Luther Vandross was a highly acclaimed American singer, songwriter, and record producer who made a significant impact on the R&B and soul music scenes in the 1980s and 1990s. With his incredible vocal range, impeccable phrasing, and emotional delivery, he captured the hearts of millions of fans worldwide. He recorded numerous hit songs during his career, earning him a spot as one of the most successful R&B artists of all time.
The top 10 best Luther Vandross songs of all time showcase his incredible talent and range as an artist. His music often centered on themes of love, heartbreak, and relationships, and his songs resonated with audiences around the world. These tracks represent some of the finest examples of his musical prowess and timeless artistry.
From the classic ballad “Dance With My Father” to the upbeat and groovy “Never Too Much,” Luther Vandross’ music continues to inspire and captivate listeners to this day. His songs have become synonymous with love and romance, and his smooth and soulful vocals continue to be revered by fans and musicians alike.
In this list of the top 10 best Luther Vandross songs, we celebrate the legacy of this legendary artist and highlight his enduring contributions to the world of R&B and soul music.
1. “Dance With My Father”
“Dance With My Father” is a sentimental ballad from Luther Vandross’ thirteenth and final studio album of the same name. The song was co-written by Vandross and Richard Marx, and it tells the story of Vandross’ childhood memories of dancing with his father, who had passed away when he was a child. The lyrics are deeply emotional and touch on themes of loss, grief, and the power of memories. Vandross’ smooth and soulful voice is accompanied by a simple piano melody and soft orchestral arrangements, adding to the song’s emotional impact. “Dance With My Father” received critical acclaim and was a commercial success, reaching the top 40 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart and winning the Grammy Award for Best R&B Song in 2004, one year after Vandross’ death. The song has since become a staple at weddings, funerals, and other sentimental occasions, touching the hearts of listeners with its poignant message of love and remembrance.
2. “Here And Now”
“Here and Now” is a romantic ballad by Luther Vandross that was released in 1989 as the lead single from his album “The Best of Luther Vandross… The Best of Love”. The song was a massive commercial success, reaching number one on the US Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and number six on the US Billboard Hot 100. The song is a declaration of love and commitment, with Vandross singing about his desire to spend the rest of his life with his partner. The song’s smooth R&B groove, emotional lyrics, and Vandross’s impeccable vocals make it a timeless classic that continues to be played at weddings and other romantic occasions. “Here and Now” won the Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance in 1991 and remains one of Vandross’s most beloved songs.
3. “There’s Nothing Better Than Love ft. Gregory Hines”
“There’s Nothing Better Than Love” is a 1986 duet by Luther Vandross and Gregory Hines. The song was written by Vandross and Marcus Miller and was released as the lead single from Vandross’s album “Give Me the Reason.” The song features Vandross’s signature smooth vocals and a catchy melody. Hines’s spoken-word performance adds a unique touch to the track. The lyrics speak of the power of love and how it can bring two people together, making them feel like there is nothing better than being in love. The song was a commercial success, peaking at number one on the Billboard R&B chart and number fifty on the Hot 100. It also received a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. The track’s popularity has endured, with numerous covers and samples being made over the years. “There’s Nothing Better Than Love” is a timeless love song that captures the essence of Luther Vandross’s music – soulful, romantic, and unforgettable.
4. “Give Me the Reason”
“Give Me the Reason” is a classic R&B ballad by Luther Vandross that showcases his powerful vocals and emotional depth. The song was released in 1986 as the title track of his album and was written by Vandross and his long-time collaborator, Nat Adderley Jr. The song’s lyrics speak about the complexities of a relationship and the need for open and honest communication. The smooth instrumentation and Vandross’s signature vocal runs create a mesmerizing and soulful sound that captures the listener’s attention. The song was a commercial success, reaching the top 5 on the Billboard R&B charts and becoming a fan favorite. “Give Me the Reason” is a timeless love song that has remained popular for decades and continues to be a staple in R&B music.
