UK pop-soul singer/songwriter @SamDickinson returns with the many delights of “Wild Sun”

SAM DICKINSON, “Wild Sun” (original and Handbag House radio edit)

Sam Dickinson has been high on my radar since the initial release of his album The Stories That Occurred back in 2013.  A pop album that straddled ballads and dance-pop with a myriad of soulful influences , it sometimes felt like the second coming of Simply Red, and received a reboot a year later in a special edition.  During that time, the Newcastle upon Tyne-based Sam ended up twice in my personal chart’s Top 10 with “Learn To Wait” and “When You Left Me”. 

Sam’s upcoming EP, From The Glass House: Part One, is again equipped with both fine ballads and dance-pop, but veers away from 80’s flavoured soul in favour of 00’s styled songs that could easily be played at pop radio.  So “Wild Sun” is the single released a month in advance of the album, and, with its chorus laced with effortless high notes, is the perfect lead-in to the album.  It’s about breaking away from a relationship and making a daring move to learn to heal and be free, even if it stings a bit.  In its video above, Sam brings the immediate expression of the song to life interspersed with scenes of a couple whose relationship is growing stale. 

There are also remixes, and the Handbag House radio edit (below), available through Spotify right now but not yet for purchase, is a club DJ’s delight.  “Wild Sun” becomes an equally uplifting but slamming house track with booming bass synths that will lift up any evening out.  This style totally embraces Sam’s voice and dance music fans need to check it out.

Pick up “Wild Sun” on iTunes and watch for the release of the remixes and From The Glass House: Part One next month!

Published in: on October 13, 2018 at 9:32 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

BILLCS Top 75 Songs of 2014

Bill's Top 30 of 2014

2014 has been an interesting and unique year for music. I’m not sure how well the songs will stand up against others in music history, but there has been an incredible variety. What seemed to strike me most were alternately creative EDM songs or ballads that aimed straight for the heart.

I am first and foremost a music fan. I look for songs and singers that are one-of-a-kind. A great hook or chorus will get under my skin fast. The latter explains the presence of the likes of the delightfully naughty Janoskians on my year end list, as well as fellow Aussies 5 Seconds of Summer, who had a million Twitter followers before breaking out in North America and proved their chops with great performances on some televised awards shows.

The performers I listened to most, and even saw in concert, were all Brits – Sam Smith, Jessie Ware, and Bright Light Bright Light. Other North American performers who were heard pretty much on record and have played some gigs but should break out in some way are Adam Tyler, Brandyn (Burnette), Mikky Ekko, Matthew Koma, Tristan Thompson, Nick Hagelin, and Travis Garland. Overseas, look to new voices such as the UK’s Harriet, Eurielle, Sam Dickinson, and James Poole (who hasn’t even released anything officially yet!) and Sweden’s Anton Ewald to make waves. And I was really impressed with the calibre of contestants on NBC’s “The Voice” in the past few seasons. Some of these singers have real futures ahead in the business.

A terrific production helps immensely. The Sam Smith and Jessie Ware albums are pretty much flawless in this department. FrankMusik dazzled us again with his By Nicole release. But there were other individual songs whose overall sound is impressive – the Aron Friedman house-y recreation of Adam Tyler’s “I Won’t Let You Go”, the tight mesh of pop and hip hop on “Get To Know You” by Corey Niles featuring Ish, the delicateness of Eurielle’s “Gold”, and the other worldly dubstep of “Love Space” and “The Day You Left” by San Diego’s Convulsic.

And we could not escape Pharrell Williams’ “Happy”, the simple, old school R&B throwback which was the best selling song of the year everywhere.

So here’s a further recap of my Top 30 Songs of 2014. You can view the full list of my Top 75 Songs of 2014 right here. Onward to 2015!!

