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, The Weeknd leads the way with the arrival of his new single, “Take My Breath.” The track kicks off a new era for the singer, one that sees him ditching the red suit and battle scars that his After Hours project featured. On the album side of things, Tinashe touches down with her fifth album 333, a project that stands out brightly in her catalog. Lastly, Victoria Monet blesses us once again with her brand new single, “Coastin.'”
The Weeknd – “Take My Breath”
Months after The Weeknd concluded his After Hours era, the singer is also back in action with a “new dawn” for his loyal fan base. It comes in the form of his new single, “Take My Breath.” Arriving as a blend of his Starboy and After Hours sounds. The new song also comes with a video that sees the singer in pursuit of a woman who literally takes his breath away.
Tinashe – 333
Two years after impressing the world with Songs For You, Tinashe takes another level upward with her artistry with her fifth album, 333 Backed by help from Jeremih, Kaytranada, Buddy, Kaash Paige, Wax Motif, Absolutely, Quiet Child, and KUDZA, Tinashe beautifully showcases her vocals and versatility towards an array of sounds throughout the project’s 16 songs.
Victoria Monet – “Coastin'”
Victoria Monet is not one to sleep and her phenomenal 2020 project Jaguar is absolutely evidence of that. Nearly a year to the date of that project’s arrival, the singer returns with “Coastin,'” a funky tune that captures her feelings for a new partner as well as that for her home state of California. “It’s made for people with that good, chill energy and the bassline instantly puts you in a certain feel,” she said in a press release about The Stereotypes-produced single. She added, “We wanted this song to represent that freedom to finally go outside.”
India Shawn – “Don’t Play With My Heart”
Joining a trio of singles that she’s shared over the last year, India Shawn returns with yet another song that’s absolutely worth listening to. “Don’t Play With My Heart” arrives as a stern warning to a companion she’s slowly falling in love with. “Don’t play with my heart,” she sings with soaring vocals. “Before we let this go too far.” In a statement about the song, Shawn said the video for the new single “pays homage to the original and iconic queens of soul, like Donna Summer and Diana Ross.” She adds that her intention is to “serve a fresh and nostalgic take on their legacies.”
Jorja Smith – “All Of This”
After a two-year wait that followed the release of her impressive debut album Lost & Found, Jorja Smith returned with her Be Right Back this past spring. The 8-track effort was showed the singer did not lose a step in her progress in the two years since her debut. Now, she’s back with “All Of This,” a track produced by Grammy-nominated producer DJ Guilty Beatz. It sees dive into the Amapiano genre, a style of house music that was birth in South Africa.
Zacari – “Rainy Day” Feat. Isaiah Rashad & Buddy
It’s been a while since Zacari, one of the newer acts on TDE’s vast roster of talent, delivered music to the world. His last project came in 2019 with Run Wild Run Free while his last singles arrived during TDE’s Appreciation Week in 2020. At long last, the Bakersfield, California-bred act returns with his first single of the year, “Rainy Day.” The track features Buddy and labelmate Isaiah Rashad and arrives as a gritty tune that emphasizes staying ready for life’s inconviences.
Reggie Becton – “Issues”
After impressing with his 2020 EP, Thank You For Listenin’, PG County’s own Reggie Becton is back with new content and it comes in the form of a new visual for his latest single, “Issues.” The video captures the rise and fall of love for the singer. High moments between Becton and his lover are quickly succeeded by turbulent times that make a future together appear more and more unlikely.
Ayra Starr – 19 & Dangerous
Earlier this year, Afropop singer Ayra Starr arrived with her self-titled debut project and just six months removed from its release, Starr graces the world with her second body of work. 19 & Dangerous blends R&B soul, and Afropop for a tale of growth that arrives as the singer prepares to exit the teenager status for adulthood. Across its 11 songs, the young singer calls on Foushee and Ckay to help her detail her transition out of adolescence.
Lion Babe – Rainbow Child
Two years after they released their sophomore album, R&B duo Lion Babe is back in action with their third body of work, Rainbow Child. Singer Jillian Hervey and producer Lucas Goodman deliver nine new songs with contributions from Ghostface Killah, Siimbiie Lakew, Oshun, and Trinidad James for a project they say was created “in response to the heightened pain and injustice Black lives have been experiencing.”
Rikki — “Is It Over?” Feat. Moneybagg Yo
New Rochelle, New York singer Rikki delivers another bright moment for her career thanks to a brand new visual with Moneybagg Yo for her single, “Is It Over?” The song itself personifies the questions one has around love while searching for the truth through it all. The single comes after the Murder Inc. singer was accompanied by Ja Rule for a remix of her previous track, “Heartbreaker.”
Amon, PJ Morton & Smooth Blaq – “All My Life”
San Diego act Amon has seen plenty of success after early struggles in his career. He’s served as an opening act for DJ Khalid, Amine, and A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie while gaining popularity for his viral track, “Lately.” Now, he finds himself contributing to City Of Ali, a documentary about Muhammad Ali, with his latest song, “All My Life” with PJ Morton and Smooth Blaq.
Vedo — “Yesterday”
Eight years ago, Vedo was taken under Usher’s wing during the fourth season of NBC’s The Voice. Since then he’s written for the legendary singer, attained a platinum single of his own, and worked with other artists as well. All of this occurs as he continues to progress upward in his own career as his latest single, “Yesterday,” is proof of that. On the soulful track, Vedo seeks to move from the past failures with an old lover despite their insistence on remaining stuck in the past.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.