#BILLCSTop86Songsof2016

Trying to find time to write everything I want is always an issue.  I present to you my Top 86 Songs of 2016, with this blog post based on the radio program which aired on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day on http://www.planetradio.ca 🙂  Here’s my commentary on my Top 30 Songs with the complete list following.  Links to my Top 10 Songs are featured further down…

#30:  Brandyn Burnette’s “Made Of Dreams”, the title song from his first EP, and the first of four songs by or featuring him on this year end list. The song was greatly enhanced by a feel-good tropical mix from Chicago remix duo Win & Woo collaborating with Kiso Armic, also from Chicago.

#29 – L.A.-based singer/songwriter Simon Curtis with “Super Psycho Love” from his album Super 8bit Heart, first of two songs from that album in this list. That album was a 2016 reimagining of Simon’s 2010 free online mixtape still available from his website called 8bit Heart, which to me is one of the most endearing recordings of the decade. “Super Psycho Love” benefited most from an update and appeared on my chart for the first time.

#28 – courtesy of Canadian duo Young Bombs, who also have two remixes in my list. They brought the bounce to a fine record out of Norway from a young newcomer named Jesper Jenset called “High”.

#27 – belonging to Canadian brothers Chris and Alex from Orangeville Ontario – DVBBS! They’ve been on this list before (in 2015 and 2014), but this year they included Toronto’s Dante Leon on vocal for the toe-tapper “Angel”.

#26 – a taste of 80’s flavoured funk courtesy of NYC producer/remixer Jenaux with the rollicking original “Get It On”. Jenaux also partnered with Texas duo Tritonal for the song “Broken” (#45), and has another remix in this list.  

#25 – more Canadians 🙂 with a creative and funky remix by Chicago’s Snøwmass of a song by Montreal production duo Sterling Grove who are paired with Toronto pop/jazz vocalist Ellyn Woods for the mysterious “Sound Of Home”.

#24 – one of the most provocative and surprising albums of 2016 was Blue Neighbourhood by South Africa-born, Australia-based singer Troye Sivan, who had a world-wide following on You Tube before making records. It consists of beautifully crafted, poignant songs which meant a lot particularly to many teens, and scored the Top 20 hit “Youth”. I dove deeper into the album for the evocative “Talk Me Down”.  My bigger list also includes “Wild” (#35)  and “Fools” (#40), all BILLCS Top 30 Top 10 songs.

#23 – belongs to California duo Mako with their dance radio hit “Smoke Filled Room”. As remixed by Elephante, who appears two more times in this list, “Smoke Filled Room” set the stage for a crush of a now-grown up woman.

#22 – on the rise in 2016 was L.A. producer and singer Mi Disguise (aka Louie Garcia), and with his pal Rouse created a wonderful dance mix EP called NGHT LFE for summer clubbing. Their song “Her And Him” is an inspiring song for late night romance.

#21 – the song I liked best on Adele’s album 25 next to last year’s “Hello”, “All I Ask” is another knockout performance and stood out from the rest of the songs on the album.

#20 – if there was any song in 2016 that would instantly make you feel good it’s one by veteran producer Tony Moran and singer Jason Walker and his amazing range. “So Happy” was a deserved #1 Billboard club hit.

#19 – I was wowed by MAX when I saw him perform in October 2015, and since then he has been a steady presence on the BILLCS Top 30. Singer and actor Max Schneider brought us a full album called Hell’s Kitchen Angel. The album contained a sweet ballad called “Lights Down Low”, but it was the smashing uptempo remix by L.A. duo Two Friends that took it to new heights. It’s the first of two in this list by MAX.

#18 – producer/remixer Tim Wu calls himself Elephante and from his EP I Am The Elephante recorded “Plans” featuring BILLCS favourite Brandyn Burnette on vocals, and I hope the pair will repeat this collaboration soon.

#17 – back and as grand as ever in 2016 was the classic dance duo Pet Shop Boys from their album Super with the lead off single “The Pop Kids”, which got club goers out onto the dance floor in the Spring.

#16 – a very distinct song that found its way out of its native Norway to become a worldwide pop and dance club hit. Featuring a unique vocal by a singer named Iselin Solheim, it’s “Faded” by newcomer Alan Walker.

#15 – Dutch duo The Him released an irresistible deep house club hit “Balance”, which features L.A. based Dutch singer/songwriter Oktavian. Watch for more great music from The Him in 2017 as they wrapped up the year opening for The Chainsmokers on their European tour.

#14 – one of the most poignant songs of 2016 is based on a coincidence of real-life events of loss, by Brandyn Burnette called “Lost” from his EP Made Of Dreams. Brandyn auditioned for American Idol at the top of the year and took a risk by performing this original, which the judges loved, though Brandyn chose not to continue on the show. “Lost” is the third of four songs in the Top 30 by or featuring Brandyn.

#13 – preceding Hell’s Kitchen Angel in 2016 was MAX’s EP Wrong. The title song is a hip hop flavoured rave up featuring rapper Lil Uzi Vert who scored with his own album and songs in 2016 as well. A BILLCS Top 30 #1.

#12 – featuring an incredible gritty vocal by American singer Brayton Bowman is “Shy” by Belgian producer The Magician, who released “Shy” and songs by others in 2016 on his own label Potion Records. Watch for more of this incredible music from The Magician and his stable of artists in 2017.  A BILLCS Top 30 #1.