1 SAM SMITH “STAY WITH ME”

Stay With Me the release of Sam Smith’s album In The Lonely Hour by a few months. With its Gospel influences and genuine, passionate performance, the song immediately captured public attention and was soon all over social media, being covered by You Tubers and singers on TV shows like The Voice. Stay With Me is a belwether song for any male singer to try and match, and shows what a unique singer and presence Sam Smith has commanded during 2014, which will continue into 2015 much like Adele cast her spell over 2011 and 2012.

2 SAM SMITH “MONEY ON MY MIND”

Towards the end of 2013, I wrote that Sam Smith’s Money On My Mind was one of the first great records of 2014. Continuing on the dance tip from collaborations with Naughty Boy and Disclosure, Sam combines old school soul with a high-tek arrangement, as well as some great high register and falsetto work. Who would have thought back then… or what was to follow.

3 BRIGHT LIGHT BRIGHT LIGHT “AN OPEN HEART”

Like in 2010, Bright Light Bright Light (Rod Thomas) has commanded my attention with his thoughtful electronic dance music, and for a second time ranks two songs in my Top 10 of the Year. I added An Open Heart to 2013’s list at #11 prematurely, the song endured for me well through January and only recently became the second single release from the album Life Is Easy. Bright Light Bright Light toured on two legs of Elton John’s tour, in both North America and Europe,and Elton even dueted with him on the single “I Wish We Were Leaving”. But An Open Heart with its larger than life lyrics has become one of my most favourite Bright Light Bright Light songs.

4 SAM SMITH “I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE”

Sam’s eloquent ways of singing about being lonely and unloved really struck a chord with people in 2014, including myself. His debut album In The Lonely Hour is hands down my favourite of 2014. I was able to watch Sam in performance at a small club date in Toronto for only $16!! And now the best seats for his shows are $100+

5 JESSIE WARE “SAY YOU LOVE ME”

UK singer Jessie Ware has one of the silkiest, gorgeous voices to arrive in pop music in years. In 2014 she released her second album Tough Love, and put on one of the finest, most intricate small club performances of the year here in Toronto. The big push for the album to start was on Say You Love Me, a song about words that anyone wants to hear from the one they love, but particularly women from men, who often don’t communicate our emotions. It’s a glorious vocal performance and Jessie is touring again in early 2015 so be sure to catch her show.

6 MARTIN GARRIX “ANIMALS”

So what made Animals by Martin Garrix stand out more than any other electronic instrumental of the last several years? It created a groundswell at raves and clubs, and then before you know it near the end of 2013 it reached #1 in the UK, and then #1 on the Billboard Dance Club Play chart. Not bad for the then-17 year old who caught manager Scooter Braun’s attention. Since then it’s been a whirlwind for the young producer/DJ with the unique style as he collaborates with just about every other notable producer/DJ’s and performs on several huge concert bills. And it’s not going to stop just yet for Martin Garrix.

7 MIKKY EKKO “SMILE”

You already know Mikky from the Grammy-nominated Rihanna’s Stay, and “Smile” possesses one of the most unique vocal performances of 2014 along with a memorable storyline which you might think is downbeat but is actually quite a happy one that will leave you very content by the end of the song. Look for Mikky’s album Time in early 2015.

8 SHOWTEK & JUSTIN PRIME featuring MATTHEW KOMA “CANNONBALL (EARTHQUAKE)”

Cannonball (Earthquake) is what happens when two songs that truly belong together are mashed up. So we have European DJ’s Showtek & Justin Prime’s instrumental Cannonball mixed with US singer Matthew Koma’s Earthquake. The result is one of the most infectious electronic dance music singles of the year which ended up as a UK Top 30 hit.

9 HOUSE ROCKERZ, DAVIS REDFIELD & CARL MAN “ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT”

Electrify The Night by the collaboration of German DJ/producers House Rockerz and Davis Redfield, and UK vocalist Carl Man, is probably one of the most obscure songs I’ve ever placed in my Top 10 of any year. It was only released in Europe on a couple of electronica compilations. But the song itself is an inviting stunner, one that gets better with every listen, thanks to great songwriting pedigree from Charlie Mason and team, as well as a gem of a vocal by Carl Man.

