CHART CHECK: Leela James’ ‘Fall For You’ Album Debuts In Top 10 + John Legend’s ‘You & I’ Makes Hot Entrance


There hasn’t been much change on the charts in the last two weeks. Jason Derulo, John Legend and Pharrell Williams are pretty much the dominating forces on the charts right now.

Find out the latest chart positions of your favorite R&B singer’s album and singles below in this week’s edition of Chart Check.

Dates range from: July 10 – July 17 (Billboard)


Billboard 200

There were two R&B albums that made it to the top ten of the Billboard 200 this week. Sam Smith’s new album “In The Lonely Hour” remains at No. 3 for a second week.

Meanwhile, Trey Songz’ hit album “Trigga” came in at No. 4, selling 34,490 copies during its second week of sales. The album is Songz’ second No. 1 album of his career.

Michael Jackson’s posthumous album “Xscape” rises three spots this week at No. 18. The album has been on the chart for 9 weeks.

John Legend’s highly successful album “Love in the Future” jumps eight spots this week to No. 31. On the other hand, Pharrell Williams’ new album “G I R L” slips six spots at No. 35.

The public isn’t here for Robin Thicke’s “Paula” album. The album only sold 7,205 units during its second week of sales. This week Thicke’s project dives 32 spots to No. 41.

August Alsina’s debut album “Testimony” falls 21 spots to No. 44. Jason Derulo’s latest album “Talk Dirty” slips eight spots to No. 54.

Bruno Mars’ “Unorthodox Jukebox” continues to get buzz. After 83 weeks on this chart, Mars’ sophomore LP rests at No. 65.

Soul singer Leela James’ new album “Fall For You” debuts at No. 69. The album includes features from Anthony Hamilton and our Rated Next Artist Joe Ryan. Hopefully, the album will rise on the chart with James now starring in TVOne’s “R&B Divas: LA.”

Photo credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Photo credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Hot 100

For the most part, the Hot 100 chart remains untouched this week. Ariana Grande’s new single “Problem” featuring Iggy Azalea rests at No. 3. Meanwhile, British singer Sam Smith’s hit single “Stay With Me” remains idle at No. 5.

Jason Derulo’s Snoop Dogg assisted track “Wiggle” dances in place this week at No. 6.

John Legend’s love ballad “All of Me” rises one spot to No. 7. The song has been on this chart for 40 weeks, peaking at No. 1. His follow-up single “You & I (Nobody in the World) makes a hot debut at No. 66

Tinashe’s debut single “2 On” featuring Schoolboy Q moves nine spots to No. 27 (last week: No. 36.)

Usher’s comeback single “Good Kisser” continues to fade away on the Hot 100. The song drops 14 spots to No. 79 (last week: No. 65.)

Other Hot 100 songs
No. 22 – Chris Brown – “Loyal”
No. 25 – Trey Songz – “Na Na” (last week: No. 21)
No. 30 – Jason Derulo – “Talk Dirty”(last week: No. 24)
No. 34 – Justin Timberlake – “Not A Bad Thing” (last week: No. 26)
No. 55 – Michael Jackson – “Love Never Felt So Good”(last week: No. 54)
No. 56 – Pharrell Williams – “Come Get It Bae” (last week: No. 58)
No. 71 – Jeremih Feat. YG – “Don’t Tell Em” (last week: No.78)
No. 79 – Usher – “Good Kisser” (last week: No. 65)
No. 92 – Trey Songz – Foreign  (last week: No. 84)


Independent Albums

According to Billboard, this chart is the week’s top-selling albums across all genres, sold via independent distribution, including those fulfilled via major branch distributors. Titles are ranked by sales data as compiled by Nielsen SoundScan.

Leela James’ fifth studio album “Fall For You” debuts at No. 12 this week. Meanwhile, Joe’s “Bridges” album drops ten spots to No. 16 (last week: No. 6).


Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs

Just like the Hot 100 chart, there wasn’t much change to Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart this week.

Jason Derulo and Snoop Dogg continue to “Wiggle” at No. 2. John Legend’s number one single “All of Me” holds at No. 3 for another week. Pharrell Williams’ is still “Happy” at No. 4.

Chris Brown’s fans are still “Loyal” to his single. The song moves up one slot to No. 5 this week. Meanwhile, Trey Songz’ club banger “Na Na” dips to No. 6 (last week: No. 5).

Tinashe’s debut single “2 On” peaks at No. 7 this week after being on the chart for 16 weeks.

John Legend’s new single “You & I (Nobody in the World)” makes a hot debut at No. 18.

Jeremih’s YG assisted single “Don’t Tell Em” increases four slots to No. 20. On the other hand, Usher’s “Good Kisser” dives six spots to No. 23.

Other Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs
No. 13 – Michael Jackson – “Love Never Felt So Good” (last week : No. 11)
No. 14 – Pharrell Williams – “Come Get It Bae” (last week: No. 13)


R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay

Chris Brown’s single “Loyal” featuring Lil Wayne and Tyga reclaims the number one spot week. R&B veteran Usher’s new single “Good Kisser” slides to No. 3 after being No. 1 last week.

Jhene Aiko’s heartfelt tune “The Worst” sails two spots from No. 5 to No. 7.

“Partition” by Beyoncé hold the No. 8 spot for a second week.

“2 On” by Tinashe enters the top ten at No. 9. This also serves as the song’s peak position on this chart.

Other R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay Songs
No. 13 – Pharrell Williams – “Happy”
No. 14 – John Legend – “All of Me” (last week: No. 15)
No. 15 – Michael Jackson – “Love Never Felt So Good” (last week: No. 16)
No. 17- Jeremih feat. YG – “Don’t Tell Em” (last week: No. 22)
No. 22 – Trey Songz – “Na Na” (last week: 19)
No. 25 – Trey Songz – “Smartphones” (peak position, last week: No. 29)

Photo credit: Warner Bros Records
Photo credit: Warner Bros Records

R&B Streaming Songs

No. 1 – Jason Derulo – “Wiggle” (last week: No. 1)
No. 2 – John Legend – “All of Me” (last week: No. 3)
No. 3 – Pharrell Williams – “Happy” (last week: No. 2)
No. 4 – John Legend – “You & I” (Debut)
No. 5 – Jason Derulo – “Talk Dirty” (last week: No. 5)
No. 6 – Ty Dolla $ign – “Or Nah” (last week: No. 7)
No. 7 – Chris Brown – “Loyal” (last week: No. 4)
No. 8 – Trey Songz – “Na Na” (last week: No. 6)
No. 9 – Tinashe – “2 On” (last week: No. 8)
No. 10 – Trey Songz – “Foreign” (last week: No. 11)


Top 10 R&B Albums

1. Trey Songz – “Trigga”
2. Michael Jackson – “Xscape”
3. John Legend – “Love in the Future”
4. Pharrell Williams – “G I R L”
5. Robin Thicke – “Paula”
6. August Alsina – “Testimony”
7. Leela James – “Fall For You”
8. Beyonce – “Beyonce”
9. Jennifer Lopez – “A.K.A.”
10. Justin Timberlake – “The 20/20 Experience (2 of 2)”


