Combining a creamy tenor with soul-searching confessionals and cosmic soundscapes, Miguel renders tales of romance and personal transformation with effortless, eclectic style. Since emerging in 2010, the singer-songwriter has oscillated between genres and feelings on his way to becoming a defining voice of modern alternative R&B. It’s a path he began blazing early on. With its blend of electronic, rock, R&B and funk, his debut album, All I Want Is You earned critical acclaim before being certified platinum. Imbued with expressive vocals and subdued cool, his J. Cole-assisted breakout single “All I Want Is You” was a forebear for the sleek, yet emotional sounds that would characterize alt R&B in the 2010s.
Miguel continued indulging his experimental tendencies with his aptly titled sophomore album Kaleidoscope Dream, a shapeshifting fever dream that saw him further refine his genre fusions with bits of imagination and knowing eccentricities. Powered by singles like “Adorn,” “How Many Drinks?,” and “Do You…’ and ‘The Thrill,” the 2013 LP was nominated for a total of 5 Grammy Awards. Written and produced by Miguel, “Adorn” garnered Miguel his first Grammy Award for Best R&B Song and lived at No.1 on the R&B/Hip-Hip Airplay chart for more than 23 weeks, becoming the longest running No. 1 single in the history of the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hoip Airplay chart. The same year, he reunited with Cole on the rapper’s hit single “Power Trip,” which peaked at No. 19 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Released in 2015, Wildheart only certified Miguel’s consistency, as Pitchfork named it the 8th best album of the year before its lead single, “Coffee,” was nominated for Best R&B Song at the 2016 Grammy Awards.
Miguel reaffirmed his status as a premier R&B auteur with War & Leisure. Propelled by his interstellar Travis Scott-featured lead single, “Sky Walker,” the 2017 album earned critical acclaim and landed at No. 9 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. It also secured his third No. 1 debut on the Billboard R&B Albums chart. More recently, his All I Want Is You single, “Sure Thing,” went viral on TikTok with over 23M creations as it surged to the No. 15 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Released 13 years ago, its resurgence is evidence of a sound that’s at once timeless and futuristic — just like the person who made it.