Best R&B Albums of the First Half of 2008


1 Jul 2008, 5:10

This below is the list of my favorite R&B albums from the first half of 2008, but I haven't checked out enough of the albums released during that period of time and so this is very temporary. Also, although I had first thought of making the list of just 5 best albums, after choosing the five, I found out it was so neo and then decided to add "5 other notables" to include In And Out Of Love and Discipline within the list.

Other higher-profiled releases, such as E=MC2, Here I Stand and especially The Declaration, are not really bad, but at least for now, I don't feel them enough to pick them up here. Furthermore, I'm quite sure that they will, within a year or two, re-release those albums with some new tracks, remixes and music videos and it will be the right time to judge them when the "Deluxe Editions" finally come out.

Among these five albums, Dwele's Sketches of a Man is very new (just released last week) and probably needs more time before it gets properly evaluated, but I love it very much and think it's great because it perfectly embodies what I love about him and his music. He's actually a modern day Marvin Gaye, from various perspectives.

I've noticed that there's something common behind all these top 5 albums; while all being very 60s/70s-oriented and having the retro vibe, they are not just reproductions of retro music but smartly developed it with modern edges. These are perfect examples of what R&B music should be in this turbulent era of urban music. However, I'm not reluctant to appreciate a "reproduction of retro music" as well when it's as good as Duffy's debut album.

5 best albums:
1. Love Behind The Melody (Raheem DeVaughn)
2. New Amerykah Part One (4th World War) (Erykah Badu)
3. Shine (Estelle)
4. Lay It Down (Al Green)
5. Sketches Of A Man (Dwele)

5 other notables:
In And Out Of Love (Cheri Dennis)
Rockferry (Duffy)
Discipline (Janet Jackson)
E-LIFE (Mint Condition)
Tiffany Evans (Tiffany Evans)


  • Di-chy

    sonnycheeebah, Yeah, Mr. Green's latest album is definitely a must-have if it's available. When a legendary soul artist releases new material today, it tends to turn out bland and mediocre, but that's not the case for [i]Lay It Down[/i].

    5 Jul 2008, 16:01
  • thomas922

    heard a few cuts from Al Green's latest..must say I am curious. Usually old legends release crap but...this has some choice trax...

    28 Jul 2008, 6:10
  • Di-chy

    thomas922, I must agree with you that old legends tend to release crap, or something mediocre at best, but Mr. Green wisely took another route and created an album that is strongly "influenced" by his own classic songs. Everyone who worked on this album seems to really love Al Green and his music. (Journal entry that I wrote when I first heard the album)

    29 Jul 2008, 9:48
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