#BILLCSTop75Songsof2015

Onward and upward to 2016!  However the music in 2015 was really strong compared to other recent years.

Chart: BILLCS Top 75 Songs of 2015

01 BRANDYN BURNETTE I Wanna Be (Free)
02 YEARS & YEARS Shine
03 ADELE Hello
04 COREY NILES F/ ALEX LACASSE Chasing Stars
05 YEARS & YEARS King
06 RIVER TIBER Let You Go
07 BRANDYN BURNETTE Sleeve
08 RIVER TIBER No Talk
09 COLOR THEORY Headphones (Matt Mancid Retro Crossover Mix)
10 DAN TALEVSKI Guilty As Sin
11 DENIZ KOYU VS TWOLOUD Goin’ Down
12 THE CHAINSMOKERS F/ GREAT GOOD FINE OK Let You Go (Tiesto Remix)
13 REIGEN Come Back To Me
14 ERIK HASSLE No Words
15 DNCE Cake By The Ocean
16 NATHAN SYKES Kiss Me Quick
17 CHRIS JAMISON Velvet
18 BRANDYN BURNETTE Life’s A Beach
19 THE KNOCKS & MATTHEW KOMA I Wish (My Taylor Swift)
20 TRIBE SOCIETY F/ KIESZA Pain Told Love
21 JESSIE WARE Pieces
22 SMASHING SATELLITES Waterfall
23 ADAM LAMBERT Ghost Town
24 ERASURE Sacred
25 SANDER VAN DOORN, MARTIN GARRIX & DVBBS F/ ALEESIA Gold Skies
26 JESSIE WARE Champagne Kisses
27 ANTONIO GIACCA Sensation
28 PARRALOX Aeronaut
29 DAN TALEVSKI My Religion
30 PENGUIN PRISON Show Me The Way
31 ERIC SAADE Sting
32 GREAT GOOD FINE OK F/ ST. LUCIA Something To Believe In
33 ELI LIEB Lightning In A Bottle
34 BRANDON FLOWERS Can’t Deny My Love
35 CHIC F/ NILE RODGERS I’ll Be There
36 GRAHAM ALEXANDER She’S A Chameleon
37 BOJANA STAMENOV Beauty Never Lies
38 NERVO F/ KYLIE MINOGUE, JAKE SHEARS & NILE RODGERS The Other Boys
39 LUCIEN DANTE Black Water
40 FRANCESCO YATES Better To Be Loved
41 GIORGIO MORODER F/ SIA Deja Vu
42 ERASURE Reason
43 TYLER SHAW Dizzy
44 FALL OUT BOY Uma Thurman
45 YEARS & YEARS Desire
46 GIORGIO MORODER F/ KYLIE MINOGUE Right Here, Right Now
47 MIKKY EKKO Riot
48 CHARLIE PUTH F/ MEGHAN TRAINOR Marvin Gaye
49 LIFEHOUSE Hurricane
50 DATABOY F/ NIKO THE KID When It Rains, It Pours
51 SHIFT K3Y I Know
52 ANTONIO GIACCA Ignited
53 NEW ORDER Plastic
54 SAM SMITH Writing’s On The Wall
55 KRISTINE W. Love Come Home
56 MARTIN LUKE BROWN Take Out Of Me
57 ANTON EWALD Save The Last Dance
58 DISCLOSURE F/ SAM SMITH Omen
59 JULLY BLACK Fever
60 THE WEEKND I Can’T Feel My Face
61 SAM SMITH Lay Me Down
62 SMASHING SATELLITES What It’s All About
63 GIORGIO MORODER F/ FOXES Wildstar
64 STEVE GRAND Time
65 ELEVEN PAST ONE There’s Nothing Wrong
66 THE WEEKND Earned It
67 BOYCODE It’s A Mistake
68 JAMES BAY Hold Back The River
69 MATTHEW KOMA So F**Kin’ Romantic
70 ADAM LAMBERT The Light
71 LAWSON Roads
72 SAM SMITH Like I Can
73 DANIEL ROBINSON Moonmolt
74 TRISTAN THOMPSON Burn Again
75 MI DISGUISE East Side Bay

#BILLCSTop30 #466 – September 21, 2015

The top of the chart continues to be difficult to dislodge though that will likely change in October.  For we have an impressive debut in the Top 10, and a fast riser from one of the last chart’s debuts.  Two debuts are also album cuts where I dive deeper into the album hoping for additional singles 🙂

The Top 10

  • Uno, dos, tres, quatro… Y&Y, Brandyn, Nathan, and PP, once again all comfortably atop the chart.

I thoroughly enjoyed Years & Years in concert last week.  They were able to pretty much replicate the songs from Communion, with “Shine” (my current #1), “Real”, “King”, “Memo”,  and “Foundation” all standouts, plus a cover of Blu Cantrell’s 2003 UK #1 “Breathe”.  Olly Alexander has a genuine and affecting stage presence that will take him far 🙂

  • A definite contender for the top of the chart is “Pain Told Love” by Tribe Society featuring Kiesza, which climbs 9-6.  It definitely marks the transformation of the former pop/rock Gentlemen Hall into the darker and thoughtful alt.rock songs of Tribe Society.

  • It baffles me why this song isn’t being played in every club everywhere, but “The Other Boys” by NERVO featuring super-friends Kylie Minogue, Jake Shears, and Nile Rodgers, advances 11-8 from the dance production duo’s album Collateral.

  • Just can’t get enough of songs by The Weeknd right now.  My fellow Torontonian is now at superstar heights, with three almost sold out dates in November at Toronto’s own Air Canada Centre.  “Can’t Feel My Face” climbs 14-9.
  • Another Torontonian, Tommy Paxton-Beesley, definitely has created some of his best music for his brand new EP as River Tiber called When The Time Is Right.  He’s shifting from progressive alt.rocker to an inventive mix of EDM, rock, soul, and hip hop.  No more is that evident on the new River Tiber single “Let You Go” (up top), which bows at #10, following the #2 “No Talk” also included in When The Time Is Right.  “Let You Go” is River Tiber’s 8th BILLCS Top 30 entry which includes two previous #1’s “Someday” and “The City”.  Simply not to be missed – and a contender for #1 on my chart – get When The Time Is Right on iTunes! 🙂  
    • And now for a bit of BILLCS chart geekery:  “Let You Go” arrives in the Top 10 at the same time as “Let You Go” by The Chainsmokers & Great Good Fine OK is at #5.  It’s the first time two different songs with the same title have been in the Top 10!

