#BILLCSTop30 #585 – April 13, 2020

I’m using this bi-weekly chart feature to take a moment to check in with you all to make sure you are doing well and staying safe.  It’s also a reminder that music is a huge distraction for everyone, so when you’re not checking out new stuff to hear, be sure to take the time now to dip into your own personal catalogue of favourites.  I’m fortunate after so many years to have a wide selection of vinyl albums, 45’s, 12″ extended mixes, cassette tapes, CD’s and Mp3’s at my disposal.  So when you feel you have nothing to do, or feel like you’re cleaning the house for the 10th time this week, put some music on either as background or to help transport you to be where ever you want!

It’s really turning out that my #1 song is very apropos for these times.  Chicago producer Whethan and Toronto singer/songwriter grandson combine forces for the alt.rock/dance frenzy of “All In My Head”, which takes the top spot for a second appearance. This one really deserves a shot for play on alternative rock stations.

Right behind once again at #2 are the gentle intentions as spelled out in “Backfire” by Italian producer Deep Chills with L.A. vocalist/songwriter Not Famous.  The arrangement the vocals make “Backfire” distinct in these times when many dance songs use the same formula.

Gareth Emery’s “Yesterday” (above), with fellow producer Nash and LA vocalist Linney, climbs 5-3, while the British producer’s follow-up, independently released single “You’ll Be OK” (featuring Annabel, below), from his upcoming album The Lasers, rises 29-21.

Like Gareth, Russian producer Arty has two fantastic songs on the chart.  Not only that but he contributed to the Beatport online festival a few weeks back with a dynamic DJ set.  “Daydreams” (above), featuring singer Cimo Fränkel in the Sultan + Shepard “echoes of life remix”, jumps 6-4, while the anthemic, much needed vibes of “You’re Not Alone” (featuring singer Griff Clawson, below) is the Fastest Riser on the chart, soaring 22-13.

I’m absolutely loving Porter Robinson’s latest reinvention of his style as “Get Your Wish” (from the upcoming album Nurture) rises 11-5.

And it’s another big jump for the Highest Debut from two weeks ago, “I Don’t Wanna Go Home” by L.A. producer The Prizm featuring vocalist and co-writer/producer ARTFCAL.  It wastes no time leaping 13-6. ARTFCAL has been in the Top 10 twice before under another name… I will leave that reveal to another time.

After contributing to both Beatport and Digital Mirage online music festivals, we must tip our hat to one of the current young masters who does his own thing like no one else – Montreal-born, NYC-based A-Trak.  His song with UK producer Friend Within called “Blaze” climbs 12-9.  A-Trak also contributed to one of the debuts which you’ll find out further down.

Shawn Hook is another performer investing some time to participate in online concerts.  The B.C. native zips up the chart 17-10 with his Canadian radio hit “I Don’t Wanna Dance”.

UK singer/songwriter Sam Dickinson is gunning for his next Top 10 entry – amazingly, all of Sam’s songs that have appeared in the chart have thus far reached the Top 10.  But for now, amid the competition, the stylish sounds of “Diamond Skin” climb 18-12.

Don Diablo was also a part of last weekend’s immense, memorable Digital Mirage festival.  His song “Congratulations”, featuring vocalist Brando, rises 19-14.

The Highest Debut arrives at #16 – a song that I wasn’t even sure if would make my chart when I wrote about it a few weeks back.  But I understand its song structure better, and both its melody and emotion have crawled underneath my skin big time.  It belongs to Nashville producer Super Duper with “All On You”.

Also offering more personalized online broadcasts is L.A. producer Mahalo, usually on Instagram.  Try to catch his sets when you can, and in the meantime, the Danny Quest remix of “Tongue Tied”, in partnership with Disco Killerz and vocalist/songwriter Brandyn Burnette (EMAN8) moves up 25-19.

As “Starlight” slowly makes its departure from the chart, the second song featuring NYC-based singer/songwriter Victor Perry is on the rise.  His third release with German producer Levi called “Lost Boy” leaps 27-20.

