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10 Best '90s R&B Songs

The list of the Top 10 R&B Songs of the '90s features a number of slow jams and sensitive ballads. Vocal groups were a huge part of R&B music during this decade, as acts like Boyz II Men brought perfectly polished harmonies back in style. A number of soulful female acts emerged during the decade as well, from Mary J. Blige to Aaliyah. Here's our rundown of the Top 10 R&B Songs of the '90s, as chosen by AOL listeners.
'They Don't Know'
Discovered by Babyface's wife, who headed a record label at the time, Jon B. went on to pen hits for some of the biggest names in R&B, and released a handful of successful albums. 'Cool Relax' produced the biggest hit of Jon's career, the 1998 ballad 'They Don't Know,' which helped him score a handful of Billboard Music Award nominations.
'Breakin' My Heart (Pretty Brown Eyes)'
Mint Condition broke through in the early '90s with the aid of producers Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, who originally signed the Minnesota sextet. Their debut album 'Meant to be Mint' included 'Breakin' My Heart,' often known by its subtitle 'Pretty Brown Eyes,' which reached the Top 10, thanks to its appealing piano melody and the flexible vocals of Stokley Williams.
SWV, Sisters with Voices, started as a gospel group, but exploded onto the R&B charts in 1992 with their debut 'It's About Time,' which produced no fewer than four Top 10 hits. On 'Weak,' the girls sang about being infatuated with a guy who makes them weak in the knees. The track hit No. 1 on the pop and R&B charts.
Atlanta quartet 112 were one of the most successful acts on Diddy's Bad Boy label. On 'Cupid,' they tried to convince a skeptical woman they had genuine feelings for her. The track from the group's self-titled record showed off their sweet harmonies as they sang, "Cupid doesn't lie, but you won't know unless you give it a try."
'Happily Ever After'
There's no drama or pain in Case Woodard's 1999 single 'Happily Ever After.' The song was a celebration of love in which Case, complemented nicely by female backup singers, expressed a desire to stay with his special someone forever: "I will be your man, your protector, your best friend / Til my humble life is ended and time begins again."
'One in a Million'
Aaliyah's 1996 album 'One in a Million' was one of the first major projects for songwriter/producer Timbaland. With Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, he co-wrote the title track, a slow jam on which Aaliyah sang, "Your love is a one in a million / It goes on and on and on / You give me a really good feeling all day long."
Aaliyah One in a Million
'Before I Let You Go'
Teddy Riley's group Blackstreet have scored hits from all ends of the R&B spectrum, from the edgy, piano-heavy hip-hop track 'No Diggity' to the breezy 'Rugrats Movie' theme 'Take Me There.' On 'Before I Let You Go,' the group revealed its soulful side, tenderly asking, "Before I let you go, can I get a goodnight kiss, baby?"
Blackstreet Before I Let You Go
'I Can Love You'
Mary J. Blige scored more than two dozen hits throughout the decade, but it was 'I Can Love You' that earned the singer a spot among the Top 10 R&B Songs of the '90s. "I can love you better than she can," Blige sings, passionately fighting for her man, while Lil' Kim adds a guest rap in which she asks rhetorically, "Who's gonna make you feel the way I do?"
'Come and Talk to Me'
'Come and Talk to Me' described the universal dilemma of figuring out how to approach a person you like. "I really want to meet you but I'm kind of scared / Cause you're the kind of lady with so much class," sang K-Ci. The track became Jodeci's third straight R&B No. 1 from their 1991 debut 'Forever My Lady.'
'End of the Road'
Topping our list of the Top 10 R&B Songs of the '90s is the song that broke Elvis Presley's 36-year-old record for the most weeks at No. 1. Boyz II Men harmonized beautifully about a relationship that has sadly reached the 'End of the Road.' The 1992 tune logged 13 weeks in the top spot, and paved the way for the group's decade-long dominance of soul music.
Filed under: Top 10 Lists, R&B

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