Is R&B Dying ?

Damaj'ia Wilburn, Veteran

R&B, abbreviated as rhythm and blues, is a popular music genre that originated in the African American communities in the 1940s. R&B is a genre that combines rhythm and blues with elements of pop, soul, funk, hip hop, and electronic music. The genre features a distinctive record production style, drum machine-backed rhythms, pitch-corrected vocals, and a smooth, lush style of vocal arrangement. On an Instagram Livestream with Timbaland, Diddy declared that R&B is “dead.” That statement had Twitter going crazy for at least three days, stating their opinions on Diddy’s statement. Diddy then took to Twitter to explain his claim of R&B being so-called “dead.” Diddy wrote, “This message is that the R&B game needs more love, Vulnerability, support!!…R&B is not the same as it once was, and everybody can see it.” After Diddy explained his point, artist Brent Faiyaz took to Twitter and said,” Don’t nobody care about music genres anymore…” Chris Brown, also an R&B artist, replied to Diddy, “Respectfully shut up” Most R&B artists disagreed with Diddy and thought Diddy was saying anything for attention.
R&B does not feature as heavily at the top of the ten charts as it once did. Today’s society cares much less about “soft” music, and as R&B music is perceived as mainly emotional love songs, some people choose to decline when it comes to it. At the moment, Rap is taking over on charts and shadowing the R&B Artist that keeps putting out singles and albums. The top-ranked R&B artists as of 2019 that have kept their ranking are The Weekend, H.E.R., Khalid, Jhene Aiko, SZA, Kehlani, Bryson Tiller, and 6lock. These artists are on the top of the charts and have remained there consistently since 2019 when I came to R&B, but the rap artist today still has them beat, outweighing them in numbers such as number of plays, number of albums, number of songs, and buys overall. The new generation is not interested in soft lovey dovey soft music like everybody once was. The new generation likes listening to aggressive rap music. Old R&B is still being heard by their generation when it came out then, and some new generations still listen to it but not as much as the new generation. They have done some poor numbers since Artist like NBA YoungBoy, and Lil Baby constantly drops albums and singles.
Interviewee Julian Brown (12) states, “R&B is not dying, well as long as I have been here, I do not feel like it died. I also do not think rap is taking over R&B, they are two diverse types of music, and I personally listen to both.”
Gally Rich(11th) states, “R&B is dying. I am not a big listener of R&B. I mostly listen to rap. I do not like the love song thing for real, and I rather listen to a rapper rap about love. R&B is too slow, and the beat puts me to sleep. It is not my type of music, and I do not think a lot of people listen to it for real.”
Misa McFarlin(10th) states that “I am very in between when it comes to this, I listen to both honestly I do not really have a preference but sometimes rap speaks louder than R&B at times, but I would much rather listen to R&B in the morning rather than rap, but I do not have a preference.”
Recently there have been talks about Jacquees being the king of R&B, but they have also talked about Usher or Chris Brown. Jacquees and Usher took to Instagram to state how they feel about it and take the crown themselves instead of the people expressing their opinions; Chris Brown has yet to say anything. After Usher was brought into the picture, people saw the charts and saw how Usher had more hits than both