Top Adult R&B Songs

No. 1 – Michael Jackson – “Love Never Felt So Good” (last week: No. 1)
No. 2 – Pharrell Williams – “Happy” (last week: No.3)
No. 3 – John Legend – “All of Me” (last week: No. 2)
No. 4 – Kelly Price – “It’s My Time” (last week: No. 4)
No. 5 – Usher – “Good Kisser” (last week: No. 8)
No. 6 – Jhene Aiko – “The Worst” (last week No. 7)
No. 7- Joe Feat. Kelly Rowland – “Love & Sex Part 2” (last week: No. 5)
No. 8 – Robin Thicke – “Get Her Back” (last week: No. 6)
No. 9 – Kem – “It’s You” (last week: No. 9)
No. 10 – Tank – “You’re My Star” (last week: No. 10)
No. 11 – DJ Cassidy Feat. R. Kelly – “Make The World Go Around” (last week: No. 11)
No. 12 – Trey Songz – “What’s Best For You” (last week: No. 12)
No. 13 – Shaliek – “Ain’t Supposed To Cry” (last week: No. 13)
No. 14 – Sam Smith – “Stay With Me” (last week: No. 16)
No. 15 – Marsha Ambrosius – “Run” (last week No. 14)
No. 16 – John Legend – You & I (last week: No. 15)
No. 17 – Ledisi – “Like This” (last week: No. 17)
No. 18 – Toni Braxton & Babyface – “Roller coaster” (last week: No. 18)
No. 19 – Avery Sunshine – “Call My Name” (last week: No. 21)
No. 20 – Dave Hollister – “Spend The Night” (last week: No. 20)

(Source: Billboard, Hits Daily Double)

Keithan is the founder/editor-in-chief of Rated R&B

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What a Time: 20 Memorable ‘Sessions @ AOL’ Performances (R&B Edition)

Sessions @ AOL may have launched in 2002, but its presence was felt more in 2003 as the way we hear and see our favorite artists online started changing at a rapid speed. From the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) going to legal war with individual music file-sharers ( Napster, ) to the launch of Apple’s iTunes Music Store, the options for consumers to follow their beloved artists started to become more difficult. But Sessions @ AOL made this easier.

Brought to us by AOL Music, the mini-concert experience became an outlet for artists to perform their past and presents hits in a more up-close and intimate way. Similar to MTV-Unplugged, many artists have sung acoustic and stripped down versions of their popular songs and album gems. Artists even sat down to dish on their latest albums ahead or after its release.

After 10 years of special performances, exclusive interviews and some name changes (AOL Sessions, AOL Music Sessions), the intimate concert series ended abruptly in 2013.

While others (Walmart Soundcheck and Yahoo! Pepsi Smash) have attempted to capture their own exclusive studio performance moments, nothing beats holding the house phone hostage so no uses it so you could use dial-up to watch your faves spill the tea on their album and sing your favorite cut track.

In the spirit of nostalgia, we compiled a list of 20 memorable performances from the online music concert series. (Sidenote: Can you guess how we ranked the list? The answer is at the end)

Mario – “How Could You” (2005)

Mario brought his underrated vocals to Sessions @ AOL to perform his top-20 hit “How Could You” from his Turning Point album.

Keri Hilson – “Let Me Down / Beautiful Mistake” (2011)

Following the release of 2010’s No Boys Allowed, the singer-songwriter stormed Sessions to sing cuts off the new album including “Beautiful Mistake.”

Chrisette Michele – “Be Ok” (2009)

Fresh off the release of her album Epiphany, Michele revisited her I Am era with a sensational performance of “Be Ok.” The uptempo number won a Grammy in 2009 for Best Urban/Alternative Performance.

Keyshia Cole – “Love” (2005)

Sporting her signature orange hair and a casual outfit, The Way it Is singer belted her powerful ballad “Love” for online viewers.

Monica – “It All Belongs to Me” (2012)

While this Rico Love-written track is a duet with Brandy, the New Life vocalist stripped down the record and took it on alone with some help from three backup singers.

Jennifer Hudson – “I Remember Me” (2011)

There are not many artists who can sit on a stool, sing their hearts out and still be on key. Jennifer Hudson is one of them. She delivered a stellar performance of “I Remember Me,” the title track of her 2011 album.

Tyrese – “Stay” (2012)

Tyrese accepted an Open Invitation to AOL Sessions in 2012 where he performed his soulful tune “Stay.” The song spent 11 consecutive weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult R&B Songs chart.