Movin’ on Up

  • After a wonderful set at his release party last week for his debut album Yesterday, Tyler Shaw makes no hesitation to weigh in as the Fastest Riser on the chart with “Dizzy” soaring 21-11.

  • While UK brother duo Disclosure continues to unveil new songs from their upcoming album Caracal, their partnership with Sam Smith continues to build with “Omen” rising 18-12.

  • NYC duo (a five piece band in concert though!) Great Good Fine OK are both Top 5 with The Chainsmokers on “Let You Go”, and Top 15 with their pairing with St. Lucia on “Something To Believe In” from the EP 2M2H.  The busy and prolific GGFO premiered their new richly produced song “Take It Or Leave It” on Soundcloud last week (below).

  • I absolutely adore the mystery of a Jane Badler song!  Her latest single from Opus, “Dead Eyes”, is dollied up in a well-matched remix from Eel Eye to put the mystery front and centre.  “Dead Eyes” climbs 22-18.

  • Matthew Koma’s delightfully punkish stab at lovelife, “So F**kin’ Romantic”, moves up 24-19.  The singer’s new album is finished, can’t wait to hear what’s been in the works now for so long.

The Rest of the Debuts

Three additional songs premiere on the chart.

  • Following up the sensual intrigue of “Guilty As Sin”, which peaked at #3, Toronto’s Dan Talevski continues his audio seduction with “My Religion”, which in turn is featured in another sexy video.  Ain’t nuthin’ wrong with that!  And the beautiful Spanish scenery makes a lovely backdrop.  “My Religion” bows at #24.

  • “Wildstar” is a standout song from Giorgio Moroder’s album Déjà Vu featuring a charming vocal from Foxes that in some ways recalls Donna Summer in her heyday from my favourite album by her called I Remember Yesterday.  So it’s a no brainer for my chart, whether or not it’s released as a single!  “Wildstar” arrives at #25.  It’s Foxes’ second appearance on the chart following 2013’s #2 “Clarity” with Zedd.  “Wildstar” also follows Giorgio’s chart successes here with the title track featuring Sia peaking at #6, and “Right Here Right Now” with Kylie Minogue landing at #4.

  • There is no doubt that Adam Lambert’s The Original High is one of my most unexpected favourite albums of 2015 so far, with brilliant production nursing Adam’s wide-ranging voice to excellent effect.  It’s so rich in songs yet I don’t see a whole lot of attention being paid to them other than of course “Ghost Town”, which should have done better as a lead off single.  Nonetheless in my chart world that song peaked at #4, and “The Light” is a riveting EDM song that would make a perfect follow up!  “The Light” debuts at #26.

You can hear me online on http://www.planetradio.ca every Monday at 10:15 pm EST counting down a Toronto Top 10 chart from yesteryear!

#BILLCSTop30 #463 – August 10/15

The amount of posts I write seems to have slowed down, but I do make them count 🙂 And my chart brings some of them full circle and also introduces you to some songs I adore that I haven’t written about (usually major name performers).  So the new chart has five debuts – don’t let the lower chart position belie how well these five will do in the coming weeks 🙂  As usual, current faves have to give up the ghost first!

The Top 10

  • What more can I possibly say about Brandyn Burnette’s “I Wanna Be (Free)”?  How about a fourth appearance (eighth week) at #1!  Just in time for the remix by The Bravos which I wrote about recently.  It’s going to be very hard to beat the Top 2 songs in this chart at year end!

  • And then there’s “Shine” by UK trio Years & Years.  I can’t understand why radio will not play this one in North America.  There’s a really powerful emotional undercurrent to “Shine”, which didn’t sink in until well after I stopped hearing it with one ear on a similar-sounding melody to Erik Hassle’s “No Words”.  It holds at #2 again, but “Shine” is looking to take over from “I Wanna Be (Free)” whenever that song surrenders #1.

  • It does have an ‘earworm’ of a chorus as my friend David kindly put it.  Toronto’s Dan Talevski has released a follow up called “My Religion” which I have not heard yet (but will in the next while undoubtedly), probably because I’m too wrapped up in “Guilty As Sin”, which rises to #3 for the talented singer.

  • I get the feeling of triumph every time I hear “Beauty Never Lies” by Serbia’s Bojana Stamenov.  The Eurovision finalist climbs up to #5 to anchor the Top 10 midway point 🙂

  • There is no doubt that “Kiss Me Quick” by Nathan Sykes (which climbs to #1 on Billboard’s Dance Club Play chart this week) has its druthers aimed for the top spot on this chart, and for now it bounds 12-6 while the UK singer continues to promote the song throughout the US.

  • Toronto quartet Smashing Satellites follow up their #3 chart hit “Waterfall” with the very different and ebullient “What It’s All About”, which has taken its time but lands at #8.

  • Rounding out the trio of Torontonians in the Top 10 is star-on-the-rise singer/songwriter/guitarist Francesco Yates with “Better To Be Loved” at #9.  Francesco sings on one of the debuts too!
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to Penguin Prison with the effortless-sounding and breezy “Show Me The Way”, soaring 22-10, and the Top 10 is no stranger to PP who have cracked #1 twice before.  In the US, you can catch “Show Me The Way” in the latest Hulu ad 🙂  Not yet a single, but soon-to-be… I hope… pretty please…

Movin’ On Up

  • I can’t get enough of UK singer Martin Luke Brown’s vocal on “Take Out Of Me”.  This searing piece of soulful pop rises 19-11.

