Where is R&B Music Going?
When R&B popped up on the charts back in the 50's, we were listening to influences from gospel and the fast up beats from jazz. The products of the two music, R&B caught on big with the African American audience and has even moved on to broader audiences across the world. In the 60's we moved to more of a "funkadelic style" and R&B became even more outrageous. Toward the 80's we had more of a pop influence and we moved to more of a upbeat sexual sound in the 90's. Here we are in 2011 with songs like "Grind on Me" and "Quickie". Now lets get it straight. There has always been some type of sexual influence in music. Even in rock, pop, rap, hip hop, country. From the earliest forms of these types of music, we have made sexual references, even songs about the feeling. However these days "Three in the morning, you know I'm horny." has really gotten out of control. That can only leave the music lover wondering "Where is our R&B music going?"
If something is not done, I'm afraid we may be hearing a recording straight from the bedroom before long. The generation we are in today has become to infatuated with sex. There have been times when people have attacked the artist, telling them to tone there music down. However many artist have shot down the role model status quo and told the parents to control their own children. A lot of R&B artist today have become just followers of the nearest dollar. That being said, if we want the music to more than just about sex, don't purchase or support the music. This is not to hurt the artist. Through process of natural selection, there music will change. For the most part, they will always cater to what the people want. But walking around saying "Take it take it" only encourages Rihanna to take off more clothes in her next concert.
Don't get me wrong, there are still quality artist out there who prefer to sing about love rather than lust. We have quality artist like Anthony Hamilton, Jaheim, Jill Schott and Ledisi who still have more to sing about than the bedroom. Still we need more. Music is about our life. For a lot of people music is our life. Through music, we have heard almost everyone's story. The heart broken, the lonely, the party goer, the hippie, the gangster, and many more. Music has its' own life. We no longer can let artist get away with saying it's "just a song." Music has never been just a song in the past, and our future generation will continue to love the beats and lyrics just as well, if not more.
Marvin Gaye never strayed away from making love music. Nor did Chuck Berry back in 50's, hence "ding a ling." But one things that separates them from the Pretty Ricky’s of our generation is mystery. Although we discouraged it, a 10 or 11 year old could sing along to the latest Marvin Gaye song with our knowing what was really "going on." if you get my drift.
Now you know the fate of our beloved R&B music. Unfortunately if we don't do something about it downgrade to strictly sex, that's all our future generation will think music better yet life will be about. R&B music is more to us than just a song, and if we want ensure it maintains the soul, joy, and pain of life itself, we have to take action.