10 BRIGHT LIGHT BRIGHT LIGHT “I BELIEVE”

I Believe is Bright Light Bright Light’s happiest ;pop/dance single to date, from his sophomore album Life Is Easy, and it stands out as one of his finest songs so far. I adore the sad electronic dance songs always written from an interesting perspective but I Believe is simply joyous.

11 DISCLOSURE featuring SAM SMITH “LATCH”

Latch has an interesting history – it got to #11 in late 2012 in the UK. But it’s had long legs, especially after Sam Smith got to #1 in the UK in 2013 singing on Naughty Boy’s La La La. Both songs became belated hits in 2014 in North America hot on the heels of Sam’s solo success. Sam’s partnership with UK producers/songwriters/brothers Disclosure will endure though, as they were heavily involved in Mary J. Blige’s latest album The London Sessions.

12 TRISTAN THOMPSON “TIDAL WAVE”

He’s 16, Canadian, and has a silky developed voice that straddles styles of both Michael Jackson and Justin Timberlake. Tristan Thompson’s debut single Tidal Wave captured a hybrid style of 80’s Hall & Oates blue-eyed soul meets 90’s heartthrobs like Backstreet Boys or 98 Degrees. With a fine debut album Here For You and a second single Burn Again receiving Canadian radio play, Tristan Thompson is off to a smashing start.

13 MARTIN GARRIX “PROXY”

Young Dutchman Martin Garrix gave away his song Proxy for free earlier in the year as a thank you for his success with his previous single Animals, and now appears on the EP Gold Skies. It’s another playful instrumental which helped establish is trap/EDM style on the DJ circuit.

14 ANTON EWALD featuring MEDINA “THIS COULD BE SOMETHING”

If there’s one record that would have you Oooh Ooohing and Ah Ahhing in 2014, it’s This Could Be Something, a slick duet between Swedish star Anton Ewald and Denmark’s Medina. It perhaps is the best song Katy Perry never got to record. The duo has a wonderful, sensual chemistry in the song, which nicely dances on the bridge between pop and electronica.

15 HARRIET “AFTERGLOW”

One of 2014’s best new arrivals is UK singer Harriet. Her warm, Karen Carpenter-meets-Rita Coolidge voice held my attention throughout the year, and particularly for several months until Afterglow saw official release in Harriet’s debut EP What’s Mine Is Yours in the summer. Afterglow is the best kind of lazy Sunday or classy dinner party music, produced by the reknown Steve Anderson of Kylie Minogue fame.

16 TRAVIS GARLAND “EASY”

Easy by Travis Garland is one of the stand out album tracks from Travis’ self-titled album. It’s essentially a Latin-flavoured disco song, quite different from the rest of his songs, and it’s easy to visualize shimmering lights glowing over beautiful people as they dance away the night. To me, anyway!

17 BRANDYN BURNETTE, “THANKS FOR NOTHING”

What can I say about L.A.-based singer Brandyn Burnette? His single for Warner Brothers, Thanks For Nothing, took a while to grow on me, but once that happened I was hooked on how he took a negative situation and turned it into a positive song with a great message. Brandyn is entering 2015 going by only his first name now as his upcoming solo album is on deck for early in the year. He’s posted a lot of new songs on Soundcloud, so be sure to check them out, and follow him on Twitter for wise posts from an old soul with a young mind.

18 ADAM TYLER “ELECTRIC VALENTINE”

Adam Tyler’s music has had frequent visits to the BILLCS Top 30 over the years. But my very favourite from him is now Electric Valentine. Adam started 2014 giving away this song for free, on Valentine’s Day of course, but the feel good vibe of the song took on a life of its own, and it ended up on his deluxe edition of Shattered Ice. There’s nary a song this year that will put you in a great mood like Electric Valentine.

