5. Black Majik – Common
Recently nominated for the “Best Rap/Sung Collaboration” Grammy, ‘Black Majik’ is a song that has Common coming aggressive lyrically. The Aiko feature on the loose chorus is her chanting, “black majik” repeatedly. While it may seem overly simple on paper, the final rendition is entrancing.
4. Sparks Will Fly – J. Cole
The fifth bonus track on J. Cole’s sophomore album, Born Sinner, is the perfect iteration of a struggling relationship. As Cole discusses the issues of managing a relationship, Jhene comes in on the chorus and explains that eventually, things will get better. Her voice makes it impossible not to trust her reassuring words and help to paint the picture of a struggle we all have been through at one time or another.
3. Beware – Big Sean
“Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned!” It is these cautionary words that Big Sean’s love ballad embody. The juxtaposition of Jhene’s and Big Sean’s voices on the chorus are what portray the contrasting views that men and women have on relationships. This overlay of Sean’s lower toned voice and Jhene’s higher pitched melodic voice is what put the track on a higher level.
2. From Time – Drake
A deeply poetic song about Drake’s relationship with his parents and the effect it has had on his personal search for true love. He brings up commitment issues and a lack of time to love himself and another person. All the while, the song has a beautiful harmonious piano being played and is supplemented by Jhene Aiko. She is playing the part of a woman who feels that she understands Drake and can give him the space and love that he needs to eventually reciprocate that love.
1. Pink Toes – Childish Gambino
One of the standout tracks on an all around great album, Pink Toes, is a beautifully put together song. It contains, respectively, a beginning, middle and an end. Full of harmonizing between the pair of vocally gifted musicians, the song is both catchy and lyrically coherent. Equal parts singing and rapping by Gambino only make Aiko’s soothing voice that much more present.