  • Another unique vocal appears in “East Side Bay” by L.A.-based producer/DJ – and yes vocalist – Mi Disguise.  This is one sneaky club track that deserves exposure, and climbs 15-12.

  • Amid fierce competition, Cobi Mike’s thoughtful and affecting “Walking Through The Fire” continues to move up 14-13 – check out the intriguing video (you’ll get past the point that the singer is naked throughout, really, you will).

  • When in doubt gain brownie points by using your country in your latest song title 😉  Seriously, “Girl From Sweden” by Eric Saade is a catchy singalong, and I’m sure you’ll find the singer dancing in the Swedish countryside one day with pretty girls in hand 😉  The song rises 18-15.

  • Performers who collaborate with their significant others often make fine music together.  Such is the case with Molly Moore, whose “Natural Disaster” climbs 25-19 (Brandyn Burnette is a co-writer).  I wrote about another top notch song by Molly not long ago called “Don’t Believe It”, which saw official release on iTunes last week. Much more new music to come!

  • Canadians J-Mi and Midi-D are off to a great start with their recent single “So Much For That”.  Not only is it loads of fun, with its 90’s Europop backdrop, but these underdogs, remixers and ravers alike, have created a song that absolutely anyone can identify with.  The video is a hoot and the nerd in us all will appreciate it.  “So Much For That” climbs 26-21.

Those 5 Debuts

  • I must admit to have been totally blown away by the collaboration of New York producer/DJ’s The Chainsmokers with fellow New Yorkers Great Good Fine OK on “Let You Go”.  But the song IMO has been immensely improved with a throttling Tiesto remix which is available for free download on Soundcloud!! “Let You Go” is the highest debut, arriving at #22.

  • It was a fine few weeks for dance music and NERVO land their first chart entry with “The Other Boys” at #23 from their new album Collateral.  The powerful mix plus Kylie Minogue and Jake Shears on vocals, carried by propulsive guitar work by Nile Rodgers should send this to the top of the national dance charts in short order.  I wish that pop radio would be open to playing it but alas I expect not.

  • The Weeknd doesn’t need my blog’s help with all of his success, to be seen in December come Grammy Awards nomination time.  His latest single, “I Can’t Feel My Face”, from the upcoming Beauty Behind The Madness (which I predict will be the #1 album of 2015), arrives at #25.  Despite all of his obvious influences, The Weeknd makes every song his own and that’s part of his appeal!  That he comes from my part of Toronto speaks volumes too 😀

  • Meanwhile, back to Francesco Yates… who sings lead on the latest single from Grammy nominee Robin Schulz on “Sugar”, the title song from Robin’s upcoming album.  The inclusion of lyrics from Baby Bash & Frankie J’s “Suga Suga” is a bonus, but kind of interesting in a roundabout way when you think that Francesco himself (who is 19) was a mere lad when the original came out in 2003.  “Sugar” premieres at #27 and the video is quite slaptsticky-funny if you suspend your disbelief.

  • The final debut belongs to Disclosure featuring Sam Smith once again on “Omen”.  This trio must get into a room and just know when they’ve written a hit.  Although “Latch” did take a while to catch on in North America (eventually climbing to #1 on this chart), “Omen” arrives signed and sealed for success.  It debuts at #28 and comes from Disclosure’s forthcoming album Caracal.

The Full Chart

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 🙂

You can hear me online on http://www.planetradio.ca every Monday at 10:00 pm EST counting down a Toronto Top 10 chart from yesteryear!

BILLCS Top 30 #458 – June 1, 2015

The slow rise of some songs and sharp drops of others continue thanks to the bevy of great music out there!  But other songs make great gains as they become some of my favourites this year.

The Top 10

  • “Chasing Stars” by Corey Niles & Alex Lacasse has a solid grip on #1 for a second appearance at the top, but with River Tiber’s “No Talk” advancing 3-2 and “No Words” by Erik Hassle rising 6-3 – it’s getting pretty hot up top!

  • As his new single “Girl From Sweden” is released, Eric Saade’s “Sting” continues to climb my chart, rising 5-4.

  • Australia’s Parralox has its second Top 5 placing on my chart with the 80’s fan fest “Aeronaut”, moving up 9-5.  Dig all of that Paris scenery in the video too!

  • There’s no stopping CHIC reviving its classic feel-good 70’s disco sound on “I’ll Be There”, which is also now a Top 5 Billboard Dance Club hit.  It rises 12-6.

  • Years & Years is making some of 2015’s most recognizable music.  As former #1 “King” is about to leave the chart in its 10th appearance, now at #10, previous single “Desire” climbs 10-7.  And there’s more Years & Years to come…

  • With Jully Black just about appearing everywhere in Canada as fierce and proud as ever in 2015, plus being a Pan-Am Games ambassador in Toronto, it’s no wonder that she has her first Top Tenner on my chart since “Seven Day Fool” in 2007.  That’s “Fever”, from her upcoming album, climbing 11-8.

  • New Jersey’s Charlie Puth is better known as the vocalist on “See You Again” (at #16), but he and Meghan Trainor have concocted a delightful bit of R&B-oriented sock hop pop with “Marvin Gaye” leaping into the Top 10 17-9.

Movin’ On Up

  •  Five years after his debut solo album, Brandon Flowers has done it again with the first single from The Desired Effect called “Can’t Deny My Love”.  It’s the fastest riser on the chart, vaulting 20-11, and about to join the three songs that made the Top 10 from Flamingo, including #1 “Crossfire”.

  • After their rollicking and extremely fun concert almost two weeks ago, Matt & Kim’s “Hey Now” from their latest album New Glow jumps 22-17.

  • Their latest EP Roads has been released in the UK, but here in North America we have a single for UK quartet Lawson’s title song.  “Roads” moves up 21-18.

  • All three of the last chart’s debuts make short work of the chart and follow each other in succession.  So we have “Ghost Town” by Adam Lambert (26-19), “Déjà Vu” by Giorgio Moroder featuring Sia (27-20), and “What It’s All About” by Smashing Satellites (28-21, below) all about to take off.

