Uptown Records’ Biggest Billboard Hits: ‘Forever My Lady,’ ‘Real Love,’ ‘Candy Rain’ & More

Andre Harrell
AP Photo/Nick Wass

Andre Harrell arrives to the Warner Theatre during the 2010 BET Hip Hop Honors on Jan. 16, 2010 in Washington.

Jodeci and Mary J. Blige, among others, gave the imprint its most successful singles.

As both fans and leading industry figures mourn Andre Harrell, best known for founding the Uptown Records imprint, Billboard reveals and ranks the biggest hits from the label’s roster. Many of the tunes, from acts such as Mary J. Blige, Guy and Jodeci, bridged the gap between R&B and hip-hop as the genres surged in popularity in the 1990s.

Harrell died at age 59 of an apparent cardiac arrest episode.

The mogul founded Uptown in 1986, and it quickly became a home for some of the hottest emerging R&B and hip-hop artists. In addition to Blige, Guy and Jodeci, Uptown counted Heavy D & The Boyz, Soul For Real and Monifah as key players in its heyday.

The organization kept its eye on industry talent, too. Famously, a young Sean Combs (the future Puff Daddy/P. Diddy/Diddy) interned at Uptown and soon nabbed a leading A&R role. Though Combs was fired in 1993, Harrell and Uptown planted the seeds for for one of hip-hop’s biggest producers and executives to learn the tricks of the trade.

In honor of Harrell’s enduring impact across two genres, let’s recap Uptown Records’ 25 biggest hits on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Among the accomplishments, eight No. 1s on the ranking, including five for Jodeci. The R&B group also claims the imprint’s top performer, the 1991 classic, “Forever My Lady.”

Song Title, Artist, Peak Position, Peak Date
1. “Forever My Lady,” Jodeci, No. 1 (two weeks), Nov. 9, 1991
2. “Candy Rain,” Soul For Real, No. 1 (three weeks), March 11, 1995
3. “Real Love,” Mary J. Blige, No. 1 (two weeks), Oct. 17, 1992
4. “Lately,” Jodeci, No. 1 (four weeks), July 24, 1993
5. “Cry For You,” Jodeci, No. 1 (four weeks), Jan. 15, 1994
6. “Come & Talk to Me,” Jodeci, No. 1 (two weeks), May 30, 1992
7. “You Remind Me,” Mary J. Blige, No. 1 (one week), July 25, 1992
8. “I Wanna Get With U,” Guy, No. 4, Dec. 22, 1990
9. “I Like,” Guy, No. 2, May 13, 1989
10. “Stay,” Jodeci, No. 1 (two weeks), Feb. 8, 1992

11. “Groove Me,” Guy, No. 4, Aug. 6, 1988
12. “Freek’n You,” Jodeci, No. 3, July 29, 1995
13. “Be Happy,” Mary J. Blige, No. 6, Dec. 24, 1994
14. “Let’s Chill,” Guy, No. 3, April 6, 1991
15. “Big Daddy,” Hev-D, No. 5, March 8, 1997
16. “Somebody For Me,” Heavy D & The Boyz, No. 8, Nov. 18, 1989
17. “Love No Limit,” Mary J. Blige, No. 5, June 5, 1993
18. “Feenin',” Jodeci, No. 2, April 16, 1994
19. “Got Me Waiting,” Heavy D & The Boyz, No. 3, May 7, 1994
20. “Now That We Found Love,” Heavy D & The Boyz, No. 5, Aug. 31, 1991

21. “Reminisce,” Mary J. Blige, No. 6, Feb. 6, 1993
22. “We Got Our Own Thang,” Heavy D & The Boyz, No. 10, Aug. 12, 1989
23. “I’m Still Waiting,” Jodeci, No. 10, Sept. 26, 1992
24. “I Miss You (Come Back Home),” Monifah, No. 16, Feb. 3, 1996
25. “Every Little Thing U Do,” Christopher Williams, No. 7, May 29, 1993

Uptown Records’ Biggest Billboard Hits are based on actual performance on the weekly Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart through May 9, 2020. Songs are ranked based on an inverse point system, with weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at lower ranks earning lesser values. Due to changes in chart methodology over the years, certain eras are weighted to account for different chart turnover rates over various periods.

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