VERZUZ (R&B battle thing)

This person would win


  • Total voters
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1 He Wasn’t Man Enough (Toni)
2 Be Without You (Mary)
3 Family Affair ( Mary)
4 Hit The Freeway (Toni)
5 Not Today (Mary)
6 Dance For Me (Mary)
7 I Am (Dave Aude Mix) (Mary)
8 No More Drama (Mary)
9 I’m Going Down (Mary)
10 Love @ 1st Sight (Mary)

I also like Mary’s cover of One and her duet with George Michael on As.
 

funky

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Mary J Blige is culturally more relevant than Toni. I probably prefer Toni’s discography just a little bit more because she has more highs, although Mary has more depth. And Mary is less accessible (especially on moopy) because she’s hardly done any pop music in her entire career, whereas Toni was almost always mainstream.

But it’ll be a cold day in hell before Toni Braxton gets in, say, the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame before Mary J Blige. Toni is fabulous but Mary is the critics darling. She is credited as a pioneer of Hip-Hop soul music which is credited for evolving into neo soul.

anyway I’m just mad at dub because I thought this thread meant they were doing a duet together :angry:
 

dUb

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Sorry about that :( you should know what verzuz is tho
 

Jark

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And Mary is less accessible (especially on moopy) because she’s hardly done any pop music in her entire career, whereas Toni was almost always mainstream.
you know I actually disagree a bit and think it's totally the other way around if anything.

with the singular exception of He Wasn't Man Enough, which felt very crossover, Toni has always stuck pretty rigidly to R&B. she's less versatile and her lane has always seemed more niche to me. her least R&B record is Pulse, which is a bit generic pop in places and came during the wilderness years when her commercial appeal had ended and suddenly nobody was interested. but on the whole she's really stuck to R&B and maybe if anything that both hastened her commercial demise in the '00s and gave her renewed credibility as a legacy act in the '10s.

whereas Mary has been way more all over the place. she came back in '07 and got a hit with Just Fine as the most straight-up pop song of her career, and half of that album (Growing Pains) was not R&B at all. then she flirted heavily with electropop beats on My Life II and with house music on The London Sessions - I think she saw the decline of R&B coming in the early-mid 00s and after The Breakthrough (more a neo-soul record anyway for the most part) jumped ship, which was probably quite savvy and good for her survival and relevance. but now, unlike Toni, she's not really delivering for the R&B queens who would be her core fanbase at this point in her career, and her last few albums flew very under the radar perhaps for that reason.

swings and roundabouts!
 

VoR

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So I've had an evening of chronologically playing Mary J's early singles.

I'm up to the Share My World album and while it's all very nice, they do rather BLEND INTO ONE compared to Toni's highs.

I guess I'm just too white. :(
 

funky

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you know I actually disagree a bit and think it's totally the other way around if anything.

with the singular exception of He Wasn't Man Enough, which felt very crossover, Toni has always stuck pretty rigidly to R&B. she's less versatile and her lane has always seemed more niche to me. her least R&B record is Pulse, which is a bit generic pop in places and came during the wilderness years when her commercial appeal had ended and suddenly nobody was interested. but on the whole she's really stuck to R&B and maybe if anything that both hastened her commercial demise in the '00s and gave her renewed credibility as a legacy act in the '10s.

whereas Mary has been way more all over the place. she came back in '07 and got a hit with Just Fine as the most straight-up pop song of her career, and half of that album (Growing Pains) was not R&B at all. then she flirted heavily with electropop beats on My Life II and with house music on The London Sessions - I think she saw the decline of R&B coming in the early-mid 00s and after The Breakthrough (more a neo-soul record anyway for the most part) jumped ship, which was probably quite savvy and good for her survival and relevance. but now, unlike Toni, she's not really delivering for the R&B queens who would be her core fanbase at this point in her career, and her last few albums flew very under the radar perhaps for that reason.

swings and roundabouts!

I do see your point. Post 2005 Mary is a mix of pop-soul and I guess dance R&B. But everything before that was core R&B. Particularly the first few albums. Toni's first album was a much more adult, therefore accessible, root of R&B, picking up where Whitney and Anita Baker left off in the 80s with the 90s Babyface sound. The next couple of albums were R&B but then she also went pop-soul in the noughties. I do like how she's gone full circle last few years though. Mary's vocal has always been undeniably soul driven though. I see Toni as much more mainstream. But yeah swings and roundabouts.
 

VoR

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Well I was being just a TOUCH tongue in cheek there funks! :basil:

Anyway, I'm on much more comfortable territory with our Mary now that I've reached this ludicrous gay mess. :D


I love her expression of faint horror throughout the video.
 

straightorbroken

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Toni has one of the most solid discogs in the biz. This would be so much fun though, MJB has the heavy hitters to run rings around Lady Bass though. If she blasted All I Need, a sea of head nods and blond wigs, Toni could whip out the Morales Unbreak My Heart all she likes, she will have lost. I also have no idea how these things even work.
 

POP!

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is @POP! a fan of Mary?

I would really like to do a sync listen for the incredible My Life II: The Journey Continues (Act 1) at some point (there was never an Act II FYI) but not sure the interest is there!

her GH Reflections (A Retrospective) is fantastic. so tight.
I'm afraid I only know the obvious hits ("Family Affair" is probably my favorite) - but willing to explore with a sync! I probably prefer Toni's big hitters, though, "You're Makin' Me High", "He Wasn't Man Enough", "Spanish Guitar" (remix), omg. I also live for her shambolic realty show from the "Hit the Freeway" era where she is feuding with her label.
 

Loufoque

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Living for this bunch of w-hite cis gays pitting two females of colour against one another. Where is @Jark to call the police.

Anyway, Mary has not been relevant or had a big hit since The Breakthrough in 06. So let's not act like she has been a chart force for the last 15 years. She had another 6 years of real pop culture relevance on Toni. That being said, her impact is more significant - she, like, invented a genre.

Loving, btw, that @VoR thinks all of Mary's songs sound the same. All the while, fingering her buss or crying to Toni's sex jam / ballad one-twos.
 

dUb

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The most recent one was Xscape vs SWV

Weak has to be one of the best R&B songs of all time no?

 

dUb

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Full thing:



I hope Xscape do RUN TO THE ARMS OF THE ONE WHO LOVES YOU
 
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funky

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I was never into Xscape. They totally passed me by. SWV for the easy win.
 

Devil

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To the arms... is one of my fave r&b ballads ever. Don’t really know too much of either back catalogue other than that and Right There really.

Also love Taj just because she was so fabulous on Survivor :D
 

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