The second debut this week is an interesting one from a couple of different angles.  It’s called “So Ready” by former Tony! Toni! Toné! vocalist Raphael Saadiq and lands at #24. The first item is that Raphael sets a record of longevity between chart appearances.  His last entry on the chart was “Get Involved”, with Q-Tip – which got to #21 in 1999!  And that’s 21 years – to the EXACT WEEK, strangely enough!  The second item is that “So Ready” enters the chart as “The Brothers Macklovitch remix” – the Macklovitches being Canadians Alain and Dave, aka A-Trak and one-half of Chromeo!  It’s a fun, speedy, classic house mix that doesn’t let up.

The third debut belongs to “Bummed” by L.A.-based, Canadian producer Chet Porter and Aussie wunderkind Alison Wonderland at #26.  This early 80’s DIY inspired release is the first appearance for Chet on the chart since 2016’s “Stay” (with Chelsea Cutler, #6), and the first time Alison Wonderland has graced the chart.  Both performers also provided immensely enjoyable sets for the Digital Mirage online festival last weekend, and you can find them both on You Tube under the Proximity channel.

The BILLCS Viral Weekly is back 🙂 and will indeed be a weekly feature despite not appearing last week (again *groan*).  Some of the songs will change every week, particularly those by bigger name artists, and it will always include a mix of newer and independent artists with those who are more popular.  Check it out below!

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 🙂

#BILLCSTop30 #583, March 16/20

In difficult times, music is a distraction that we should never take for granted.  It gets us through the best and the worst of times.  So I’m pleased to bring you the new chart, which underwent several changes up to last night, including a few eye-popping moves!

But nothing was going to change the Top 2 songs which hold tightly, at least for two more weeks.  Harry Styles’ jaunty and thoughtful “Adore You” (above) gets a second appearance at #1, while former #1 “Flames” by R3HAB, Zayn and Jungleboi remains solidly right behind it.

Young Bombs’ smash Canadian radio hit and North American dance hit “Better Day”, featuring the golden tones of Aloe Blacc, moves up 6-3.  Could it be on top in two weeks?

It’s a BIIIG 12-4 move for “Backfire” by Italy’s Deep Chills with L.A.’s Not Famous offering the highly listenable, showcased vocal.  Like “Better Day”, it’s definitely a contender for the top, but, since the chart is drenched with movement, it’s not the only one…

Arty has a big week, receiving his second Top 10 hit on this chart, following 2018’s #3 “Tim”, with the Sultan + Shepard ‘echoes of life’ remix of “Daydreams” (13-8, above) featuring a Ryan Tedder-ish vocal by Cimo Fränkel.  Not only that but Arty’s equally brilliant follow up, “You’re Not Alone” (featuring Griff Clawson, below) bows on the chart at #26!  AND… Arty has yet another new song called “Outburst” (featuring Stellz) which you can also check out below.

When veteran producers get together there is often magic.  And that is the case as Chocolate Puma and Firebeatz team up again, this time for the rich deep house of “Soul Fifty” (below), which climbs 11-9.

The Fastest Riser on the chart is THE song to watch.  Whethan’s 80’s alt.dance.rock throwback “All In My Head” (above) soars 25-11 and that has lots to do with his production as it marries with the vocal by Toronto’s grandson.  It’s from Whethan’s forthcoming album Fantasy, which also includes the third preview single called “Upside Down” (below), this time featuring L.A.’s Grouplove.

Right behind are two songs which are following each other to new heights.  Gareth Emery & Nash’s “Yesterday” (above) is another slice of 80’s-oriented electronic dance music featuring a beauty of a vocal by L.A. singer Linney, rising 20-12.  You can expect Gareth’s new single, the affecting “You’ll Be OK” (featuring Annabel, also above) to join it on the chart mighty soon!  And leaping 21-13 is “Fall-Out” (below) by Netherlands/Emirati producers Revelries working this time with fellow producers Boyboyboy and vocalist Will Church.

Another song set to soar is Porter Robinson’s gentle and touching “Get Your Wish” (above) which climbs 28-17.  And yes, Porter has already released a follow up called “Something Comforting” which you can hear below.

There are two more newcomers to the chart besides Arty’s “You’re Not Alone”.  The Highest Debut belongs to Swedish duo Mary Jane and Victor – you know them as Smith And Thell.  Their encouraging new song “Goliath” has radio hit spelled all over it after their last single “Hotel Walls” received a lot of attention.  “Goliath” (above) arrives at #24.  Then, at #30 is the first solo appearance for Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters with his outstanding independent release “Meltdown” (below).  This is one rollicking and engaging dance track that club DJ’s should embrace instantly.  Scissor Sisters previously appeared on this chart, hitting the Top 10 both times, with “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin'” (#8) in 2006 and “Only The Horses” (#5) in 2012.  Jake also provided vocals on “The Other Boys” (#5) with NERVO, Kylie Minogue and Nile Rodgers in 2015.

