Mary J. Blige’s “What’s The 411?” Defined Urban Music’s New Culture

Mary’s “What’s the 411” is an album that will always remain timeless.

She was the girl everyone was being introduced to and yet they all felt they had known forever. She was cool and gritty, yet soft and pretty. She shot up the charts and defined what urban culture would look like for a young teenage crop of girls who were desperate for something different.

With both her sound and her look, the old soul with wisdom beyond her years would parlay this freshman project into a lifetime of achievement. And it all started with one incredible album. For the last 25 years we’ve been rocking with Mary J. Blige’s “Whats The 411?” for one simple reason. She got it goin’ on!

WATCH- “What’s the 411?” 25 Year Tribute Video

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Through songs like Reminisce, Real Love, You Remind Me, Love No Limit, Changes Ive Been Going Through and Sweet Thang, Mary J. showed the world that she could speak on lifes trials and tribulations with ease, and do so in a way that made you believe that she had lived and loved for real.

But it was the songs that featured other artists that were the cherry on top of an already phenomenal Mary J Blige musical sundae.

At the time of “Whats The 411?”s release, there had not been an album that fused Hip Hop and Soul in quite the way that Mary would attempt. But music fans were shocked and elated at the pure perfection of the way she would attack the musical endeavor. Hit after hit proved that not only could it be done…it could be done by her!

We no longer even have to say her full name. To us, shes just Mary. And whether she was leaving messages about real love, going through changes over loves that were sweet, or being reminded of loves with no apparent limits, Mary entered the musical ring exuding class, down to earth appeal, fearless fashion sense, grit and an overwhelming feeling of familiarity that carried her from the airwaves straight into the hearts and minds of a people who would love her for generations to come.

After 25 years of excellence we still remember when…we first heard her voice. And if loving her is all that we have to do, we don’t want to do anything else.