Debuting

  • More Years & Years??  Yes, please!!  And it’s kind of an unintended companion song to Erik Hassle’s “No Words” above, they have a very similar song structure and melody at times (play them one after another!).  “Shine” (at the top) appears on the trio’s upcoming Communion album and bows at #25.
  • I was really rooting for the incredible vocal performance by Bojana Stamenov to make her country Serbia’s entry to Eurovision 2015, “Beauty Never Lies”, the winner.  Alas the winner ended up being the also worthy “Heroes” by Måns Zelmerlöw, but nonetheless the song has opened the doors worldwide for the talented Bojana.  “Beauty Never Lies” arrives at #27.

  • It’s hard to believe that Maroon 5 has not appeared on my chart since 2011’s “Moves Like Jagger” but their latest single “This Summer’s Gonna Hurt Like A Motherfucker” is so irresistible in so many ways… and as atypical a song for the band as were some of those within their debut Songs About Jane 12 years ago!  “This Summer’s Gonna Hurt” is their 11th chart appearance and premieres at #30.

The Full Chart

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 🙂

 

 

BILLCS Top 30 #457 – May 18, 2015

The songs of Spring are so strong that on my chart there seems to be a never-ending queue of new songs that keep climbing and climbing – and then one week they crash to make room at the top.  We’ll see if this trend continues in the coming weeks!  But for now, on to the new chart:

The Top 10

  • Canadians Corey Niles and Alex Lacasse replace Years & Years’ “King” up top with their anthem “Chasing Stars”.  If this song were on a major label, you’d hear it everywhere.  So it’s important that if you like it that you pick it up on iTunes.  One of my favourite songs of 2015 thus far, the melody, vocal arrangement, and lyrics are all on point!!

  • More contemporary Canadiana is on the rise with River Tiber back in the Top 3 for the first time in two years with “No Talk”, which as you recall was sampled in Drake’s “No Tellin'” from his latest album.  I’m hoping Tommy Paxton-Beesley and his team will keep up the momentum with more new music to come this summer.

  • It’s been a hot while since Sweden’s Eric Saade was in the Top 5 on my chart (in fact it was in early 2012 with “Fingerprints”), so it’s pleasing to see the very different and brusque “Sting” advance to #5.  It’s only the start of more adventure for the talented Eric!

  • It’s two charts in a row that “No Words” – by another Swedish Erik, this time Hassle – is the fastest riser on the chart!  That bodes well for the coming weeks where there’s nothing truly obvious to succeed “Chasing Stars” at the top, so we’ll wait and see.  The jaunty but sad “No Words” climbs 17-6 – and don’t forget to check out an unintended companion-piece in Years & Years’ “Shine” – they make a great mashup!

  • Austin duo DATABOY’s collaboration with producer Niko The Kid has waited patiently but breaks loose and climbs to #7 with “When It Rains, It Pours”.  All of DATABOY’s entries on my chart – 10 of them since 2011 – have reached the Top 10 🙂

  • Australia’s Parralox is also 3 for 3 for Top 10 entries with the sublimely 80’s “Aeronaut” from the album of the same name, moving 13-9.

  • Not surprisingly, Years & Years rounds out the Top 10 with “Desire”.  It’s hard not to sit still when this one’s playing.

Movin’ On Up

  • Just outside of the Top 10, after a triumphant Canadian Music Week performance, is Canadian R&B queen Jully Black with her single “Fever” at #11.  I received a concert-only copy of “The LP”, which contains most of the songs she sang that night.  And it’s a gem, so I hope most of the songs like “Here 2 Love U”, “Fool For You”, “On Your Side”, and especially “Don’t Keep Me Guessing” appear on her commercially-released album when it’s released this summer.

  • I wish pop radio would loosen the hell up and play CHIC’s “I’ll Be There”, but I guess Top 40 has no room for disco throwbacks.  Nevertheless dance clubs have embraced it fully as has the alternative pop/dance crowd.  Such a fun song, it climbs to #12.

  • Do yourself a favour and pick up one of the most enthusiastic album releases of the year on iTunes in Steve Grand’s All-American Boy.  “We Are The Night” is one of the best songs, a rollicking rock anthem, and climbs to #15.  This album clearly shows why Steve Grand is a pop artist at heart, whose style crosses over to both rock and country.  It’s very 80’s in a lot of ways – and that of course was before Steve was born (1990)!

  • More attention also needs to be given to “Cosmonaut” by Wrathschild, aka Simon Curtis and Bad W0lfy.  It’s a glorious, dreamy, slow nighttime EDM song that will stick in your head.  It moves up to #16.

  • Charlie Puth continues back-to-back status from two weeks ago with his duet with Meghan Trainor, “Marvin Gaye”, advancing to #17, while his #1 duet with Wiz Khalifa, “See You Again”, climbs to #18.  It will be interesting to see what dethrones “See You Again” at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

  • I’m probably gonna listen to Brandon Flowers’ new album The Desired Effect this week, particularly after all of the glowing comments I’ve read.  The stunning lead off single “Can’t Deny My Love” rises to #20.

  • Lawson once again are touring the hell out of their home country, England, in advance of the release of their EP Roads.  The title song, available in Canada as a single on iTunes, moves up to #21.

  • The middle of Spring here in Toronto needs a good shot of a Matt and Kim performance, which I will check out tomorrow (May 18) at the Danforth Music Hall.  Their infectious and good-natured song “Hey Now” climbs to #22.

Debuts

  •  Adam Lambert’s “Ghost Town” is one of the most unique songs out there right now, combining Adam’s vocal power with a heavily early-90’s influenced house rhythm that listeners say reminds them of Madonna’s “Vogue” – but check out Malcolm McLaren’s earlier “Deep In Vogue” too!  It’s a great lead-in to the June release of his third album The Original High.  It’s only Adam’s third appearance on my chart, but both “Better Than I Know Myself” and his “Glee” cover of Lady Gaga’s “Marry The Night” both got into the Top 10.

