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Usher Raymond celebrated the 25th anniversary of his album My Way by recreating the cover art for the album's singles.

Usher was only 12 when he caught the attention of L.A. Reid, founder of now defunct Atlanta-based LaFace Records.

The R&B crooner released his self-titled debut album Usher in 1994 and his second album My Way in 1997.

My Way spawned three hit singles, "Nice & Slow", and Billboard top 2 singles "You Make Me Wanna" and "My Way."

Kevin Mazur/WireImage

He was 19 when his single "Nice & Slow" became his first number-one hit on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1998. He is pictured with his first Grammy Award.

On Tuesday, the 43-year-old father-of-four unveiled the new cover art for his singles "You Make Me Wanna" and "Nice & Slow."

Usher's My Way, 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition will include a silver vinyl reissue, plus a lyric and photo booklet.

The My Way anniversary edition is set for release in early 2023.

Sandra Rose/Sandrarose.com

16-year-old Usher is pictured with his then-girlfriend, Karon Vereen (Ben Vereen's daughter), and R&B singer Monica, who was 15.

Sandra Rose/Sandrarose.com

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Usher Raymond (right) crowned himself the King of R&B after his former mentor Sean "Puffy" Combs (left) declared R&B "dead."

"I do deserve that," Usher told Bevy Smith on SiriusXM and Radio Andy's "Bevelations."

"King, whatever you wanna call it. Yeah, I've been working to the point where I do own that, and I do deserve that."

Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

The eight-time Grammy Award winner added, "And I ain't gonna ask for it no more. You're gonna give it. Because I did work for it."

Combs made the controversial statement during an Instagram Live, telling music producer Timbaland that "R&B is muthaf–kin' dead as of right now."

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

After Usher signed to LaFace Records as a teenager, Combs took the boy singer under his wing.

Usher is one of the R&B crooners insulted by his former mentor's statement.

Noam Galai/WireImage

"When I do hear people, even like Puff saying, 'You know R&B is dead.' He sounds nuts to me. It sounds, it sounds, it sounds crazy," said Usher.

"You know, especially knowing he was a pioneer in understanding and beneficiary of it. You know, the source that is R&B created the breath of life that was breathed into hip-hop. It wouldn't be. There would be no hip-hop if there were not R&B, so it's blasphemous to hear me say, to hear people say anything, especially hip-hop cats, to say anything about R&B."

Usher added: "That's what R&B is. R&B is timeless, it ain't gonna go away."

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Capitol Records

Twelve-time GRAMMY® Award winner Babyface and multi-Platinum singer-songwriter Kehlani team up on a new track "Seamless," released Friday by Capitol Records.

The song is off his new album, Girls Night Out, set for release on October 21 on Capitol Records.

The album also features Babyface's collaborations With Ella Mai, Queen Naija, Ari Lennox, Doechii and others.

"Seamless" offers a frank look at a night out that's filled with drama, thanks to a partner who always makes a scene. Kehlani takes the lead on vocals, with Babyface on backing vocals. They co-wrote the track with The Rascals (Drake, Chris Brown, Ariana Grande), who produced alongside Babyface.

"I worked with Kehlani many years ago and I am just so proud of who she has become as an artist and also how well she knows herself and her fans," says Babyface. "I am really honored to have her collaborate with me many years later for such a special project and I love the song we created. Kehlani is one of one and a true superstar."

"Seamless" follows Babyface's collaboration with Ella Mai, "Keeps On Fallin,'" which is the first single from Girls Night Out.

Vibe praised "Keeps On Fallin'" as "dreamy" and ThisIsRnB hailed it as a "classic Babyface track, with a modern R&B vibe."
 
Babyface and Kehlani - Seamless

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MNRK Music Group

R&B star K. Michelle's new hit single "Scooch" takes over the #1 spot on both the Billboard (7M+ audience) and Mediabase (8M+ audience) Adult Radio charts for the first time in her career.

Produced by Lil Ronnie, "Scooch" debuted in February and has worked its way up the charts, with airplay growing at radio stations across the country, including cities like Atlanta, Dallas, Chicago, Houston, Charlotte, and more.

In addition, the single has also amassed over 5M+ streams and views combined on DSPs (Apple, Spotify, YouTube, etc.). "Scooch" is K. Michelle's first single off her sixth and final R&B album, I'm The Problem, which releases this fall.

"I'm just excited about putting out music that everyone can relate to," states K. Michelle. "It's time for my new album, I'm The Problem, and I can't wait for you guys to hear it."

Click here to listen to "Scooch."

