Annal: 2001 Grammy Award for Best Rythm & Blues Album

Results of the Grammy Award in the year 2001.

Album:Songs in A Minor

Songs in A Minor

Alicia Keys

She may be beautiful, but Alicia Keys is a musician first and foremost. She plants herself firmly behind the piano keys on her debut, unlike many of the booty-waggin’ junior divas who are crowding the R&B videoscape these days. Though many of the tracks on Songs in A Minor are embellished with adolescent angst, this 20-year-old’s substantial, gorgeously soul-drenched alto putties the cracks between notes with astonishing ease. “Fallin’,” the album’s first single, showcases Keys at her best. She wails plaintively and passionately over rolling blues chords,…

Album:Aaliyah

Aaliyah

Aaliyah

Seven years after her debut at just 15 years old, Aaliyah assembled a third studio album that was astonishingly mature. Sadly, her death just a little over a month after its release stilled a promising voice in R&B. At 22, when most artists would just be getting started, Aaliyah had already progressed from pop to street to an unconventional retro-modern, risk-taking version of R&B. While lead track “We Need a Resolution” is as mainstream as it gets, there are fewer hits on this album than on previous efforts. Instead, this collection is an extraordinary romantic…

Album:Acoustic Soul

Acoustic Soul

India.Arie

India.Arie’s Acoustic Soul is just as advertised: grooving soul music with an acoustic bent. Arie herself plays guitar, supplemented by strings (instead of synthesizers) and drums (instead of drum machines). The first single, “Video”, is a calm, confident ode to self-love, comparing the dreadlocked, petite Arie to the average girl in a video. Arie is indeed anything but average: her debut marks the auspicious return of the black female singer-songwriter, in the vein of Me’Shell Ndegeocello, Tracy Chapman and Dionne Farris. If you like their music, with…

Album:No More Drama

No More Drama

Mary J. Blige

Anyone who’s purchased one of Mary J. Blige’s albums understands that the “queen of hip-hop soul” would much rather push artistic envelopes than lick ‘em. With No More Drama, her enlisting of hip-hop’s finest beat-makers to create lush musical soundscapes is nothing short of genius. On the Dr. Dre-produced “Family Affair,” Blige implores the club set to “get crunk ‘cause Mary’s back” as she introduces some new slang to the hip-hop vernacular (“holleration”). “Steal Away” is a classic Neptunes-induced head-nodder in the “Love Is All We Need” vein, as…

Album:Survivor

Survivor

Destiny's Child

One listen to the eagerly anticipated third CD from the world’s biggest girl group and it’s clear there is one child with the most destiny. To paraphrase the hip-hop legends, “Who’s house?” Beyoncé’s house, and with the lead vocalist producing or cowriting all of the 14 tracks, it’s hard to imagine what those other two chicks even do (other than act grateful to still have a gig). Seizing creative control is a bold move for Miss Knowles, and anytime an R&B act eschews the beat of the week, they have to be commended. But the problem is that Beyoncé, even with her…

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