Brow Beat

Mary J. Blige Reunites With Disclosure and Sam Smith in “Right Now”


Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

Some of the more surprising, cross-genre collaborations of the past year have featured the unlikely trio of Mary J. Blige, Sam Smith, and Disclosure. In January, Blige teamed up with the British electronic duo for a remix of “F for You,” and in June she and Smith did a soulful rendition of “Stay With Me.” Now Blige is releasing a full album, The London Sessions, that heavily involves her new British buddies. Our first taste of the record is “Right Now,” a throbbing dance number produced by Disclosure and co-written by Disclosure, Smith, and Jimmy Napes.

The track is what you’d expect: a canny combination of Disclosure’s stripped down house production and Blige and Smith’s soul sensibilities. Blige’s R&B vocal runs are especially expressive here, and surprisingly compatible with the electronic warbles and synth flourishes underpinning the song. Expectations for The London Sessions, out this fall, should be very high.