R&B has really evolved over the past few years, and we’ve seen the rise of sub-genres such as alternative R&B. Artists such as Frank Ocean, SZA, and Kelela deviate from the contemporary R&B and blend in ingredients from hip-hop, pop, and electronic genres. It’s a genre that is always changing and evolving, and that works for me. If you’re a fan of 60’s and 90’s R&B, alternative R&B, and future soul then this list is for you!
Listen to the Spotify playlistHere are 9 of the best artists ahead of the R&B game right now feat. @rayanajay @amberolivier_ @cleosol @thequincat +more! #future #rnb #newmusic Click To Tweet
Unparalleled sensual British soul
Likely to find on bedroom jams, fresh finds, and mellow vibes playlists. Since 2016, she has spent time working closely with producers such as Sonder (Brent Faiyaz) and Masego and released her self-titled debut in February 2018. Recently, she told the 405 how she feels about the current state of R&B.
Jazzy neo-soul with superwoman powers
Likely to find on chilled Soul/R&B, fresh finds, and mellow vibes playlists. Blossom’s jazzy neo-soul inspired voice and meaningful lyrics have found her in the favor of Portland’s underground hip-hop scene. She released her EP, Tease, in 2017. Peep her interview with Earhart here that also includes an exceptionally curated playlist.
Self-described “soul with a sprinkling of pop”
Likely to find on next big thing, acoustic soul or any soul playlists. 19-year-old Kara Marni has been infatuated with music for as long as she can remember. With her adolescent years being soundtracked by classic soul artists, it was on the school run while hearing her mum playing Minnie Riperton’s Loving You that her interest in music was fully realized. The young Brit is about to take over. Start with ‘Golden’ then ‘Curve’ (below) which samples Dusty Springfield’s ‘Spooky’ and effortlessly blends the 60’s with RnB. We dare ya to listen just once.
Silky smooth ethereal RnB
Just thinking about Raveena’s music calms me down. Indian-American RnB singer Raveena emerged on the scene in 2016 with her debut single, ‘You Give Me That’. And last year she released the beautiful and exquisite debut EP, Shanti, which contained stand-out tracks ‘Sweet Time’ (watch the self-directed music video for below) and ‘If Only’. According to Spotify, her highest number of listeners hail from London and it’s no surprise. We all know that England has an ear for that sweet soul. It’s time we catch up. Keep your eyes on Raveena.
Bay Area butter
Next up we give some homegrown Bay Area love to Rayana Jay. Jay is able to deliver lyrically, telling an honest and vulnerable story with the expertise of an old-soul. The 23-year-old R&B/soul singer-songwriter started singing in the choir. Jay’s latest EP, Morning After, was released in September 2017 and we haven’t been able to put it up on the shelf yet. Can’t stop listening to the effortlessly cool “Sunkissed” and “Magic“. On February 14th, she released a 3-track project titled Love, Rayana and we definitely fell in love. So excited to see what will be next for Rayana Jay, definitely one to watch.
Jazz influenced future RnB, future soul, electronic soul…basically the future
With just three songs available on Spotify, JGrrey is already commanding a space for herself in the R&B/Soul realm and ready to take over 2018. She released her second single, ‘Don’t Fade’, in December after teasing us with one of the best Colors performances to date. While JGrrey does that undeniable British ting, blending jazz-tinged soul with production sounds from 2030, what sets her apart is the delicious vocal delivery and an almost grime attitude in her songwriting. And we’re hooked. You’re going to be hearing more from this multi-talented lady in 2018 so be ready. Check out her most recent release, ‘Growing’, below.
Self-described “fantasy soul sound”
Likely to find on chill and future soul playlists. After releasing her debut EP, Galactica, in the fall of 2016, she garnered critical acclaim from outlets like the Fader, Vibe, Okayplayer and more. She was then tapped by JMSN to support him on his recent tour that saw the pair wow crowds across the country. Her second EP, Dreamgirl, was released last year and featured Syd on the track ‘Sticky Situations‘. We love her distinct “fantasy soul sound” and we need more in our lives
Next-level RnB from (not surprisingly) Toronto
Likely to find on fresh finds, bedroom jams, and all of the feels playlists. Her debut album, Nightshade, was released last July and features collabs with some of Canada’s hottest talents including Charlotte Day Wilson (another HGB fave). Her distinct sound of R&B is very refreshing and is delivered in very creative ways. I’m in love with the entire album; the production and vocals are on point. Definitely one to keep an eye on.
Jazz-inspired UK Rnb with honest lyrics
Likely to find on sweet soul Sunday, Starbucks coffeehouse pop, and London soul playlists. Cleo has been part of the UK music scene since her teens but we first discovered the UK soul songstress while listening to Julie Adenuga’s Beats 1 radio show and we been hooked ever since. She stepped back onto the scene after a 5-year hiatus with ‘Why Don’t You’ (below) and released her debut EP, Winter Songs, last month.