#BILLCSTop30 #621, August 30/21

It’s hard to believe I finished my last day of work in my human resources career a year ago! While it’s been tough with the restrictions of the pandemic during my first year of retirement, my music projects and consulting have increased, and I’m suddenly back “on air” on online radio stations as an announcer for the first time in many years, which I never, ever expected to happen.  The only way is up, and I’m looking forward to some travelling this coming year.  

Make sure you read about my ONLINE RADIO AFFILIATES (see details after the post) – all kinds of online radio announcing projects now keeping me busy!

The revolving door at #1 on this chart continues, as Sweden’s Darin reaches the top with the best song of his career so far called “Can’t Stay Away”.  This is a very deserved number one, the positivity oozes from the song and the video is a fun, colourful throwback to the disco years.

I can’t get enough of the multilingual “Mon Cheri” (above) by Sofi Tukker and award-winning African duo Amadou & Mariam, which climbs 9-3. It’s culled from the recent Red Hot + Free set, whose proceeds go to charity. Now also available in a host of remixes at the link below.

Ed Sheeran’s upcoming album is now called Equals (or = ) as “Bad Habits” (above) climbs 6-5. He’s also released a new single from it called “Visiting Hours” (below).

The Fastest Riser on the chart lands in the Top 10 in its second appearance on the chart. It belongs to “Sanctuary” (above) by Dutch producer Howen and “American Idol” finalist, songwriter and producer Robbie Rosen, which soars 16-9 with sights clearly set on #1!  Robbie is also the singer and co-writer behind “Don’t Want Perfect” (below) with Quebec producer Kayliox, which moves up 22-18.

Also new to the Top 10 is “Back To You”, the riveting house track by Chicago’s Aash Mehta and Charlotte’s ephem, which rises 13-10.

Ashwyn’s “Sell My Soul” is a real grower, with its stellar guitar solo as the focus of an otherwise mellow and thoughtful song.  It moves up 15-12.

“Break Me Down” (above) busts through the middle of the chart for Chicago’s Autograf and Win & Woo with vocalist SINGA, and climbs 20-14.  Also check out below a lovely dance performance video from Win & Woo of their latest release called “Knots” featuring Blair Lee.

The Highest Debut on the chart is “Nonchalant” by Duck Sauce at #24.  In my blog post last week, I noted that its melody revolves around an old somewhat obscure favourite of mine, “Queen Of The Rapping Scene”, a 1981 release by UK group Modern Romance.  Combine it with a pulsating house rhythm and A-Trak and Armand Van Helden have another winner!

Next up at #26 is The Weeknd’s “Take My Breath”, yet another winner for my fellow Scarborough native Abel Tesfaye, who in full club mode and is clearly with retro disco rhythms this time, which is no surprise given he covered Michael Jackson’s “Dirty Diana” (as “D.D.”) ten years ago.

Then at #27 is NYC’s Gina Naomi Baez with a vocal tour de force on “My Time”, which is your new end-of-summer empowerment anthem!

Chicago house music is winning on this chart! As with releases from Aash Mehta, Autograf and Win & Woo, Jarod Glawe and Dutch vocalist Robin Vane arrive at #28 with “Belong To You”.  It’s an enjoyable release peppered by a powerful vocal from Robin, who I initially compared to Dan Smith of Bastille when I wrote my blog post about it, but since then I’ve been hearing more similarities to Bono of U2.  In any case he’s in great company!

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂

ONLINE RADIO AFFILIATES

Radio GTA – listen to The Big 20 from 10pm to Midnight EST as “The Musicman” James Rogers and I bring you the latest in new songs mixed with classics and songs you haven’t heard in a while.  And on Saturdays and Sundays from Noon to 6pm I bring you “Your Weekend Music Mix” six hours of commercial-free music from the 2000’s including many song choices from this blog.

Halton Hills Online – “Your Weekend Music Mix” has a second home on Saturday and Sunday evenings from 8pm to Midnight! It’s a different mix from Radio GTA’s show, and like that one it is also commercial free, proudly brought to you by Symposium Cafe Restaurant & Lounge in Georgetown, Ontario!