#11 – “Kiss The Sky” by NYC duo The Knocks featuring none other than The Fugees’ Wyclef Jean on vocals. The Knocks created a grand party when I saw their show in January, proving themselves to be slick entertainers as well as producers. Their album 55 continued the dance party, and they found themselves opening for Justin Bieber on his European tour in the latter part of 2016. “Kiss The Sky” is sheer dance music escapism at its best.  A BILLCS Top 30 #1.

#10 – the third entry on the list by Elephante is “Closer”, which became his signature song after being heard in many remixes which included worthy ones by the likes of producers Aash Mehta and Speaker Of The House. The vocalist on “Closer” is Portland, Oregon’s Bishøp and it’s one of the best of 2016. 

#9 – “Dreamin’” by British producer/remixer Embody featuring fellow Brit vocalist Camden Cox. It’s somewhat hard to believe that the song that could transport you most to a hot beach party in 2016 was brought to us from two talented Brits. “Dreamin’” is 2016’s best tropical mix.

Songs 8 through 1 all were BILLCS Top 30 #1’s 🙂

#8 – belonging to my fellow Canadian The Weeknd, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, and Abel grew up not far from where I grew up, but in a community of 90’s Ethiopean immigrants, which makes his success all the more formidable. The Weeknd collaborated with the award-winning French duo Daft Punk for “Starboy”, from the diverse album of the same name, which also gave him his first Billboard #1 hit. 

#7 – Brandyn Burnette has his final song of 4 in the Top 30 (and 8 on the full list, plus one by his duo Cosmos & Creature with his gal Molly Moore) from his special EP Made Of Dreams with “Nothing At All”. It’s a sparse production that brings out the progressive soul vibe of the song, which made the Made Of Dreams EP all the more listenable. Brandyn’s putting finishing touches on his third release due in January.

#6 – one of the most emotional songs of the year, the second one on the list called “Lost”, this one by British Columbia native Connor Phillips. In its original version, the song is a short acoustic ballad, but Canadian remix duo Young Bombs once again gave their redux an extra wow factor by washing it in enough synths to make your eyes wet. If you find yourself wanting to hug someone, blame it on the power of music.

free download:

#5 – the second song from Super 8bit Heart on this list is “8bit Heart”, a personal favourite of mine from 2010 that was redone for 2016. “8bit Heart” is a song like none other to me, it’s a song full of love and heart that totally captivated me 6 years ago in its original version, and was my #4 song of that year. Simon kept it real in 2016 and made the redux of “8bit Heart” the lead companion song for his book Boy Robot. 

#4 – released in late July, it was hard to believe that “Closer” by The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey would become one of the biggest hits of the decade, with 12 weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. The Chainsmokers, who are the NYC duo of Alex Pall and Drew Taggart, appeared on my list last year but more than any act in 2016 outdid themselves with their relentless performing and recording schedules. But the best of it all, is that they remained truly down-to-earth and supportive of other breaking acts in the dance community. “Closer” resonated with me too.

#3 – this song really kicked a funky butt into the proceedings in 2016, being the song that followed The Chainsmokers’ “Closer” at #1 on my regular chart of the BILLCS Top 30. It’s “Native Son Prequel” by producer/remixer Gramatik featuring London-born American vocalist Leo Napier. It’s a song told from the perspective of a pimp, and aside from that odd story angle, NYC remixer Jenaux gave it a spirited 70’s funk flavour that could only make you think of the character Huggy Bear from TV’s Starsky & Hutch 😛 

#2 – Toronto duo Dzeko & Torres collaborated with Sweden’s Hellberg for their free download release of “Care For Me”, which is my #2 song of 2016. While the performers may have considered “Care For Me” to be a great free promotional vehicle for their music in 2016, it was in fact a fabulous arrangement featuring an uncredited vocal, whose lyrics also struck an emotional nerve with me. Dzeko & Torres have since decided to pursue other efforts, with Julian Dzeko continuing to record while Luis Torres ventures into the production side of things, and I’m glad I caught their show in Toronto in April. Jon Hellberg on the other hand featured prominently on the BILLCS Top 30 in 2016 with both “Synchronize” and “All The Way”.

#1 – my favourite song of 2016 was brought to my attention courtesy of an excellent innovative remix, one of the best of the year, by relative newcomers EDWYNN x TIKAL (also known as Swedes Thor Lundberg and Leonard Palmberg) and Spirix (who is American producer/remixer Devain Doolaramini). The song is “So Bad” by L.A. singer/songwriter Brandon Skeie, who didn’t release more than a handful of songs in 2016 but is set out to conquer 2017. A protege of Semi-Precious Weapons frontman and noted songwriter Justin Tranter, who co-wrote Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” and Fall Out Boy’s “Centuries” among others, Brandon has an amazing high register, which helped send “So Bad” into the history books for me. It’s one of the best songs ever about longing for someone who you may or may not get to have in your life. 

Original:

Remix (free download):  

The full list, web version:  BILLCS Top 86 Songs of 2016

Spotify playlist of most of the songs:  BILLCS Top 86 Songs of 2016

“No More Love Songs” puts @BrandonSkeie’s versatile voice on display

BRANDON SKEIE, “No More Love Songs”

“No More Love Songs” is the follow-up single to Brandon Skeie’s brilliant “So Bad” from this past Spring, which is one of my most favourite songs of 2016.  “No More Love Songs” doesn’t resonate as quickly perhaps, though it is handsome textbook songwriting.  The star here is Brandon’s versatile, far-reaching voice, which we also heard in “Pulse”, a song that he and Eli Lieb recorded after the Orlando murders.  He can pretty much sing anything and will slide easily between pop and EDM/dance genres.  “No More Love Songs” swoops and swirls and is big or quiet in all the right places.  Check it out at the link above and pick it up on your favourite digital platform.