  • Giorgio Moroder is back with his album Deja Vu on deck in June, and the title song featuring vocalist Sia (her first appearance on this chart) lands on my chart at #27.  It follows the first success from the album, his partnership with Kylie Minogue on “Right Here, Right Now”, which recently reached #4.  Every time I hear “Deja Vu”, I hear Donna Summer’s “Dim All The Lights” poignantly ringing in Sia’s vocal midway – anyone else?

  • Their song “Waterfall” just peaked at #3, so Canadian quartet Smashing Satellites, led by the incomparable Salvatore Costa, wastes no time by debuting with “What It’s All About”.  I’ve been saying since I wrote about it a while back – it’s the first graduation anthem of 2015.  Listen to the moving lyrics and let the song inspire you!  It’s a departure from “Waterfall” and other songs on the upcoming Sonic Aluzion album – but wait till you hear the jam “Us” (which I heard at one of their Canadian Music Week gigs)!!

The Full Chart

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 🙂

BILLCS Top 30 #456 – May 4/15

It’s testament to the volume of excellent new music out there that most songs have to settle for creeping up only a notch or two on my new chart.  All songs on the chart between 1 and 20 either hold or move up!!  Now that usually means that the chart will shake looser in two weeks, but I expect some songs will have a slow rise to their eventual peaks.

In the meantime, on to the new chart!

The Top 10

  • Not surprisingly, Years & Years are bouncing from country to country, who are all falling in love with the trio’s unique blend of pop and EDM.  “King” gets a third appearance (6 weeks) at #1.

  • Holding very strong at #2 is “Chasing Stars” by Corey Niles featuring Alex Lacasse.  I’m surprised that Canadian radio hasn’t fallen over backwards over this song – released a few months ago, it follows a song structure similar to the current worldwide #1, which debuts further down, and the two songs make great music bookends 🙂

  • “Waterfall” by Smashing Satellites hangs tight at #3 as the band’s latest single “What’s It All About” is about to take off.  Smashing Satellites play two gigs during Canadian Music Week in Toronto – May 6 at the Hideout, and May 8 at The Phoenix – and I expect to be at one of them!

  • That fantastic veteran dance duo Erasure have yet another Billboard Top 10 Dance Club Play hit with “Sacred”, and the song holds at #5 on my chart.

  • If my Top 5 wasn’t so damn strong, River Tiber’s funky alternative rock “No Talk” would rank higher, but for now it climbs 8 to 6… for now.

  • The only newcomer to the Top 10 is one Sam Smith with that universal pop smash “Lay Me Down” at #10.

Movin’ On Up

  • DATABOY’s latest “When It Rains, It Pours” is victim to a slower rise than usual for the dynamic duo, but fear not it settles outside of the Top 10 at #11.

  • “Aeronaut” by Parralox makes an impressive 20-13 jump given the rest of the chart, which bodes well for the coming weeks for John von Ahlen and company 🙂

  • Canada’s R&B queen Jully Black is back and stronger than ever with her latest single, the sultry and steamy “Fever”, which climbs 19-14.  I’ll be checking out Jully’s show May 5 at The Phoenix in Toronto.

  • The fastest riser on the chart has turned out to be one incredibly contagious tune, and that is “No Words” by Erik Hassle, which leaps 26-17.  The talented Swedish singer’s pop career needed this song… and I hope it happens for him internationally 🙂

  • Classy disco music never goes out of vogue and thus Nile Rodgers and Chic have a bonafide club hit once again with “I’ll Be There”, which moves up 25-18.

  • And never underestimate the power of Brooklyn duo Matt & Kim on my chart, ever!  “Hey Now”, from the fun New Glow album, which features some notable EDM inspiration, rises 30-26.

Debuts

  •  The first two debuts are all about that new shining star from New Jersey named Charlie Puth.  He’s also a songwriter and producer (Trey Songz’ “Slow Motion” comes to mind!), and his new EP is called Some Type Of Love.  “Marvin Gaye”, his sock hop throwback duet with Meghan Trainor, bows at #23, and right behind of course at #24 is that massive Wiz Khalifa smash “See You Again” in which he is the featured vocalist.

  • At #27 is the 80’s retro-tinged “Can’t Deny My Love” featuring a powerful vocal by Killers’ Brandon Flowers.  Can’t wait to hear the rest of his second solo album The Desired Effect.

  • And I definitely want to hear more from UK quartet Lawson, who I’ve seen in concert twice and enjoyed every minute of their sets!  Their new single, finally released in North America, is “Roads”, which bows at #28.

The Full Chart

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 🙂

BILLCS Top 30 #455 – April 20/15 warning: chart geekery afoot!

I’m going to have a bit of fun indulging in chart geekery, i.e. fascinating chart facts and figures about performers on my chart who have previously charted in the 16+ years of the chart.

Aside from that there is a bonus – there are 4 of my fellow Canadian performers in the Top 10 😀

The Top 10

Aside from #1, all of the songs are on the rise!  This will make it a bit difficult in two weeks to find out if any songs advance into the Top 10 at all!

  • First we have highly touted UK trio Years & Years with “King”, which gets a second appearance at #1.  Their album Communion is coming soon, and the only other appearance they’ve had on my chart is current – previous single “Desire” is at #14.  Had I heard The Magician’s “Sunlight” (which features Years & Years) at time of release it would have charted but there’s just so much out there…

  • Canadians Corey Niles and Alex Lacasse advance to #2 with the compelling and emotional “Chasing Stars”.  I do hope this will be the first domestic radio hit for both!
    • Rollercoaster (featuring Dru) #12, 2013/14
    • Get To Know You (featuring ISH) #7,2014

  • Canadian quartet Smashing Satellites move up to #3 with “Waterfall”.  That’s great news on the eve of their anthemic new single “What’s It All About”, which I wrote about recently.  The band’s previous entry “Hounds” got to #16 earlier this year.  They are playing Canadian Music Week on May 8 at the Phoenix in Toronto.

