20 Best R&B Albums of 2014

The year in tough lovers, elusive chanteuses, purple royalty and more

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Teyana Taylor, 'VII'
20
12/20

12. Teyana Taylor, 'VII'

Teyana Taylor scored a small, but buzzy hit in 2009 called "Google Me," but her career as a rapper and singer petered out shortly after. The song threatened to become an unfortunate bit of schadenfreude after she was asked to stand in as Nicki Minaj at an early Kanye West concert celebrating My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, and later engaged in a Twitter beef with Rihanna. However, she recently made a splash with the R&B radio staple "Maybe," a lustful, Ty Dolla $ign-quoting track featuring Yo Gotti and Pusha T that's now a top result when you, you know, Google her. On her excellent debut, she's dropped the rapping of "Google Me," putting her soft and pleading — but not strained — vocals over steamy beats that seem to exhale right along with her.  J.S.

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