Published in: on October 22, 2016 at 11:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCS Top 30 #489, August 8/16

This is a condensed NYC-holiday based blog post coming at you with the new chart 🙂

The Top 10

  • Brandon Skeie’s “So Bad” (in original or EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix remix) stays on top for a 4th appearance (8 weeks) and certainly appears to be my song of the summer as well as one of the best of the year so far.
  • Bounding in to steal the top away from “So Bad” in two weeks is “Shy” by The Magician featuring Brayton Bowman.  It soars up the chart 19-2 as the fastest riser.  Find the Club mix of this one if you can!
  • Now based in L.A., Spirix gets his second song in the Top 5 in a pairing with LZRD and vocalist Remmi for the emotional “Take Me Apart”, which climbs 8-5.
  • Ariana Grande’s “Into You” matches the #8 peak 3 years ago of “The Way”, so let’s see if it goes higher in two weeks.  Helping make that a possibility is the delightful, recent arpeggio-laden remix by L.A.’s The Wookie.
  • The only other new entry to the Top 10 rises 18-10, some  NGHT LFE romance called “Her And Him” courtesy of Mi Disguise and Rouse’s mixtape.  It becomes Mi Disguise’s 2nd Top Tenner following 2014’s “East Side Bay”.

Also Rising

  • The song that’s resonating most with me from the State I’m In EP by Brandyn Burnette is “Worship”, which rises 17-11.  The title song is also on the move too, up 22-18.
  • “Rest Of My Life” by Electric Bodega featuring Matt Beilis gets stuck in your head way too easily.  I’m often humming it long after it’s ended, and it climbs 23-15.
  • Equally memorable but for different reasons – such as a funky remix by Jenaux and a sly vocal singing cool lyrics, is “Native Son Prequel” by Gramatik featuring Leo Napier, which moves up 25-17.

  • Don’t y’all worry ’bout their new single “Closer”, with Halsey, it should arrive on the chart in two weeks as it continues to grow on me amid fierce competition… in the meantime should-have-been-second-single “Inside Out” by The Chainsmokers featuring Charlee, jumps 26-20.
  • New Atlanta singer Victor Perry brings on his unique soulful charm on his song “Rainbows” from the EP 4 A.M. Nostalgia.  It moves up 27-22.

New to the Chart

The common theme with this chart’s debuts is that songs with great vocals won out this time!

  • If you’re looking for an early 90’s influenced house track with a fierce vocal, then get to know “Born Ready” in its Halogen radio edit by The Disco Fries featuring UK singer Hope Murphy.  It arrives at #24.
  • Another bouncy house track of a different, darker nature premieres at #25 – it’s “Balance” by The Him featuring Oktavian.
  • Charlie Puth returns to this chart courtesy of an engaging remix by The Netherlands’ DROELOE with “We Don’t Talk Anymore”, his duet with Selena Gomez, who has never appeared on this chart previously.  It debuts at #26, and follows Charlie’s previous entries of “Marvin Gaye” (#7) and “See You Again” (#16).
  • The final new arrival is “Elevated” by rising L.A. duo RKCB, which has been remixed by many folks lately but none better to my ears than by young Australian producer Joe Mason.  “Elevated” debuts at #27.

In lieu of the published prettier web version of the chart, here’s the basic chart until I post the full one later in the week 🙂

01 01 SO BAD (EDWYNN x TIKAL & Spirix remix) Brandon Skeie
19 02 SHY (Club mix) The Magician F/ Brayton Bowman
05 03 SO HAPPY Tony Moran F/ Jason Walker
04 04 GET IT ON Jenaux
08 05 TAKE ME APART LZRD x Spirix F/ Remmi
06 06 MAGNETISED (Kat Krazy remix) Tom Odell
07 07 RUN RUN Kat Krazy F/ Johnny Stimson
10 08 INTO YOU Ariana Grande
02 09 DREAMIN’ Embody F/ Camden Cox
18 10 HER AND HIM Mi Disguise x Rouse
17 11 WORSHIP Brandyn Burnette
14 12 OPEN YOUR MIND Megaphonix
15 13 STRONGER (Steve Void edit) Nik Ernst
16 14 DANGEROUS Built By Titan F/ Jesse McCartney
23 15 REST OF MY LIFE Electric Bodega F/ Matt Beilis
03 16 SOUND OF HOME (Snøwmass remix) Sterling Grove F/ Ellyn Woods
25 17 NATIVE SON PREQUEL (Jenaux remix) Gramatik F/ Leo Napier
22 18 STATE I’M IN Brandyn Burnette
21 19 DON’T YOU CRY FOR ME Cobi
26 20 INSIDE OUT The Chainsmokers F/ Charlee
24 21 LIMITS Latchmere F/ Andreas Liberos
27 22 RAINBOWS Victor Perry
09 23 DON’T NEED YOU Christofi F/ J-VEN
New 24 BORN READY (Halogen radio edit) The Disco Fries F/ Hope Murphy
New 25 BALANCE The Him F/ Oktavian
New 26 WE DON’T TALK ANYMORE (DROELOE remix) Charlie Puth F/ Selena Gomez
New 27 ELEVATED (Joe Mason remix) RKCB
11 28 CLOSER Elephante F/ Bishøp
12 29 LOST (Young Bombs remix) Connor Phillips
13 30 DON’T LET ME DOWN The Chainsmokers F/ Daya

