*Just for kicks, Billboard decided to rank the top R&B/hip-hop artists, songs and albums over the past six decades. After crunching the numbers, Motown legends The Temptations, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and theMary J. Blige track “Be Without You” are the genre’s top all-time artist, album and song, respectively.

The Temptations topped the list, having tallied a record 16 No. 1s on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart (which began in 1965) and 14 leaders on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart (which dates to 1958), including its longest-leading hit single, the eight-week No. 1 “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” in 1966. The act scored 43 top 10s, including in each decade from the ’60s through the ’90s.

Aretha Franklin is the No. 2 artist (and top female), followed by Stevie Wonder (top male) at No. 3, with the two icons sharing the record for the most No. 1s – 20 each – on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. James Brown (No. 4) and Michael Jackson (No. 5) round out the artist list’s top five.

Among primarily rap artists, Drake ranks the highest at No. 19, followed by Jay Z at No. 20.

Jackson’s “Thriller” leads the all-time albums list after having spent a record 37 weeks at No. 1 on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums in 1983-84. The Black Eyed Peas‘ 2009 set “The E.N.D.” ranks at No. 2 and Jackson’s “Off the Wall,” from 1979, places at No. 3. Rounding out the top five are Whitney Houston’s self-titled 1985 debut (No. 4) and M.C. Hammer’s “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em” (No. 5), the top rap album.

Blige’s “Be Without You” is the all-time No. 1 R&B/hip-hop song, powered by its 15-week reign on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs in 2006. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis‘ debut “Thrift Shop” (featuring Wanz), a 14-week Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs topper in 2013, follows at No. 2 – and is the highest-ranking rap title – while Usher’s 11-week 1997 No. 1 “You Make Me Wanna…” places third. At Nos. 4 and 5, respectively, are Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” (No. 1 for 10 weeks in 1982-83) and Deborah Cox’s “Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here” (No. 1, 14 weeks, 1998-99).

Electronic Urban Report