Sometimes the best new R&B can be hard to find, but there are plenty of great rhythm-and-blues tunes to get into if you have the time to sift through the hundreds of newly released songs every week. So that R&B heads can focus on listening to what they really love in its true form, we’ll be offering a digest of the best new R&B songs that fans of the genre should hear every Friday.
This week, singles lead the way for new releases in the R&B world. SZA and Kali Uchis are at the forefront with a bilingual remix of “Fue Major” that even catches the TDE singer flaunting her Spanish-speaking skills. T-Pain also steps forward with a remix of his own as he calls on BIA to join Kehlani for a new take of “I Like Dat.” As for the album side of things, JoJo returns with 12 vulnerable and honest songs for her Trying Not To Think About It project.
Kali Uchis & SZA — “Fue Major”
While she may not be releasing music that brings us closer to her upcoming sophomore album, SZA’s music outputs have certainly increased over the past year. She recently shared “The Anonymous Ones” for the soundtrack of the Dear Evan Hansen film which came after she delivered “random thoughts” in the form of three songs in August. Now, the TDE singer is back with more and it comes through a remix of Kali Uchis’ “Fue Major,” a new take that finds SZA flaunting her Spanish singing abilities.
T-Pain — “I Like Dat” Feat. BIA & Kehlani
T-Pain has earned himself a comeback record of sorts thanks to “I Like Dat” with Kehlani. The singer shared the record back in May and this past weekend, he delivered a new take of with a help from rising rapper BIA. T-Pain lays a new verse on the song while BIA contributes one of her own that brings new flavor to the song and extends the track’s overall experience.
JoJo — Trying Not To Think About It
A year after giving the world her fourth album Good To Know and its deluxe version, JoJo returns to action with her latest project, Trying Not To Think About It. The new effort, which is labeled as a “capsule EP project,” comes equipped with 12 songs and from start to finishing, JoJo beautifully tackles issues surrounding her anxiety, depressioon, negative thoughts, relationship self-sabotage, and emotional immaturity with honest, vulnerability, and transparency.
Eli Derby — “Gaslight”
LVRN’s youngest act is finally stepping out on his own. Eli Derby first caught this writer’s attention with his rendition of “This Christmas” from the label’s 2020 Christmas album. Since then, waiting for more music was all that one could do and it finally arrived. The 18-year-old arrived with “Gaslight,” a record he says is about making a person feel “okay not knowing what to call their ‘situation.'” He adds “sometimes uncertainty can be exactly what you need in the moment.”
Ryan Trey — A 64 East Saga
Three years removed from his debut project August, an effort that project attention to the Louisville singer/rapper, Ryan Trey displays his growth and maturity with his second body of work, A 64 East Saga. Across 14 songs, Trey only calls on one guest, that being Bryson Tiller on “Nowhere To Run.” Altogether, a homegrown story of love, success, positive and negative changes, and more through Trey’s point of view.
Nija — “Finesse”
Back in August, Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Nija took a step forward in developing her solo career with the release of her debut, “Ease My Mind (Come Over).” More than a month later, she returns with another taste of her artistry through her second single, “Finesse.” Compared to her first release, “Finesse,” flaunts a slower tempo while maintaining a bounce that makes for an enjoyable listen. This record is an emotional note for a past lover who continues to wriggle their way back into her life, despite her attempts to move on to something better and stable.
Mahalia — “Roadside” Feat. AJ Tracey
Two years removed from her career-breaking sophomore album, Love And Compromise, British singer Mahalia is back with a passionate groove with “Roadside” featuring British rapper AJ Tracey. The record finds Mahalia realizing a guy she once thought was better than the rest proved to be nothing but the same. A failed love left her on the side of the road with a bag filled with regrets and frustrations.
Tone Stith — “Something In The Water” Feat. Maeta
Tone Stith gave the world his first project in three years with FWM this past summer. The nine-track effort is a strong body of work from the singer, and it looks like he’s got more for his fans in 2021. With Still FWM? on the way, Tone Stith calls on Maeta for “Something In The Water,” a warm ballad that finds Stith reflecting on a past breakup while Maeta ponders a return to her ex or a journey towards something new. Both let their thoughts run over the piano keys of Carl Thomas’ 2000 classic track “I Wish.”
Samm Henshaw — “Chicken Wings”
British-Nigerian singer Samm Henshaw is just a few months from sharing his new album, Untidy Soul. The project arrives on January 28, 2022, and to build up buzz for it, Henshaw delivers his giddy new single, “Chicken Wings.” The track uses the fried meal as a metaphor for going after the things we love and satisfying life’s cravings.
Derrick Milano — “Die4It”
Last year, singer-songwriting Derrick Milano won a Grammy award for co-writing Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce’s chart-topping “Savage” remix. This year, he inked a deal with Epic Records and began a new journey as a solo act with his new single, “Die4It.” The melodic and airy track is described as a record about accepting “whatever comes with the risks we take” when it comes to relationships. He adds, “The heart of the song protects us from whatever doesn’t serve us well and when we do meet the right woman, it is our responsibility to protect her.”
Elujay & Serpentwithfeet— “Luvaroq”
In just under two months, Bay Area’s Elujay will release his debut album, CRKMVNT. it comes after years of solid mixtapes that have only elevated his status. To begin the campaign towards the release of CRKMVNT, Elujay taps Serpentwithfeet for “Luvaroq,” a track that finds comfort in nostalgia and easygoing corners of life through reggae and dub-style production.
RINI — “Need It”
At long last, RINI is prepared to deliver a full-length project to the world as the singer confirmed his debut album, Constellations, will touch down on October 8. Supported by 12 songs and a sole feature from Wale, RINI gives us another preview of what’s to come with “Need It.” Riding steady kick and upbeat production, the singer confesses his selfish desires and wants for a special woman in his life.
Butcher Brown & Alex Isley — “Remind Me”
Releases from Alex Isley come far and few nowadays, but man, when she does give us new music, it’s always a beautiful thing. The latest example of this comes through “Remind Me,” her collaboration with Butcher Brown. The song itself is a tribute to the legendary Patrice Rushen, a cover they originally debuted last year, but its addition to streaming services allows fans like myself to enjoy it on repeat for however long we desire to.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.