Goapele – Dreamseeker
The ethereal Cali-based singer released her vibey EP, Dreamseeker, in 2017 and it definitely made some waves in the R&B world. This project represented a rebirth for the songstress as she stayed true to her soulful roots, but decided to experiment and successfully blend in addictive new modern sounds.
Getting together with BJ the Chicago Kid, on “Stay,” and getting more sultry about love and womanhood on “Take It Over,” Goapele sings each note with grace and ease. Easily, this is one of the veteran singer’s most interesting projects she’s put out in a long time.
Vivian Green – VGVI
This is grown folks music, but nothing about Vivian Green’s latest album VGVI screams old. Serving us a variety of uptempo fun tracks, soulful ballads, and sweet serenades, her album provides the grown vibes without feeling it’s meant for only R&B lovers of a certain age.
Viv’s pure voice combined with carefully orchestrated instrumentals supplies listeners with an experience that transports you to her little world. Her duet, “Just Like Fools” with Musiq Soulchild and uptempo jam “I Don’t Know” will keep your head bobbing all day long.
Letoya Luckett – Back 2 Life
Letoya is finally back! If we weren’t sold on her return to music with her short-film for “Back 2 Life” broken up as episodic music videos, then she definitely sold us with the vocals on this album. The Houston-bred songstress gave fans a new and improved version of herself with the release of her third full length album.
Luckett’s project might have been another one of those albums that flew under the radar for you in 2017, but it’s definitely filled with some undiscovered gems. The title track, “B2L,” which features a Soul II Soul sample and the emotional “In the Name” stand out as must-listens from her album which reminds us that love is a journey not a race.
Tamar Braxton – Bluebird of Happiness
Tamar claims that this is her last album, and we sure hope not, but Bluebird of Happiness would definitely be an acceptable goodbye project from the youngest Braxton. Devout Tamartians can enjoy the songstress’ versatility throughout this album as she showcases those infamous strong vocals and her sassy attitude.
The songstress delivered exactly what we love most from her on her third LP, which only includes one feature from Yo Gotti, “Hol’ Up,” which will definitely make you want to dance. Bluebird of Happiness has multiple strong points including an ode to her parents “My Man,” the gospel laden “The Makings of You,” and the reggae-tinged “Run Run.” Whether you want a ballad, a song that let’s you release your inner ratchet, just something that will help you relax after a long day, Tamar’s album has you covered.
TLC – TLC
This iconic group finally finished that crowd-funded album they promised fans back in 2015, and the result was their self-titled and final album TLC. The album’s lead single “Way Back” featuring Snoop Dogg felt like it was taken straight from the playlist of a ’90s BBQ.
T-Boz and Chilli honored Left-Eye’s legacy by creating this album without any extra features or adding in any unfinished Left Eye verses. Promising to always stay a group, TLC gave fans exactly what they wanted; fun, feel-good music and positive songs that remind women to love themselves and remember that life is meant to be enjoyed.
TLC’s tracks “Haters,” “Joy Ride,” and “Scandalous” will provide all the nostalgia we hoped the Atlanta-based group could still give us all these years later since we first fell in love with them.
Mary did her thing-thing. You urban music professional have to understand that Mary’s ex-man is using her current album as collateral evidence against her in court to make money and to win his case. Kendu is already suffering the karma, by not being able to get a job making anything near 4 million dollars to 400 thousand dollars to even 4 thousand dollars or less a year, because of how he did Miss Mary. So, Mary can only release visuals from the LP, that do not have anything to do with a dog cheating man. And, she released “Thick Of It” when she was still with him. So, to all the boys and girls along with men and women, support Miss Mary by going to her sold-out shows and support all other media that Miss Mary has going on with herself. That’s why us as fans couldn’t get the other five videos from Miss Mary, but once Mary settles her debts with Miss Kendu, we should be getting them. Shhhhittttt, maybe even a dope LL, Puff, Diddy, Snoop, Jay or other legendary rap remix at the top of the year, because Mary has put in 27 years in this music industry and Momma still going strong. – #MaryJBlige – #ATrueLegend
You forgot about Mabel, her mixtape “Ivy to Roses” is pretty good too!
And Kelela’s debut album “Take Me Apart” is worth mentioning as well.
H.E.R. did her thang this year… She might be one of my most favorite female artist of 2017. Lets see if she can keep up the momentum.
Check out our Top 30 R&B Albums List for 2017 here http://www.ebonynsweet.com/2017/12/the-30-top-r-albums-of-2017-ebony-n.html