19 AVICII featuring AUDRA MAE “ADDICTED TO YOU”

I can’t say I was a huge fan of Swedish DJ/producer Avicii’s mix of country music with dance music, which had already been done 20 years ago. So going deeper into his album True we find Addicted To You, immensely enhanced by a creative bluesy vocal by singer Audra Mae.

20 HANNIS “TIME HAS COME”

One of the most unusual but addictive songs of 2014 is Time Has Come by new Finnish singer Hannis. The singer’s lush europop vocals mesh well with an inventive, dub-steppy arrangement which makes it memorable for anyone who hears it.

21 NEVEREST, “TAKE COVER”

Take Cover by Toronto band Neverest started the year as a free download follow up to their BILLCS Top 30 2013 #1 Rewind. It’s an equally powerful and punchy rocking song that shows that this group can do when they are not writing stellar ballads.

22 SIRPAUL “EVERY SINGLE MOMENT”

New York dance club singer SIRPAUL has built a nation-wide reputation for creating original songs that are alternately romantic and touching, or mysterious and even a touch dirty when it comes to what goes down in the bedroom. From his album Seventh Star, Every Single Moment is dedicated to that special person you want to spend all of your time with.

23 ZEDD featuring MATTHEW KOMA & MIRIAM BRYANT “FIND YOU”

After previously collaborating on 2012’s #1 dance hit of the year “Spectrum”, Grammy-winning producer/DJ Zedd brings back go-to-guy Matthew Koma along with newcomer Miriam Bryant for more crossover emotional dance/pop with Find You. Zedd has remarkable magic with production, melody and vocalists.

24 JASON WALKER featuring BIMBO JONES “TELL IT TO MY HEART”

Jason Walker’s cover of Taylor Dayne’s Tell It To My Heart came right out of the blue with a powerhouse vocal performance that will raise the hairs on the back of your neck. This NYC singer has already been to the top of the dance club play chart many times so it’s no surprise that Jason’s collaboration with UK DJ’s Bimbo Jones became yet another Top 10 dance hit for him.

25 EURIELLE, “GOLD”

Shrouded in mystery and an exotic, medieval sound, UK singer Eurielle revealed her EP The Incarnation, which included Gold, an update on renaissance-oriented song stylings brought into the pop world in the past by the likes of Enya and Loreena McKennitt.

26 ADAM TYLER “I WON’T LET YOU GO” (Aron Friedman remix)

I Won’t Let You Go was first released in 2011 and was in my Top 30 for that year too! But the house-inflected Aron Friedman remix gave the song new life again and it appears on Adam’s deluxe edition of the Shattered Ice album.

27 THE PRESETS “NO FUN”

Veteran Australian duo The Presets only released a few singles in 2014 to whet our taste for a full new album. No Fun was one of them, and fun it certainly is – a whole lot of inventive electronic wizardry that plays off of a more laid back vocal this time.

28 TRAVIS GARLAND “MOTEL POOL”

Carrying over from 2013 with his self-titled album, L.A.-based Travis Garland issued Motel Pool as its second single, a sexy and sizzling piece of R&B pop that continued to showcase the singer’s versatility and made his album one of the finest of 2013.

29 CONVULSIC “LOVE SPACE”

San Diego’s Erik Hale is also known as EDM/dubstep artist Convulsic, and he released a trio of cool songs in 2014, including Love Space. All of them actually bridge the dance and pop worlds much better than could be expected, which holds promise for new songs from Convulsic in 2015.

30 LITTLE MIX “LITTLE ME” (Steve Smart & Westfunk radio edit)

Little Mix is the all girl vocal quartet that won X-Factor in 2011, and of course went on to great success in the UK with several Top 10 placings. But it was a remix of their song Little Me that got my attention in 2014. The whirling frenzy of a remix by Steve Smart and Westfunk set the song to a new upbeat melody from its original downbeat mix which focused more on its thoughtful message for girls and young women. The combination of EDM remix and message gave “Little Me” an edge in 2014.

BILLCS Top 30 #438 – August 25/14

This post will be about the highlights on the chart, as there is so much going on, with so much good new music find its way onto the chart too that others are making a quick exit.  Plus there’s a rare event as a past hit re-enters the chart in a remixed version!

The New #1

Bright Light Bright Light gets his latest #1 (only his 5th since 2010 😉 ) with “I Believe”, from his sophomore album Life Is Easy.  Past #1’s were “A New Word To Say”, “Love Part II”, “Waiting For The Feeling”, and the song that will follow “I Believe” as the next single from the album, “An Open Heart” (released on last year’s In Your Care EP).  Rod (aka BLx2) will be on tour in England soon and then back to the US for more shows later in the year.

The Rest of the Top 20

  • “This Could Be Something” by Anton Ewald featuring Medina is one of the year’s ear-creepers as it advances to #2, matching Anton’s previous peak last year with the still-exhilarating “Begging”.
  • One of the year’s most unexpected pleasures is the europop/dubstep mix in “Time Has Come” by Finnish singer Hannis.  It moves up to #3!
  • Sam Dickinson is one busy lad in the UK, set to perform a number of dates to promote the deluxe edition of his album The Stories That Occurred.  “When You Left Me” will grab you from its first note, and it climbs 10-7, surpassing the previous #8 peak of last year’s equally riveting “Learn To Wait”.

  • The Presets are in fine funky form with “No Fun”, the Aussie duo’s latest and one of their most interesting songs to date.  And I’m so pleased they’re coming back to North America for a Fall tour, so I’m hoping to catch them in Toronto on October 29 at the Danforth Music Hall this time.  It’s been 5 years since I saw their show in California and I’m itching to hear the songs in concert that they’ve released since that time!!

Movin’ On Up

  • It’s absolutely no surprise that Sam Smith’s “I’m Not The Only One” is the fastest riser, jumping 22-13.  It’s simply a classic pop song just like “Stay With Me” and is set to follow suit up my chart and others!

  • “Stranger” by Chris Malinchak & Mikky Ekko debuted just outside of the Top 40 in the UK this week, and I’m hoping interest will continue in this gorgeously sung and produced song.  It moves up 18-14 and Mikky Ekko is set to release his debut album, which he previewed in concert in Times Square recently!
  • “Electrify The Night” leaves #1 after a month at the top, but the other collaboration by Davis Redfield & Carl Man, “Music Gods”, is on its own way up the chart, advancing 19-15.

  • Canadians Corey Niles and Ish and their busy hip hop/pop song “Get To Know You” are all fired up and climbing, this week up a massive 25-17!

  • I thought we’d hear more about what was next (besides more touring) for Neon Trees after the success of “Sleeping With A Friend” from their album Pop Psychology.  In my chart world, “Love in the 21st Century” continues to rise, up 20-18.

  • Singer/songwriters Brandyn Burnette and Eli Lieb have good things going on with their latest single.  Brandyn’s kiss off “Thanks For Nothing” moves 26-20 and Eli’s reminiscence of those special times listening to “Zeppelin” climbs 27-21.

Four Debuts!

The chart continues to be a revolving door for new music lately – it’s all soooo good!