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear will be heard on Wednesday evening at 9pm EST:)

#BILLCSTop30 #488 – July 25/16

The increasingly fast pace of the online music community, especially those in EDM/dance, has created a shift on my bi-weekly chart, with five more debuts this week.  My favourites up top are hard to dislodge right now but will soon have to make way for new ones 🙂

The Top 10

  • Newly signed to Warner Chappell/Justin Tranter publishing this week, Brandon Skeie retains the pole position with his delightful “So Bad”, either in original form or the splendid remix by EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix.  It ties “Care For Me” by Dzeko & Torres and Hellberg (now #20) as the longest running #1 of 2016 so far.

  • Both the #3 and #4 songs have a funk undercurrent in common which makes them stand apart from other songs this year.  Snøwmass’ crunchy remix of “Sound Of Home” by Canadians Sterling Grove and Ellyn Woods moves to #3, while the 80’s retro funk/R&B sound of Jenaux’s original “Get It On” climbs to #4.

  • For the second time, the fastest riser belongs to the glorious “So Happy” by Tony Moran and Jason Walker which rises 12-5 and has its sights on the top.  Will it get there?  It largely depends on other songs on the rise further down.

  • Making it two-for-two in the Top 10, L.A.-based producer/remixer/performer Spirix lands at #8 in partnership with LZRD and vocalist Remmi for the crazy/emotional “Take Me Apart”.  One to watch 🙂
  • Michael Christofi gets his first Top Tenner with the slick classic house of “Don’t Need You”, featuring a marvelous vocal by J-VEN.  It moves up 11-9.

  • Following 2013’s debut “The Way”, Ariana Grande is back in the Top 10 at #10 with the slick, R&B flavoured “Into You” from the Dangerous Woman album. 

Movin’ On Up

  • Chicago’s Megaphonix continues to climb up the chart with the fun and positive deep house track “Open Your Mind”, rising 20-14.  Spin this and watch your dance floor fill up!
  • L.A.-based singer/songwriter Brandyn Burnette is really expanding his horizons with the diverse songs from his recent EP State I’m In.  The title song (video coming soon!) climbs 26-22 while the hypnotic “Worship” jumps 21-17.
  • The songs from the mixtape NGHT LFE by Mi Disguise and Rouse have major growing power.  The late night romance in “Her And Him” rises 23-18 but I wouldn’t second guess a future debut from another song on the mixtape sometime soon!

5 Debuts

  • One song I’ll be heaping praise over for the next few weeks is “Shy” by Belgium’s The Magician featuring NYC-based singer/songwriter Brayton Bowman.  This old-style disco-flavoured track is one of the most powerful, ear-catching dance songs around thanks to a riveting vocal by Brayton.  It plows onto the chart at #19!
  • Another song with a fantastic vocal but an emotional quality that will leave it stuck in your head is “Rest Of My Life” by NYC’s Electric Bodega.  The vocalist is Matt Beilis and I could listen to him sing anything.  “Rest Of My Life” bows at #23.
  • Following his success with “Get It On” (currently #4), Jenaux continues to funkify other songs through remixes, and one that works especially well is “Native Son Prequel” by Gramatik.  But what also helps make this song special are the ultra cool lyrics and equally smooth vocals which are so into it all by Leo Napier.  “Native Son Prequel” premieres at #25.

  • I’m not sure it will happen, since it was pretty well released simultaneously with “Don’t Let Me Down” (now #13), but to me “Inside Out” by The Chainsmokers featuring Charlee should be “Down”‘s follow up hit.  So many remixes, including those by KLYMVX and Not Your Dope x Spirix, show the diversity and power in this particular song that worked so well with “Down” too.  “Inside Out” debuts at #26.
  • A few weeks back I was pleased to write about “Rainbows” by new Atlanta singer/songwriter Victor Perry, which helped send it to #1 for a few days on the Hype Machine Twitter chart!  It’s also got some positive vibes from other blogs since then too.  It’s a beautiful classic ballad – “Rainbows” arrives at #27, from Victor’s EP 4 A.M. Nostalgia.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chartGo on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear return this Tuesday evening at 9pm EST:)

#BILLCSTop30 #487 – July 11, 2016

The new edition of my personal chart is one of my favourites of 2016.  It was difficult to compile in many ways, and there’s also so much great new music out that it makes it challenging to create only a list of 30 favourites.  This is also causing songs to exit the chart sooner perhaps than in recent years – many used to last the full 10 appearances (20 weeks).  But onward and upward with this post highlighting a number of the songs 🙂

The Top 10

  • He apparently has something new in the works, but right now I cannot get enough of L.A.-based singer/songwriter Brandon Skeie’s “So Bad” in either its original (above) or its swirling remixed version by EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix (below).  This was the easy part of compiling the chart – “So Bad” nails #1 hands down and will be difficult to dislodge!
  • The runner up is the timelessly summery “Dreamin'” by the UK’s Embody featuring vocalist Camden Cox.  It’s one to play at your beach parties 🙂

  • One of the more out-of-the-ordinary songs on the chart is “Sound Of Home” by Canadians Sterling Grove and vocalist Ellyn Woods, which in its deep house remix by Chicago’s Snøwmass climbs 6-4.

