Is Mary J. Blige ‘Stronger’?

Off the top, I'm very conflicted about "Stronger" by Mary J. Blige, and it's all Chris Brown's fault. Because were it not for his wack ass presence on background vocals, I would have a greater appreciation for this song, which doubles as the theme music for the upcoming documentary More Than A Game. The doc chronicles LeBron James and his high school basketball dream teammates and, in that context, the song fits perfectly. But that irksome voice on background vox is like nails on a chalkboard to my ears since "The Incident." Although CB is all over the song, at least he's not in the video, which is part documentary footage and part Mary singing amidst nature scenes. MJB is typically a style curve-setter, but I'm not feeling her wardrobe in this clip either. This song and video don't make me want to rush out to buy Mary's new album when it hits stores (which will be a first), but at the very least it does make me want to see More Than A Game.

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11 Responses

  1. I just wanna know how long are people going to hate Chris Brown?
    I was never really a fan of the young man but it seems like people are just never gonna let this ride. I get it. He put his hands on a woman which I think is deplorable, however, his talent is undeniable. His voice...not the greatest. His writing skills... definitely getting there. The fact that he, in fact, penned this song is a testament to the fact that he deserves a second chance. It sounds like he is growing and learning. We have all been young and we have all made mistakes only most of us will never have to live those mistakes out in the oh so unforgiving public eye.
    I think that instead of disparaging every project he is a part of going forward, we should attempt, I repeat, attempt to be objective and judge him, his collaborations and the work on the basis of their own merit.
    With that said, I appreciate the fact that the young man was able to add a work so powerful to a story that is sure to inspire and uplift children and adults, particularly African-Americans, around the country and possibly even the world.
    Maybe we should take a page from Mary's book. She publicly expressed her disappointment in the situation, however, she somehow was able to separate the "boy" from the art. Could it be because she recognizes that given her own history, we stood beside her in the midst of the storm. I think it's time we recognize and do the same.

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    This song would have really been nice if not for the pitch correction on Mary's voice. The hook sounds seriously computerized and saps the life out of her vocals.

  3. @ Sho: Sorry, but I hated Chris Brown before he hit Rihanna, and I will continue to hate him afterwards. His voice is shrill and wretched, he looks like a chinchilla, and his songs--including this one--are all generic Stargate productions. The only thing he is truly good at is dancing, which doesn't explain why he chose to be a singer... He is a terrible example for his female fans, especially that video of him humping the air/floor for four minutes straight ("Take You Down.") His apology was fake as hell and I often question if he has any brains in that noggin of his. He is despicable and
    I have no clue how he became so famous. He surely didn't deserve it; there are hundreds of more talented R&B singers on their grand that deserve his spot much more than him. And instead of choosing to set trends, he tries to crossover and do that stupid auto-tune heavy, Euro-pop trash that everyone else and their mother is doing.

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    Not to condone what Chris did, but I will say that his voice is original. Honestly one of the many of reasons R&B/Soul is in such bad shape is due to the clones. Every year we get bombarded with the “MarvinMichaelSteviePrince” clones. Not to mention the MaryWhitneyMariahBeyonces. I can’t really hear Chris and say, “he grew up listing to him”. So yea, his tone is annoying and he’s not the greatest singer on earth. But he has an original voice. Not that I’m much of a fan...

  5. Chris' voice is original among our species, but in chipmunk land, he's just another one in the crowd.

  6. Wow, you weren't kidding about Chris Brown. Did they really need the "hey!" in the background?

  7. i think i love this song. great fit for jordin sparks but i'm not feeling it for mary. i'm not liking this softer, gentler, "let's clean up her vocals" mary.

  8. I have to disagree. I HEART THIS SONG like nobody's business. The track is haunting and edgy, Mary's voice fits it perfectly, and Chris' vocals and song writing skills are on point. Yes that "boy" made a mistake. But at some point we have to move past it. How many times have we forgiven R. Kelly and his golden shower escapades on under age girls but still support his music? Come on folks. Everyone deserves a second chance and Chris Brown is due his. Again he made a mistake, however it's learning from those mistakes that show a boy growing into a "man".

  9. ummm, can i just not like the song because it sounds like an urban celine dion joint? and sho, i agree with you wholeheartedly.

  10. I think this is a great song - Mary J style and at her best. All you people having issues with Chris Brown on this song need to face the truth. This has nothing to do with the song and everytning to do with the Chris Brown and Rihanna issue. Yes, he was wrong and so was she. You need to separate that issue from the music. If you can't just Shut Up - your biased comments are not needed.

    • "Yes, he was wrong and so was she"
      no. she was the victim. it's disgusting for you to find blame with the victim just because you're hot for the perpetrator. stop it.