods thrown towards you. The song became one of the biggest selling EDM songs and remains a staple in many playlists and also used as commercial music background.

10 Male and Female Duets of the Last 20 Years

When a male and female singer intertwined in a song, they can make a good love song. Hopeless romantic people fall in love with these songs which contributes to their successes. However, there are some duets about broken hearts.

10. Ricky Martin and Christina Aquilera- Nobody Wants to Be Lonely

When you’re longing for someone you love, then this will be a good song for you. It’s Latin power when the two artists as Latin roots. As expected, it was huge in Spanish-speaking countries. It was huge in Asia too.

9. Mariah Carey ft. Joe and 98 Degrees- Thank God I Found You

Mariah did several duets before, while in this song, she’s with Joe and included boyband 98 Degrees to sing in the chorus. This song reminded me of a song by Asian singers, Jackie Cheung and Philippines’ Regine Velasquez because of similar melody of the chorus. Still, this number 1 song Mariah is good to listen to and fall in love to its message.

8. Jennifer Lopez ft. LL Cool J- All I Have

This rap-sung collab from J.Lo and LL may be a sad love but it fits to be in this list. It was about leaving despite loving the person because of mistreatment from the partner. It was number 1 in the charts during first quarterof 2003.

7. Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran- Everything has Changed

It’s romantic when a girl and a guy can play guitar and made a great folk, pop, country love song. Taylor and Ed did a pretty good job with this UK top ten hit.

6. R. Kelly and Celine Dion- I’m Your Angel

This can be considered as a holiday song since this was released during the last quarter of 1998 and included in Celine’s holiday album. But this song is a promise of protection for loved ones. It was huge in US during the holidays.

5. Nelly ft. Kelly Rowland- Dilemma

Falling in love with another one despite in a relationship with someone? This song talks about that. Well, that’s Kelly’s dilemma. The song went to number 1 elsewhere in the world.

4. Pink ft. Nate Ruess-Just Give Me a Reason

This is a great love song about learning to love again despite all the flaws. The combination of Pink’s strong voice and Nate’s fragile voice is perfect. It has dominated the charts and radio and became like an anthem to many.

3. Beyonce ft. R. Kelly- If I Were a Boy (Remix)

It’s not the usual love song you hear, as it is about a relationship of a woman with a man and reversing her role as a man and how to treat the woman. R. Kelly answered in this great duey remix of the song.

2. Alicia Keys and Usher- If I Ain’t Got You

This is one of the best love songs released in 2004. Before Usher invited Alicia for “My Boo”, Alcia took Usher’s assistance to do the male part for this song’s remix. The song talks about everything in this world is nothing without her or his love.

1. Mariah Carey and Brian McKnight- Whenever You Call

This song was not released as an official single but reach the airwaves of some Asian countries. It was a solo of Mariah in the album version, however, recorded as a duet with Brian McKnight since it was co-written by him. It sounds better as a duet with this “I’ll Be There”-esque song. The reason why I picked this as number one because of its lovely lyrics and vocals of the 2 artists.

 

Rap-Sung Collaborations

It started out in the 90s when singers and rappers work together to form a song. A singer may invite a rapper for a rap part of a song or the other way around. Together, they can form a good melody which became a formula for a hit song.

Below is my list of 10 rap-sung collaborations:

10. Beyonce ft. Jay-Z- Crazy in Love

The couple first collaborated when Destiny’s Child appeared in Jay-Z’s song until the two worked together for “03 Bonnie & Clyde” (not on this list) and finally in this song, “Crazy in Love”. The horn sample dominates the entire song and the rap part is catchy and I can’t think how it’s like without it.

9. Nelly ft. Kelly Rowland- Dilemma

Nelly was known for catchy rapping. I mean his way of rapping creates melody especially heard in this song. Kelly Rowland’s part, though, made the song a bigger hit because of its melody.

8. Eminem & Rihanna- Love the Way You Lie

When bad boy rapper meets good girl gone bad singer, it will result to a great collaboration especially in a song about going through a difficult relationship. The huge collaboration resulted into huge success after achieving multi-platinum certification.

7. Fergie ft. Ludacris- Glamorous

What I love about this song is its smooth R&B sound. The rap is good enough to complete the song. Well, it just became Fergie’s second ¬†number one hit.

6. Twista ft. Kanye West and Jamie Foxx- Slow Jamz

This became one of the rap/R&B hits in 2004. I liked the song when I first heard it on radio. The sampling of Luther Vandross’ song made it more effective.

5. Ja Rule ft. Ashanti- Always on Time

Ja Rule always made effective songs during 2000-2003. Her collaboration with Jennifer Lopez and Ashanti were the most notable especially this song. Anyway, what made this song a hit was the catchy chorus.

4. Usher and Alicia Keys- My Boo

Many of you might think there’s no rapper in this song. Nevertheless, there’s rap part of the song done by Alicia Keys after Usher’s intro. It’s a beautiful mid-tempo love song that’s pleasing to listen to.

3. Black Eyed Peas ft. Justin Timberlake- Where’s the Love?

Justin may not have been properly credited in this song but the chorus is the life of the song along with its wonderful lyrics. It eventually became huge back in 2003.

2. Jennifer Lopez ft. Ja Rule- I’m Real (Remix)

The original version of the song is good but the remix version is better. I love how they sing and rap alternately in every line. It was huge at the charts back then.

1. Mariah Carey ft. ODB- Fantasy (Remix)

This is one of the biggest rap-sung collaboration of 1990s. It was also one of the first remixes of hip-hop and R&B. It proved that rap and singing can be effective in music industry.