Watch the music video below, directed by Derek Blanks.
 

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Capitol Records

Babyface and Ella Mai team up for a new single "Keeps On Falling'" out today via Capitol Records. The track is from Babyface's long-awaited ninth studio album.

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Capitol Records

Babyface & Ella Mai collaborate together for the very first time on the timeless new single "Keeps On Fallin.'" With her silky, soulful vocals, Ella Mai extols a longtime lover who can still give her butterflies. Babyface weighs in, reminding her that she's the inspiration for this lasting love.

The dreamy jam interpolates "Can We Talk," Tevin Campbell's 1993 hit, which Babyface wrote and produced with Daryl Simmons.

Download / stream "Keeps On Fallin'" HERE. View the accompanying visualizer HERE.

Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

"When I first heard Ella's voice, I thought, 'what an incredible and distinctive voice, I have to get in the studio with her!'" Babyface recalls. "Well, I did... and it was everything I imagined and more!"

"Working with Babyface was an absolute dream come true for me," says Ella Mai. "To be welcomed and praised by someone so talented and acclaimed, I couldn't have asked for our 'Keeps On Fallin' sessions to be any better. We sang, we wrote, we laughed and we talked. Babyface is so humble and a pleasure to work with, I hope this record is the start of many more."

"Keeps On Fallin'" - which marks Babyface's first release since signing to Capitol Records - is from his forthcoming project. He produced the track with D'Mile (H.E.R., Silk Sonic, Ty Dolla $ign).

Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds is one of the most celebrated creative forces in music. He has contributed to over 800 million records sold and over a billion records streams. He won a total of 12 GRAMMY® Awards and ranks as the only individual in GRAMMY history to be honored as "Producer of the Year" four times.

In 2018, Ella Mai's first single, "Boo'd Up," broke the record for the most weeks at No. 1 of any song by a woman on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay chart. It is now RIAA-certified 7x Platinum.

Source: Press release
 
Babyface & Ella Mai - Keeps On Fallin'

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Motown Records

Today, Sean "Diddy" Combs makes his official return to music with the release of his new single "Gotta Move On" featuring Bryson Tiller.

"Gotta Move On" signals Diddy's decision to finally move on from Cassie Ventura.

"She don't want my love / I guess I gotta move on," Tiller sings.

"You found a new man, so I gotta move on / Guess you got a new agenda, with someone you barely know / I won't say you're wrong, guess you had to move on."

Diddy raps:

"We goin' up, we goin' live
Can't stop, won't stop, told y'all, uh
See me pull up, no problem (Watch it)
I can never ever be no one option (Watch it)
Pull up on me but no blogs (No blogs)
Now you wanna say you wanna talk (Wanna talk)

Get in your bag, stay in your bag
Gotta move on, find peace, serenity."

Listen to "Gotta Move On" HERE, which is the first song released from his highly-anticipated new album under his LOVE RECORDS imprint, in partnership with Motown Records. The song paves the way for more music to come, with his new album due out later this year.

The smooth and seductive track illuminates his latest evolution with its unshakable groove, standout verses, and an undeniable hook from Bryson Tiller. Diddy initially debuted the single with a show-stopping performance at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards.

Beyond inciting buzz globally, the live performance video has already amassed over 2 million YouTube views organically, including a surprise performance of "First Class" by Jack Harlow and the classic "Mo Money, Mo Problems" with Christian King Combs and Teyana Taylor. He also served as Host and Executive Producer of the live awards ceremony, exactly 25 years since he won his first Billboard Award for his debut album No Way Out.

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Motown Records

BET announced that the legendary mogul and cultural pioneer will be honored with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at "BET Awards" 2022. The coveted award honors industry giants who have not only significantly shaped culture through their extensive careers, but who have also been transformative leaders that consistently inspire generations by setting a true standard of excellence.

Not only is Diddy one of the highest-selling artists in history, he is also one of the most accomplished music producers of all time. LOVE RECORDS represents Combs' triumphant return to R&B as an Executive Producer, Curator and A&R of his forthcoming album. Combs will continue his oversight on his successful Bad Boy Entertainment label.

He is a cultural icon, innovator and mogul. In addition to his catalog of hit records, Diddy has produced and creatively shaped the sound for superstars Mary J. Blige, The Notorious B.I.G., Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Boyz II Men, Britney Spears, Kanye West and many more.

LOVE RECORDS will be dedicated to R&B music and will release singles and collaborative projects from a collective of world-class artists, producers and songwriters.

Welcome to the LOVE ERA.

