Name An Artist That Completely Broke Your Heart

mimi_mariah.jpgEver stan so hard for an artist only to one day be completely thrown off by an underwhelming project of theirs? It's happened to quite a few of us. In this week's Crowd Participation, some of us came together to discuss this highly important and distressing matter. It's like being cheated on by a once faithful spouse, or having your reliable local health food store sell you some bad flaxseed oil. If the above image is any indication, Mariah's got some 'splaining to do.

Cornfed says:

Yowser, there are more than a few that make this list. I'll go with my top two:

Dave Hollister: After a somewhat too urbane debut, Ghetto Hymns, Dave released the brilliant Chicago: The Movie 85 and a serviceably pleasing Things In The Game Done Changed. Then Dave hit me with Real Talk, a plodding, tiresome and unintelligable work if there ever was one. I felt like he kicked me in the nuts and, after one listen, I wanted to return the favor.

Mariah Carey has managed this feat not once but three times: EMC=2 following the classic Emancipation of Mimi is self-explanatory. Glitter following the megawatt Butterfly (I know that Rainbow was between these, but I loath to admit in public just how much I liked Rainbow). And the schmaltz gone awry Music Box following her stunning eponymous debut and the fun, if uneven Emotions. Why?? Why do I keep going back knowing that she'll beat me again?!

ill Mami says:

Tupac broke my heart. I really dug him when he was down with Digital Underground doing the "Humpty Dance" and exuding Black pride in "Same Song." I was totally loving him when he was chronicling Brenda's demise after she had her baby, and loved how he was down with the homies when they called. But when he began his thuggery, I couldn't be down. The madness that followed (the spraying of bullets, the rape charge) and the intense rage that followed was like watching a small child upset that the world would not bend for his whims. And what made it worse was that you knew how it was all going to end.

I can't say that I hated All Eyez On Me or The Don Killuminati. But his popularity was at such a fever pitch that it was damn near impossible for me to really form an unbiased opinion without someone telling me I was crazy because I was not on Team 'Pac. Alot of those albums were a bit too much gangsta-ness and negativity for me. I guess in the end, no one will be able to say that he was only a studio thug. It's too bad you can't get a prize for that.

Clay says:

I know this is a beloved album, but I was sorely disappointed with Mary J. Blige's Share My World. I loved What's The 411?, What's The 411? Remix and My Life. Share My World just completely let me down, with the exception of "Missing You."  Maybe my expectations were just too high. Share My World was released back when you had to buy full CDs for $12.99 -- an album of only two songs you liked was like robbery!

nOva says:

My Mariah Carey collection runs rather deep, and I was all set to give E=MC2 a chance even after I heard the first single. But never have I imagined in my lifetime that I'd walk away from a Mariah album going "I like the beat to one song." I wouldn't recommend E=MC2 to an enemy. It serves as the greatest testament to how a once respectable artist and vocalist is able to slide by merely on the fact that our expectations and standards have plummeted significantly over the years.

Usher, who I still have fleeting respect for, no longer cuts it for me. The themes on Here I Stand (aside from the lead single) are somewhat refreshing, but the production is the same lazy, paint-by-the-numbers dreck that I expect to be handed over to less-talented, less-experienced, less-savvy artists. This might be acceptable if I was still twelve.

DJ Diva says:

I have always been a stan for Prince and there have been several occasions where he released some albums that made me even raise an eyebrow. I was very upset when I purchased the Chaos and Disorder album he put out in 1996. His last album before his contract with Warner Bros was up and it was straight garbage with the exception of "Dinner With Delores"! I was disgusted and it took me a long time before I bought another Prince album. Long as in 2 years later when I bought The Vault.

Has this ever happened to you? Let us know!


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35 Responses

  1. Man, where do I start? I guess I should go with the artist that has really crushed my poor heart with her lackluster albums after having such a great run, and that would be Janet Jackson. It's been one disaster after another after her release of Velvet Rope. Velvet Rope seems to have been her last hurrah.
    All for You
    Damita Jo
    20 Y.O.

