My Top 10 Favourite 90's R&B Slow Jams

Often considered the Golden Age of slow jams. This era of music features many classic tracks that are still beloved to this day. With so many memorable hits, it was difficult rounding it down to 10. This list is more influenced by in the 2nd half of the decade. The most notable artists not to make this list (and though very much deserving) are as follows: Usher, TLC, Dru Hill, Toni Braxton, Janet Jackson, Keith Sweat, Monica, Sade.

10. Deborah Cox - Nobody's Supposed To Be Here (1998)

The only Canadian to crack this list. This heart felt jam can be put on repeat over and over and never get old. Although, back in the day, repeat was pressing rewind on the cassette tape. A blank cassette tape which would be used to record the songs off the radio.

*FLASHBACK* #relatable, when the radio DJ announces your favourite track coming up and you rush excitedly to the stereo to the hit record button on time!

9. Babyface - Every Time I Close My Eyes (1996)

A masterful superstar producer. This man is a straight genius. Anything he touches turns into gold. If 90's was the Renascence golden age of Slow Jams, he would be the Leonardo Da Vinci of it. This top 10 list doesn't include producer credits. But if it did, Babyface would undoubtedly dominate it.

8. Lauryn Hill - Ex-Factor (1998)

Killing Me Softly & Can't Take My Eye Off You are definitely her more popular tracks. Even during the 90's the I listened to those tracks more than Ex-Factor. However, as time has passed I've come to appreciate this track, the lyrics are much more relatable.

7. Brian McKnight - Back at One (1999)

This song was so catchy this it was sung by everyone on the school bus for rides to and from home. Many times mockingly and in jest. However also many times with renditions performed with utmost passion.

6. K-Ci & JoJo - All My Life (1997)

The ultimate first dance song to play at a wedding. With the emergence of the Internet during the late 90's and early 00's, one of my very earliest memories of using Google search included finding the piano sheet music to this song. Even though I don't play anymore, the introductory notes of this song will forever be engraved in my brain.

5. SWV - Weak (1992)

Probably the most unfamiliar artists on this list. The popularity of this group mostly applied to the first half of the decade. Still love it whenever, this track comes on the radio.

4. Mariah Carey - I'll Be There (1992)

During the 90's in Canada, we didn't have MTV(gasp!). However, we did have this channel called MuchMusic. This Canadian version of MTV would then rebroadcast many of the MTV Unplugged Specials. The 2 specials that I remember in particular are of course Mariah Carey's & Nirvana's (another beloved band to be discussed at another time).

3. R. Kelly - Bump N' Grind (1993)

The intro itself is a total hook line and sinker. You can almost picture R. Kelly preaching in front of a church congregation like it was Sunday morning. And that's when the bass drops... I don't see nothing wrong!

2. Whitney Houston - I Will Always Love You (1992)

Performed at least once by everywould be diva at your school's talent show throughout of all grade school. Whitney's voice was a once in a generational talent that was taken from us all too soon.





1. Boyz II Men - End Of The Road (1991)

Let me tell you a story about my boy and his very high-school first girlfriend.

For many of us, our first love doesn't end up with happily ever after. This story is no exception. Our story picks up right after she had dumped him and his gallant attempt to win back her affections. One night, outside her bedroom window, he threw a small rock at the pane to capture her attention. There he stood with flowers and a boombox as if he were John Cusack in Say Anything. But instead of blasting Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes", it was MoTownPhilly's finest break up track, End of the Road.

His original recounting of the story to me was met with nothing but chuckles and face-palms. I laughed so hard I can't even remember how it ended. But that's not the point of the story, just the vision of that scene alone brought me to tears in more ways than one.


We hope you've enjoyed reading our 10 top list of 90's Slow Jams. And for those wondering, my boy turned out alright. He's been steady with his long term girlfriend, everything is all good.


-Raf (2017)


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