  • I wrote about her EP What’s Mine Is Yours just the other day, but I’ve been waiting so long to chart Harriet’s “Afterglow” – I won’t chart songs until they are officially available for purchase/download.  Nonetheless, “Afterglow” makes a huge splash at #16 – a must for your ears in 2014!
  • While his “Knew You Better” holds at #9 this week, I mentioned two weeks ago that songs from Adam Tyler’s Shattered Ice deluxe edition have been quietly waiting for their turn on the chart.  And with this edition there’s a double whammy.  First, a rarity:  “I Won’t Let You Go” returns after 3 years in a brilliant downtempo house-y remix by Aron Friedman that almost sounds like a new song.  It returns at #22 and we’ll have to see if it matches the #5 peak of the original.  It also may end up being the longest-lasting song on the chart as a re-entry if it lasts 9 appearances.  The record for a re-entry is currently held by Ryan Star’s “Last Train Home”, which had 17 appearances in two separate chart runs.  Then we have an insanely catchy new one, produced by Australia’s Paul Hetherington called “Criminal”, which I think should be the next single after “Knew You Better”.  “Criminal” arrives at #27.
  • Debuting at #28 is Jamie Scott’s “Unbreakable”, which sounds like it could be a Fall smash with its emotional story and solid vocal performance from the singer of Graffiti6.  Jamie’s album My Hurricane is on deck for October.

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 chart.

08 01 I BELIEVE Bright Light Bright Light
03 02 THIS COULD BE SOMETHING Anton Ewald featuring Medina
05 03 TIME HAS COME Hannis
01 04 ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT House Rockerz featuring Davis Redfield & Carl Man
02 05 TIDAL WAVE Tristan Thompson
07 06 BOOM CLAP Charli XCX
10 07 WHEN YOU LEFT ME Sam Dickinson
14 08 NO FUN The Presets
09 09 KNEW YOU BETTER Adam Tyler
04 10 LITTLE ME (Steve Smart & Wildfunk radio edit) Little Mix
13 11 TEN FEET TALL Afrojack featuring Wrabel
15 12 BIG CITY GIRLS (DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH SMALL TOWN BOYS) Zorro Blakk
22 13 I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE Sam Smith
18 14 STRANGER Chris Malinchak featuring Mikky Ekko
19 15 MUSIC GODS Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man
New 16 AFTERGLOW Harriet
25 17 GET TO KNOW YOU Corey Niles featuring Ish
20 18 LOVE IN THE 21ST CENTURY Neon Trees
06 19 TELL IT TO MY HEART Jason Walker featuring Bimbo Jones
26 20 THANKS FOR NOTHING Brandyn Burnett
27 21 ZEPPELIN Eli Lieb
Re-entry 22 I WON’T LET YOU GO (Aron Friedman remix) Adam Tyler
28 23 JUST SAY HELLO Lyonn
29 24 AMNESIA 5 Seconds Of Summer
11 25 GOOD NEWS (FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE BAD NEWS) Zorro Blakk featuring Deniz Olivieri
12 26 MIRACLE E-Mute
New 27 CRIMINAL Adam Tyler
New 28 UNBREAKABLE Jamie Scott
16 29 YOUR LOVE FADES AWAY Simone Denny
17 30 TRUST IT Nick Hagelin

Listen for My New Music Pick Of The Week on D-Moos.com!

As many of you are already aware, after many years away from the microphone, I am now pleased to be back as a voice on D-Moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station, which mainly plays a selection of oldies, mostly from the 50’s to the 90’s, with soon to be more intrusions from the 2000’s and other new music.

Do listen in for my New Music Pick of the Week feature on D-Moos.com 8 times per day starting at 2:05 AM EST on Mondays, and while the station is only live in the evenings from 9:00 pm to midnight (with my long-time musical partner in crime “The Musicman” James Rogers), you can hear my voice at other odd times, particularly if you’re an oldies loving night owl on the weekend overnights 🙂

BILLCS Top 30 #437 – August 11, 2014

The vacation season is almost as busy as being at work, though with Robin Williams’ passing last night it didn’t seem appropriate to post anything amid the sadness.

But on we go, to a new personal chart with six new contenders premiering, four of which I’ve already written about!

The Top 10

  • My Top 2 songs stay the same.  House Rockerz/Davis Redfield/Carl Man continue to light up the chart with “Electrify The Night” at #1, while former #1 Tristan Thompson hangs at #2 with “Tidal Wave”.  Tristan’s coming to Toronto for a benefit performance in a few weeks so I’ll keep you posted on that!
  • Eyeing the top spot for two weeks from now is the brilliant pairing of Sweden’s Anton Ewald with Denmark’s Medina on “This Could Be Something”, from Anton’s EP On My Way.  There’s truly international potential for this one, hopefully it can still break out of the Nordic countries!
  • New to the Top 5 at #5 is Finland’s Hannis with her europop/dubstep beauty, “Time Has Come”, one of the most different and alluring songs of 2014.
  • Charli XCX’s “Boom Clap” from “The Fault In Our Stars” appears to be headed for #1 in many places around the world and will become one of 2014’s defining pop songs.  It climbs to #7 this week.  It might be the best song Roxette never wrote! *Hums “Joyride*
  • The fastest riser once again on the chart is no stranger to that accolade, Bright Light Bright Light, with “I Believe” from his new album Life Is Easy, climbing 16-8.  “An Open Heart”, which got to #1 earlier in the year on my chart through its appearance on the In Your Care EP, will be the next official single release from the album.  Woooohoooo!

  • I’m so torn between two or three other songs from the Deluxe Edition of Shattered Ice that another Adam Tyler song will have to wait for two more weeks to appear on the chart.  In the meantime, leading the way is the single “Knew You Better” – love all of the Madonna-ish French dialogue – rising 13-9.
  • Right behind, after releasing his Deluxe Edition of The Stories That Occurred last week on iTunes, is Sam Dickinson, receiving his second Top 10 placing on this chart with “When You Left Me”, moving up 14-10.

Movin’ On Up

A bit of a log jam happening for some fine songs, with a couple of last chart’s debuts making headway and looking to climb more in the next few weeks!

  • “Ten Feet Tall”, the affecting collaboration by Afrojack and Wrabel, climbs 20-13 – does anyone else think the melody sounds a bit like Marc Cohn’s “Walking In Memphis” at times?

  • Despite its title, “No Fun” by The Presets is indeed a fun, funky, grooving ride, full of great effects and a fine vocal.  It rises 21-14.

  • Zorro Blakk’s second chart entry, the bouncy “Big City Girls (Don’t Fall In Love With Small Town Boys)”, continues to move up after “Good News (For People Who Love Bad News)” peaked at #7 on the last chart.  “Big City Girls” jumps 18-15.
  • Look for “Stranger” by Chris Malinchak featuring Mikky Ekko (22-18), “Music Gods” by Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man (23-19), and “Love In The 21st Century” by Neon Trees (25-20) to break out more in two weeks.

A Half Dozen New Arrivals

  •  Sam Smith’s “I’m Not The Only One” debuts at #22.  It wasn’t what I expected as a follow up single to “Stay With Me” but it could do as well on the charts.  It’s also accompanied by a terrific and sometimes hard-to-watch video featuring “Glee”‘s Dianna Agron.  Give it a watch at the top of the post.
  • Corey Niles has his second chart entry with a rollicking slice of hip hop/pop, “Get To Know You”, featuring fellow Toronto rapper Ish.  It bows at #25.

  • It’s all about the hook and Brandyn Burnette knows how to write ’em.  It takes a couple of listens but “Thanks For Nothing” is a no-brainer winner.  It arrives at #26.

  • Remember those times spent with friends and rocking out to your favourite performers?  Eli Lieb makes it an emotional memory fest with “Zeppelin” at #27.

  • Talented Knoxville TN-based newcomer Lyonn arrives with “Just Say Hello” at #28 from his EP Promenade.  Huge thumbs up for the adorable and sincere accompanying video.

  • All of a sudden 5SOS are one of the biggest bands in the world.  The Aussie quartet lands on the chart for a second time as “She Looks So Perfect” exits with the pretty pop/rock ballad “Amnesia” at #29.

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 chart.

