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January 23, 2020

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Rythem and Blues Greats: Mary J Blige and Faith Evans

Mary J Blige vs. Faith Evans

Ok, there is no beef between the two artists at all. Catchy title huh? Well, what this is about is the comparison of their careers. Why is it that Mary J is on top of her game "MaryVSFaith"and Faith Evans seems to be missing in action?


Mary J Blige hit the scene in 1992 with her hit album “What’s The 411” from there she continue to drop hit album after hit album after hit album, totaling 10 albums (Ten is a really good number). To this date Mary has sold over 50 million albums and 15 million singles worldwide.

Wow how about I didn’t know that Mary’s middle name was Jane. I wonder what her parents were thinking? Anyway, Mary has also has done some acting. Most people remember her in the movie “Prison Song”. She played a mother and in the movie she was placed in jail and her son had to be put in the foster care system. When he grew up he became an artist but he ended up in jail for murder. It was sad but realistic to some but not me.  The adult version of her son was played by Q Tip. It mainly runs on BET. She also acted in Tyler Perry’s movie “I Can Do Bad All By Myself” in 2009. So Mary has had a very successful career even though she has some hard times.

Now let’s talk about Faith Evans. Faith dropped her debut album in 1995 called “Faith” which was a hit. She has had 6 albums. She hasn’t been too creative with the name of the albums. Seems she was a little stuck on her name. Her albums were titles, “Faith”, “Keeping the Faith”, “Faithfully” and “First Lady”. I was getting ready to give her a break for the last one but there is an “F” in that one. She also had a Christmas album called “A Faithfull Christmas “which makes number six. She had big breaks in between her albums; she took from 3 to 5 years off between each album.

Faith also has done some acting in her career. “Turn It Up” and “The Fighting Temptations”The main movie I remember Faith in is “The Fighting Temptations”, also starring Cuba Gooding Jr. I rather enjoyed that movie. It was very entertaining compared to a sad boring movie with over acting.

Anyway, Faith Evans has held her own in a different way and has still had some success. To her it may be enough, but to others it may not be enough. But who is to say it’s not good.

Now let me compare and break down the difference. I’m going to start off on a light note. Faith didn’t really seem to grind as hard as Mary, but I think it is mainly because she has had children to look after, where Mary has none. I also feel like Mary’s success was fueled by drugs and alcohol. Not saying that Faith didn’t have her own issues, but Mary seemed to be in a little further than Faith. When you are heavy into drugs and alcohol in the industry it tends to keep you in the party scene where Mary probably had a bigger chance to mingle with other industry people that was mixed up in drugs and alcohol. (Which is a lot) What better way to meet people than to party. Also Mary seems to have dropped an album almost every two years from her first release. So it seems Mary was on a vicious grind. Faith seemed more laid back with her work. Now I know that both of them did great hits with P Diddy, Puffy, Puff Daddy, Sean Combs (Whatever his name is) and once they both left him the had a drop. But Mary didn’t fall too far. Faith to me just didn’t seem to come back. Her first album was the best for me. I also enjoyed her second one but after that I couldn’t keep up. Her style changed.  

Sometimes change is good but when you have captured people’s hearts you need to keep it. Mary continued to keep the hearts she’s captured. I can’t say that I haven’t enjoyed any of Faith’s albums, but one after another Mary has put her heart and soul into hers. That’s it! I think that Mary made more of a success in her career because she was true to herself in her albums. Not saying Faith wasn’t but let’s be real. Faith had great songs but there was no connection. She just sang her songs. It didn’t feel to me that she was singing from her heart. But Mary on the other hand, every song made you cry, made you happy or made you feel strong and independent. Mary made me feel like a strong woman. So many of her songs I swear she took a page out of my journal and wrote the songs and sang it back to me like, “Ms. Luvly this is for you.” I never got that feeling from Faith’s music. I love the songs, I sing along with her but there was no mental connection.

Now let’s go a little deeper in the comparisons. What really connects Mary and Faith was the death of Biggie (Biggie Smalls or Notorious B.I.G). The whole hip hop community was devastated about his murder, which to this day it is still unsolved. We know Faith was his wife, but Lil Kim was his mistress. I remember during the funeral Mary J stood by Lil Kim’s side holding her up as she grieved for Biggie. Who was there for Faith? Maybe this caused a bit of separation in the music industry. I mean Biggie was a legend so people have a tendency of choosing sides. During this time Lil Kim was big and Mary was big so that made Faith the odd person out. Also Biggie didn’t make Faith out to be a great person. His portrayal of Faith in his video “Get Money” made her looks like a gold digger. (Charlie Baltimore played Faith) I remember second guessing her motives also, but it was just a video. Then there was the picture Faith took with 2 Pac that caused huge drama between Biggie and 2 Pac. It might have been all innocent but that picture didn’t help any. So I am thinking there were a huge turn over for Faith after all those incidents. It is sometimes hard to make a comeback from scandal in the industry, especially when people are quick to choose sides. No one has a mind of their own nowadays.

But after all has been said and done I truly think that both Faith Evans and Mary J Blige are wonderful artist and they each hold their own no matter who is more successful in money. Success should not be measured by money. Success is what the person feels in their heart. So both women have been extremely successful…

Ms. Luvly

 

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