    All snoozers.

  2. Don't have E=MC2, but have a feeling that it's not the like Emancipation. I was disappointed in John Legend's last's okay, but not awesome like his first. Van Hunt had great first album with Van Hunt, but on the Jungle Floor was hot garbage. Tweet's first album was good, but I coulnd't fully get into her second. Erykah B's Amerykah vol. 1 is off for me as well- only like Honey...but for me, the biggest let down is from Ms. Hill. But by far, the saddest disappointment for me is :Lauryn Hill's Unplugged. It was dreadful except for one song...well there may be more, but I never made it through the whole thing.....

  3. Dave Hollister gets two votes from me............Maxwell, D'angelo each get a vote from me and without a doubt R. Kelly gets my most votes. Besides for his obvious sickness his music has fallen the hell off, I cant even listen to any of his music post child molestion charges. His last 3 albums have been garbage his career is over.......Thank God.

  4. Yes it has happened but the most first moments of disappointment that comes to my head are from the three of the best male R&B groups of this young century...
    Dru Hill gave me heat with their self titled debut album, classics like "In My Bed" (the remix) and "5 Steps". The Enter the Dru didn't disappoint either, "These are the Times", "How Deep is Your Love", and the timeless "Beauty" and you can't forget about the "We're not Making Love No More" from the Soulfood Soundtrack. The aftermath, first Woody left, which didn't mean much; but his departure caused everyone to do there own thing. And Sisqo first...his second album was trash. And in 2002 they came back with a 5th member Scola. Initially I loved "I Should Be" but when I got the album I was extremely disappointed. With the expectation if "Millions" that albums was trash.
    On top of that I was also being disappointed by 112, whose first 3 albums (112, Room 112, and Part III), were excellent. Then they came out with Hot and Garbage, sorry Hot and Wet, and Pleasure and Pain sucked just as good as Hot & Wet. In my opinion they stop singing about love in Part III and that's where they lost there luster.
    Despite my disappointments in 112 and Dru Hill, I could always count of Jagged Edge. From A Jagged Era to JE Heartbreak to Jagged Little Thrill they showed the most growth and maturity in there music...Then Hard came out it sounded like JE was trying to be something they weren't. Jagged Edge is known for power ballads, and they had a couple, I had the bootleg and I bought the album and I highly upset and since then they haven't been the same.

  5. Butta, don't kill me!!!
    But Maxwell's Now album was such a disappointment to me. After falling in love with Urban Hang Suite after the first listen, and standing up for Embrya (an album only a true fan could love), the anticipation for Now was high for me. After a 3 year wait, we got a 11 track (not 12 like it's numbered) album of songs we'd been hearing on tour for the 3 years we waited for the album.
    Let me break it down for you:
    Track 1 - There is no Track 1
    Track 2 - Get to Know Ya (he'd been singing this song on tour for 2 years!!!)
    Track 3 - Lifetime (I like this one)
    Track 4 - W(As) My Girl - A slowed down rendition of a song from a soundtrack I already owned
    Track 5 - Changed (this one's alright)
    Track 6 - Noone (i like this one)
    Track 7 - For Lovers Only (I love this song but I always felt like it was way too short).
    Track 8 - Temporary Night (I like this one)
    Track 9 - Silently (I love this one!)
    Track 10 - Symptom Unknown (this one grew on me!)
    Track 11 - This Woman's Work (SERIOUSLY!!! Personally I prefer the live version from the Unplugged EP put out 4 YEARS EARLIER!!!!!)
    Track 12 - Now/At the Party (this song does absolutely nothing for me!)
    I still love Maxwell, and can't wait for the 3 albums he's been working on for who knows how long. But "Now", I'd like to forget he ever did that to me!!!

