Top 10 Sade Songs

Sade Songs

Our Top 10 Sade Songs list takes a look at a legendary singer/band. It could be a misconception that Sade is a solo artist, but she’s part of a band. The band is named after the artist. Sade is known for recording jazz, soul, quiet storm and pop music. Some of their hits include “Is It a Crime?,” “Smooth Operator,” “Paradise,” “Your Love Is King,” “Sweetest Taboo,” “No Ordinary Love,” “Kiss of Life,” “Cherish the Day,” as well as many others. Sade, the singer, is known for her husky contralto vocals. Sade sold over 75 million records worldwide. It’s time to get to know the band better.

Sade formed in London in 1982. Sade named the band after her name. The band consists of lead singer Sade (Helen Folasade Adu), bass guitarist Paul S. Denman, keyboardist Andrew Hale and guitarist and saxophonist Stuart Matthewman.

Sade released their first album Diamond Life in 1984. The album peaked at number three on the r&b charts, number five on the jazz charts and number five on the Billboard 200 charts. The album features the singles “Your Love Is King,” “When Am I Going to Make a Living,” “Smooth Operator,” “Hang On to Your Love” and “Why Can’t We Live Together.” The album sold over 10 million copies. It was a very successful debut album.

Promise was released in 1985. The album debuted at number one on the r&b and Billboard 200 charts. It debuted at number four on the jazz charts. It features the singles “Is It a Crime?,” “The Sweetest Taboo,” “Never as Good as the First Time,” “Fear” and “Mr. Wrong.” The album sold over four million copies.

Stronger Than Pride was released in 1988. It peaked at number three on the r&b charts, number seven on the Billboard 200 charts and number 21 on the jazz charts. The album features the singles “Love Is Stronger Than Pride,” “Paradise,” “Nothing Can Come Between Us,” “Turn My Back on You” and “Haunt Me.” The album sold over 3 million copies.

Love Deluxe came out in 1992. It peaked at number two on the r&b charts and number three on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “No Ordinary Love,” “Feel No Pain,” “Kiss of Life” and “Cherish the Day.” The album sold over three million copies. The band had four consecutive platinum-selling albums when they went on a hiatus. They took a break because Sade had a baby. She also had to deal with rumors that she was battling a substance abuse problem. There were also rumors that she was dealing with mental issues.

The band Sade got back together in 1999 and released Lovers Rock in 2000. This was a departure from their jazz albums. They went in a new direction. They wanted to record r&b, soft rock, reggae and neo soul music. The reunion was just what the fans needed. The album peaked at number two on the r&b charts and number three on the Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “By Your Side,” “King of Sorrow” and “Somebody Already Broke My Heart.” The album sold over four million copies.

The band took another hiatus. They reunited and put out another album. Soldier of Love was released in 2000. The album peaked at number one on the r&b and Billboard 200 charts. It features the singles “Soldier of Love,” “Babyfather,” “The Moon in the Sky,” and “Bring Me Home.” The album sold over one million copies.

Sade is a successful jazz band from London. All of their albums managed to be hits. It’s quite a feat for all of their albums to go platinum, but they made it happen. They broke up and still managed to make hit albums when they got back together. There aren’t too many bands in music like them. Sade has inspired many artists with her style and grace. Our Top 10 Sade Songs list will feature their best songs.

# 10 – Babyfather

The first song on our Top 10 Sade Songs list is “Babyfather” from the Soldier of Love album. The song is from one of the band’s comeback albums. The song has a reggae sound. The celebratory song is an ode to the father of her child. The lyrics are heartfelt. She wanted to write about the joy of parenting. She believes that you can be a good parent if you feel good about yourself. This is a song that fathers need to hear. There aren’t too many songs painting fathers in a good light. This song makes up for that. She could have destroyed the father of her baby, but she didn’t do it. She wanted to honor good fathers.

This is a positive message for fathers everywhere. The music is laid back and chill. The acoustic guitar and drums dominate the music. The band stepped outside of their wheelhouse and wanted to do a reggae song. The music is stripped down so you can focus on her rich vocals. Sade Adu was 51 when she recorded this song, but she sounded like she was just starting out. Her voice is majestic and down to earth. She sings the song with a lot of passion. You can tell the song means a lot to her. The song made such an impact the band won a Grammy for it.

# 9 – By Your Side

The next song on our Top 10 Sade Songs list is “By Your Side” from the Lovers Rock album. It has an r&b, soul and soft rock sound. The warm song is about her never leaving someone’s side. She is determined to be there through thick and thin. The song could be about a couple or a loved one. The track could be about a friend too. The lyrics hit you hard when you need someone to love you unconditionally. The lyrics will touch your heart. Sade are geniuses when it comes to songwriting. They write about real issues and subjects. They know how to write a song that will touch your soul. The music has something for everyone.

Once again it’s a stray from their jazz roots. They ventured for more of an r&b and folk sound for this jam. The track is stripped down to the acoustic guitar, the keyboard and the drums, which allows you to focus on the positive lyrics. The music is comforting and soothing which is excellent for the theme of the song. Let’s talk about her vocals. Sade’s vocals are soulful and beautiful. The band may have changed their style, but she didn’t lose her smoky and husky vocals. They took a hiatus from music when they recorded this song, but she sounded better than ever. Her voice is what the music scene needs. She knows how to reach into your soul and make you feel warm inside. The chorus will stay in your head after you hear it.

# 8 – Cherish The Day

The smooth song is from the Love Deluxe album. The song has a trip hop beat. The joyful song is about embracing and appreciating life. The song has an uplifting message about cherishing life. The song is relevant now because of what’s going on in the world today. The band was ahead of its time when they created this gem. They wrote this song decades ago, but it still resonates today. People should embrace what they have because it can disappear instantly. The musical arrangement is downplayed so the vocals can be the star of the song. The band intended to keep the music soft and understated so Sade can shine vocally.

You can still enjoy the relaxing music in the background because it’s very appealing. It’s perfect to listen to when you want to relax. The guitar, synth and drums are outstanding. Sade’s vocals are stellar. She can do amazing things with her voice. She pushes her vocals to their limit. She sings the song in a higher key than our previous entries. Her voice is warm and smooth. She’s making love to our ears when she sings. Her phrasing is on point. She belts in the chorus. The song will stay in your head after it’s done. You will want to keep it on repeat so you can hear it over again. This classic song is something that won’t get old. The combination of the tranquil music and her lovely vocals make for an excellent song.

# 7 – Kiss of Life

The compelling song is from the Love Deluxe album. It has a soul and r&b sound. The romantic song is a story about a loving relationship. This is a song that’s in the band’s comfort zone. Sade is at home writing soulful love jams. This is the area that made them a popular band with music fans. They know how to write love songs that will touch your heart and soul. People have written love songs ever since music started, but Sade manages to make their songs stand out among the other tracks. “Kiss of Life” sounds refreshing and doesn’t sound like anything else that was written in the past.

The song was written a long time ago, but it can be appreciated today. This song is perfect for the bedroom. The song has a slow groove. It has a saxophone solo that shouldn’t be missed. The drumbeat gives the song enough tempo to bop your head. Her vocals are smoky and husky. Her voice is so relaxing that you can be lulled into a hypnotic state. You won’t want her to stop singing because her voice is that good. She has moments where she belts and it showcases the strength of her voice. Everything about the song works.

# 6 – Paradise

The poetic song is from the Stronger Than Pride album. It has an r&b, soul and funk sound. The expressive song is about love. She is comparing love to “paradise.” She’ll do anything to make sure she can be with her lover. There aren’t too many songs that compare love to the beach. She mentions the sand while she’s talking about her lover. This track has become one of the band’s signature songs. The music is captivating. It has a mid tempo beat that will make you dance.

The drumbeat is slightly similar to Madonna’s “La Isla Bonita.” It sounds like a soulful version of her song. If you listen to it carefully, you might notice it. It sounds like island music and it will make you feel like you are in paradise. If you close your eyes, you can picture yourself on a beach. She sounds happy as she sings each lyric. She seems like she’s in love so the lyrics may describe her personal life. Her vocals are pure and smooth. She has a calm voice and it will help you relax. She proves she can sing about anything and make it sound cool. She’s in her comfort zone so she’s right at home with this track.

# 5 – Is It a Crime?

The next song on our Top 10 Sade Songs list is the track “Is It a Crime?” from the Promise album. It has a soul and smooth jazz beat. The sentimental song is about her wondering if it’s a crime to love someone the way she does. She wants to know if it’s wrong to love her man the way she does. People have covered this topic before, but Sade managed to make it sound original. They are a rare breed when it concerns songwriting. They don’t bash love too often in their songs. They make you believe love is a good thing. She uses metaphors to describe the way she loves her man. The metaphors keep the lyrics from sounding like other songs on the radio. The music begins with a saxophone solo that is impressive. The rest of the band joins in on the fun. They know their stuff when it concerns musicianship. The music is stripped down to give you a chance to embrace her velvety vocals.

