In the late 80s and early 90s something called “New Jack Swing” happened to R&B. And it was awesome.
It uses R&B style vocals sung over hip hop and dance-pop style influenced instrumentation. The sound of new jack swing comes from the hip hop “swing” beats created by drum machines and hardware samplers, which was popular during the golden age of hip hop with contemporary R&B styling.
Simply put, the New Jack Swing sound was catchy as hell. Â Think Bobby Brown, Keith Sweat, Color Me Badd and Montell Jordan.
One of the best examples of New Jack is Montell Jordan’s “This Is How We Do It.”Â It features Jordan singing over Slick Rick’s “Children’s Story.” Â For me the track brings memories of the summer of 1995 and thugging around the streets of Brookings.Â I drank a 40 of Coke slurpee every night while bumpin’ this song in my ’88 Aries K car wagon.Â I think the underglow, spinners and hydraulics really upped my street cred.
Montell Jordan, “This Is How We Do It”:
BONUS:Â Montell Jordan, “Get It On Tonight”: