Reintroducing This Blog… and the Tuned-On! Top 30 #348 – March 14, 2011

While my new personal chart is hopping with activity, it’s generally been pretty quiet in the music world these past few weeks, and both Canadian Music Week and SXSW are in progress.  So for those who are unfamiliar with this blog, allow me to reintroduce it for you.

BillcsIsTuned-On! the blog began in September 2009 as my outlet for selective things good and musical and mainly current that I enjoy and would like to share with others.  Like other bloggers, the benefit of others discovering the music that we are talking about – even if we aren’t the first to talk about them – is the reward of writing this blog.  The blog also frames the bi-weekly publication of my favourite 30 songs of the moment, the Tuned-On! Top 30, which I have been producing online since late 1997 and is now in its 348th edition.  Like everyone, I have my favourite singers and performers.  Unlike many bloggers, I have over 30 years of music fandom, college radio and writing experience.  I love documenting the history of music and compiling lists, and this forum is one way I can share this kind of information with you as well.

Meanwhile, back on the Top 30 🙂  When I look at the current chart, it makes me wanna be at SXSW so much.  I’ve been to Austin TX and enjoy it a whole lot.  Combine that ‘weird’ city with artists on my chart who are performing there – Jamie Woon, Frankmusik, Duran Duran, Andy Grammer, Bright Light Bright Light, and Penguin Prison – and I guess I’ll just say that I’m there in spirit.

Jamie Woon fortunately is coming to my town (Toronto) on March 25 and I’m hoping to catch his show.  “Night Air” climbs to #1 this week a month before his CD Mirrorwriting is due in the U.K.  Can’t. Wait.  I posted a preview of the video for “Love 2 Baby” by Christian TV a few weeks back.  The song scores a very competitive runner-up spot on the chart.The full video debuts on Monday March 14 and I will post that clip once it’s available.  EDIT!  The video’s below 🙂


Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” climbs easily to #3, while Ro Danishei and Simon Curtis stay at a strong #4 with “Michelle”.  There’s double Frankmusik, with “The Fear Inside” slipping from the top to #5 and glorious ballad “Hurt You Again” moving to #6.  Far East Movement and Ryan Tedder get stuck at #7 with “Rocketeer”, and three songs make their first appearances in the Top 10.

“I Won’t Let You Go” is one of Adam Tyler’s best songs and it leaps to #8 – I’m so looking forward to his debut album Lullabies for Rattlesnakes.  “Sunlight” by Bag Raiders featuring Dan Black will be more effective with Spring around the corner and moves 16-9.  “More” by Usher continues to impress me with the singer’s delivery and the production, and it becomes his first Top 10 hit on the chart (his 9th entry) since “Yeah” reached the summit in 2004.

Songs by Andrea Lewis, Andy Grammer, Alphaville, Neverest, and BT all move up, but surround songs that make greater gains.  “The City” by Patrick Wolf is Top 10 bound as it jumps 20-14, and “Tonight” by Enrique Iglesias & Ludacris (in whatever version you prefer) moves 26-20.  But the song that has captured music fans’ attention the most this Winter is also the fastest riser, and that’s “Born This Way” by Lady GaGa, up 25-17.

Three of the four chart debuts have already been mentioned previously.  Don’t get me started on Adele’s “Someone Like You”.  The song makes a splashing debut at #12, and continues as the deserved UK #1.  It looks to be one of the best songs of the year from the 21 album, which could be the best album of the last several years.  Further down at an impressive #23 is “How To Make A Heart” by Bright Light Bright Light – don’t forget to watch the sad but entertaining video.  On a danceable but totally different bent is Kyle Brylin’s “Everything I’m Missing” at a smashing #24, a song that I’ve found to be quite contagious over the past few weeks.  And yeah check out the video again, while you’re at it, and then pick up the song as a free download right here.  Lastly, as “Jacksonville” departs so continues the presence of songs from Brandon Flowers and the enduring Flamingo album on this chart.  One of the best songs he performs live in concert is at #27, “Jilted Lovers & Broken Hearts” – watch the clip below.

You can view the full chart using the link to the right under ***BILL’S PERSONAL CHART*** or just click right here.  Enjoy and post your comments 🙂

Tuned-On! Top 30 #347 – February 28/11

My newest personal chart is a busy one despite the lack of debuts.  Continuing to lead at the summit is the top notch “The Fear Inside” by Frankmusik, while Mr. Frank’s ballad “Hurt You Again” soars into the Top 10 at #8 as the Fastest Riser on the chart.   Inching up to runner-up spot is “Night Air” by UK singer Jamie Woon, who has some North American show dates on deck, including SXSW in Austin and one in my town on March 25 🙂  Making the Top 3 songs extremely competitive is the irresistible “Love 2 Baby” by Christian TV, whose video is in the works as you can see in the behind-the-scenes preview at the top of this page.  We’ll see who places first in two weeks.

Continuing its impressive rise is the scorching “Michelle” by Ro Danishei featuring Simon Curtis, now entrenched in the Top 5.  And joining it is Adele’s soulful “Rolling In The Deep”, from her brand new album 21.  Besides “Hurt You Again”, the Top 10 has a change up with three additional debuts.  “Rocketeer” by Far East Movement featuring Ryan Tedder (which Frankmusik is performing on tour instead, since the Far East guys are his label-mates) climbs 13-7, while Duran Duran’s “All You Need Is Now” and “Ice Melts” by Matt & Kim (who were recently in Europe) round out the Top 10.  Duran Duran are also featured in SXSW next month.

Also on the rise for a sunny Spring and looking good for Top 10 status soon include Adam Tyler’s europop flavoured “I Won’t Let You Go”, “Sunlight” by Australia’s Bag Raiders featuring Dan Black (video at the bottom of the page – love the use of the word iridescence!),  “Keep Your Head Up” which has L.A.’s Andy Grammer (another SXSW performer) accentuating the positive, Alphaville’s update of their 80’s eurodisco with “I Die For You Today”, and the sparkling Richard X mix of “The City” by Patrick Wolf.

The newbies on the chart this week are actually huge hits which I’ve already discussed in previous blogs:  Lady GaGa’s forever anthem “Born This Way”, and “Tonight” (in whichever version you want) by Enrique Iglesias and Ludacris.

You can view the full chart using the link to the right under ***BILL’S PERSONAL CHART*** or click right here.  Please post any comments you might have – thanks for reading 🙂


Tuned-On! Top 30 #345 – Jan 31/11

The top songs on this edition of my personal chart stay the same once again. Penguin Prison’s amazing “Golden Train” hangs tight for a 4th appearance at #1, while Frankmusik’s addictive “The Fear Inside” follows at #2 for a third appearance. So what will happen in two weeks? I’m not so sure, but Rihanna’s “S&M” has made an interesting surge to #3 – the peak of 2007’s “Don’t Stop The Music”, her highest ranking song on my chart to date. Will she get to #1? There are a few challengers below.

Each song below makes a good case why it might reach the top in two weeks. “Monster” by Kanye West is one of his most ferocious and entertaining songs to date and moves up to #5. But he’s been to the top with Estelle in “American Boy” and to the runner up spot with “Gold Digger” – can he get to either again? Then there’s the beautiful rendition of ABBA’s “The Winner Takes It All” by UK chanteuse Elouise, which moves up to #6. Last year, her “Pretender” soared to #2. “Falling”, the theme song to the 1990-91 TV show ‘Twin Peaks’ has been redone and reshaped by UK electro sensation Bright Light Bright Light, and becomes Rod Thomas’ 4th consecutive Top 10 entry here. Both “A New Word To Say” and “Love Part II” were #1’s last year – will “Falling” follow suit?

Then there are the extremely strong new entries to the Top 10. First is the scathing “Michelle” by LA fireball Ro Danishei which becomes a duet when Simon Curtis (who is apparently playing a show in upstate New York sometime in February!) enters mid-way. One of the most fun but aggressive songs in recent years, “Michelle” climbs 13-8. Then we have the dreamy, mysterious, fastest riser in the chart – “Night Air” by Jamie Woon, which zips up 18-9. Can’t wait for Jamie’s album Mirrorwriting, due out in Spring, but “Night Air” will do just fine right now. Then we have that early 80’s dance flashback courtesy of Javi Silva and his project Native Underground at #10 with “Till It Hurts”. JUST SO MUCH GOOD STUFF!!

A great trio of very different songs that debuted at the end of last year find themselves mid-way on this edition of the chart. Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” was prevented from #1 in the UK by “Grenade” by Bruno Mars, and rises 17-13 this week. Immediately below is Brooklyn’s fun rock indie couple Matt & Kim with “Ice Melts” from their sophomore CD Sidewalks at #14. Then Duran Duran are in full comeback mode as the title track from All You Need Is Now is #15.

More of the last chart’s debuts continue to do well. “Robot” by wild Toronto gal Andrea Lewis glides to #18, while Far East Movement join with OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder for the uplifting “Rocketeer” at #19. Usher’s surefire hit “More” makes you want just that as it moves up to #20.


Two of our six debuts were featured earlier in the week in the blog and I can’t get enough of them right now, Christian TV’s “Love 2 Baby” and “I Won’t Let You Go” by Adam Tyler. An uncharacteristic but extremely likeable song that’s been on a slow burn is “Keep Your Head Up” by Andy Grammer. Create your own variation of his video for the song at his website right here.

I lived through 80’s electropop and one of my favourite acts was Alphaville, which started as a trio and essentially is now the performing name for singer Marian Gold. You know Alphaville from “Forever Young” (prominently sampled by Jay-Z recently on “Young Forever”) and “Big In Japan”, and now we have “I Die For You Today” at #28, from a forthcoming album called Catching Rays On Giant.  Alphaville almost toured in North America a few years back; a live clip of “I Die” is at the top of the blog.

It seems like they may be more than just your everyday boy band, but Canadian quartet Neverest have arrived with their debut single, a ballad called “About Us” which lands at #29. They are managed by Howie Dorough of Backstreet Boys and CJ Huyer of 3Deep (remember “Never Gonna Give Up” from 1999?), but we’ll need to hear more to see what else they have to offer. Great start though! And last is another emotional adventure from These Hopeful Machines, the latest album by electromeister BT. “The Emergency” is the final debut at #30. Its video is at the bottom of this blog.

The full chart can be found using the link to the right under ***BILL’S PERSONAL CHART*** or just click right here. Please leave any comments – thanks for reading!

From My iTouch Shuffle…

Sometimes it’s fortunate when you’re on a long drive home from work in bad traffic that iTouch shuffle actually cooperates and sends some good tunes your way.  Here’s my hour long drive home today (an iTouch on the retro side 😉 ):

Heatwave “The Groove Line (Dance mix)” (1978)

Patrick Wolf  “The Magic Position” (2008)

Desmond Dekker & The Aces “Israelites” (1969)

Johnny Hates Jazz “Shattered Dreams” (1988)

Dire Straits “Expresso Love” (1980)

Eurythmics “Who’s That Girl” (1984)

Janet Jackson “Weekend” (I think this was a free download a few years back)

Naomi Striemer “Let Me Go” (2005)

Alphaville “The Mysteries Of Love” (1986)

Marmalade “Reflections Of My Life” (1970)

Share your own shuffles and playlists if you wish 🙂