  • Rounding out the Top 5 is the enjoyable funky business that is “Get It On” by NYC producer/performer/remixer Jenaux, who is also making headway with his 80’s influenced rework of Gramatik’s “Native Son”, which I wrote about recently.  “Get It On” rises 8-5.

  • More people need to discover the vivid Kat Krazy remix of Tom Odell’s “Magnetised” which leaps 11-6; you can find the original on Tom’s second album Wrong Crowd.

  • Speaking of Kat Krazy, the British duo end up with two new Top 10 entries, the second being their collaboration with American vocalist Johnny Stimson on “Run Run”, which jumps 14-9.  That piano riff will get you every time!

Movin’ On Up

  • Tony Moran and Jason Walker are making many joyful waves together on the chart with “So Happy”, as the #1 Billboard Club Chart hit soars 18-12.

  • The fastest riser on the chart is one of the most decidedly different, a heartbreaking EDM song that has a refrain that you’ll either find haunting or daft.  Nonetheless young producers/remixers LZRD and Spirix have got a great thing going on with “Take Me Apart”, featuring a beautiful vocal by singer Remmi, and it vaults 23-14, heading in no time to the Top 10!  Spirix is already up top with his co-remix of “So Bad”; more to come from this talented young man – like tomorrow!
  • There’s been renewed interest on the music website Hype Machine this past weekend for Bryce Fox’s fine “Burn Fast” in its Koni remix, which continues to rise 17-15.

  • Rain Man is all over the Billboard Dance Radio charts with his reflective “Bring Back The Summer”, featuring powerful vocalist Oly in its INSTRUM remix.  It moves up 20-16.
  • The exuberant deep house sound of Chicago’s Megaphonix is on display with “Open Your Mind”, which climbs 25-20.
  • I really enjoy the softer progressive soul sound that Brandyn Burnette has used in his song “Worship” from the State I’m In EP.  It advances 28-21 – only the humble beginning 🙂

Four Debuts

  • There was no way that I could miss adding “Her And Him” by Mi Disguise and Rouse to the chart, from their soulful and danceable mixtape NGHT LFE.  It’s a romantic saga for the club world 🙂  “Her And Him” bows at #23.
  • It’s been in the wings for a while, but L.A.-based singer/songwriter Cobi, formerly of Gentlemen Hall and more recently a featured vocalist on the Above & Beyond acoustic tour, arrives on the chart with “Don’t You Cry For Me”.  The song was originally titled “Darker Than Dawn” when I wrote about it a while back.  Newly christened, this compellingly old-school bluesy pop song debuts at #24.  It follows up last year’s “Walking Through The Fire”, which reached #12.
  • Following #21 “Worship” is the title track from Brandyn Burnette’s State I’m In EP.  It’s such a timely song given recent current events, and everyone should think twice about how they really feel and how it affects the world around them.  “State I’m In” premieres at #26, making it three songs on the chart for Brandyn, including “Made Of Dreams”, which peaked at #5.
  • Another one that’s been waiting to make its move, and is a perfect companion piece to both #19 “Stronger” by Nik Ernst and “Open Your Mind” by Megaphonix at #20 is the British house sound of “Limits” by Australia-based Brit Latchmere featuring singer Andreas Liberos.  It debuts at #27 and is a free download.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chart. Go on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear return this Tuesday evening at 9pm EST:)

 

#BILLCSTop30 #486 – June 27, 2016

All eyes on the top of the chart in this edition as there’s a new #1 and loads of activity.  As a result, newer songs make smaller moves, and even the fastest riser on the chart only moves up 5 places.  I like a good competition! 🙂

The Top 10

  • It was only a matter of time, but either in its original version or its love struck-sounding remix by EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix, Brandon Skeie’s “So Bad” (above) displaces Connor Phillips’ “Lost” (Young Bombs remix) at #1.  With Eli Lieb, Brandon also co-wrote and sang “Pulse” (below) during the past two weeks, a warm and inspiring song written in the aftermath of the Orlando tragedy.

  • It’s summer in the western world and no song on the chart suits the summer months better than “Dreamin'” by Embody featuring Camden Cox, which climbs 7-3.
  • Another romance-oriented remix by Speaker Of The House surfaced to show what a great, diverse song Elephante has in “Closer” (featuring Bishøp).  “Closer” really does deserve to be a pop hit.  It moves up 6-4. 

  • Jenaux’s powerfully funky and fresh “Get It On” arrives in the Top 10 at #8.  Got any platform shoes handy? 😉

  • It says something when you get to play a free show in Times Square, and NYC natives The Chainsmokers are doing just that tomorrow (Monday June 27).  If they perform “Don’t Let Me Down” perhaps Daya will be present too.  The song rises 12-9

  • The Knocks and Semi-Precious Weapons singer (and now noted songwriter) Justin Tranter are a great pairing, and “Tied To You” becomes The Knocks’ third song from their album 55 to grace the Top 10, climbing 13-10.

Movin’ On Up

  • Tom Odell’s winning new composition “Magnetised” gets stuck outside of the Top 10 due to fierce competition.  Thanks to a bass-synth driven Kat Krazy remix it continues to get attention in the club scene.  “Magnetised” jumps 15-11.

