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Neo soul
Stylistic origins Soul music
Contemporary R&B
Hip hop
Urban contemporary
African music
Cultural origins Early 1990s, United States
Typical instruments Guitar - Bass - Electric Piano, - Organ -Drums - Vocals - Synthesizers - Horns - Drum machines - vocals(Rap, Poetry)
Mainstream popularity Late 1990s – early 2000s[citation needed]

Neo soul is a sub-genre of contemporary R&B or poetry with music[citation needed]. The music itself is usually a hybrid of 1970s-influenced soul music with influences from jazz, funk, hip hop and occasionally house music, although since 2000 there are also elements of broken beat and L.A. electro-soul hybrids along the lines of J Davey)[citation needed].

The term neo soul was initially coined by Kedar Massenburg of Motown Records in the late 1990s as a marketing category following the commercial breakthroughs of artists such as D'Angelo, Erykah Badu,India.Arie, and Maxwell[1].



20th Century

In the USA, some consider the genre to have been influenced by the 1970s-era work of artists such as Roberta Flack, Al Green, Sly Stone, Jimi Hendrix, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Gil Scott-Heron, Donny Hathaway, Jazz musician Roy Ayers, and the Philly Soul sounds of producers Gamble & Huff. Later, during the New Jack Swing era bands such as Tony! Toni! Toné! and the R&B/hip-hop band the Fugees. The genre began to increasingly garner exposure after the releases of singers Meshell Ndegeocello, Erykah Badu, and Joi's debut album Pendulum Vibe, which contained elements of 1970s style arrangements along with Funk Rock elements. The growth of neo soul continued with releases by singers Dionne Farris, Eric Benet's 1996 CD True To Myself, Lauryn Hill, Maxwell, and D'Angelo's 1995 LP Brown Sugar, the work of the duo Groove Theory, which included the members Amel Larrieux and producer Bryce Wilson.

The UK's progenic Sade broke through in the mid 80s with cult albums such as 1984 Diamond Life, 1985 Promise (album), later with 1988 Stronger Than Pride and 1992 Love Deluxe, the Neo soul movement wasn't quite heard of as yet but Sade did set a pace with their strong lyrics/jazz-soul sound and inspired followers to what it became later on. Other british artists that exhibited a retro soul/R&B vibe during this period were Omar Lye-Fook, Young Disciples, D'Influence, Urban Species, Jamiroquai, The Brand New Heavies, Soul II Soul, and Carleen Anderson.

The first soul revival artist to make a major impact on the mainstream was Lauryn Hill, whose 1998 The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill LP was a critical and commercial success, garnering five Grammy Awards. Her success influenced a number of other Signed & Indie neo-soul artists such as Angie Stone, Musiq Soulchild, Eric Roberson, Jill Scott, Goapele, India.Arie, Davina, Pru, Alice Smith, Jazzyfatnastees, Ursula Rucker, Rhian Benson and Martha Redbone. Other soul artists include Lucy Pearl, Floetry, Glenn Lewis, Res, Anthony Hamilton, Bilal, Hill St. Soul, Rahsaan Patterson and Dwele, some of whom became staples of R&B radio. Recent major neo soul artists include Stephanie McKay, Malina Moye, Emily King, Raheem DeVaughn, Sy Smith, Ledisi, Cleveland, Ohio's Conya Doss, Cincinnati-Bred artists Ja'Meze & the Spoken word soul collective Shades of J, Big Brooklyn Red, Antonia Jenae, The Square Egg, Britain's Julie Dexter, Laurnea, N'Dambi, Gaelle, Rachael Bell, Joy Denalane, Aya, Divine Brown, Asa, Lady Seoul (AeKyung Yoo) and Angela Johnson.

21st Century

Since 2000 artists such as Jill Scott, Alicia Keys, John Legend, India Arie, Nicole Atkins, Musiq Soulchild, Sy Smith, Eric Roberson, Dwele, Goapele, Omar Lye-Fook, Platinum Pied Pipers, Erykah Badu, Bilal Oliver, Raphael Saadiq, Raheem DeVaughn, Van Hunt, Maxwell, D'Angelo, Eric Benet, Anthony Hamilton, Daniel Merriweather, Leela James, Jesse Boykins III, Chrisette Michelle, and Kem maintain the Neo Soul music genre.

Many indie soul artists are hardly known at all except within a certain geographic region like Middle Child from Ohio. Some artists have garnered exposure on the music video channels MTV2 and VH1 Soul, while others like Maxwell, Erykah Badu and D'Angelo, are known by mainstream America through Major Label promotions (Radio/Tv/Print Media), and live appearance such as D'Angelo's performance on VH1's Men Strike Back 2000 and Badu's role in the movie Blues Brothers 2000. D'Angelo's critically acclaimed 2000 album Voodoo has been recognized by many critics as a masterpiece and the cornerstone of the neo soul genre.[2][3][4]

See also


External links


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