Remember the 90s when R&B was at its best? Remember the multiple male artists who were known to wear suits or sports jackets with a shirt with no collar? Think about it…. Ok, I’ll name a few: Al B. Sure, James Ingram, Luther, Freddie Jackson, and so on… While writing this, I suddenly had the image of several of them in a room at the same time. LOL. The temperature would drop several degrees as too many cool brothers would be in vicinity of each other. The aromas of Old Spice, Aramis, and CoolWater colognes would be overpowering. LMAO. Everyone would be doing that “I’m trying to be sexy and smooth at the same time” whisper as they spoke. You would see suits in a rainbow of colors with everyone wearing a white collarless shirt and a contrasting handkerchief. Too funny, but you just visualized it. You know you did.
This blog post is dedicated to some of those smooth brothers that sang all the right words that you didn’t know how to say to your lady. Shiii….you could literally play these songs to do the talking for you. There are plenty to choose from, but below are four that instantly came to mind.
Song #1: Love is Just a Touch Away – Freddie Jackson
I had a hard time determining which songs I was going to discuss, and I especially had a hard time determining which one I was going to discuss first. For those who know Freddie Jackson as more than a reference in a particular Outkast song, you know that this dude had some smooth ass tracks. Real talk – In college, I used to play the Freddie Jackson Greatest Hits CD straight through on some of my “romantic” nights. Well, straight through other than the last song. After several sexy songs, “Christmas Forever” will fuck up any mood. I used to either program every song except for that one, or I would have the stereo remote by the bed in order to fast forward to what was next. LOL….fun times.
The song of subject in particular is definitely one of my favorites. Just start with the title…imagine how cool of a line that would be if you walked up to a lovely lady and said, “Hey girl….you know that love is just a touch away.” LOL. Actually, that would be wack now, but that might have been girl when spitting game was more poetic. Fun times…
My favorite line is “Girl, if you feel I’m wrong…I’ll keep holding on because someday you might change.” Lemme break that down for you. Ready…ok. I take that to say, “Girl, you may not realize that I am what you need in your life right now, but with time, patience, and persistence….you will see that I am the one.” Ehhh….maybe. Thoughts?
Song #2: Kissing You – Keith Washington
If there was a Playa’s Ball equivalent for Male R&B singers of the 90s, Keith Washington would be “King of the Playa’s Ball”. There is no damn doubt! Keith Sweat would not stand a chance (though I like Keith Sweat). This Grammy nominated singer (for this song which was the intro song for the soap opera, General Hospital)……would come out on top as naturally smoother than the rest.
I imagine this dude recording all of his songs while sitting down in a suede chair with unlimited refills of Old Fashions (look it up) and two beautiful sistas rubbing his shoulders. I bet this dude don’t even need deodorant. He is just that cool. He couldn’t be my wingman back in the day…I wouldn’t get any hanging around him. I ain’t sweating a dude like that, but smooth recognizes smooth.
This song though…Kissing You is just one of many times Keith killed it. This “Quiet Storm” track is simple, yet astoundingly poetic at the same time. Fellas, you might wanna type up the words to this one and practice singing it for that special one. Hell, you could probably just hand her the paper and let her read them…in case you can’t sing. Either way, you can’t lose. Of course, this should be a constant track on one of your “I’m in the mood” soundtracks regardless of your age. It is timeless and romantic.
Trust me, you are going to see more of this brother’s songs in future posts. I gotta give props where props are due. Ya feel me?
Song #3: Secret Garden – Quincy Jones, Barry White, James Ingram, Al B. Sure, El Debarge
BEFORE YOU READ THIS next part, you better fix yourself a smooth brown liquor drink, light two candles, and turn down the lights…even if you are by yourself. Hell, I didn’t have to tell you that! When you read the title of one of the “Top Five Timeless Sexy Mixtape Songs EVER”, you recognized greatness and got goosebumps. I mean, you can just play this shit all night on repeat to GET and KEEP the mood going. WHAT?!? I could write a blog post on JUST THIS SONG. (True talk – I walked in the hallway at work and said to one of my co-workers, “Hey, What do you think of Secret Garden?” I ain’t lying, she subconsciously touched herself. (Must’ve been a hell of a flashback she had!)
As you read the names of the “Power Rangers of Smooth Brother Soul”, you know that I am justified in including this one in the post. Quincy Jones, the Conductor, pulled together a helluva all-star cast to drop this panty-wetting, you-what-we-came-to-do track that some of the readers were probably conceived while it was playing…well, maybe some of your young cousins.
Anyway, Jones pulled together Barry White (aka The Godfather of Deep Voice Brothers – RIP) and a whole bunch of cats that solidified light skin dude popularity back in the day. Laugh…you know it’s true. Then Al B. Sure (aka The Shy Sex Symbol) comes in and whispers to you to convince you that you are the right one and that the time is right. Next, you got James Ingram (aka The Soulful One) serenading to ensure you that you can get it whenever…every night. LOL. That brother felt EVERY word that he sang and put his all into it. I ain’t lying. Lastly, El DeBarge (aka Smooth Superhero) comes in and sings the draws off (if they aren’t already off). The others built the ladies up, then this dude goes in for the kill. Listen to the song…you’ll see what I’m saying. Barry White gives his deep commentary around the singers (Show you right!), and it all blends perfectly.
I bet recording the song was a powerful experience. You just can’t put that much smoothness in a studio…at…the…same…time. It ain’t right, man. It ain’t right. I challenge anyone to find a better collabo of men that brought it to you like that! If you say TGT or LSG, sit your ass down and shut up!