  • It’s a fantastic, vivid story that will hold your interest throughout – Toronto-bases singer Joël’s “You Fucked Up” rises 14-12.

  • Ariana Grande’s “Into You” is one of her best songs, yet it seems to be still stuck behind many better ones!  We’ll see if she surpasses the #8 peak of “The Way” in the coming weeks.  “Into You” moves up 20-16.

  • The fastest riser on the chart is the gloriously feel good #1 dance anthem “So Happy” by Tony Moran featuring Jason Walker, which jumps 23-18.
  • Hand in hand with Embody’s “Dreamin'”, Rain Man has done exactly what his song says.  “Bring Back The Summer” (featuring Oly) is meant for sunshiny days and moves 24-20.
  • Nik Ernst’s “Stronger” is British deep house at its best, and given a slick edit by Dutchman Steve Void.  It climbs 25-21.

  • Built By Titan’s collaboration with Jesse McCartney on “Dangerous” is definitely turning heads as it bubbles under in the pop and dance genres.  “Dangerous” moves up 26-22.

Debuts

  • “Take Me Apart” is a thoughtful original by producers/remixers LZRD and Spirix featuring the flattering voice of Remmi.  Spirix of course is part of the teenage remix duo who bring us “So Bad” by Brandon Skeie at #1 too.  “Take Me Apart” is one of the most impressive new songs I’ve heard all year, so expect great things to happen for it in the coming weeks.  It arrives at #23 and is a free download – for now!
  • “Open Your Mind” by Chicago producer/remixer Megaphonix follows up his remixes of songs by Zedd, Jack Ü, and others which have got worldwide attention.  “Open Your Mind” is a joyous original slice of house which is perfect for Pride events.  It’s a free download and bows at #25.

And lastly…

  • “Worship” by Brandyn Burnette arrives at #28 from the freshly minted State I’m In EP which was released this past Friday.  “Worship” stands out as one of Brandyn’s best compositions, but there are many more to meet the ears in State I’m In which I haven’t yet written about, such as “Inner Child”, “Closer” (with John Lock), in which I keep hearing vocal phrasing from both MGMT’s “Electric Feel” and DNCE’s “Cake By The Ocean”, and “Set In Stone”.  State I’m In is another fantastic effort for Brandyn, admirably following up Made Of Dreams.  It’s available to buy on all platforms.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chartGo on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST Monday through Sunday (that’s 42 times in a week!), and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear on Tuesday evening at 9pm EST:)

 

#BILLCSTop30 #485 – June 13, 2016

This is the ‘moving house’ edition of the BILLCS Top 30 😛  And there are four Canadian artists in the Top 10!

The Top 10

  • Connor Phillips’ “Lost”, in a complete makeover through the Young Bombs EDM remix, retains the top spot quite handily but we’ll see if that extends to the rest of June in two weeks…
  • With “Twenty-Something” already on deck as the next single from Super, Pet Shop Boys move up a notch to #3 with “The Pop Kids”. It’s their second biggest song in this chart’s history next to 2013’s #1 “Vocal”.

    “So Bad” by Brandon Skeie is one of those instantly likable songs that you’ll be singing all summer long. You might also be grooving to its amazing EDM remix courtesy of EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix. “So Bad” climbs to #4.

    Elephante’s “Closer” (featuring Bishøp) has had another official makeover, courtesy of remixer Aash Mehta, which makes it into a romantic end-of-evening song. It rises 8-6.

    It’s taken a while since I first heard it last Fall, but after its official release, Embody’s summery “Dreamin'” (featuring Camden Cox) is closing in on the Top 5, moving up 11-7.

    The fastest riser on the chart is a remix that transforms the original song into a mysterious, deep house track. Canadians Sterling Grove and Ellyn Woods have “Sound Of Home” in an intriguing Snøwmass remix, which vaults 16-8.

    Toronto’s Dan Talevski scores his third consecutive Top Tenner here with “Knock Me Off My Feet”, climbing 12-9.

    https://youtu.be/dNbQpjafJ_8

Movin’ On Up

  • Jenaux’s funky and fresh “Get It On” is wasting no time making short work of the chart, as it climbs 18-11. Do check out his recent remix of 3Lau’s “Is It Love” too!
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsHKyAkxqic

    re The Chainsmokers the EDM performers of 2016 already? When they’re not performing, at a party, or on a plane, they are recording. “Don’t Let Me Down” featuring Daya is already amazingly as equally big a hit as “Roses” and rises 17-12.

    It’s another fantastic week on this chart for British producers/remixers Kat Krazy. Their official remix of Tom Odell’s magnificent “Magnetised” jumps 21-15, while their original pairing with Texas singer Johnny Stimson “Run Run” soars 24-17.

    Sandwiched in-between Kat Krazy tunes is Christofi’s classic-house inspired “Don’t Need You” (featuring J-VEN) (19-16), which has already been followed up by “Higher”, which I wrote about recently.

    Rounding out the Top 20 could be Ariana Grande’s biggest song to date, “Into You”, which climbs 25-20.

    Four Debuts

  • It’s already been a #1 Billboard dance club hit, but “So Happy” by Tony Moran and Jason Walker will pervade dance club playlists throughout the summer.  It’s a beautiful song to which you can just let it all go and smile.  It bows at #23, and is Jason Walker’s second chart entry following 2014’s splendid high energy cover of Taylor Dayne’s “Tell It To My Heart” (#3).

  • Rain Man’s “Bring Back The Summer” (featuring Oly) has been around since last Fall, but numerous remixers were asked to do their thing, and now the song is everywhere in different shapes and forms.  My preference thus far is for INSTRUM’s futuristic take on the song, which arrives at #24.
  • Just as his remix of SNBRN’s “Beat The Sunrise” departs the chart after peaking at #5, the Steve Void edit of London-based German-born Nik Ernst’s “Stronger” debuts at #25.  It’s classic British deep house that breezes by and is available at the link below for free!
  • The final debut features the unexpected appearance of singer/actor Jesse McCartney on an EDM track that has loads of pop potential.  It’s brought to us by Built For Titan and is called “Dangerous”.  The video seems to be part of a multi-episode martial arts short film.  It bows at #26 and is Jesse’s 7th entry and first since 2009!

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chartGo on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST Monday through Sunday (that’s 42 times in a week!), and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear on Tuesday evening at 9pm EST:)

#BILLCSTop30 #484 – May 30/16

We have a gorgeous, emotional new #1 which will be challenged in a few weeks by some new tunes not too far below… 484 editions later, here is the new BILLCS Top 30!

The Top 10

  • The top spot this week belongs to Young Bombs’ stunning remix of fellow British Columbian singer/songwriter Connor Phillips’ “Lost”.  What is originally a 2 minute acoustic song is completely overhauled to become a mesmerizing and emotional 3+ minute EDM song that will stop people in their tracks when they hear it.  Plus the after effect is that you will want to give someone a great big hug.  A one-of-a-kind record for sure!!  And it’s still available as a free download 🙂
  • Max R’s progressive remix (and free download) of Manse’s “Freeze Time” (featuring Alice Berg) helps it advance 4-3, while continuing to keep Pet Shop Boys at bay at #4 with the affectionate retrospective of “The Pop Kids”.

  • Brandyn Burnette collects his 7th Top 5 hit on the BILLCS Top 30 with the Win & Woo x Kiso remix of “Made Of Dreams”.  It’s a different approach to the song from Brandyn’s original on his same-titled EP but it’s a total winner with a happy, sunny vibe that hits a home run.  Brandyn’s new EP State I’m In is coming soon!

  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to Brandon Skeie with “So Bad”, in its pensive original or the fantastic EDWYNN x TIKAL & Spirix remix (a free download – 1.6 million listens!).  About to become one of the best of 2016, “So Bad” soars 15-6.

  • I just wrote about a vibrant alternate take by remixer Aash Mehta (free download!) on Elephante’s “Closer” (featuring Bishøp), but the original lands in the Top 10, moving 14-8 🙂

  • Rounding out the Top 10 is the Two Friends remix of Mako’s “Way Back Home”, climbing 13-10, and helping create an entirely new adventure for that song 🙂

Movin’ On Up

  • It’s your late night date song for a night on a Caribbean beach.  “Dreamin'” by Embody featuring Camden Cox moves up 19-11.

  • Toronto’s Dan Talevski has been appearing on Canadian TV recently performing his latest, an 80’s R&B-influenced hit called “Knock Me Off My Feet”, which rises 18-12.  Look for Dan to be out and about this summer promoting his music!

  • While Eric Saade’s “Colors” continues to climb 16-13, he’s released a follow up already which is decidedly different called “Wide Awake”.  Check it out below.

  • Toronto-based singer/songwriter Joël continues to move up with his great story song that is still available as a free download.  “You Fucked Up”, rising 20-15.

  • “Don’t Let Me Down” looks like it will become one of the songs of summer ’16 for many folks.  The Chainsmokers and Daya have a huge winner which moves 22-17.

 

  • Aside from Brandon Skeie’s “So Bad”, all of the rest of the last chart’s debuts move up in due order, which are all free downloads:
    • Canadians Sterling Grove and Ellyn Woods have their pop/jazz song “Sound Of Home” transformed into a gritty, mysterious EDM number by Chicago’s Snøwmass, and it rises 21-16.
    • Jenaux’s funk and disco-inspired “Get It On” advances 23-18, while the classic house riffs of “Don’t Need You” by Christofi featuring J-VEN allow it to climb 26-19.
    • Koni’s inspiring tropical remix of Bryce Fox’s “Burn Fast” send it moving27-20.

Debuts

  • The lower reaches of the chart have gone Kat Krazy as the London duo’s remix of Tom Odell’s affecting “Magnetised” arrives at #21, while the pair’s own “Run Run”, featuring Texan singer Johnny Stimson, bows at #24.  These are Kat Krazy’s first appearances on the chart since 2013 when their remix of Natalia Kills’ “Problem” reached the Top 15, and prior to that, “Never Will Be Mine” by Rye Rye featuring Robyn got to #10 in 2011.

  • The third debut goes to the slinky and dirty-sounding “Into You” by Ariana Grande at #25 from her Dangerous Woman album.  This is probably the best I’ve heard the singer to date.  She’s appeared twice on the chart before, but it’s been some time – as featured on Mika’s reissued “Popular Song” in early 2013 (#17), followed by her own debut with Mac Miller on “The Way” that Spring (#8).

