We’re all radio stations with our own unique frequencies.
That’s why when a couple gets into the studio together, magic happens. Very often a couple can have a similar vision for the future and outlook on life, so the messages in the music plus the choices in rhythm and melody are aligned in a way that other collaborations are not. As a singer, I look for other artists to collaborate with who have a similar perspective, and I can’t imagine someone better to create art with than a significant other.
These 10 songs are great examples of couples who got it right for our audio pleasure.
Beyonce & Jay Z “Drunk In Love”
All hail the King and Queen. Bey & Hov’s “Drunk In Love” collab has got to be one of my favorites on the list. It’s a fun song from the married couple that can bring you into another dimension. From the Arabic-influenced sound at the beginning of the song, to the magical and mesmerizing background that accompanies Bey and Jay’s lyrics, this song has a mood-altering ability unlike many other tracks.
Nicki Minaj & Meek Mill “Buy A Heart”
Omeeka has collaborated on a few songs together, so it was hard to choose just one. But this one had me pondering deeper than I had expected it to. The concept of buying a heart and trust highlights the relationship between money and love. Which, let’s face it, is quite dominant in our society.
Rihanna & Chris Brown “Nobody’s Business”
This song is perfect for this past couple. For a pair so notoriously splashed all over the worldwide media, “Nobody’s Business” is the perfect melodic and lyrical response to the storm that brewed in 2009. As someone who has been harassed about her love life, I can just play this song for someone and leave it at that. When it comes to love, it is nobody’s fucking business but the individuals involved. Plus, when you’re talking about two voices that sound good together on a track, Rihanna and CB are who come to mind. Not only are they two of the most distinct voices in the industry, but they clearly had love for each other and it is evident in their collaborative sound.
Will Smith & Jada Pinkett Smith “1000 Kisses”
The Fresh Prince and his lady are seriously vibing in this one. The feel good song showcases Jada’s talent and Will’s signature sound. This one brings sunshine into a dark room, which to me is a reflection of The Smiths’ overall positive vibe as a couple.
Big Sean & Ariana Grande “Research”
Before Ariana Grande and Big Sean broke up, they collaborated on “Research,” a story of a couple who basically doesn’t have any trust. The song showcases Ariana’s vocals and Sean’s ability to create imagery and tell a story with his flow. It’s a dope track to sing-along to and a reminder of exactly the type of relationship you don’t want to find yourself in. You know, the kind where you find yourself furiously searching through your partner’s phone. Whether you find something in your research or not, the mere fact that you’re invading their privacy is a red flag that something is off in the relationship. I hope art didn’t imitate life for these two music heavy-hitters.
Lil’ Kim & Biggie “Drugs”
I was a unsure of whether to include this one, but I love the song and it still illustrates the point of the article. While it is understood that Kim wasn’t Biggie’s main chick, they still clearly had a connection. They collaborated on multiple songs together, and had a very similar vibe to themselves as artists. No disrespect to Faith by including this song on the list, but side chick or not, the pair made some dope music together. And the only two people who knew Kim & Big’s relationship were Kim & Big, so I’m not judging.
Kelis & Nas “Blindfold Me”
Despite the fact that the couple broke up, they made some fire music before they did. The video is as risqué as the song title entails, and the song’s message is to get it in right, and creatively, with your partner.
Erykah Badu & Common “Love of My Life (Ode to Hip-Hop)”
This song is one of my go-tos, and I’m sure I’m not alone in that. With classic artists such as Badu and Common on a track together, it was bound to create a classic song. While Common has credited Erykah Badu with wanting to keep their relationship out of the public eye while they were together, I am very grateful she didn’t reserve this collaboration for their private use only. Both Common and Badu have an aura about them that brightens up anyone’s day, and this song is no exception.
Papoose feat. Remy Ma “What’s My Name”
The couple that rides together, flies together. “What’s My Name” is a great sound for the couple that got married while Remy Ma was still incarcerated in 2008. It’s got a mix of an old-school flow and contemporary sound.
Nelly & Ashanti “Body on Me”
I think I was the last to find out that Nelly and Ashanti were an item, let alone for ten years. But when I found out I instantly remembered this song that I used to bump back in the day in my dilapidated Saab convertible. This track was a hot club hit in 2008. That may feel like another lifetime ago to some, but despite the flashbacks a throwback may bring, this one has an up-tempo beat that can give getting ready for your day or night a fun vibe.
Mack 10 & T-Boz “Tight 2 Def”
Though this married couple’s story didn’t exactly end in marital bliss, the couple produced a Bonnie & Clyde-esque song with classic TLC vocals from T-Boz and hard bars showcased by Mack 10.
While many of the couples on this list are no longer an item, they bestowed upon us musical collaborations that we can always enjoy. Love may not always be forever, but music is. As evidenced by the songs on this list, a love connection can lead to great art. So, a big thank you to all of these couples who produced studio magic we can nod our heads to at our desks, and party to when the time is right.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty