What Is R&B Music?

So, I’m finished recording 5 songs (so excited!!) and I’m in the process of mixing them.

I’ve listened to them a thousand times or more, and while I always find something I want to do over (the perfectionist in me) I’m left with another problem.

I never really thought about this until now.

See, the music I listen to most — Michael Jackson, Earth, Wind & Fire, Mariah Carey, Lauryn Hill, Stevie Wonder — it’s a good mix of R&B Soul.

And because R&B is pretty much all I listen to, I always thought of myself as an R&B artist.

But looking at the top R&B charts, I don’t really match what’s charting.

So, I googled it…

R&B By Definition

R & B
noun: R & B; plural noun: R & Bs; plural noun: R & B’s
1. short for rhythm and blues.
2. a kind of pop music of African-American origin with a soulful vocal style featuring improvisation.

Okay, I’m good there.

But when I pulled up the top R&B songs on Spotify the # 2 spot was Silento with Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).

Not me at all.

Is the definition changing?

Many of the R&B charts combine both Hip Hop and R&B. When did that happen?

I’m not sure R&B is really R&B anymore.


What is R&B music to you? Who do you consider R&B? I’m curious to know what you think. Let me know in the comments.