Boyz II Men Join Mariah Carey In Power Ballad Cover Trend

Boyz II Men originally made their bones rocking a sound that married classic Motown with modern R&B sounds on tunes like “Motownphilly” and “End of the Road.” But for their new album Love, which hits stores on November 17, they are turning to other people’s songs. The album, produced by the group with a hand from “American Idol” judge Randy Jackson, is their third album of covers, following 2004’s Throwback, Vol. 1 and 2007’s Motown: A Journey Through Hitsville USA. Love will be made up entirely of (surprise, surprise) love songs, and the first single is an epic: A cover of Journey’s “Open Arms.” (Perhaps not coincidentally, producer Jackson was also a member of Journey.)

This comes only a few weeks after the debut of Mariah Carey’s new single from Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel, which is a cover of Foreigner’s “I Want to Know What Love Is.” (Carey also covered “Open Arms” on her Daydream album.) So what is the deal with R&B masters and their embrace of AM rock schlock? With voices like that, why do they want to all be white power balladeers?

Only time will tell whether or not this becomes a full-blown trend, but here’s a whole batch of problematic ideas that hopefully nobody will actually embrace.

» TLC covering Styx’s “Come Sail Away”

» Blackstreet taking on REO Speedwagon’s “Keep on Loving You”

» Sisqo breaking out Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again”

» Pussycat Dolls knocking out Extreme’s “More Than Words”

» Whitney Houston working through Boston’s “More Than a Feeling”

Got any other tremendously bad ideas? Leave them in the comments or head over to to make your voice heard.