Female R&B stars vs Mumble Rappers: Who’s here to stay?

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“Only real music’s gonna last.”

Kehlani

Photo: Courtesy of Atlantic Records

SZA, Kehlani, Ella Mai, Jorja Smith, HER, Jhené Aiko—That’s just to name a few of the female vocalists that have taken the world of Contemporary R&B/Neo-Soul by storm in recent years. These ladies have proved that vocals and lyricism are always appreciated. The risqué (if not raunchy) lyrics and somewhat indie-tones are what sets this new wave of R&B apart from the generations prior. Older R&B fans may turn their noses up at songs about being a “side-chick”, the frequent use of the F-word, and explicit music videos, but love it or hate it, it’s in high demand.

Mumble Rap is another relatively new trend that has been at the forefront of Hip-Hop for quite a few years now. SoundCloud and the XXL Annual Freshman List are to thank for bringing artists such as Playboi Carti, Lil Pump, Smokepurrp, and Lil Uzi Vert to fame; Some of which have gained cult-like followings in the process. The Hip-Hop industry can’t seem to get enough of Mumble Rap, for that reason, there’s no shortage of these artists. It’s likely that you’ll see an unfamiliar artist with colourful hair and a familiar style of Rap at least once or twice a week on your timeline.

While both mumble rappers and the leading ladies of Contemporary R&B are very popular at the moment, do either have longevity? Should we accept this as the new generation of Hip-Hop & R&B, or should we expect them to die out in maybe a few years? Perhaps one trend will outlast the other. One thing is certain, real talent never dies.


Words by Brax Chea