Source: Press release
 
Sean "Diddy" Combs ft. Bryson Tiller - Gotta Move On

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Three-time GRAMMY® Award-winning R&B hitmaker Ne-Yo returns with another stripper anthem, titled "You Got the Body."

"I got the bag, you got the body," sings the iconic songwriter, actor, entrepreneur, and philanthropist.

Most recently, Ne-Yo released a slew of new singles – "Stay Down" [feat. Yung Bleu], "Don't Love Me," and "You Got the Body" – paving the way for his anxiously awaited eighth album, Self Explanatory, due out July 15, 2022.

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Ne-Yo, real name Shaffer Smith, has sold a cumulative 20+ million adjusted albums worldwide. His debut single, 2005's "So Sick," hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was certified quadruple Platinum.

Since then, the Motown Records/Compound Entertainment recording artist has racked up a collection of hits including "Sexy Love," "Closer," "Because of You," "Miss Independent," and "Push Back" [feat. Bebe Rexha and Stefflon Don].

Three of his albums have entered SoundScan's Top Current Albums chart at No. 1. Ne-Yo has also proven to be as powerful with his pen as he is in the studio and on stage.

The Las Vegas native quickly became known as a go-to hitmaker, penning bangers like Rihanna's "Unfaithful," "Russian Roulette," and "Take a Bow," along with Beyoncé's 2006 breakup anthem "Irreplaceable" and songs for such artists as Jennifer Hudson, Usher, Carrie Underwood, and Celine Dion, among others.

Source: Press release
 
Ne-Yo - You Got the Body

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YouTube

K. Michelle dropped her new single "Scooch" just in time for Valentine's Day! R&B superstar K. Michelle is sending lots of love to her fans with the release of her new single "Scooch," out today via MNRK Music Group.

Produced by Lil Ronnie, this mid-tempo feel-good song and new love anthem will have you creating new connections in no time. The Single Black Female star premiered the new single with a performance on the Emmy-Award-winning show The Real (click here).

"Scooch" is the lead single off of K. Michelle's sixth studio album, I'm The Problem, out this spring.

Recently, K. Michelle debuted her new television series, My Killer Body with K. Michelle, via Lifetime. Executive produced by the R&B chart-topper, K. addresses her struggles with silicone injections that almost took her life on the show and attempts to help desperate men and women correct plastic surgery procedures and get their lives back.

In addition, K. Michelle also appeared in the Lifetime TV Movie Single Black Female opposite Amber Riley and Raven Goodwin.

Watch the music video for "Scooch" below.
 

Source: From a press release

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300 Entertainment

Mary J. Blige dropped her new album, Good Morning Gorgeous, today ahead of her historic performance during the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show this Sunday.

9x Grammy award winning and 2x Oscar nominated artist, producer, and actress Mary J. Blige released her new studio album, Good Morning Gorgeous, that can be streamed or purchased now HERE.

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300 Entertainment

The 13-song tracklist includes collaborations with Anderson .Paak, Usher, DJ Khaled, Dave East, and Fivio Foreign. Blige also dropped the music video today for "Rent Money" (featuring Dave East) and directed by Eif Rivera that can be viewed HERE.

The album follows Mary's leading role performance as drug queenpin Monet on Starz's 'Power Book II: Ghost' that won her the NAACP Image Award for 'Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series' in 2021 and the nomination once again in 2022, among other honors.

The release of Good Morning Gorgeous leads into a historic performance this Sunday, February 13th, at the Pepsi Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, CA alongside Dr. Dre, Eminem, Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar.

Blige launched the album campaign with single and video
"Good Morning Gorgeous" along with "Amazing" (featuring DJ Khaled). Since its release, "Good Morning Gorgeous" has been used by fans on TikTok to express and promote self-love, self-empowerment, and self-care with over 40,000 total creates, and is growing 40% every week.

A compilation of select videos can be viewed HERE. The song is also climbing the radio charts, having entered the Top 30 at Urban and is poised for #1 at R&B.

All new music is released through Blige’s own banner, Mary Jane Productions, and in partnership with 300 Entertainment.

Good Morning Gorgeous Track List

    1. No Idea
    2 Love Will Never
    3. Here With Me (feat. Anderson .Paak)
    4. Rent Money (feat. Dave East)
    5. Amazing (feat. DJ Khaled)
    6. GMG interlude
    7. Good Morning Gorgeous
    8. Come See About Me
    9. On Top (feat. Fivio Foreign)
    10. Love Without The Heartbreak
    11. Failing in Love
    12. Enough
    13. Need Love (feat. Usher)

For more information, please visit www.maryjblige.com.