Ashanti – “Rock wit U (Awww Baby)” (2003)

The then-Murder Inc front-women was on point with all aww babies for her first time at Sessions. And catch how Ashanti barely opened her eyes during this performance of “Rock wit U (Awww Baby).” We love a dizzy queen.

Faith Evans – “I Love You” (2005)

The First Lady had viewers in their feelings with “I Love You” from her 2001 album Faithfully. Did you peep Meelah, lead singer of 702, singing backup?

Toni Braxton – “He Wasn’t Man Enough” (2005)

The sultry tone diva came to Sessions to promote material from her Libra album. She also revisited The Heat era and sung “He Wasn’t Man Enough” alongside her sisters Trina and Tamar Braxton.

Fantasia – “Bittersweet” (2010)

Donning a black dress with silver shoulder embroidery, the Back to Me singer left it all on stage with her mind-blowing performance of “Bittersweet.” She reprised the emotionally charged ballad with more personal lyrics.

The-Dream – “I Luv Your Girl” (2013)

The Radio Killa paid a visit to AOL Sessions in 2013 to promote IV Play. While there, the versatile musician dropped the auto-tune and bared his natural singing voice for his wavy performance of “I Luv Your Girl” off his debut album, Love Hate.

Ne-Yo – “So Sick” (2006)

The singer-songwriter had us “So Sick” with his first-ever AOL Music Sessions visit. The heartbreak song topped several Billboard charts including the Hot 100 for two consecutive weeks.

Chris Brown – “Winner” (2006)

The young Breezy had girls all over the world screaming at their computer screens with his performance of “Winner” off his self-titled album.

Brian McKnight — “Back to One” (2003)

Brian McKnight was one of the first R&B artists to grace the AOL studio. He performed his classic song “Back at One” from his 1999 album under the same name.

Earth Wind & Fire – “The Way You Move” (2005)

Supported by a full band, the legendary group got us out our seats to dance along to “The Way You Move” from their 2005 Illumination album.

Kelly Rowland – “Like This” featuring Eve (2007)

Ms. Kelly invited rapper Eve to perform their fierce collaboration “Like This.” Hopefully, no one hurt themselves trying to reenact this dance number.

John Legend – “So High” (2004)

Seated behind his instrument of choice, Legend had us levitating as he wonderfully sung “So High” from his debut album, Get Lifted.

Alicia Keys – “Unthinkable (I’m Ready)” – (2010)

Alicia Keys rarely steps from behind her piano to perform music. But she did for the majority of her 2010 Sessions to perform past and present tunes including “Unthinkable (I’m Ready)” from The Element of Freedom.

Mary J. Blige – “Take Me As I Am” (2005)

It was all or nothing at all with the Queen of the Hip Hop Soul’s moving performance of “Take Me As I Am” from The Breakthrough.

Rihanna – “Unfaithful” (2007)

The Unapologetic artist starred on the Sessions for three album eras: A Girl Like Me, Good Girl Gone Bad and Rated R. Her amazing performance of “Unfaithful” in 2007 is a standout though.

Beyoncé – “Me, Myself and I” (2008)

Although she was there to promote B’Day and its singles (“Irreplaceable”), it was Yoncé’s breathing performance of “Me, Myself and I” alongside her incredible background singers The Mamas that stole the show.

Give up yet? The list of performances was ranked by the artists’ number of Grammy nominations. Beyoncé has the most (63) nods out of all the artists featured on this list while Mario and Keri Hilson have the least (2).

Monica’s ‘The Boy is Mine’ Album: Every Song Ranked 20 Years Later

On July 14, 1998 — just three days shy of the third anniversary of her debut album Miss Thang — Monica released her sophomore effort The Boy is Mine. The album was named after her uber-successful duet with fellow R&B teen Brandy who had released her second album a month prior.

While the title track was issued as the lead single for both vocalists project, they both followed up quickly with their own respective solo singles. “The First Night,” Monica’s second (first) single, was sent to radio a day before LP’s release date.

