Annal: 2004 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary R&B Album

Results of the Grammy Award in the year 2004.

Album:Confessions

Confessions

Usher

A CD is always more compelling when you know it’s lifted from the artist’s autobiography, and that’s certainly the case with Confession, Usher’s first record since 2001’s 8701. The Atlanta singer’s string of hits over the past decade have been decidedly PG-13 rated, almost veering towards teen pop, but he’s changed all that on this co-produced offering, which he claims is “the real him.” It would be too simplistic to just brand this record a break-up record, chronicling his public split with TLC’s Rozonda “Chili” Thomas; it is that, but so much…

Album:Afrodisiac

Afrodisiac

Brandy

After a breakup, childbirth, and a reality show, the one-time teen star finds herself growing up a little more on Afrodisiac. While this isn’t a concept album—the songs aren’t ordered as such—it’s filled with the frustrations and pleasures of Brandy’s past few years. At the same time, her vocals are richer than ever, reaching a Blige-like level of expression on “I Tried” and “Who is She 2 U.” Timbaland’s production on nine cuts anchors the disc; he even makes the title track’s sampled baby, a link to his classic work on Aaliyah’s “Are You That Somebody,”…

Album:Damita Jo

Damita Jo

Janet Jackson

On her eighth studio album, Damita Jo—the title lifted from her middle name—Janet Jackson teams up with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis once again on what is perhaps the most feverish album in her two decade long career. Whether she’s taking the listener on a torrid excursion in the four song island suite, or boasting of her sexual prowess on “Sexhibition’s” word games lyrics, where she tells fans “relax, it’s just sex,” the singer tries hard—maybe too hard—to establish herself as a sexual avatar with portfolio. But in “Strawberry Bounce,” she seems more like a…

Album:Hurt No More

Hurt No More

Mario Winans

Album:It's About Time

It's About Time

Christina Milian

Just when you thought the current surplus of pop princesses would cause the leather-miniskirted bottom to drop out, along vamps Christina Milian with a crackling new CD whose 12 songs outshine “AM to PM,” her 2001 hit. In the Cuban-American Milian, J-Lo has found her heir apparent (not that she was looking): The songs spotlight a similar sex-i-fied energy, jumbling attitude, vulnerability, and a jigger of jadedness into a heaving, R&B-leaning, red-hot heap. The secret is whip-smart production—credit players who have worked with Alicia Keys, J-Lo, and Mariah…

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