  6. I am a lifelong member of the TLC fan club. I even got my name onto that list of fans in the book of (questionable) poetry T-Boz released because I stan that hard. But I was pissed off when I first heard Fan Mail. There are a lot of things to be said about my disappointment in this album; I loathe "Unpretty" so, so much and the songwriting on the whole album is garbage. It took the death of Left Eye (may she rest) and the subsequent sadness of 3D for me to renew my love for the group.

  7. I love Mariah til the end! E-MC2 is a very solid album, but it doesn't come close to the Emancipation of Mimi (I still keep "Stay The Night" on repeat).
    That said, if there is one artist who I loved but that has really let me down it's Monica. Her last two releases just didn't do it for me. After the Storm had a lot of potential with "So Gone" but it just fizzled there after. It also had a lot of album filler. She has a golden voice and we want to hear her sing. I don't expect her to make an album of bland Diane Warren ballads, but she needs to stop talking fast and rapping and get back to making quality music like her debut album and it's follow-up The Boy Is Mine (Street Symphony is still the cut). She said she never wanted to be a pop star but wanted to follow the career path of maybe Mary J and Keyshia. Her last album was total garbage and I think she need's to get Dallas Austin to executive produce her next project, because he know's her best and once he left her music started to go downhill. Sideline Ho was crap and so was the rest of The Makings of Me. Stop rapping and if you want to be hood that's great just come with great material.
    -Get back with Dallas Austin!! Don't just ask for his advice, get him involved in your project! You sing with a lot of conviction and soul, it's time to bring it!

  8. I am also a stan of Janet. I almost feel the same way that you do...dare I say that you're not a true fan of Janet's. All for You was her last successful album. Damita Jo was heavily slept on..If it wasn't for the Super Bowl crap, it would have done better..Now 20yo was not up to par....Discipline is back on track...she puts out quality work, it just doesn't sell like it used to..JANET IS STILL QUEEN.

  9. I MUST agree with Shawn Blaze. Dru Hill's first 2 album's were phenomenal, but they fell off ridiculously. It makes me weep sometimes. 112 and Jagged Edge were up there on my list too.
    Mary J. has broken my heart with almost every single album that she is released since I graduated from high school in 1999. Her singles are usually cool, but every album makes me want to stab my stereo. And her perfomances make my ears bleed with all that out of tune screaming.
    E. Badu didnt break my heart with this last offering, but she did chip the side a little bit. I just couldnt get into it, and i expected to fall inlove with it immediately, especially since "Honey" was my jam *sigh* It did grow on my but none of her albums have EVER had to grow on me.

  10. I would have to say Prince during his "wanna-be-gangsta" growing pains of the '90s. I really hated his pandering to hip-hop, which seemed like a bad attempt to prove his blackness. Despite what some critics said about his crossover success in the late-80s, black people loved him, especially "Parade," "Sign 'O The Times" and "Lovesexy."
    When it came around "The Symbol" album, The Gold Experience and New Power Generation, Prince was pretty laughable.

  11. when Bobby married Whitney...that hurt me.

  12. Alicia Keys: I can't say I'm a stan for Alicia Keys but I like her as an artist. Songs in A-Minor was brilliant. Diary of Alicia Keys was hot with even with the questionable Dragon Days. And then the live album with Unbreakable hotness. But when she came with As I Am I was ready. I had spent the summer out the country and didn't have time to get sick of no one. So I was feeling it. When the album leaked I downloaded it with every intention of buying it still. Listened to it and realized I would not be paying the 10.74 at Best Buy on New Music Tuesday. I only like wreckless love aside from No One. That's sad. Alicia What Happened.
    I agree with the summation of Here I Stand but I was never an Usher Stan.
    There's another album I was going to mention but I can't even remember the name of it. How forgettable is that.

  13. Well good thing I was on CP time with my response because it would have been the same as Clay's. And I just can't have Mary getting too much hateration in one post.
    I happened to love Share My World though. It wasn't until No More Drama that she started BREAKIN MY HEARRRRT. She had me crying out like Nettie in Color Purple. "Whhyyyyy???!!!!" Sitting here, I can't remember one song off that album besides Dance For Me because it's a good workout song. Regardless, Mary is one of the few artists I will always purchase no matter what.
    The last album of Mimi's that I will likely ever purchase is Emancipation. I'm not a stan but it was over for me after that.

  14. @ Viv: Love MJB too, but No More Drama angered me in a way that no other album by one of my favorite artists has. To this day I wish I could retroactively remove that from her catalogue. To add insult to injury, Faith's Faithfully was out around the same time, but NMD was getting all the attention while Faithfully was so much better. Like, to the point of making NMD look foolish.

  15. My 2nd favorite artist is Mariah and she broke my heart bad with E=mc2. I can't honestly remember the last time i listened to the few songs on the cd that I actually like. I mean I wore MIMI out when that dropped in 05 & I shout loud and proud that Glitter was a GREAT yes GREAT soundtrack but this e=mc2 mess...Jesus wept

  16. badu was definitely a disappointment. you gotta let artists evolve and to their thing but after the long wait, i was expecting better. hopefully her 2nd cd coming out this year is the one we've been waiting for.
    musiq also underwhelmed me with his last cd. hopefully that song 'radio' aint a true indication of things to come from the new one...

  17. Where do i begin...
    @ Nova- i agree No More Drama didn't really do anything for me except for the title track. It wasn't classic material like ..411? or My Life.
    BTW...I really enjoy Share My World...not gon' cry and 7 days are 2 of my faves. also, Love & Life was forgettable.
    I am definitely a fan of A.Keys, but As I Am wasn't her best material and was kinda safe. ...Diary is my fave album of hers!
    Mariah is another one; I am a huge fan of (most of)her work but from what i've heard e=mc2 is...crap- especially coming after Emancipation!
    @ Ayesha: i agree Now is Maxwell's best, but I'll be interested in everything he sets his voice to.
    Urban hang suite is one of my top albums ever.

  18. At the top of my list is John Legend. I loved his debut and then the second albu was a mess. I only got through it once. It feels so calculated and he's trying be perfect, which results in the opposite result. It sounds like Starbucks music, and nothing more. And that "Green Light" mess was the nail in the coffin. He ain't getting any more of my money until further notice.
    I was really digging Tweet's debut, but her sophomore album was lukewarm, at best. Ashanti really left me hanging with the Declaration. I was digging E=MC2 at first, but it doesn't have much replay value.

  19. I seem to be among the few who liked John Legend's 2nd album; "Again", "Show Me", "Another Again", "Each Day...", "Coming Home"... were all well-written, simple and beautiful songs

  20. @Nate I agree! Slow Dance is the only song I remember off JL's sophomore effort. I gotta wait to hear the word on the street re: his upcoming release before I drop my dollars.
    I would definitely agree with the assessments on Dru Hill. Speaking of Breaking My Heart, Can we talk about Mint Condition too? Life's Aquarium was the one that sent us to counseling.
    Wondering if I'm alone in my adoration of New Amerykah? Am I strange because I was in love from the first delcious listen?

  21. @ Ayesha Girl, don't be skurred. I stan for Maxwell, but I know the difference between an excellent album and a so-so one, which Now turned out to be. He didn't break my heart with it, though.
    I would have to agree with the previous commenters who have listed Prince and R. Kelly as artists who have broken their hearts.
    Prince has done it twice. Once before in the '90s when he was going through his gangsta phase that led into his SLAVE phase. He lost me for a good 10 years from being the rabid fan I was prior to that. And most recently he's broken my heart with his iron-fist internet policies. Lord knows I almost cried when my YouTube channel was brought down in January for posting cover versions of his songs. I'm still salty behind that.
    As far as the R-rahh, his mental affliction and pedophile predilections don't sit well in my soul. He started to lose me when he got all thuggish ruggish in his songs circa I did break down and buy Chocolate Factory and his double album Happy People/You Saved Me because the music appealed to me, but with all the charges and allegations I felt dirty listening to him. I can't in good faith support this man anymore, which is a shame because he is a tortured genius.

  22. ONE MORE THING- ANY EN VOGUE ALBUM POST Dawn's departure has hurt my heart like no other. I hope these ladies get right!!! That's a real group- All 4 members are intricate to it's success and can't be replaced!!!

  23. YES! @ nOvaMatic about Faithfully...Anyway I see this is a hot topic with a lot of good, opinions. One album that really got me angry was MJB's Love & Life. I was more-than-amped for the Diddy & Mary J. reuniting and i.m.o. it was SO garbage!! That's also the album where her voice suddenly lost the grit and she started sc'reaching' those high-notes she does now. No More Drama was the last time she was gravely-voiced MJB, all raspy and what not. I liked that.
    Also Musiq's Soulstar took me a LONG time to get into. And now I can say I like about 1/3 of that album after all this time. I was heated with that dude for making that album for a minute =) He came back with Luvanmusiq which was a little better, not the same Musiq from albums 1 & 2 but still cool, ya know? But now....'Radio'....turned off

  24. I read thru all the comments before posting...and I totally agree with several: 112, I wanted to like their last two efforts but just....couldn't. and with MJB....I actually liked some of Love & Life, it was No More Drama that hurt me to my soul. Even though, Never Been and Steal Away are my songs....that "dancery" shit was just a bad time for Mary. She more than made up for it with Breakthrough and Growing Pains though, so all is well with me and Mary again....
    I also gotta cosign the Alicia Keys...As I Am just doesn't compare to The Diary, Unplugged or Songs In A Minor....
    I'll also get on the Usher bandwagon as well. Here I Stand just doesn't do it for me....

  25. Joe has to be the only artist to truely crush my soul beyond repair. His early and somewhat unknown work "Everything" and "All That I Am" are some of my all-time favorite albums. It seems the more popular he got, the more cliche and underwhelming his music became. After purchasing "My name is Joe" and "Better Days" I absolutely refuse to spend any more money on this man.

  26. Bree, you're not alone. I loved John's 2nd album and still do til this day.

  27. Great post topic, and a tough one, hence my inability to submit a timely response.
    I could say Nas, although my relationship with hip-hop has been deteriorating for so long that it's hard for me to pinpoint where he lost me. "Oochie Wally" was probably the last straw, but then he kinda made up for it by penning one of the best songs in all of hip-hop ("Made You Look")
    At this point in my life, no artist can really break my heart. That's due to a combination of cynicism and a deep familiarity with the fragility of the creative psyche. When you understand that brilliance is not commonplace, you embrace it tightly because you know mediocrity is inevitable.
    I expect EVERYBODY to fall off at some point, with the exception of The Roots and De La Soul, and old jazz dudes who always seem to get better with age. I mean, the group responsible for my personal favorite album of all time has dropped a string of stinkers. You grow to understand that some creative triumphs are a perfect of storm of all the right factors coming together that can never be duplicated.
    Check back with me after the new Common album drops though.

  28. "My Name is Prince"
    Chain-curtain police hat,/gun-mike era Prince. Could not follow. There's a reason he doesn't play that in concert. No one wants to hear it. Ever. My heart wasn't broke, but definitely had to walk away for a minute.
    Am I the only one that didn't hate "New Amerykah"? I like Erykah playing in different soundscapes, sometimes with mixed results. Every artist has their "Electric Circus", and this was Erykah's. And found "Honey" to be a radio track that was too predictable (the video, however, is fun). I think her next CD will be more what y'all want-- more upbeat, head nodding music.

  29. Nu Amerykah is the shiznit.
    I can't play "The Cell" in my iPod on my morning commute because I can't help but challenge shuffling government workers to uprock battles.

