Jermaine Dupri recently said that R&B music changed because too many artists try to cater to the sound that is on the radio. The words that JD uttered resonated with me and stayed with me for a while to the point I wondered how other artists or people in the business felt about radio’s effect on R&B music.
When I had the opportunity to sit down and talk to Brian, Brandon, Wingo, and Kyle, collectively known to the world as Jagged Edge, they had an interesting take on it when I brought up the fact their former mentor and now business partner, Jermaine Dupri sort of put the onus on the artist.
When I asked the soulful quartet do they think R&B went a different route because of the music that was making it to radio and if artists, consumers, or the industry dictated what type of R&B music is making it to radio, group member Brandon said,
“We have a great appreciation for radio because it has obviously helped us in our career but I think people give artists too much credit because we don’t have the power to change the sound of radio. Only people who program radio have the power to change it. Radio isn’t responsible for the music that artists create but it can be one of the influences in the B.S. that some kids make. You get your share of kids that make B.S. but you also get your share of kids that make some good throwback R&B music. You choose to put that in the pile and play that other stuff. You choose to play that stuff that makes radio sound all alike instead of making the radio a bit more diverse.”