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We’re sure you’ve got the memo, this year’s RNB Fridays Live lineup is stacked with all the RNB icons we need for a perfect day of singalongs, and to make this treat even sweeter, they’ve gone and added Brandy to the mix.
It is truly going to be throwback central, and we are buzzing off the fumes of this nostalgia already.
To get you in the mood, we’ve picked out the tracks we are most excited to sing at the top of our lungs when RNB Fridays Live rolls through our city.
Let us know which tunes we’ve missed so we can make sure we have the lyrics locked down.
RNB Fridays Live have turned up the heat a few more notches, revealing that their mystery act is none other than ’90s RNB royalty Brandy. We are absolutely buzzing about the news that we are going to get to hear her sultry vocals in the flesh so you know we’re deep-diving straight back to the ’90s to relive some of her greatest hits in preparation.
If you’re looking for a quintessential Brandy throwback you can’t go past her team up with Monica for ‘The Boy Is Mine’. We already know the melody and hook are immediately in your head just thinking about it. Of course, the 1998 hit is the longest-running number-one female duet in American chart history, scoring the Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group and a trio, nominations for Record of the Year and Best R&B song, and a trio of Billboard Awards. The best part of it all is, that even though Brandy and Monica were good friends, the media was obsessed with their supposed rivalry, and the single exploited that. Another classic case of pitting women against each other.
While we’re soaking up all the ’90s glory let’s go back even further, to 1994, and the first time we were properly introduced to the future superstar with her debut single ‘I Wanna Be Down’. The dance moves, the fashion, the chorus – every part of this is exactly the trip down memory lane we’ve been craving.
With more than four decades in the music industry and 11 albums in her discography, picking just one Janet Jackson song that we can’t wait to hear was a task we weren’t quite ready to face – we aren’t even sure how she is going to narrow down a setlist – so instead we picked two.
Taken for her 1993 album Janet, we can’t go past ‘That’s The Way Love Goes’ as the number one Janet Jackson single we need to hear at RNB Fridays Live. Janet, do you hear us? Please don’t leave this tune out. We’re pretty certain ‘That’s The Way Love Goes’ has a mantle all to itself with all the awards it scored – the Grammy for Best R&B song, Billboard Awards, BMI Pop Awards, American Music Awards, not to mention that stack of nominations it received. Since then it has been covered by the likes of Bruno Mars and ‘N Syn, cited as an influence by Britney Spears and Nelly Furtado, and sampled by some of today’s biggest pop artists. One of the biggest hits of 1993 – and to date, the longest-running number-one single for any member of the Jackson family on the Billboard 100 – it is a truly iconic moment that still well and truly holds up 26 years later.
We told you we had to double up here, but honestly, can you blame us? Almost a decade and two albums later, Jackson dropped the lead single and title track of her seventh album All For You and proved that even with the early-noughties wave of RNB newcomers like Aaliyah, Brandy, and Kelis, she wasn’t going anywhere. Where her previous record The Velvet Rope showed a darker side to Jackson’s RNB-soul sound, ‘All For You’ welcomed a brighter pop sound. MTV called her the ‘Queen of Radio’ after the song’s release, it also won a stack of awards, and was featured on not one, but two, of Jackson’s greatest hits collections.
Using love to spur on change in society, the Black Eyed Peas’s 2003 mega-hit ‘Where Is The Love?’ still stands just a strong as it did now – not only for it’s killer bassline and swooning chorus, but because its universal message rings just as true in 2019 as it did 16 years ago. Three records in and ‘Where Is The Love?’ finally shot the Black Eyed Peas to international attention, kickstarting what has been a monumental rise. Black Eyed Peas clearly don’t take their status as ultimate party starters lightly, and when they throw down ‘Where Is The Love?’ you know it’s going to be huge.
50 Cent seems like one of those artists who, even if you don’t listen to rap, you know every single word to every single one of his hits. And none hit harder than ‘In Da Club’. Taken from his 2003 debut album Get Rich or Die Tryin’, the track became the first of many number ones for the American rapper. With its irresistible bounce, snaking synth hook, and tongue-twister rap that feels like the ultimate success if you get it right. “Go shawty, it’s your birthday” and you know we’re definitely going to be partying like it’s your birthday when ‘In Da Club’ kicks off.
Jjjjjaaaaassssoooonnnnnn Ddddeeeerrruuuulllllooooo. That’s really all we need to say, isn’t it? The song that started it all – part meme, part career-started, whole banger. With its pulsating electro beat and rock undertone, we can’t wait to see the crowd erupt when Jason Derulo breaks out into ‘In My Head’. While its rise to the top may have been slower in the US and Canada, right here in Australia, the success of ‘In My Head’ was immediate. Since becoming the only song to debut at number one on the ARIA charts in 2010, it has gone 7x platinum and is still one of our best-selling singles of all time. To be fair, we don’t care about the sales that much though – we’re just here for the singalongs.
You know what we all really need – a good self-love anthem, and that’s exactly what Keri Hilson was throwing down with her 2010 tune ‘Pretty Girl Rock’. While some might roll their eyes at the confidence Hilson boasts throughout, when she sings “Don’t hate me ‘cos I’m beautiful,” you know she wants the ladies to singalong. The ultimate power tune, this is a full ladies-to-the-front moment and is sure to be a shining light of the whole RNB Fridays day.
Looking back on things, it might be a little strange that in 1999 there was a bunch of 7-year-olds dancing along to Sisqo’s ‘Thong Song’ at their school dances. But hey, we live in Australia, and at the time we all probably thought Sisqo was singing about our favourite summer sandal. Garnering four Grammy noms and a stack of other awards, it was an inescapable hit in every corner of the globe. 20 years later, and ‘Thong Song’ is still a banger – it is undeniable. Clearly Sisqo thinks so too – he performed the song at his wedding last year. It really is the gift that just keeps on giving.
Speaking of songs that soundtrack memorable moments, was there a high school party in 2004 that didn’t feature garages packed full of teenagers waving cans of soft drink in the air while J-Kwon’s ‘Tipsy’ blasted through the speakers of their cd player? Do we remember when, in a 2013 New York Times interview, Kanye West called it his favourite track of all time? It’s a classic – J-Kwon thinks so, Kanye thinks so, we do too. Get ready RNB Fridays Live!
In 2006, even if we had never touched a hundred dollar bill, you can bet we put our hands up. While Fatman Scoop is once again returning to hosting duties for this year’s RNB Fridays event, we couldn’t skip the opportunity to relive this brilliant three-minutes of mid-2000s hip hop glory. Thank us later.
Now that you’ve got a little taste of nostalgia, get ready to experience it all in the flesh. RNB Fridays Live 2019 will land this November. Tickets are on sale via Ticketmaster.com.au.