The BILLCS Viral Weekly is back 🙂 and will indeed be a weekly feature despite not appearing last week.  Some of the songs will change every week, particularly those by bigger name artists, and it will always include a mix of newer and independent artists with those who are more popular.  Check it out below!

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTAYou can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

#BILLCSTop30 #582, March 2/20

Last week’s new music schedule was simply ferocious. There was so much new music to hear that I felt quite overwhelmed.  I still haven’t digested it all, but in the spirit of sharing more of what I listen to on a regular basis outside of music that is sent to me for review, I’ve created a new Spotify playlist!

The BILLCS Viral Weekly is here 🙂  Some of the songs will change every week, particularly those by bigger name artists, and it will always include a mix of newer and independent artists with those who are more popular.  Check it out below, and then on to the new chart!

Harry Styles obtains his second #1 on this chart with the totally charming “Adore You”.  “Lights Up”, the lead single from Fine Line, reached the top last November and tumbles off the chart this week after the requisite maximum 10 appearances (20 weeks).  Harry’s still back-to-back with Zayn as the latter’s outstanding vocal on R3HAB and Jungleboi’s “Flames” slides to #2.

Autograf and Jared Lee climb 5-3 with the classic house of “Ain’t Deep Enough” (above), while The Weeknd’s UK #1 “Blinding Lights” (below) rises 6-4.  You can hear his latest song “After Hours” in the Viral Weekly playlist above.

“Better Day” (above) by Vancouver’s Young Bombs with the distinct voice of Aloe Blacc climbs 14-6.  And Young Bombs have something in common this week with the artist at #7 – besides being Canadian – who is Famba with “Storm” (below), featuring Kyra Mastro.  Young Bombs have in fact remixed Famba’s new single “I Feel Your Pain”, featuring David Aubrey, to spice up the ballad for the dance floor.  You can also check it out below as well as on the new Viral Weekly playlist!

ZEROBADDAYS and Victor Perry land in the Top 10 at #8 with the sweet and soulful “Starlight” (below).  It becomes NYC-based Victor’s 5th Top 10 as either a solo or featured artist. ZEROBADDAYS is usually the saxophone half of the German production duo Saxity, who themselves have been in the Top 10 twice, including once with Victor on 2018’s “You Found Me” – which also reached #8!

The third song to jump into the Top 10 is “Mirage (Don’t Stop)” by Jessie Ware at #10.  It’s from her upcoming album What’s Your Pleasure, which will also feature a song released last week called “Spotlight”.  And yep, you can hear it in the Viral Weekly playlist above!

The Fastest Riser on the chart is the previous chart’s highest debut, “Backfire” by Italy’s Deep Chills with L.A. singer Not Famous.  It’s a tropical house-pop charmer to which anyone can relate, with an impressive vocal by Not Famous that will get stuck in your head.  It soars 21-12.

Also not to be discounted is Arty’s “Daydreams”, featuring singer Cimo Fränkel in a Sultan + Shepard ‘echoes of life’ remix, which rises 18-13.

I must now skip to the five debuts on the chart which are all quite impressive in their own right.

Leading the pack is Whethan and grandson’s alternative dance concoction “All In My Head”, which arrives at #25.  It’s from Whethan’s upcoming full album called Fantasy.  Whethan previously charted in 2018 with Broods and “Be Like You”, which reached #8.

Also returning with plans to keep his Top 10 streak intact is UK singer/songwriter Sam Dickinson with the slick and soulful “Diamond Skin” at #26.  Sam’s forthcoming album is called Off Script and is due in October.

Although I’ve seen him perform a few times over the years, this is the first appearance on this chart for British Columbia’s Shawn Hook.  “I Don’t Wanna Dance” (#27) is a stunning new pop/dance track released by Ultra Records, and could prove to be not only a radio hit but another dance club hit for Shawn, following 2016’s #1 club smash “Sound Of Your Heart”.

