Apple Music is taking this month to elevate soul and R&B’s icons and ones to watch with its Soul September campaign.
The streaming platform explains in a statement that there will be a selection of 14 exclusive playlists from artists we know and love, from John Legend, Tamia, and Toni Braxton to Ari Lennox, Snoh Aalegra and South Africa’s own Elaine.
The artists selected their ultimate soul and R&B songs, along with tracks that were vital in helping them forge their own career paths. Soul September features the best new R&B releases alongside classic albums, music videos and Artist Essentials playlists.
Take a look at a handful of featured playlists with quotes from our favorites below, with the full rundown here.
“This is like my Throwback Thursday playlist that I listen to most days! I love old-school jams; it reminds me of when I was cool, young and hot but didn’t even know I was cool, young and hot! No matter what, when you look back you will always remember those hot fun summer moments. Some of the newer songs have that same flavor. I wanted to highlight younger artists who are bringing that same heat.”
“This is a list of some of the R&B and soul songs that I love. Many of them are from decades ago. They were the songs that made me fall in love with the beautiful tradition of black music that I try to help carry on today. Some are from my favorite R&B artists of today. They’re all beautiful and special to me—songs of love and joy, longing and uplift.”
“Soul September makes me think of warmth, romance, passion, feeling nostalgic and everything in between. This playlist highlights some of the artists that I grew up listening to, and that have paved the way for young R&B and soul artists like myself.”
“These songs reflect many different times in my life when I was transitioning. Jodeci reminds me of my first trip to NYC to get my record deal at Uptown/MCA in 1992 with $67 in my pocket. We would sing the entire album on our drive from Charlotte [North Carolina]. Some of the songs on this list remind me of my childhood and other songs remind me of good and bad relationships.”
“This playlist of soulful legends really changed my life, and I love them so much. They really inspired my sound. Also shout-out to the new soulful artists on this list as well. The future is bright for soul music, which is very exciting!”