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YouTube/VEZT

Neo-Soul R&B singer-songwriter Davion Farris released his new music video "Sometimes" via Lena Waithe's Hillman Grad Records / Def Jam Recordings.

Hailing from Inglewood California, two-time GRAMMY-nominated singer-songwriter Davion Farris has previously written with and for artists such as Mary J Blige, Tyrese, Trey Songz, Ginuwine, Jill Scott, SiR, and more.

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"Davion is a timeless artist," said Lena Waithe. "He isn't afraid to be vulnerable in his music. And that's why he stood out to myself, Albert, and Tebs as an artist we wanted to sign. He's been a fantastic collaborator and we can't for everyone to hear what we've been cooking up."

"Sometimes is for those of us who give our best and still get knocked down. It's a reminder that we're not alone," said Davion Farris. "This song is about strength in vulnerability. It's OK to acknowledge that in certain moments, you're not OK."

However, fans say "Sometimes" is an ode to the new Black male who is in touch with his feelings and finds strength through weakness.

    "I stumble sometimes
    I lay awake at night
    I drink and I cry
    'Cause I'm only strong sometimes, sometimes

    Took less than my worth
    Put everyone first
    It broke me inside
    That's why I'm only strong sometimes, sometimes"

 

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Instagram

Here is what the press is saying about "Sometimes":

"...lyrics and penetrating vocals to paint a vivid portrait of love and its complications."
~TEEN VOGUE

"...soulful ballad..."
~VIBE

"...the song's lyrics aim to spark self-reflect, encouraging listeners to embrace the times when they're emotionally drained."
~RATED R&B

STREAM "Sometimes" HERE.
 

Davion Farris - Sometimes

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Prince Williams/Wireimage

Rapper Tip "T.I." Harris is thankful that Xscape signed a record deal in 1992 - or he may have never met the Love of his life.

The group, from Atlanta, Ga, signed to Jermaine Dupri's boutique label So So Def in 1992, and released their debut album Hummin' Comin' at 'Cha in 1993.

The album spawned two hit singles "Just Kickin' It" and "Understanding."

The album cover for Hummin' Comin' at 'Cha featured LaTocha Scott, her sister Tamika Scott, Kandi Burruss, and a petite 4-foot-10 powerhouse singer named Tameka "Tiny" Cottle.

In an Instagram post on Oct. 12, T.I. reminisced about the first time he laid eyes on his future wife on the cover of Hummin' Comin' at 'Cha in 1993.

"So as the calendar has made clear it's been 28yrs since this album came out and allowed me to set my sights on the lady of my life. Congratulations Love.... you know we gon go to the moon and back bout this shit of ours & ain't no stopping it!!! I'm proud of you and all that you've done, for the culture and for ME!!! I admire your growth and willingness to accept change for advancement & the greater good of all. I love you to no end... YKWTFGO wit us. This shit ain't for the weak & you've exhibited enormous amounts of strength and resilience on our journey. I honor & respect that. But even before we met and I put you up on this Pimpin... I was a Xscape fan.... that shit ain't changed. Congratulations @jermainedupri & Congratulations to my sisters as well. It's UP!"

Tiny responded in the comments, saying:

"Awe babe..that was the sweetest… msg..U Da 1 sexy!! Married me a legend. I can't thank you enough.. I Fuk'n [Love] U Mr. H!!"

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Getty Images, WENN.com

(L-R): singers Carl Thomas, Donell Jones, and Dave Hollister are joining forces to form a new R&B supergroup.

The R&B veterans, who each peaked in the 1990s and early 2000s, have come together to form The Chi, a nod to their native city of Chicago, Illinois.

The singers each broke the news to fans via social media, alongside a photo of their new group.

Donell Jones wrote:

"New R&B Group 'The Chi'... Yesssss it's happening! The level of music and songwriting will be impeccable and you already know the voices! It's only right for us to come together and represent Chicago and R&B to the fullest (sic)."

"New R&B Group 'The Chi'...," former Blackstreet member Hollister captioned his post. He explained they toyed with the idea of teaming up professionally for over a decade.

"The music... the voices finally coming together to give your ears and hearts what you've been waiting for...we started talking about this in 2009 and now the time has finally come. Brothas I count it an honor and privilege to Rep home with you both! LETS GO (sic)!"

And Thomas, who hasn't released any new music since 2011, simply stated, "Next up! 'The Chi' #soulmusic #R&Bmusic".

No word on when fans can expect new music from The Chi.

The new trio drew comparisons to R&B supergroup LSG, which consisted of vocal powerhouses Gerald Levert, Keith Sweat and former New Edition member Johnny Gill.

