With five number-one albums on the Billboard R&B charts, Tank has enjoyed a prosperous career, but until now, his music was not available on streaming platforms.
Finally, after waiting 20 years, Blackground Records debuted digital versions of his first three albums on Friday, September 17.
“It’s bittersweet,” the four-time Grammy nominee tells Rolling Stone. “It’s bitter because I’ve missed out on 10 years’ worth of revenue, 10 years’ worth of discovery.”
However, Tank says he’s grateful for the new exposure.
“Now people will know I was an artist that existed before 2010,” he notes. “I go back — and there’s music to prove it.”
Tank’s first album, 2001’s Force of Nature, and its two follow-ups, 2002’s One Man and 2007’s Sex, Love & Pain, can be streamed for the first time.
The late Aaliyah was also signed to Blackground Records, and now her catalog is available on digital platforms too. Tank began his career singing background on tour for Aaliyah in 1997, then launched his solo career in 2001.
That year, his second single, “Maybe I Deserve,” became his biggest hit.
“That took me from shows with 150 people showing up to nearly 3,000 people showing up in six months,” the 45-year-old singer says. Now he’s recording a new song that samples “Maybe I Deserve.”
It’s a chance to “bring 2000 all the way to 2021,” Tank says.
“Maybe I Deserve” tells the story of man who mistreated his woman and begs for forgiveness. Tank says his fans need those lyrics expressing guilt.
“Ultimately, fans want a thing from you,” he maintains. “They’re like, ‘OK, listen, you can dance around, go to a strip club, but at some point, I’m gonna need you to help me save my relationship.’ That’s their request.”
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