Renown in electronic dance circles and a Grammy nominee, Porter Robinson lands on the chart at #28 with the thoughtful and emotional “Get Your Wish” from his upcoming album “Nurture”. And yes, that is Porter’s vocal, an adapted, effected, androgynous voice that he intends to keep for future releases.  And when you’re such a well-respected wizard in the dance genre, you pretty much have a ticket to do what you want, so I’ll look forward to more vocal tracks by Porter!

The fifth debut is a no-brainer for dance clubs because it’s by Don Diablo!  The song is “Congratulations” at #29 and features vocalist Brando, who is also at #24 on the chart with “Look Into My Eyes”.  It’s the Don’s second entry on the chart following last year’s “Fever” (#15).

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

#BILLCSTop30 #581, February 17/20

While former One Direction members don’t have three songs again in the new chart, they are back-to-back in the pole positions.

Zayn’s featured vocal totally makes “Flames” by producers R3HAB and Jungleboi (above) , and it holds at #1 for a second appearance at the top.  But right behind at #2 is “Adore You” by Harry Styles  (below) from Fine Line, so the two songs will battle it out for #1 in two weeks.  And Harry’s “Watermelon Sugar” rises a notch 8-7 too.

Awolnation’s catchy electronic rocker “The Best” (above) climbs 4-3, while Chicago production duo Autograf move up 10-5 with “Ain’t Deep Enough” (below).  That matches featured vocalist Jared Lee’s previous peak appearance on the Midnight Kids’ “Those Were The Days” last year.

Not surprisingly, Famba’s “Storm” (above), featuring fellow Canadian Kyra Mastro, becomes his third Top 10 hit on this chart, advancing 11-9, while yet another Canadian, Ekali acquires his first one in collaboration with Illenium and vocalist Chloe Angelides on “Hard To Say Goodbye” (12-10, below) from the album A World Away.

More Canadians have the fastest riser on the chart.  It belongs to Vancouver producers Young Bombs for their original featuring Aloe Blacc called “Better Day”.  It zips up the chart 22-14 and is on its way to becoming their second Top 20 radio hit in Canada, following last year’s “Starry Eyes”.  It’s also a Top 30 dance radio hit in the U.S.

The debuts from two weeks ago are already making inroads on the chart.  Arty’s “Daydreams” featuring Cimo Fränkel (above) climbs 24-18 in its Sultan + Shepard “echoes of life” remix.  The Russian producer has immediately followed it up with another thoughtful anthem, “You’re Not Alone” with vocalist Griff Clawson, below.

Louis Tomlinson’s touching “Don’t Let It Break Your Heart”, from his debut album Walls, is well on its way up the chart, rising 27-20.

“Better Off Without You” by Becky Hill and Shift K3Y has leapt into the Top 25 in their native UK, and it’s done the same thing on this chart, climbing 28-23.

The highest debut on the chart is the first appearance for Italian producer Gianmaria Sanna, otherwise known as Deep Chills, with a charming pop-flavoured slice of tropical-tinged electronica called “Backfire” featuring L.A. vocalist Not Famous.  It arrives on the chart at #21.  Check out the lyric video featuring both performers above.

Arriving at #24 and continuing his mighty comeback is British producer Gareth Emery with newcomer Nash for “Yesterday”.  The song has a classic 80’s feel which reminds me particularly of Mike Oldfield’s songs with Maggie Reilly, such as “Family Man” or “Moonlight Shadow”.  So thanks to L.A.’s Linney for capturing that vocal style, intentionally or not, which gives the song the gentle, reflective feels that it needs.  Check out the video from Gareth’s recent “Laserface” show in Minneapolis, above.

Following up last year’s snappy and infectious “Don’t Think Twice” (#2) is “Fall-Out” by Netherlands-based Emirati producers Revelries, this time in collaboration with fellow producers Boyboyboy and UK-based German vocalist Will Church.  It bows at #25.

The fourth debut is “Look Into My Eyes” by L.A. singer/songwriter Brando, who you know from his memorable vocal on Loud Luxury’s massive hit “Body”.  He returns to the chart at #27 with this original which also reworks Charles & Eddie’s 1992 hit “Would I Lie To You” into the hook of the song.

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

#BILLCSTop30 #580, February 3/20

When One Direction last recorded about 5 years back – and they never appeared on this chart – no one could have told me that three of the members would be on this chart years later at the same time!  And for a second chart in a row, there are three Harry Styles songs in the Top 10.  And there’s a long line up of songs waiting to get into both the Top 10 and the Top 30!

