R&B Music of 2000s
Top 20 2000s Female R&B Singers
While the nostalgia eras of the 1980s and 1990s were among the most memorable times for R&B music, 2000s female R&B singers brought in a new era of rhythm and blues. From the top R&B artists of the 1990s continuing their legacy, to the launching of careers of today’s top R&B artists, rhythm and blues of the 2000s was a balance between the golden era of the 1990s and the new sounds and cultures of the 21st century.
2000s Female R&B Singers
Following her time with Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé started her journey into becoming one of music’s all-time greats. With her at the lead of the success of Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé would begin a new chapter in her career, releasing three albums during the 2000s, Dangerously in Love, I Am… Sasha Fierce, and B’Day, known for songs like “Crazy in Love”, “Irreplaceable,” “Halo,” and “Single Ladies.”
The Barbados singer rose from a rising star in music to becoming one of the world’s top icons and one of the world’s richest women. Her first introduction to listeners was in 2005 with the release of “Pon de Replay.” Not until 2007’s Good Girl Gone Bad, which featured Jay-Z and the hit “Umbrella,” did Rhianna rise to prominence, becoming one of the top 2000s female R&B singers.
3. Destiny’s Child
The trio of Beyoncé, Kelly Rowland, and Michelle Williams made their debut during the late 1990s, at first as a four-member group. The 1990s was truly successful for Destiny’s Child with the hits “Say My Name”, “No, No, No”, “Bug A Boo”, and “Bills, Bills, Bills,” while their second album The Writing’s on the Wall would reached 8x platinum. The 2000s was a continued success, led by albums Survivor and their final release as a group, Destiny’s Fulfilled.
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4. Mary J. Blige
Growing up in the streets of Yonkers, New York, Mary J. Blige’s music always represented the demographic of strong women, inspiring and influencing millions of R&B fans. Continuing from success during the 1990s, Mary J. Blige did not skip a beat during the 2000s, remaining as one of the top artists of R&B.
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Debuting with her biggest hit to date, “Foolish,” the former first lady of Murder Inc. became one of the top stars during the 2000s, especially through her collaborations, duets, and features with top rap artists that gave her a prominent role in R&B and in hip-hop
6. Keyshia Cole
Crushed on by male listeners, and idolized by female listeners, the Oakland native became a fan favorite during the 2000s, creating her own lane music and abiding by her rules through the development of her own style.
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While the 1990s with music, film appearances, and her starring role on the television show Moesha was Brandy’s most notable time, Brandy carried on her successful career into the 2000s with the release of projects like Full Moon and Afrodisiac. In all, the Mississippi born, and Los Angeles native went from singing backup vocals to becoming one of black culture’s leading women during the 1990s and 2000s.
The release of Miss Thang and its hit single of “Don’t Take It Personal,” along with collaborating with Brandy for one of the most memorable songs of R&B “The Boy is Mine,” led Monica to having one of the biggest names in music during the 1990s. The 2000s was not quite the same, but Monica remained on top of R&B, especially with songs like “So Gone”.
9. Jill Scott
Philadelphia native and R&B and neo-soul artist, Jill Scott made her first appearances after being discovered by Questlove from The Roots. From discovery by the legendary group of The Roots, to receiving numerous awards and nominations, including a few Grammys, Jill Scott became one of the most popular soulful singers of her time.
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Growing up in Washington DC’s DMV area, Mya was introduced to arts at a very young age. After making her leap into music, debuting in 1998 with her self-title freshman release, Mya’s career would peak through the late 1990s and early 2000s with songs like “Lady Marmalade”, albums Mya, Fear of Flying, and Moodring, and collaborations with hip hop artists like No Limit’s Silkk the Shocker, “Best of Me, Part 2” with Jay-Z, and “Ghetto Superstar” with Pras and Ol Dirty Bastard.
11. Keri Hilson
This Atlanta, Georgia native may not have had the most extensive catalog of music, but Keri Hilson would gain success with the release of two full-length albums under top hip-hop producer Timbaland’s imprint of Mosley Music. Known for the hit songs “Knock You Down” and “Pretty Girl Rock,” Keri Hilson would shine as one of the top R&B stars of the late 2000s and early 2010s.
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A former contestant of American Idol, during a time when American Idol was the number one show on television, Fantasia made her run through the gauntlet and became one of the most notable winners, after winning the show’s third season. Since thereafter, she began her solo career, releasing songs like “When I See U” “Free Yourself”, “Truth Is” and “I Believe”.
13. Angie Stone
Another one of the top neo-soul female R&B artists of the 2000s, Angie Stone’s career in music dates back to the early 1980s, beginning part of the hip-hop group The Sequence. Following her time with The Sequence, Angie Stone would later be credited for songwriting and singing vocals for a number of artists, all before beginning her solo career. Debuting with Black Diamond, she would continue to Mahogany Soul, Stone Love, and The Art of Love & War.
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14. Christina Milian
Actress and singer Christina Milian debuted to the world with appearances on the 90s television show Smart Guy, and later in music with Ja Rule’s “Between Me and You”. Only a moment in music, but with her beauty and personality, Christina Milian kept relevancy throughout the 2000s and 2010s.
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Known for her longstanding relationship with P. Diddy, Cassie enter the industry during 2006 with the single “Me & U”. Her debut album, Cassie, saw some success, but her career as an artist would not truly takeoff as other artists of the 2000s, despite still making an impact in music as one of the top 2000s female R&B singers.
16. Kelly Price
The soulful Queens, New York native began her path in music during the early 1990s, but her claim to fame would come later with projects like Soul of a Woman, Mirror Mirror, and Priceless , all leading to numerous award nominations and a respectable career.
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Starring the trio of Kiely Williams, Adrienne Bailon, and Naturi Naughton, 3LW made a name for themselves upon their arrival with “No More (Baby I’ma Do Right)” and “Playas Gon’ Play”, all while working with artists like Nas, Lil Wayne, and P. Diddy.
18. Chrisette Michele
Featuring on the records of a number of hip-hop’s biggest stars, like Kanye West, Jay-Z, Nas, Rick Ross, and The Game, her career as an artist would include chart topping albums like I Am, Epiphany, and Better.
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19. Brooke Valentine
While Brooke Valentine may not be the most notable female R&B star of the 2000s, but her hit single “Girl Fight” was one of the biggest hits of the decade. Following her debut release, Brooke Valentine would go on to work with some of the top southern rap legends, becoming well known during the mid-2000s.
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20. LeToya Luckett
Houston, Texas native and former member of the original Destiny’s Child, LeToya Luckett stepped out on her own with her solo debut LeToya. Over the course of her career, LeToya would become known for songs like “Torn”, “Not Anymore,” and “She Don’t.”
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