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chartGo on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is back!  Listen for my Pick of the Week regularly, and this week I’ll have my flashback to a Toronto Top 10 on Wednesday evening at 9pm EST 🙂

#BILLCSTop30 #483 – May 16/16

Dance music has always been present on my chart but seems to arrive in waves but also in droves.  There is so much great dance music out there, probably as much as there was around 2002-04 when worldwide flavours became more prominent thanks to online exposure.  So in edition #483, there are SIX debuts (about which I’ve already written), all in the EDM/dance vein, remixed or not!

The Top 10

  • “Care For Me” by Toronto’s Dzeko & Torres (currently touring in Europe) and Sweden’s Hellberg, and the emotional Young Bombs remix of “Lost” by B.C.’s Connor Phillips still lead the chart neck-and-neck.  Both songs are two of my most favourites of 2016 thus far.
  • Manse’s “Freeze Time”, featuring fellow Swede Alice Berg on vocals, may have come out in 2015, but MaxR’s progressive remix (available for free download above) has kept it much alive in 2016, as it climbs 6-4.

  • If this were almost any other year, “The Pop Kids” by Pet Shop Boys (7-5) would be #1 on this chart.  But the songs above are preventing that from happening so a lower placing will happen, though it’s one of their best songs in years.  PSB tour North America later this year, and chances are that tickets are already gone for most of those shows (I’m going 🙂 last time I saw the lads perform was in 1991!).

  • Win & Woo and Kiso created such a warm and charming remix of Brandyn Burnette’s “Made Of Dreams” that it continues to climb 10-7.  It’s all in anticipation of more music from Brandyn’s upcoming EP State I’m In.

  • Miguel is touring with label-mate Sia on her upcoming tour to a city near you, and “Waves” lands in the Top 10 this week, rising 12-10.

Movin’ On Up

  • The fastest riser on the chart this week is Elephante’s stunning original “Closer” which grows with each listen thanks to a compelling vocal by Portland, Oregon’s Bishøp.  It vaults 21-14.  Listen to the busy, futuristic remix above for free download by Virtu!

  • Dan Talevski’s “Knock Me Off My Feet” is one of those songs that just stands out when it’s played on the radio, so I hope that movement spreads to the U.S.  It climbs 23-18.

  • It’s one of the most engaging pieces of storytelling of the year, so you’d be best to download “You Fucked Up” by Toronto-based singer/songwriter Joël LeMay before it disappears!  It rises 26-20.

  • It’s as much of an EDM anthem as “Roses”, and not surprisingly “Don’t Let Me Down” (featuring Daya) is cleaning up the pop charts for the ever-busy Chainsmokers.  It moves up 28-22.

SIX DEBUTS

  • Brandon Skeie is a name and voice to watch!  “So Bad” is an immediate singalong to which anyone can connect and a cool video for the song has arrived too.  Brandon has an amazing voice which will make you smile when he uses his high register.  Watch it above and check out the dynamic free remix by EDWYNN x TIKAL and Spirix above too.  “So Bad” arrives halfway up the chart at #15!!

  • Ever since I heard this song last Fall, I was hoping it would see official release (as its singer Camden Cox has reassured me!).  And it has so be sure to pick up “Dreamin'” by Britain’s Embody on iTunes and show your support.  It’s a perfect song for a summer night on the beach, and it bows at #19.

  • It’s very reminiscent in some ways of the bigger Everything But The Girl hits of the 90’s but “Sound Of Home” by Montreal’s Sterling Grove and Ellyn Woods in its remix by Chicago’s Snøwmass has its own mysterious qualities that are likely more rooted in jazz.  The remix kicks up the original quite a bit and makes it irresistible for clubs.  “Sound Of Home” premieres at #21.

  • There are more and more producer/DJ’s showing their talent as performers and songwriters and I think that’s great.  Jenaux’s “Get It On” is totally rooted in 70’s funk and disco via 80’s new wave like Duran Duran and is meant to hit you square between your ears.  It arrives at #23.

  • “Don’t Need You” by Christofi is a gorgeous R&B-influenced house music original at its best, thanks to a fine vocal by L.A.’s J-VEN.  It debuts at #26.

  • It’s been around for a while yet, but “Burn Fast” by Bryce Fox is long-lasting thanks to a spiffy progressive tropical mix by Koni.  “Burn Fast” lands on the chart at #27.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed web edition of my chartGo on, have a look and listen/watch :)

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

http://www.planetradio.ca is currently improving its technology and my two features, “Bill’s Top 10” and “Pick Of The Week”, will return soon!

EDWYNN x TIKAL (@Thorisen) & @Spirixmusic put a future bass spin on the beautiful “So Bad” by @BrandonSkeie

BRANDON SKEIE, “So Bad” ( EDWYNN △ TIKAL & Spirix remix)

Often I get introduced to songs that are great with or without remixes and “So Bad” by 22 year old Washington native Brandon Skeie is just that.  What a voice!  So crisp, clear, and easily recognizable!

brandonskeie

His stellar original gets two helping hands into the dance remix world courtesy of a couple of talented teens,  EDWYNN △ TIKAL from Sweden, and Spirix from L.A.  It’s kind of a wild future bass sound for what is essentially a pretty straight forward song.  But these remixers do not overtake the original with effects, they simply enhance it.  Brandon’s soaring high octave is the star and the bass drop that immediately follows sticks like glue till you get to hear it again later in the song.  You cannot go wrong with either version but this remix will get the ears of club goers and new fans for Brandon as well.

Published in: on April 29, 2016 at 8:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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