How Prince's Music Helps Fill the Hole in Our Hearts

Nearly a year after Prince suddenly and shockingly died at his Paisley Park studio in Chanhassen, Minnesota, the world is still coping with his loss. Last April 21, the Internet teemed with videos and images of middle-aged men crying at work, government buildings and city bridges being draped in royal…

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Ones to Watch: Sampha

Last week, Sampha released his debut album. For anyone who has followed the British singer since his breakout performance as the dominant voice on Aaron Jerome’s U.K. garage project SBTRKT, the arrival of Process seems long overdue. It’s not as if Sampha has been entirely absent in…

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10 Best R&B Albums of 2016

If the recent past has brought the excitement of an identifiable movement, whether that be the “alt-R&B” explosion of 2011 or the ratchet R&B of 2014, then this year marked a return of social consciousness. Whether motivated by the “wokeness” of social media, Black Lives Matter…

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10 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2016

Unlike 2015, when Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly landed on hip-hop fans like a copy of David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest, this year brought a surfeit of good-to-great albums and little consensus as to which was the best. Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo may not…

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Sharon Jones Dies at 60

Soul music has lost a bit of the spark that fires it with the passing of Sharon Jones. Jones, who publicly fought pancreatic cancer since her diagnosis in 2013, lost her battle to the disease on November 18. She was 60 years old. It was reported that Jones was surrounded…

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10 Reasons Why Laura Mvula Is Utterly Unique

In her native Britain, Laura Mvula is a bona fide star. In the United States, she’s the kind of secret discovery that fans love. Her 2013 debut, Sing to the Moon, was the kind of left-field wonder that landed onalbums-you-might-have-missed lists, and made writers scramble to describe blend of…

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