Let’s face it: R&B female duets come in few numbers. The reality is what else can two women sing about other than fighting over a two-timing man? While this may be true, R&B’s ladies have found other avenues to take when it comes to approaching collaborations with another female. However sticking to the traditional confrontational record still strikes a chord in R&B fans.
Check out some of our favorite “Woman To Woman” duets of the past 20 years.
“I’m His Only Woman” by Jennifer Hudson & Fantasia
Taking a direct cue from the Shirley Brown’s 1974 classic “Woman to Woman,” these two cycle three American Idol alums went for vocal blows on the Missy Elliott and Jazmine Sullivan-penned duet from Hudson’s self-titled debut. After battling it out on this Grammy-nominated record, we’re still wondering who got Tony in the end.
“Don’t Waste Your Time” by Mary J.Blige & Aretha Franklin
There’s something special about two respective queens in music uniting on a track that compliments their vocal prowess. On this soulful cut, which appeared on Blige’s fourth set, the Queen of Soul provided comforting words to the scorned hip-hop soul frontwoman who has been hurt far too many times by the hands of her lover. This Babyface-produced record earned the two a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group at the 2000 Grammy Awards.
“The Boy is Mine” by Brandy & Monica
Love triangles never turned out well. In 1998, Brandy and Monica vocally expressed the feelings of women who’ve been in those shoes on their catfighting duet “The Boy is Mine.” Their fiery dynamic on this chart-topping track earned the two divas many accolades, including a Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group.
“When You Believe” by Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston
Who said Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston didn’t have love for each other? The top-billing divas of the ’90s put those rumors to rest and reached gold status with their breathtaking duet “When You Believe.” At the 71st Annual Academy Awards, the inspirational recording won Best Original Song. They also took center stage to belt the Babyface-produced ballad.
“Trust” by Keyshia Cole and Monica
The track first appeared as an iTunes bonus track off Cole’s critically-lauded sophomore effort, Just Like You. For the updated version, the Oakland native brought Monica aboard for a stellar performance. It proved a hit, becoming the highest-charting track from Cole’s hopeful follow-up, A Different Me.
“Put it in a Love Song” by Alicia Keys & Beyoncé
Lifted from The Element of Freedom, this Swizz Beatz-helmed uptempo track finds Bey and A revealing a laundry list of expectations that they each want their men to live up to. While the official video never surfaced and probably never will, this drum-heavy track is still a solid collaboration between the two music phenoms.