Alicia Keys Essentials
The promise of Alicia Keys as a prodigious teenage pianist who could weave between Chopin and R&B would've been enough—had she not turned out to be so much more. Early on, the sell was her maturity: At 19, she had as much poise in her writing—and power in her voice—as neo-soul artists a decade older. As her sound diversified—hip-hop, touches of electronic music, straight-up pop—she maintained a sense of rootsiness and naturalism that made her not just a preeminent performer, but a generation-bridging artist who could mix trend and tradition without making too big a fuss about it. Sophisticated, empowering, and soulful, here’s the best of Alicia Keys.