Our Top 10 Blu Cantrell Songs list looks at the smooth r&b hip hop songs of an artist who exploded onto the music scene at the turn of the century. Tiffany Cobb, daughter of a former beauty queen, was born in 1976 and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. Fans are more familiar with Cobb’s stage name, Blu Cantrell. The American singer-songwriter first got into the music business in 1999 when she dove into the R&B and soul music genres. Cantrell’s interest in music stems from her upbringing as her mother was also an actress and jazz singer, so the world of show business was something she was already familiar with.
Rise to Fame
After starting out as a backup singer for Sean “Puffy” Combs in 1999, then briefly joining a girl group before signing up with the record label, Arista. In 2001, Blu Cantrell’s big breakthrough came about as her debut album, So Blu produced a hit single that would earn the songstress a globally recognized name. The album was a commercial success, earning Blu Cantrell certified gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), as well as with Music Canada (MC).
Cantrell’s second studio album, Bittersweet, was released on June 21, 2003, and it had since earned a gold certification from the British Phonographic Industry (BPI), thanks to the number one single that was released from it. Following this album was the mixtape, From L.A. to L.O., which was released in 2004. Afterward, the compilation album, Hit ‘Em Up Style: Chart and Club Hits of Blu Cantrell, was released on July 26, 2005. Since then, there have been no further albums produced by Cantrell, but the story had it in 2013 she was supposedly working on her third studio album before encountering a publicized scandal that resulted in a hysterical Cantrell being taken into police custody in 2014. It was reported in 2016 she was still working on that third studio album. Three singles had been recorded and released in 2016, but none of them are officially associated with any album credited to Cantrell.
Top 20 Blu Cantrell Songs
#10 – My World
Recorded and released in 2016, “My World,” is one of the singles that’s technically released as a non-album single. It never was recognized on any official billboard charts, but the delivery of Blue Cantrell’s performance in the song seems to give the listener a peek into the singer’s world that has seen its fair share of ups and downs. This is one of three songs she released in 2016, which was the first new material coming from the artist since 2004.
#9 – Breathe (original version)
The original recording made by Blu Cantrell’s “Breathe” was featured on Blu Cantrell’s debut album, “So Blu,” which was released in 2001. This version of the song did not chart but inspired remixed versions of it that had Sean Paul featured in it. That version became a hit, but it does not diminish the strong, vocal performance Blu Cantrell performs in her solo version of “Breathe.”
#9 – Till I’m Gone
“Till I’m Gone” was a soulful performance by Blu Cantrell that made this single an easy-listening favorite. Although it never did appear on any official music charts, Till I’m Gone serves as one of those perfect for the club songs to just sit, enjoy, and stop worrying about any relationship troubles, as Cantrell’s vocal performance suggests.
#7 – U Remind Me (featuring Usher and Method Man)
This remix of “U Remind Me” was released in 2001 as part of Usher’s third studio album, U Got It Bad. Blu Cantrell’s contribution to the soft hip-hop, R&B style of Usher and Method Man, adds just enough melodic magic to make this song become refreshing compared to its original.
#6 – It’s Killing Me (In My Mind)
Bad Company was a comedic film in 2002 that starred Anthony Hopkins and Chris Rock. The soundtrack featured the bluesy song, “It’s Killing Me (In My Mind),” which was performed by Blu Cantrell. The soulful delivery of her vocals, mixed with the R&B style she is best known for, adds a sultry number to the list of tracks that were recorded for the album.
#5 – I’ll Find a Way
The softer side of Blu Cantrell beams through with her soulful delivery of “I’ll Find a Way,” which never did realize chart success, but still serves as a blues classic that offers slow dance appeal when caught up in the easy listening moment, as well as Cantrell’s rhythmic vocals.
#4 – Round Up (featuring Lady May)
On the US Billboard Rhythmic chart, “Round Up” peaked at number twenty-seven and at number ninety-three on the US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart in 2002. It was originally meant to be the lead single from Lady May’s debut album as it was she who wrote it, but that album was never released, just the single. It does show up in the international release of Cantrell’s second studio album, Bittersweet, which was released in 2003. Within the song, 1954’s Dueling Banjos has some of its elements included, which added to the standoff-ish playout and the rapping vocal talents of Cantrell and May.
#3 – Make Me Wanna Scream (featuring Ian Lewis)
“Make Me Wanna Scream” is a dual performance between Blu Cantrell and Ian Lewis, which is the second single that came from her second album, Bittersweet, which was released in 2003. This song has more than one version, but the one that made it a hit single has the reggae talent of Ian Lewis mixed with Blu Cantrell’s bluesy vocals. While the song didn’t perform remarkably well on the billboard charts, in 2004 it did peak at number ten on the UK Hip Hop and R&B Singles Chart and at number twenty-four on the UK Singles Chart. Make Me Wanna Scream peaked as its highest at number six on the Romanian Top 100. It did not, however, appear on any of the North American charts.
#2 – Breathe (remixed) (featuring Sean Paul)
“Breathe” is among the best-recognized singles credited to Blu Cantrell. She, along with Sean Paul, performed this remix in 2003, and on the UK Singles Chart and Irish Singles Chart, the song peaked at number one. This original version of the track was featured on Cantrell’s second studio album, Bittersweet. Fans of Dr. Dre’s 1999 single, What’s the Difference, may recognize an altered instrumental inclusion into Breathe’s remixed version of Cantrell’s original. There are a number of remixes to this song, but the radio-edited one featuring Sean Paul is the one that became the globally charted hit. The single became gold-certified with ARIA and platinum-certified with UK’s BPI.
1. Hit Em Up Style (Oops!)
Blue Cantrell’s most recognized hit was ‘Hit Em Up Style (Oops!),” which came from her debut album, So Blu. Sung as a bitter woman bent on revenge against her cheating man, the power of a woman scorned brought out the best of Cantrell’s vocal talent. In 2001, the single charted at number one on the US Billboard Mainstream Top 40 and at number two on the US Billboard Hot 100. It also charted worldwide, as it peaked as high as number three on Australia’s ARIA chart and New Zealand’s Recorded Music chart. It was actually a top forty hit throughout most of Europe, with the exception of France, Germany, and Switzerland. The song did chart there, but at number forty-seven, sixty, and seventy-seven, respectively. In Australia, “Hit Em Up Style,” was certified gold for having over 35,000 copies sold in that nation.
Top 10 Blu Cantrell Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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