Grammy-winning singer Peabo Bryson. Grammy-winning singer Peabo Bryson.
Marselle Washington for Marco Imagery

Peabo Bryson and Jimmy Jam Talks 'Stand For Love' At The Art Of Romancing Women 

Grammy-Award winning pop icon Peabo Bryson is the quintessential master of passion, with his romantic songs and gifted vocal range leaving behind 40 years of timeless music. Considered one of the greatest vocalists in music, Bryson, 67, contributed to decades of hit singles such as “Feel The Fire,” “I’m So Into You,” “If Ever You’re In My Arms Again,” and “Tonight, I Celebrate My Love” with Roberta Flack. In the 1990s, his career reached new acclaim with “A Whole New World (Aladdin’s Theme)” with Regina Belle, and “Beauty & The Beast” with pop icon Celine Dion – which became Disney's two most successful singles, and earned Bryson a pair of Grammy Awards.

Bryson’s anticipated 21st studio album, Stand For Love will be released August 3 – 11 years since his previous record, Missing You. He has joined forces with Grammy Award-winning production duo Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and producer/musician John Jackson which he called a “magical coming together.”

“Peabo is just one of the greatest voices of our time,” Jam and Lewis said in a joint statement. “He exudes a class and sophistication that’s so needed in music today. I know R&B needs Peabo Bryson especially now. And his fans both old and new will fall in love with Stand For Love.”

“They stay true to the music,” Bryson says working with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the legendary producers who have shaped the music of artists such as Janet Jackson, Chaka Kahan, New Edition, George Michael, and Michael Jackson. “We agreed on truth and truth has carried us throughout this entire project and I think in many ways responsible for some of the success we’re receiving at this particular point in terms with how people embrace it.”

The new album's first single “Love Like Yours And Mine” has been positively received since its springtime release, becoming the fastest rising single on the Urban AC chart and recently breaking the top 10. His second single, “All She Wants To Do Is Me,” premiered on an episode of The Chi.

VIBE talked to Bryson and Jam about the forthcoming album, their thoughts on the current state of R&B and romancing women in music.

READ MORE: Jimmy Jam On Janet Jackson’s 2018 Billboard Icon Award: It’s “Overdue”

---

 VIBE: How did you go about staying current yet maintain the iconic sound?

Bryson: That was my challenge to them. We challenged each other. It was, “Can you make me current without destroying what has taken me a lifetime to accomplish? Can you do that?” It’s not more than two people on the planet I would trust with that particular task. That’s not something you’d want to play around with at this stage of your life or your career. Fortunately, they wanted me to be as involved as I can possibly be. They will play you track after track, they’ll ask you if you feel anything. “Do you hear anything?” They will make you hum it, then they’ll help you write it. You’re so involved, you’re so personally invested. It’s an extraordinary kind of thing.

Jam: Great music is timeless! So, you talk about current and not current. The thing that’s interesting to me is a lot of current music is sampled from great music. Those are the kind of records that Hip Hop is sampling. I was talking to Questlove about it the other day. I played Questlove one of the tracks and he said, “Man, that’s like the most down record that I’ve heard from a 70-year-old.” I’m like, “He ain’t 70, Quest,” but I get what you’re saying.

Bryson: I’m mad at that! (laughs)

Jam: He’s saying, “Man, that sounds like something I’d go sample right now.” That could’ve been a 1970s record very easily.

What was the overall direction in creating Stand For Love?

Jam: For me, from the production end of it we were just trying to do something that was indicative of Peabo’s really great work that he has done through his whole career. I mean in studying his career you had classic R&B records from “I’m So Into You” to “Feel The Fire,” those types of records that I grew up listening and loving. So much to pull from as far as just inspiration. At the end of the day, we thought the thing everything had in common was love and it wasn’t just about love between lovers but it was also about love for people. At this time with where we are in the world, it’s a great time to talk about love and who better to do that than Peabo?

What are your thoughts on the current state of R&B and what significance will this album have?

Jam: I think R&B is alive and well and I think this album is one of the albums that’s going to prove that, but I think there’s a lot of great young artists out there making really good music and I think there’s room for everything. I’m very encouraged by people like Daniel Caesar, who’s one of my favorites, certainly H.E.R. and SZA. Quality fits when you talk about soul music. Music that reaches the soul. That’s what I think those [artists] have, that’s what Peabo has and I think they can coexist together and to me, it just widens what perception of R&B music is.

Bryson: We’re telling the same story with a new pace, with a current pace so that we’re passing it from generation to generation. That’s the goal of what this is and the essence of what this is. This project and album is music fellowship in every way. That’s what music is. It’s there to soothe the soul and to remind you that you’re not alone in whatever it is you’re going through.

You come from an era of R&B that embraced love songs. What inspires honoring women in your music? 

Jam: Peabo comes from a place where he’s lived so much life and now he can share his experiences and teach these younger folks what’s up. What’s up about loving, about respecting, and how to treat a woman?

Bryson: It’s my honor. Somebody asked me, “Why do you like Sade so much?” (One of the album’s songs is called, “Looking For Sade.”) I like Sade like I like Janet Jackson. I like Sade like I like Roberta Flack. You know why I like these women? Cause they represent what is mysterious, sultry, sexy, and appealing that is in every woman. It’s our honoring our pleasure to remind women of who they are and what they are. What I know or Jimmy and Terry know anything about love is go to do with what we learned from the women who raised us. I mean, they had a standard of love – that’s what we’re standing for today.

Do you think women are thirsting for that in music today?

Bryson: I can’t tell you how many young women feel so disenfranchised because they don’t have the luxury of having the same kind of relationships that we had. I can tell you this right here, every young woman I’ve spoken with all are searching for the same thing. Searching for that kind of relationship and this crosses all color barriers. They all tell the same story, all depressed about it not being available to them ‘cause they see it in their parents. When young people today kind of want the same relationships their parents have, when they start to lust after that we’ve got a problem Houston! Stand For Love is available for pre-order.

From the Web

More on Vibe

Lee Celano/Getty Images

Haitians Protest For President Jovenel Moise's Resignation

The people of Haiti have taken action to encourage the resignation of President Jovenel Moise. According to The Washington Post, the demonstrations have been gaining steam over the course of six weeks. Since 2017, Moise has been in power with a length of three more years left on his presidency.

Reasons for the protest—which stretches from the country's capital Port-au-Prince to surrounding towns—includes inflation, and other environmental concerns like inadequate drinking water, and a food and fuel shortage. The protestors also call into question the monetary aid the country received after the 2010 earthquake that has yet to reinstall infrastructure to the most affected places.

In a statement issued to the Post, Jake Johnston, an international research associate who focuses on Haiti's economic and policy sectors said "Haiti is facing a broad rejection of a political and economic system that in 30 years has failed to deliver results for the majority of the population. There's a general distrust of politicians and elections. And the promises of economic development after the earthquake have clearly not been met."

Moise's plans to launch a "dialogue committee" to attempt a resolution but has been met with opposition from those on the front lines of the protest.

Another view of today’s mass antigovernment demonstrations in #Haiti called by some musicians. pic.twitter.com/mONWrWGp37

— Jacqueline Charles (@Jacquiecharles) October 13, 2019

Island TV’s report during yesterday’s anti-government protest in #Haiti. According to reporter crowd was moving peacefully when police suddenly began firing tear gas, causing some to fall off motorcycles. pic.twitter.com/SkNhX5e6e0

— Jacqueline Charles (@Jacquiecharles) October 12, 2019

In addition to the protests, the United Nations ceased its 15-year peacekeeping mission in the country, The Miami Herald reports. The organization arrived in 2004 to help restore order after Haiti fell into political corruption and violence following President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's exile. The news site adds that some U.N. personnel were also accused of sexual abuse crimes against boys and women and that the organization admitted to its role in 2010's cholera outbreak.

Continue Reading
Scott Gries

Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame 2020 Nominees Include Notorious B.I.G., Whitney Houston

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has announced its nominees for the class of 2020, and The Notorious B.I.G. and Whitney Houston are among the nominees.

Among this year's 16 nominees, nine are first-time ballots: B.I.G., Houston, Pat Benatar, Dave Matthews Band, The Doobie Brothers, Motörhead, The Notorious B.I.G., Soundgarden, T. Rex, and Thin Lizzy. The other seven are attempting to land in the hall after previous tries: Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, Kraftwerk, Judas Priest, Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails, MC5 and Todd Rundgren.

Biggie became a nominee in his first year of eligibility. If inducted, he will be only the second rapper to join the hall, after 2Pac's induction in 2017.

Ballots are distributed through a panel of more than 1,000 voters - historians, music industry insiders, and previous inductees. Fans can have an impact as well. Billboard reports that from Oct. 15 through Jan. 10, 2020 at 11:59pm ET, fans can go to Google and search “Rock Hall Fan Vote” or any nominee’s name plus “vote” to cast a ballot with Google, vote at RockHall.com or at the Museum itself in Cleveland. The five artists who receive the most fan votes comprise a fans’ ballot that will be tallied along with the others to determine the 2020 inductees.

The class of inductees will be announced in January 2020, and the 35th annual induction ceremony will be held in the hall's home of Cleveland, Ohio on May 2, 2020.

Nominees for the hall must have released their first commercial recording 25 years before the year of the induction. The hall's website also states: "Besides demonstrating unquestionable musical excellence and talent, inductees will have had a significant impact on the development, evolution and preservation of rock & roll."

The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame inductees from 2019 were Janet Jackson, Radiohead, Stevie Nicks, Roxy Music, Def Leopard, The Cure, and The Zombies.

Continue Reading
Kevin Mazur

Ebro Darden Denies Report That Says 'Hot 97' Will Not Play Tekashi 6ix9ine's Music

'Hot 97' radio personality Ebro Darden denies a TMZ report which said that the station will not play Tekashi 6ix9ine's music once, and if, he's released from prison.

Earlier today, TMZ published a report that stated that a Hot 97 executive said the station has never really been fans of Tekashi 6ix9ine, and that they will not play his music upon his release. Shortly after the report was published, Ebro responded.

"All execs @HOT97 deny speaking to anyone @TMZ," Ebro wrote in a tweet, "So this means that Tekashi marketing machine is revving up to rally his on-line #Bots and drive stories."

All execs @HOT97 deny speaking to anyone @TMZ ..... so this means that Tekashi marketing machine is revving up to rally his on-line #Bots and drive stories.

— El Viejo Ebro (@oldmanebro) October 14, 2019

A follower replied how Ebro shuts down new artists. And Ebro responded by saying that he will play Tekashi's music.

And then this... hahahahaha! I just said I was gonna play it. Ya’ll dumb https://t.co/JQAjkE2L9W

— El Viejo Ebro (@oldmanebro) October 14, 2019

6ix9ine reportedly signed a $10 million deal with his former label, 10k Projects, to record two albums upon his release from prison. It's been reported that one will be recorded in English and the other will be recorded in Spanish. As for his looming release, the rapper's sentencing has been scheduled for Dec. 18 at 10 a.m. EST.

Continue Reading

Top Stories