  • Jessie Ware’s “Champagne Kisses” rises 5-4.  I snuck Jessie on to my chart as a part of the UK reissue of Miguel’s “Adorn” in 2013, which got to #1.  Her subsequent single “Say You Love Me” also got to #1, followed by the album track “Pieces” which peaked at #3.

  • My favourite song from Erasure’s album The Velvet Rope, “Sacred” climbs 11-5.  Their previous single “Reason” topped out at #4.  The rest of their BILLCS chart history (all Top 10 🙂 ):
    • Solsbury Hill, #10, 2003
    • I Could Fall In Love With You, #8, 2007
    • Then I Go Twisting, #9, 2011
    • plus Andy Bell solo with “Crazy”, #7, 2005

  • Mikky Ekko’s rollicking “Riot” from his album Time climbs to #6.
    • Stranger (with Chris Malinchak) #8, 2014
    • Smile #1, 2014

  • Lifehouse has had a storied history on my chart going back to their debut single.  “Hurricane” is their latest and advances 10-7.
    • Hanging By A Moment, #1, 2000, #1 song of the year
    • Sick Cycle Carousel, #20, 2001
    • Everything, #3, 2001
    • Spin, #1, 2002
    • You and Me, #3, 2005
    • Halfway Gone, #3, 2009
    • Had Enough (with Chris Daughtry), #11, 2010
    • All In, #8, 2010
    • Between The Raindrops (with Natasha Bedingfield), #4, 2012

  • The fastest riser on the chart is “No Talk” by Toronto’s River Tiber, which has been sampled by Drake in his song “No Tellin'” from the album If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late.  River Tiber also released another song which could be a companion piece to “No Talk” called “Motives” (also above).  But I’ve been on the River Tiber tip since 2012 as below:
    • Someday, #1, 2012
    • Symmetry, #2, 2012
    • These Are Centuries, #13, 2012
    • The City, #1, 2013
    • Reverie, #12, 2013

  • The second new entry to the Top 10 is The Weeknd’s stunning “Earned It”, which is growing on me weekly.  It’s the Toronto native’s first appearance on my chart, though Ellie Goulding’s free download cover of  his “High For This” reached #19 in 2012.

  • Eric Saade has had several chart entries since 2011, and his punchy latest is Melodifestivalen entry “Sting”, at #10.
    • Popular, #1, 2011, and #1 song of the year
    • Made Of Pop, #2, 2011
    • Stupid With You, #10, 2011
    • Backseat, #1, 2012
    • Fingerprints, #3, 2012
    • Miss Unknown, #16, 2012
    • Winning Ground, #17, 2013

Movin’ on Up

So many songs are on the rise, and some hit a wall this week because 9 of the 10 songs in the Top 10 move up.

  • Sam Smith’s gorgeous “Lay Me Down” moves 15-11.  Now that’s been a stumbling peak for two of Sam’s recent songs, so we’ll see if the Top 10 has room for “Lay Me Down” in two weeks.
    • Money On My Mind, #1, 2014
    • Latch (with Disclosure), #1, 2014
    • Stay With Me, #1, 2014 and #1 song of the year
    • Not In That Way, #6, 2014
    • I’m Not The Only One, #1, 2014
    • Restart, #11, 2014
    • Like I Can, #11, 2015

  • Austin duo DATABOY are BILLCS Chart veterans since 2011!  I’m looking forward to a sophomore album follow up to 2012’s Dreams Are Gold.  Their latest “When It Rains, It Pours” inches up to #12.
    • Stupid, #5, 2011
    • Just Once, #1, 2011
    • Memorize Me (with Rune RK), #1, 2012
    • Dreams Are Gold, #1, 2012 and #1 song of the year
    • Lotion, #6, 2012
    • Genius, #8, 2012
    • Good Girlfriend (with Kid Massive), #9, 2012/13
    • We Can’t Stop Summertime Sadness, #6, 2013

  • The pairing of producer/songwriter Mi Disguise with L.A. based singer Adam Tyler has sent their song “Alive” to #15 on my chart.  But of course Adam has a storied chart history thus far as a solo performer 🙂 :
    • Friction, #4, 2010
    • Operation, #12, 2010
    • I Won’t Let You Go, #5, 2011
    • Pull The Trigger, #5, 2011
    • Like A Drug, #7, 2012
    • Music Freak, #6, 2012
    • Fade Into The Light, #9, 2013
    • Electric Valentine, #3, 2014
    • Knew You Better, #9, 2014 (check out Adam’s self-directed recent video above!)
    • I Won’t Let You Go (Aron Friedman remix), #5, 2014
    • Criminal, #9, 2014

  • While Brandyn Burnette’s former #1 “Sleeve” slides to #16, his first appearance on my chart was with “Thanks For Nothing”, which peaked at #4 for 4 appearances (8 weeks)!

  • The BILLCS chart history of Canada’s R&B queen Jully Black goes back the furthest than any other performer on the chart.  She plays a show at the Phoenix in Toronto on May 5.  Her new single “Fever” – her first chart entry since 2007 – rises to #19.
    • Rally’n, #4, 1999
    • Money Jane (with Baby Blue Sound Crew), #10, 2000
    • The Day Before (with Baby Blue Sound Crew), #16, 2002
    • Sweat Of Your Brow, #4, 2005
    • Seven Day Fool, #5, 2007
    • DJ Play That Song, #13, 2007

  • Steve Grand’s “We Are The Night” from his debut album All-American Boy climbs to #21 with more great things coming from the Grand Nation camp this year!
    • Back To California, #10, 2014
    • Time, #9, 2014/15

  • The outrageously talented duo of Simon Curtis and Bad W0lfy (aka Ro Danishei), as Wrathschild, bring us “Cosmonaut” from their EP Birds.  The duo’s first single together as Wrathschild, “Fall Into Love”, peaked at #8 in 2014.