Skip Bolen/WireImage.com

Sadly, Gerald died of an apparent heart attack on Nov. 10, 2007 at age 40. His father, The O'Jays legend Eddie Levert (center) joined Sweat (left) and Johnny Gill (right) to perform at the 2007 Essence Music Festival.

Johnny was a successful solo singer before joining New Edition. He is best known for his steamy 1990 hits "My, My, My", "Rub You the Right Way", and "Wrap My Body Tight."

And many ladies lost their panties at Keith Sweat's concerts. He is best known for his hits "I Want Her", "Make It Last Forever", and "Keep It Coming."

LSG released their debut album titled Levert.Sweat.Gill. in 1997. The album was certified platinum with the chart-topping lead single "My Body."

KNNG / BACKGRID

Diana Ross is planning a major comeback with her first album in over a decade. The soul legend has announced plans to release Thank You on new label Decca, distributed by Universal Music Group.

The project will feature 13 songs Ross co-wrote with writers and producers, including Jack Antonoff, Freddie Wexler, Tayla Parx, and Troy Miller, among others.

MediaPunch / BACKGRID

A message to the singer's fans reads:

"This collection of songs is my gift to you with appreciation and love. I am eternally grateful that I had the opportunity to record this glorious music at this time.

"I dedicate this songbook of love to all of you, the listeners. As you hear my voice you hear my heart."

The title track and debut single will be available for streaming and download on Thursday, June 17.

WENN.com

The 77-year-old Detroit-born legend is best known as the lead singer of the iconic R&B group the Supremes, who became one of the world's best-selling girl groups of all time.

WENN.com

The original Supremes (Florence Ballad, left, Mary Wilson, center, and Diana Ross) scored a total of 12 No. 1 hit singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, including, "Where Did Our Love Go", "Baby Love", "Come See About Me", and "Love Child."

Diana Ross embarked on a successful solo career in 1970.
 

Diana Ross - Thank You (Visualiser)
 

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Instagram

R&b singer Ann Marie is free on bail after she allegedly shot her boyfriend in the head in an Atlanta hotel room last year.

The singer's scowling mugshot -- showing off her fiery red natural hair - went viral on social media.

Now out on bail, Ann Marie has a message for her fans who want new music from the R&B beauty.

On Tuesday, Ann Marie posted photos of herself working hard in a recording studio.

"Back At It!!" she captioned the images on her Instagram page.

The Chicago native, real name Joann Marie Slater, 25, was charged with possession of a firearm during commission of a felony and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in the shooting that occurred on Dec. 1.

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Instagram

Sources say she shot the man in cold blood for cheating on her with another woman.

However, Ann Marie claims the gun dropped from her hand and accidentally discharged, shooting her boyfriend in the head. His medical condition is unknown.

Ann Marie's newfound notoriety as a shooter has earned her a legion of fans who desperately need new music from the Chicago songbird.

Question: What's your favorite Ann Marie song?
 

GAB Archive/Redferns

James Burke, pictured right, of the R&B group The Five Stairsteps, died Friday, Feb. 19. He was 70.

His death was confirmed to the Rolling Stone on Tuesday by his brother Dennis Burke, who said the cause of death was pneumonia, according to Variety.com.

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GAB Archive/Redferns

The group was comprised of five of Betty and Clarence Burke Sr.'s six children. (L-R): sister Alohe Jean, and brothers Clarence Jr., James, Dennis, and Kenneth "Keni" Burke.

The R&B group once regarded as "the First Family of Soul" served as inspirations for sibling R&B groups such as The Jackson 5, The Sylvers and the Brighter Side of Darkness.

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GAB Archive/Redferns

The Five Stairsteps's hits included "Ooh Child", "World of Fantasy," and "Don't Change Your Love.

"Ooh Child" was their only single to crack the Top 40 chart in 1970.

The song was ranked at No. 402 by Rolling Stone magazine on its 500 Greatest Songs of All Time List.

"Ooh Child" was covered by Nina Simone, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Kelly Rowland, the Spinners, and more.

Clarence Burke Jr., lead singer and guitarist for The Five Stairsteps, died in 2013 at his home in Marietta, Ga. He was 64.

The youngest brother, Cubie, who briefly joined the group at age 3, died in 2014 at age 49.

Clarence Burke, Sr., died on July 16, 2020, the day before his 91st birthday, in an Atlanta area hospital.

The surviving siblings: Alohe Jean, 73, Dennis, 69, and Keni, 67, all live in the Atlanta area.