  30. Alot of people seem 2 have been 'disappointed' with New Amerykah. I can kinda understand why... she came out of nowhere with the style and song structure. However I loved it immediately. However I can't say the same for World Wide Underground ... not a fan! Love of MY Life (and the rmx), along with Danger and Back In The Day (Puff) are great songs but the rest sounds disjointed and a bit of a mess in my opinion.
    I'll probably be shot for this but I was kinda disappointed with MJBs Growing Pains, especially after The Breakthrough which was a classic. The only real song I listen to regularly is Fade Away. Altho as Vivrant Thang said earlier ... I will always purchase the new MJB album!
    Luvanmusiq was probably one of my biggest disappointments tho! I love his first 2 albums, and I even dig most of Soulstar but I just felt that Luvanmusiq was a bit too 'mainstream R&B' - honestly I felt like any male 'R&B star' (see Usher, Ne-Yo) coulda sang those songs (which certainly wasn't the case with his 1st 3 releases).

  31. Though still young in the game, Raheem Devaughn had me with his smooth grownup sound on his first album. I bought the second without hesitation on the day it dropped. Though the album is not quite as good as the first, he lost me with that crap of a song Text Messages. Also collabing with the Pied Pedophile has reduced the level of respect that I have for him as an artist.
    Mary J would be my other disappointment. I have not purchased a complete album from her since My Life.

  32. Janet Jackson - Discipline: I mean, it's a solid effort and I like 'most' of the songs, but it's no Velvet Rope or Janet. She could've done SO MUCH BETTER. I wish she'd get back with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. I was listening to her Velvet Rope album the other day. That entire record is good. I miss that sound! Come on back to us Janet! See you in concert in October!
    Santogold - Innovative, but I think it's just a little beyond me or something. I like about half the tracks but the rest I totally zone out on. I'm keeping the record though; collector's habit, ya know. LOL.
    WorldWide UnderGround & New Amerykah - Again, the innovativeness is awesome and perhaps I just haven't devoted the 'time' but these two for me are just so-so... But I'm keeping them too. LOL

  33. Aaliyah dying was a heartbreaker. So young and talented. And Luther dying. Is there a better vocalist? Good thing we still have Johnny Gill (where are you, Johnny?) as the obvious godson (musically speaking) of Luther. Jodeci breaking up. Forever My Lady (their 1st album) was off the hook, and Diary of a Mad Band was unbelievable. They kinda lost it for me for their 3rd effort The Show, The After Party, The Hotel, but I was more than willing to give them another chance on their 4th. And their live performances on Uptown MTV Unplugged of Stay and Lately are still on constant rotation with me, even after 15 years! I guess the egos of Devante and K-Ci proved to be too much. Also? Too bad Jo Jo is busy collapsing mid show (in Australia, recently). Come back Jodeci!

  34. I have 3
    #1 Lauryn.....after the fantastic unplugged album......I was chompin at the bits for her next release.....NUTHIN....actually Lose Myself was kinda nice.....breaks my heart to see her live shows on Youtube ...her voice is wrecked....I cant stand to see her that way.....
    #2 D'Angelo lawd.....WHY!!?? from legal issues to the weight new work in ages....arrgh....i wanna wake up from this nightmare
    #3 Whitney.....i think that ship has sailed....I SO wanna be proven wrong....cos nobody can reach in and just grab my heart like homegurl can.
    Honorable mention goes to Mariah.... after Butterfly...i just cant listen to her.....somethin bout the hand movements and that affected breathing between notes ...ugh....remember the song "If it's Over" that was the Mariah i LOVED.....

  35. Sort of coming into this late, but I agree with E=MC2. She was starting to mature on Charmbracelet and Mimi, so what in the heck happened? With E=MC2 she went back to the immaturity and middle school lyrics of the Butterfly and Rainbow days. The truth is that some of us don't care for the Butterfly and Rainbow eras at all and the ones that do love it to death are the obsessive stans. I want more Emancipation of Mimi and less Butterfly.