For The Boy is Mine, the 17-year-old singer defined the new batch of songs a “natural progression” from her debut. “I was 13; the themes weren’t as mature,” she told Billboard in a 1998 interview. “I’m trying to portray a more assertive young female. It’s fine to be a teen female, but there are certain decisions they must with assurance. I’m 17 now; my lyrics aren’t sexually explicit but are about love and being in love. I speak on those subjects for what I know them to be.”

Monica’s newfound maturity, enhanced confidence and tender outlook on relationships resonated with those in and out of love. The Boy is Mine entered the Billboard 200 at No. 8, selling 91,000 copies in its first week sales. The 13-track LP garnered multi-platinum success and a grand total of three number one singles (“The Boy is Mine,” “Angel of Mine” and “The First Night”) on the Billboard Hot 100.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Monica’s album The Boy is Mine, Rated R&B has ranked the songs from minimal rotation (worse) to heavy (best) rotation.

13. “Take Him Back”

Every album has its fillers and I guess this dull recording slipped through the track list cracks.

12. “‘Cross the Room”

Out of the LP’s 13-tracks, this party-starter anthem is definitely one that finds the crowd telling the DJ to turn it all the way down.

11. “Gone Be Fine” featuring Outkast

Even with tight production and a brief appearance from Outkast, something is still missing from what was supposed to be a bomb collaboration.

10. “I Keep It To Myself”

It’s a good song but the melody and chilled production of this dreamy slow jam sounds too similar to records from Xscape’s catalog.

9. “Right Here Waiting” featuring 112

Evidently, Monica’s then-label Artista had a point to prove to listeners and critics with a second cover of another classic. To be honest, it wasn’t necessary. It was an enjoyable remake, though.

8. “Misty Blue”

Monica deserves an applause for her stirring rendition of Dorothy Moore’s signature selection.

7. “Ring Da Bell”

Before Beyonce rang the alarm, Monica made noise with this Dallas Austin-produced track. On the verses, she used a slow and deliberate vocal approach to get her point across to her disrespectful lover.

6. “Inside”

On this emotionally-triggering ballad, Monica does a fantastic job flaunting her vocal range as she discusses the matters of the heart.

5. “Angel of Mine”

After listening to Monica’s two other covers on this album, this remake is in a league of its own. Her vocal poise almost shares similar singing moments of big-name vocalists.

4. “Street Symphony”

Like first impressions, the opening track on an album can set the tone for the rest of the project. As expected, Monica kept fans interested in hearing more of the album but not without getting us to press repeat on this underrated gem.

3. “The First Night”

Jermaine Dupri was in his bag with this one and Monica knew it. That’s why she rode the So So Def beat with a level of sophistication and street edge.

2. “The Boy is Mine” duet with Brandy

Yes, collecting numerous accolades and going number one is great but the question has always remained: who won the vocal catfight on this record? Let’s just say, “The song might be yours, but the album title is mine.”

1. “For You, I Will”

Ahead of Monica’s duet success with her teen counterpart, Monica had already bagged her own crossover hit. The Diane Warren-penned ballad, from the Space Jam soundtrack, solidified her place in pop culture.

Did we get the order right? Let us know.  Follow An’Twane on Twitter at @9thwonderofPR.

Tinashe Drops New Song ‘Like I Used To’

Tinashe reflects on old love on her new song “Like I Used To.” On the Hitmaka-produced cut, Tinashe sings about the reality of moving on from a breakup.

“Never be the same / Won’t trust you like I used to, yeah / Wake up in the morning I can’t fuck you like I used to, yeah,” she sings on the chorus.

Fans have speculated “Like I Used To” is about Tinashe’s ex-boyfriend Ben Simmons, who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers in the NBA.

Earlier this year, Tinashe released her sophomore album, Joyride on RCA Records.

Listen to “Like I Used To” below.

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