The music is soft when she sings the verses. They play louder just as she gets to the pre chorus. They play lower after she finishes the chorus. They show excellent control. They know when to bring the beat up and down. There is a musical pause that will blow your mind away. They are truly talented musicians. Sade Adu shows excellent control with her voice. She goes up and down like a rollercoaster when she sings the song. She shows just how strong her vocals can get with this track. She belts and holds notes in the song. She took more vocal risks in this song than she did in the other songs on the list. She tries to turn the song into a power ballad. She doesn’t usually hold notes like this so it was a pleasant surprise. The only complaint is the song is a little long. The song is over seven minutes so it could have been a little shorter.

# 4 – Your Love Is King

The jazzy song is from the Diamond Life album. The song has an r&b and smooth jazz beat. The charming song is about a woman who loves her man and his lovemaking abilities. She appreciates how good he is and how he makes her feel in the bedroom. She refers to her man as her king. She gives him the ultimate compliment because he’s good to her in and out of the bedroom. The lyrics are perfect for lovers. This is the song that introduced the world to Sade. This is the first single the band released from their hitmaking debut album.

The music sounds sensual. It features the saxophone, keyboard and drums. There is a saxophone solo that you have to hear to believe. The person playing the saxophone definitely knows how to blow. The drummer and keyboardist aren’t slouches. They do a tremendous job too. She will blow your mind with her vocals. It’s hard to believe this is the first single off their debut album. She sounds like she’s a seasoned professional. She is in perfect key throughout the song. She can seduce you with her voice. She’s singing about her king, but she sounds like a queen. She can sing the alphabet and make it sound wonderful. She truly has a gift from God.

# 3 – No Ordinary Love

The intimate song is from the Love Deluxe album. It has a jazz and soul beat. The anthemic song is about a one-sided love. She sings about loving a man who refuses to love her back. She loved him and gave him everything only to end up getting hurt. He made her think that he loved her, but he broke her heart. This track is outside of the band’s wheelhouse. They usually write love songs. This song proved they could write about the downside of love.

They took a chance and it paid off for them. People can relate to this song today because this type of thing happens now. The music is intoxicating. It features thumping guitar riffs that drive the music. The drumbeat is sensual and sexy. It gives the song tempo that allows you to move around to it. The music is perfect for lovemaking, but the lyrics tell a different story. If you pay attention to the lyrics of the song, she is talking about a relationship that had turned sour.

Her smoky vocals are fire. She is the highlight of the song. She gives this song her all. She sounds sophisticated and stylish. She commands your attention on this slow jam. She takes no prisoners vocally on this track. She sounds like an angel as she sings the lyrics.

# 2 – Sweetest Taboo

The erotic song is from the Promise album. The song has a jazz and r&b beat. The sensual song is about her man bringing her to her sexual desire. This is one of the band’s most provocative songs. They talk about love, but they didn’t talk about it the way they do in this song. The lyrics are risque without being too graphic. She tackles the subject in a glamorous way. She is descriptive without going overboard. She describes the desires enough to give you an idea about how good her man makes her feel. The title may confuse some listeners.

They may not get that she’s talking about lovemaking. They may think it’s about something controversial. The music certainly isn’t taboo. The beat is mid tempo and will please fans of jazz music. The music is simple and elegant. The track is perfect for quiet storm radio. If you listen to the lyrics, she mentions quiet storm so it fits. Her vocals shine bright like a diamond. She sings the song in her normal voice and she sounds great. She uses a double for the chorus. She has excellent harmonies when she sings the chorus. She holds little notes throughout the song. It’s good to hear her push herself and hold notes.

# 1 – Smooth Operator

The number one song on our Top 10 Sade Songs list is “Smooth Operator” from the Diamond Life album. The song has a pop sound. The heartbreaking song is about a con artist who breaks the hearts of many women. He uses women to get money. He doesn’t care about the women. He just wants to use them for their money. The song is ahead of its time. People use others for money now. It’s unusual that the band wrote about a man who uses people for money. The songs are usually about women using men for money so it was different to hear this take on the subject.

The music is masterful. The band knows what they are doing when they play their instruments. The highlight of the music is the saxophone solo. It will send chills down your spine. Her vocals should come with a cautionary tale. She will send chills up and down your spine as well. She will blow your mind with her soulful vocals. Her voice is poignant and convincing as she captivates the listeners with the lyrics. This is one of Sade’s biggest hits and it’s easy to see why that’s the case. Everything about the song works. They give this song their all. It deserves to be a hit and it deserves its spot on our list.

Feature Photo; Ninoska Yévenes, CC BY 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

Top 10 Sade Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021

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