The Best Songs By The-Dream

For a decade, Terius Youngdell Nash was R&B’s best producer-writer, making everyone from Rick Ross and Mary J. Blige to a young pimply Justin Bieber sound good. He has faltered in the last six years, but after the surfeit of collaborations and works for hire, who could blame him and sometime partner Christopher “Tricky” Stewart if their powder ran dry?

The Prince comparisons were too on-the-nose, not when Ready for the World was eager for a Wiki link. Nash’s high, effete voice and commitment to the love-you-down wasn’t as weird as Prince’s. Give him this: like the Purple One he understood that he wrote best for women. Electrik Red’s How to be a Lady Volume 1 remains one of the fleetest and sassiest of the millennium’s R&B albums, and chances are you haven’t heard it if you’re not on my social media lists. Rihanna’s performance on 2007’s “Livin’ a Life” also needs a shout-out; in the last two years she seems to have rediscovered its distinctive empathy.

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