12 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Before What’s The 411? was released in 1992, commercial soul was largely saccharine—the polar opposite of the rugged hip-hop beats and gritty subject matter pioneered by Blige. Her throaty vocals ache with emotion on uptempo tunes like “Reminisce,” the plaintive new jack swing of “You Remind Me,” and the heart-on-its-sleeve modern soul classic “Real Love.” The combination of edgy street vibe with soaring melodies worked like coffee and cream, deservingly earning her the title Queen of Hip-Hop Soul.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Before What’s The 411? was released in 1992, commercial soul was largely saccharine—the polar opposite of the rugged hip-hop beats and gritty subject matter pioneered by Blige. Her throaty vocals ache with emotion on uptempo tunes like “Reminisce,” the plaintive new jack swing of “You Remind Me,” and the heart-on-its-sleeve modern soul classic “Real Love.” The combination of edgy street vibe with soaring melodies worked like coffee and cream, deservingly earning her the title Queen of Hip-Hop Soul.

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