To paraphrase 1980s one-hit wonder Oran "Juice" Jones, a wedding reception without a love song is like cornflakes without the milk. Love songs - particularly R&B love songs - have traditionally played a significant role in weddings, be it during the actual ceremony, at the reception, or on the honeymoon. And here's some of the better wedding-themed R&B songs, featuring tracks by artists like Stevie Wonder
, Anita Baker, Brian McKnight
, Jill Scott
and other vocalists known for evoking warm emotions in their music.
As the title implies, Eric Benet
's "Real Love" is a celebration of genuine emotion between two people. Or as Eric puts in in the song: "We've got something real, real love, real love, real love, In a world full of make believe, We got something real good/Real love, Yes, real love, I bet everything on you and me."
Some may consider this Boyz II Men
song a little sappy and a tad bit too melodramatic, but when it comes to bringing tears to a woman's eyes during a wedding party, few songs can do it better than "On Bended Knee."
This song, which is on Kem
's third album, Intimacy
, is about a man who tells his woman that he wants to spend the rest of his life with her. For the men out there who are getting ready to propose marriage to your lady and need a little inspiration, this just might be the perfect song for you.
This soaring Stevie Wonder
classic is one of the most beautiful, romantic songs of all time. I usually don't cry at weddings -- unless this song is played.
This sweet romantic duet between Atlanta-based singers Anthony David
and Algebra Blessett encapsulates what it's like to be committed to a loving, thriving relationship: "Forever's a mighty long time, But I really wanna spend it with you, I shine when you shine, And there's really no substitute," the vocalists sing in harmony.
This song by a virtually unknown four-man vocal group from Oklahoma epitomizes what a great wedding song should be: lovely, tender and sweet.
This song, which is on Ruben Studdard
's 2009 album, Love Is
, is a bold yet tender declaration of a man's love for a woman and his desire to make her a permanent part of his life.
Cover © Motown Records.
This is another one of those Brian McKnight
songs that's considered melodramatic out in the real world, but within the setting of a wedding party, it fits in as naturally as a bouquet of flowers. This should be played during a slow dance at a wedding reception.
This love song from Anita Baker's seventh studio album is a tune that should already be familiar to devoted R&B fans: it's a remake of "Lately," the beautifully lush love song that was originally a hit for model-turned-singer (turned actor) Tyrese
Gibson in the late 1990s.
This warm, loving song by crooner E. Walter Smith and former "American Idol" hopeful Tatiana McConnico, is perfect for the father-daughter dance during the post-ceremony reception. It's a tasteful, classy and well-sung ode to the love a father has for his little princess.