5. “Never Too Much”
“Never Too Much” is one of Luther Vandross’s most iconic songs, released in 1981 as the lead single from his debut album of the same name. The song features Vandross’s signature smooth and soulful vocals, accompanied by a funky, upbeat rhythm that has become a classic in the R&B genre. The lyrics express the sentiment of being head-over-heels in love and wanting to express that love to the fullest, with lines like “I just don’t want to stop, oh my love” and “I can’t fool myself, I don’t want nobody else to ever love me”. The song’s infectious groove and catchy chorus have made it a staple at parties and events, and it continues to be a beloved classic in the decades since its release.
6. “Endless Love ft. Mariah Carey”
“Endless Love” is a beautiful duet sung by Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey. Originally written and performed by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie, Vandross and Carey’s rendition adds a soulful touch to the classic love song. Vandross’ smooth vocals blend perfectly with Carey’s powerful voice, resulting in a romantic ballad that tugs at the heartstrings. The song’s lyrics express an unwavering devotion between two lovers, declaring that their love will endure for eternity. Vandross and Carey’s version of “Endless Love” was released in 1994 as a single and became a hit, reaching number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song showcases Vandross’ talent as a vocalist and his ability to create emotional connections with his audience through his music.
7. “Stop to Love”
“Stop to Love” is a classic Luther Vandross track that features his signature soulful vocals and smooth R&B sound. Released in 1986 as part of his album “Give Me the Reason,” the song reached the top ten on the US R&B and Adult Contemporary charts. The lyrics are a heartfelt plea to his lover to slow down and take a moment to appreciate the love they have for each other. The song’s catchy melody, combined with Luther’s passionate delivery, makes it an instant classic and a favorite among fans. The music video features Luther performing the song in a dimly lit club, adding to the intimate and romantic vibe of the track. Overall, “Stop to Love” is a timeless love song that showcases Luther’s talent for creating emotional and relatable music.
8. “If Only For One Night”
“If Only For One Night” is a smooth and romantic ballad by Luther Vandross. The song, written by Brenda Russell and David Foster, was released as a single in 1985 and was included in his album “The Night I Fell in Love”. Vandross’ soulful voice glides over the slow-tempo melody, expressing his desire to spend one magical night with the person he loves. The instrumental arrangement features a delicate piano, strings, and horns that add depth and emotion to the song. The lyrics capture the fleeting and intense nature of a moment of passion and make the listener feel the intensity of the emotion. Vandross’ performance is sincere and passionate, bringing the song to life with his signature vocal style. The song became a hit and is considered one of Vandross’ greatest love songs, showcasing his ability to create beautiful and timeless ballads that resonate with listeners.
9. “A House Is Not a Home”
“A House Is Not a Home” is a soulful ballad by Luther Vandross that was released in 1981. The song is a cover of the 1964 hit by Dionne Warwick, but Vandross added his own touch to it, making it one of his signature songs. The lyrics speak of a house that lacks love, and how it cannot be a home no matter how well-furnished or beautiful it may be. Vandross’s smooth and powerful vocals add depth and emotion to the lyrics, making it a heartfelt ballad that touches the soul. The song features a slow and steady tempo, with a mix of piano, strings, and soft percussion that create a melancholic and romantic atmosphere. Vandross’s interpretation of the song earned him critical acclaim and a Grammy nomination for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance. “A House Is Not a Home” is a timeless classic that continues to be a favorite among soul and R&B music lovers.
10. “So Amazing”
“So Amazing” is a romantic ballad performed by Luther Vandross, released in 1986 as a single from his album “Give Me the Reason.” The song is known for its smooth melody and Vandross’s soulful vocals. It was a commercial success, reaching the top 40 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and topping the Hot Black Singles chart. The lyrics express deep admiration for a loved one, describing how amazing they are and how they bring joy and happiness to the singer’s life. The song features a blend of classic R&B and pop sounds, with the use of instruments like piano, saxophone, and guitar. Vandross’s impeccable delivery and passionate vocal performance made “So Amazing” one of his signature songs and a timeless classic in the world of R&B.