New To The Chart

  •  Reading between the lines of my posts about the single and album, it’s no surprise that Australia’s Parralox debuts with “Aeronaut” at #20.  John von Ahlen and team have visited the chart before though!
    • Silent Morning (with Ryan Adamés), #5, 2013
    • Headhunter, #8, 2013

  • They would have been all over my chart in the 70’s, but disco group Chic, with creator Nile Rodgers, arrives for the first time on my chart with the discotastic “I’ll Be There” at #25.  Nile was a part of the Grammy-winning Daft Punk hit “Get Lucky” of course, which peaked at #2 in 2013.

  • At #26 is a somewhat overdue chart debut for Sweden’s Erik Hassle.  His “No Words” is perfect pop/R&B confection with an upbeat tempo masking a sad song.  It arrives at #26.

  • Lastly at #30 is “Hey Now” by that fun duo from Brooklyn, Matt & Kim, who I will be seeing in concert again on May 18.  Their new album New Glow recently dropped and it nicely bridges the no holds barred entertainment that the duo brings with a bit more emotion this time, especially noted affection for each other, notably in “Hey Now” and its video 🙂
    • Daylight, #4, 2009
    • Ice Melts, #10, 2011
    • Block After Block, #6, 2011
    • Let’s Go, #8, 2012
    • Now, #14, 2012
    • It’s Alright, #12, 2013

The Full Chart

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 🙂

Disco Blast: The Return of @CHICorg featuring @NileRodgers with “I’ll Be There”

CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers, “I’ll Be There”

First, Giorgio Moroder gets signed back to a major record label (RCA) to release his upcoming album 74 Is The New 24.  Now, following hot on the heels of his success with Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” comes eminent guitarist/producer Nile Rodgers and CHIC with “I’ll Be There” (courtesy of Warner Bros).  

Nile of course has never been away from the music scene, and with the loss of Bernard Edwards many years ago, it was hard to fathom a return of the CHIC brand to pop music.  But timing is everything and Nile and CHIC are out to influence a new generation of dance music fans with the timeless, trademark sound that brought us not only “Le Freak” but classic R&B/dance songs such as “Dance Dance Dance (Yowsah Yowsah Yowsah)”, “Everybody Dance”, the much-sampled “CHIC Cheer”, and “I Want Your Love”.  The video seamlessly intersperses clips of old TV dance shows (my generation’s version of reality TV, now pretty much a thing of the past) with Nile and his troupe of talented performers who flawlessly recreate CHIC.  All we’d need would be some vocals by Luther Vandross…  

“I’ll Be There” is sheer old school fun but meant for anyone who wants to discover great music and the happy spirit that disco music brought to the world.  More CHIC, please!!

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Voices Carry: Betty Who, Sam Dickinson, Lawson, Simon Curtis, Bac2ssential with Charly Mae, plus My Favourites of the First Half of ’13

It’s summer and the best voices soar on a clear sunny day…

BETTY WHO  “Somebody Loves You”

Australia has given us another divine new voice in the form of singer Betty Who, who dropped her EP The Distance amid oodles of praise.  Add my endorsement – “Somebody Loves You” is a sparkling single that could weave its spell in the same way that Katy Perry’s best singles can overtake you.  And while this single just glows, the EP, which is free for the downloading right here, shows much depth that will make her a keeper in the pop world.

SAM DICKINSON “How It Used To Be”

Sam Dickinson is a new British blue-eyed soul singer based out of Newcastle.  Stop.  “New British blue-eyed soul singer” is almost always a good sign for me with music, but even with that positive heads up, young Sam has a unique, powerhouse voice that will blow the roof off your local club.  Take heavy doses of 80’s Simply Red and Style Council via contemporary dance tunes and add significant inspiration from the Atlantic/Stax era of the late 60’s, and you will hear where Sam Dickinson is coming from in “How It Used To Be”, from his forthcoming album The Stories That Occurred, which is due in two weeks.  I will have the scoop on that album for you closer to that time.

LAWSON “Missing”

Just in advance of yesterday’s official UK and Australian release of “Brokenhearted” (featuring B.o.B.) (which I wrote about right here), promising UK quartet Lawson treated us to an acoustic performance of Everything But The Girl’s classic 1995 hit “Missing”.  This is particularly impressive because the original version of  “Missing”, from EBTG’s Amplified Heart album, was acoustic.  But all eyes and ears are on singer Andy Brown, who embodies this cover with passion and desperation, very unlike the original.  I hope they perform it in concert when I see them again in late August.  In fact, the boys can take it as an official request – pretty please 🙂

SIMON CURTIS “Meteor”

Lately, one of our favourite American wunderkinds of this decade, Simon Curtis, has been chatting on Twitter about how one of his songs called “Meteor” was excerpted in a new TV show called “Twisted”.  Yesterday, he let on that the song was available on the Internet to hear, for those that could find it!  Always up to a challenge, I have indeed located this frenzied bit of arpeggio-laden Swedish-influenced pop, which according to the Soundcloud link was discreetly posted about 10 months ago.  Even if it may not receive official release, it’s certainly way beyond a lot of the fluffy Europop that will grace your ears this summer. A very shiny sign of good things to come from Simon’s work-in-progress.

BAC2SSENTIAL featuring CHARLY MAE “Waiting For You”

Though I’m still digging her anthemic “Girls Go Hard”, UK singer Charly Mae has lent her big, big voice for the first time to a deep house club banger courtesy of Bac2ssential called “Waiting For You”.   It’s got that familiar, infectious house bounce that is slayed by Charly Mae’s engaging vocal.  Dance club DJ’s shouldn’t overlook this one.