Planet Radio Canada – Now back in action, listen to the “3D Variety Show” with “The Musicman” James Rogers. I’m featured every Tuesday between 7 and 7:30 pm with my New Music Pick of the Week, and I also join occasionally for looks at music from our past through some live segments.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Nonchalant” is the latest deep house treat by @DuckSauceNYC featuring a fun, prominent sample from the 80’s

DUCK SAUCE, “Nonchalant”

After a long hiatus, A-Trak and Armand Van Helden reunited on record as Duck Sauce last year with two delightfully quirky singles in “Captain Duck” (which prominently sampled Captain Sensible’s “Wot”) and “Mesmerize” (which has one of the strangest animated videos).  “Nonchalant” isn’t as much of a novelty as either “Barbra Streisand” or “Captain Duck”, as it builds an extremely catchy, soulful vocal chorus around a retro-sounding Latin melody that is lifted from British group Modern Romance’s 1981 disco/dance release “Queen of The Rapping Scene (Nothing Ever Goes The Way You Planned)”, a minor but memorable dance record (I still am proud to have my original 12″ import of it!!).  That makes it a sure dance floor draw, with the slick-sounding sample in direct contrast to the fierce vocal. “Nonchalant” is a pretty irresistible, highly creative slice of fun.  You can peruse the ‘duck takeover’ in the odd video above, or check out the track below. Quack!

Is 90’s house music in comeback mode? Are new releases by @InnerCitydet & @IdrisElba @officialTenCity @Ritontime and @ChrisLake, @ArmandvanHelden and @ArthurhBaker starting a welcome trend?

IDRIS ELBA & INNER CITY and STEFFANIE CHRISTI’AN, “No More Looking Back”

RITON & NIGHTCRAWLERS and MUFASA & HYPEMAN, “Friday” (Dopamine re-edit)

TEN CITY, “Be Free” (Emmaculate and Shannon Chambers mix)

CHRIS LAKE & ARMAND VAN HELDEN and ARTHUR BAKER & VICTOR SIMONELLI, “The Answer”

Are we in store for a big 90’s House Music Party that we don’t quite know about yet?  All signs are pointing to a lot of fun ahead if these four new songs and even the resurgence of Crystal Waters’ classic “100% Pure Love” in recent weeks on RuPaul’s Drag Race are any indication.  So enjoy this digression from my usual blog posts!

Kevin Saunderson and his revamped Inner City project team up again with Idris Elba for “No More Looking Back” in follow up to the Inner City album release We All Move Together.  Using the stellar vocals of Steffanie Christi’an once again, “No More Looking Back” is an amazing marriage of classic house and disco styles with a dash of early 70’s soul meshed with today’s technology and sounds.  Once clubs are back, if they aren’t blasting this one, then they are missing out big time.

“Friday” by veteran British producer Riton reinvents The Nightcrawlers’ smash “Push The Feeling On” as a new theme for the weekend, with fun interjections from Mufasa and Hypeman, making it an easy sell to today’s audiences while still soaking in its 90’s house roots.  Dance music radio is all over it in the US and deservedly so.

Ten City, the always dynamic duo of Marshall Jefferson and Byron Stingily, returns for the first time in 25 years with “Be Free”.  Not to sidestep Byron’s own solo successes, it’s like the pair parachuted in right out of the 90’s and comfortably into today’s slicker sounds to capture exactly what they were best at with sophisticated classics like “That’s The Way Love Is” and “My Piece Of Heaven”.  “Be Free” is breezy, soulful fun that should not be missed by house music fans.

Like the Inner City track, “The Answer” by Chris Lake and Armand Van Helden with Arthur Baker and Victor Simonelli emphasizes a soulful early 70’s-inspired vocal over 90’s house-flavoured rhythms.  Longtime club veteran Chris, surprisingly, is the novice producer, if you will, among the other three heavy hitters, and this collaboration just flows so beautifully. There’s just so much to enjoy about this song and it’s no wonder that it’s bubbling at US dance radio.

I think there will be a lot of happy house music lovers and club DJ’s if these tastes of 90’s house develop into more of a trend.  I also hope these releases serve as inspiration for producers looking for a creative jumping off point in dance music!

Tuned-On! Top 300 of the 2000’s, Part 2 (250-201)

From big worldwide hits (“Yeah”, “Naughty Girl”, “Can’t Get You Out of My Head”) to more localized hits (“That Girl”, “The Way (Put Your Hand In My Hand)”, “Alone In The Universe”), to club smashes (“Planets of the Universe”, “My My My”) to rock tracks (“Sometimes”, “Load Me Up”) to first timers (“There You Go”), to CD only tracks (“I’ll Do Anything”, “Hot Mess”) – you’ll likely find something you like a lot on this list.

You can find the updated list right here – don’t forget to leave your comments! 🙂