So the second 1D member to reach #1 on this chart after Harry is… Zayn!  I didn’t care for his first solo album at all, but the second, the overlooked Icarus Falls, is really quite intriguing.  I was happy for him to spread his wings and work with a dance dynamo like R3HAB in partnership with fellow producer Jungleboi.  So it’s the stunning “Flames” that is on top, just in time for the arrival of its official video (above)! Although we can pretend that the mystery man in black is Zayn, alas he is not in the video.

And speaking again of Harry, and his supurb Fine Line album, “Adore You” advances 7-3 and seems like it might be the logical choice to succeed “Flames” at the top, fanciful video and all.

And right behind is L.A. alt.rockers Awolnation who climb 8-4 with their latest, with an incredibly infectious hook, “The Best”.

The Weeknd’s retrotastic “Blinding Lights” (above) becomes his 4th Top 10 hit on this chart, moving 11-9, while Autograf’s classy deep house track “Ain’t Deep Enough” (below), featuring singer Jared Lee, climbs 12-10.  It’s Jared’s second recent appearance in the Top 10 after last year’s #5 with Midnight Kids, “Those Were The Days”.

“Storm” by Famba and Kyra Mastro climbs 14-11 and is the current #1 dance song in the USA.  Check out his new EP Wishes Vol. 1, which features his other two big Canadian radio hits “Swear To God” and “Wish You Well”, plus three more new songs.

Ekali is only playing one Canadian date on his upcoming tour, but I’m sure more will follow as the producer has a flair for remembering to make up previously cancelled shows (like in Toronto).  From his new album A World Away comes his collaboration with Illenium, “Hard To Say Goodbye”, featuring the voice of Chloe Angelides, which moves up 17-12.

“Starlight” is a quiet, sweetly soulful winner for producer ZEROBADDAYS and singer/songwriter Victor Perry, as it glides up the chart from 19-14.

The Fastest Riser is the previous chart’s highest debut, “Mirage (Don’t Stop)” by the immensely talented Jessie Ware, which advances 23-17.  Don’t this silky slice of UK soul slip through the cracks!  And if some of the melody sounds slight familiar, and perhaps may have been an unintended source of inspiration, you might catch yourself singing parts of Shannon’s “Let The Music Play”…

Also holding its own amid a busy chart featuring a lot of power players is Toronto area duo Homestead, from their debut EP Beacon, with the danceable rocker “Lifeline” climbing 28-23.  Joël and Liam will be performing the entire EP and some new songs this coming Thursday in Toronto at the Northern Maverick Brewing Company, and I’ll be there to check it out!

The Highest Debut at #24 belongs to Russian producer Arty with vocalist Cimo Fränkel on the delightful “Daydreams”, soon to be a festival favourite in its Sultan + Shepard Echoes of Life remix, which sounds like a Coldplay song that’s taken a dive into melodic house.  It follows Arty’s 2018 instrumental tribute to Avicii called “Tim” which got to #3.  Official video of “Daydreams” is above, the Sultan + Shepard remix is below.

A third One Directioner arrives on the chart for the first time – it’s Louis Tomlinson with his captivating and incredibly sincere ballad “Don’t Let It Break Your Heart” at #27. He co-wrote it with the likes of James Newman, singer Wrabel, producer Stuart Crichton, and Cole Citrenbaum from the duo Opia, so lots of fine hands were in the mix.  It’s also from Louis’ debut album Walls, after over 3 years of singles-only releases.  And the 1D fans are incredibly happy about that.  Watch the video for a rather unbelievable ending!

The third debut is “Better Off Without You” by chart returnees Becky Hill and Shift K3Y at #28.  These Brits have both been in the Top 10 before.  Becky was the voice on Matoma’s “False Alarm” which got to #6 in 2016, while producer Shift K3Y got to #7 in 2015 with one of his early releases, “I Know”.  A bit of trivia for you: Shift K3Y’s real name is Louis Jankel, and he is the son of singer, songwriter and producer Chaz Jankel, who not only was a key member/songwriter with Ian Dury & The Blockheads (“Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick”) but also was prominent on the US dance charts in the early 80’s with the funky “Glad to Know You” and “Ai No Corrida” (later covered by Quincy Jones).

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