MY FAVOURITES OF THE FIRST HALF OF 2013

Songs (in alphabetical order)

BEGGING  Anton Ewald

BLUE ELECTRIC ROSES  Travis Garland

CAPTAIN  FrankMusik

THE CITY  River Tiber

CLARITY  Zedd featuring Foxes

GET LUCKY  Daft Punk featuring Nile Rodgers & Pharrell Williams

LEARN TO LOVE AGAIN  Lawson

LIFTED  Kwik Fiks & Bongiovanni

MAP  FrankMusik

MY GIRL  Willy Moon

1998  Matthew Koma

OUTTA MY MIND  Matt Blue

PARACHUTE  Matthew Koma

PLAY THE GIRL  Tao Hypah

SAIL INTO THE SUN  Gentlemen Hall

SOMEBODY TO LOVE ME  Eli Escobar featuring Nomi Ruiz

VOCAL  Pet Shop Boys

A WORLD APART  Davis Redfield

YEAH YEAH  Willy Moon

YOUR TOUCH  Blake Lewis

Albums (alphabetical by performer)

MATT DUSK  My Funny Valentine: The Chet Baker Songbook

FRANKMUSIK  Between

TRAVIS GARLAND  Fashionably Late II (EP)

MATTHEW KOMA  Parachute (EP)

MIGUEL  Kaleidoscope Dream

WILLY MOON  Here’s Willy Moon

JARELL PERRY  Simple Things (EP)

THE PRESETS  Pacifica

RIVER TIBER  Synapses

KIM SMITH  Nova

ANDY SUZUKI & THE METHOD  Born Out Of Mischief

BILLCS Top 30 #403 – April 22/13

And the new music keeps on coming, with four new entries (all but one of which I’ve written about), causing premature exits on my personal chart for some songs, but it looks like we are in for a grand summer given the quality of music on its way.  And can the flavour of 1970’s disco make its comeback with the help of one of the new songs?  Read on…


“Lifted” by Kwik Fiks & Bongiovanni holds tight at the top for a third chart appearance (6th week), and the guys are busy with other projects, including Bongiovanni’s “I Think I Love You” rework which I wrote about earlier.  Zedd & Foxes (video below) and Gentlemen Hall continue in the runner-up spots, with Lawson ranking 5th, while FrankMusik’s “Map” climbs to #4 and “Captain” rises to #6.  FrankMusik is no stranger to my Top 5, with two previous #1’s (“The Fear Inside” and “No ID”) and three other Top 10’s, including “Fast As I Can”, which will also appear on his upcoming album Between in May.  New single “Chasing Shadows” is on deck soon!  If “Lifted” doesn’t hold at #1 in two weeks, I think a new #1 will be a surprise 🙂

You can view the full Top 30 using the link under ***BILL’S PERSONAL CHART*** to the right, or you can click right hereYou can hear all of the songs on the chart or watch their videos by clicking on the pics on the chart page.  Any free downloads that are identified are sanctioned by the performer.  There’s always a tiny place at the bottom of the blog post with tags and the statement “Leave A Comment” – please feel free to do so :)

Most of the chart is in a tight lock, as often happens when a lot of new songs arrive, so there is minimal upward movement.  Nonetheless The Presets’ “A.O.” grabs #7, and “My Girl” by Willy Moon (whose album Here’s Willy Moon is still not out in Canada) rises to #8.  James William’s supremely catchy “Lay Your Love On Me” (sing it – wo-oh-oh-wo-oh-oh – below) becomes a Top 10 hit in its own right and it’s still available as a free download.  “The Way” by Ariana Grande & Mac Miller is becoming a deservedly huge pop hit and climbs to #10.

Songs by Matt & Kim, Semi-Precious Weapons, and Jerry Reid are still locked in below the Top 10, so there are bigger moves just below.  You can find me jamming in my car to “Your Touch” by Blake Lewis pretty much every day, and the song jumps to #16.  Matthew Koma’s glorious slice-of-life of “One Night” is right behind at #17.  But it’s Travis Garland’s “Blue Electric Roses” (below) which is the fastest riser, moving 25-18.  It’s a phenomenal song that gets better with each listen; the lyrics are pointed but thoughtful, and the vocals… well don’t get me started being overly partial to male R&B-sounding voices.  Travis has it in spades with his recent EP Fashionably Late Part II which you must download from his website.

Locked into the chart #20 and below are the bluesy jamming in “Right Back Home” by Lifehouse featuring Peter Frampton and Charles Jones (live clip below), Demi Lovato’s “Heart Attack”, “On My Way” by Charlie Brown, and “Kiss My Lipstick Off” by Georgia Haege.

The newcomers to the chart are all pretty brilliant.

Dutch singer Matt Blue has already had two chart appearances in 2011, first with a collaboration with Bass Robbers called “Another Dimension” (#8), and then with his own feelgood jam “Can’t Help Myself (Keep Dancing)”, which got to the top of the chart in November 2011.  The singer has returned as featured in Kontor’s massive Top of the Clubs series, with his single “Outta My Mind”, which is now available on iTunes everywhere and makes a huge splash at #19.  There is no end to how great summery feelgood songs can be if they are done right, and I am looking forward to a full album from Mr. Blue one day that will show off his big, big vocal range.

Another Dutchman, Armin van Buuren, is back with a new album appropriately called Intense.  I’m predicting incredible things to happen with the first single “This Is What It Feels Like”, which I wrote about last week, and it bows at #25.  A major plus is the return of soulDecision singer Trevor Guthrie to the music scene, I just never expected it to be on a dance record.  Wise choice – it’s a great song, and van Buuren has a 10 year pedigree for successful emotional dance pop.

The big news of the last week was the official release of “Get Lucky” (at the top of the post), French duo Daft Punk’s return with vocalist Pharrell Williams (who sounds tremendous) in tow along with music legend Nile Rodgers providing his distinct, recognizable sound.  “Get Lucky” starts out at #27 but will undoubtedly take off in the coming weeks.  I think it could be not only one of the best pop and dance records of the year, but its celebratory vibe could bring back the happy disco sound of the late 70’s.  Young people have never experienced the glorious days of disco, and I think considering so many recent tragedies that the impetus is there for a joyous update.  The older disco haters have long gone… now is the time!!

Lastly, it’s hard to cherry-pick songs from Jarell Perry’s debut free download album Simple Things.  It’s ALL more than good and I will be a broken record about it over the next few months.  I’m leaning heavily towards the day-in-a-snapshot as told in “9 2 5”, a big and emotional song which arrives at #28.  Jarell Perry’s got way too much talent not to get a record deal, and if not, someone is missing out and he will succeed on his own terms.  Listen for this fantastic singer.