01 01 ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT House Rockerz featuring Davis Redfield & Carl Man
02 02 TIDAL WAVE Tristan Thompson
05 03 THIS COULD BE SOMETHING Anton Ewald featuring Medina
04 04 LITTLE ME (Steve Smart & Wildfunk radio edit) Little Mix
06 05 TIME HAS COME Hannis
03 06 TELL IT TO MY HEART Jason Walker featuring Bimbo Jones
08 07 BOOM CLAP Charli XCX
16 08 I BELIEVE Bright Light Bright Light
13 09 KNEW YOU BETTER Adam Tyler
14 10 WHEN YOU LEFT ME Sam Dickinson
07 11 GOOD NEWS (FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE BAD NEWS) Zorro Blakk featuring Deniz Olivieri
12 12 MIRACLE E-Mute
20 13 TEN FEET TALL Afrojack featuring Wrabel
21 14 NO FUN The Presets
18 15 BIG CITY GIRLS (DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH SMALL TOWN BOYS) Zorro Blakk
17 16 YOUR LOVE FADES AWAY Simone Denny
19 17 TRUST IT Nick Hagelin
22 18 STRANGER Chris Malinchak featuring Mikky Ekko
23 19 MUSIC GODS Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man
25 20 LOVE IN THE 21ST CENTURY Neon Trees
09 21 HEY I DON’T KNOW Kongos
New 22 I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE Sam Smith
10 23 STAY WITH ME Sam Smith
11 24 THE DAY YOU LEFT Convulsic
New 25 GET TO KNOW YOU Corey Niles featuring Ish
New 26 THANKS FOR NOTHING Brandyn Burnett
New 27 ZEPPELIN Eli Lieb
New 28 JUST SAY HELLO Lyonn
New 29 AMNESIA 5 Seconds Of Summer
24 30 BACK HOME Andy Grammer

Listen for My New Music Pick Of The Week on D-Moos.com!

As many of you are already aware, after many years away from the microphone, I am now pleased to be back as a voice on D-Moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station, which mainly plays a selection of oldies, mostly from the 50’s to the 90’s, with soon to be more intrusions from the 2000’s and other new music.

Do listen in for my New Music Pick of the Week feature on D-Moos.com 8 times per day starting at 2:05 AM EST on Mondays, and while the station is only live in the evenings from 9:00 pm to midnight (with my long-time musical partner in crime “The Musicman” James Rogers), you can hear my voice at other odd times, particularly if you’re an oldies loving night owl on the weekend overnights 🙂

BILLCS Top 30 #436 – July 28/14

I’m a tad late due to vacationing in New York City but there’s plenty brewing on the new chart that’s of interest!!

Fancy That, Another New #1

It’s probably one of the more obscure songs to top my chart, but you owe it to yourself to check out “Electrify The Night” by House Rockerz, Davis Redfield and vocalist Carl Man below.  It’s one energetic romp with great lyrics that will connect to the music lover and club goer inside you 🙂  Right now, I’m only aware of it being available on a European dance compilation “House Rockerz – Feiern ist wichtig! Vol. 2” released by Kontor Records.

The Rest of the Top 10

  • That clever, swirling Steve Smart & Wildfunk remix of “Little Me” by Little Mix finds its way to the dance-filled Top 5 at #4!
  • I’m hoping that the fun “This Could Be Something” by Sweden’s Anton Ewald and Denmark’s Medina finds its way to international clubs and radio, it’s too irresistible to pass up.  It climbs 9 to 5 🙂  Watch the video right here!  I don’t know why it can’t be made available on You Tube or Vevo…
  • The last chart’s fastest riser, “Time Has Come” by Finland’s Hannis, makes another big bold move 13-6, and should find itself easily in the Top 5 in two weeks.
  • “Good News (For People Who Love Bad News)” (below) takes Zorro Blakk & fellow vocalist Deniz Olivieri to a new peak of #7!  El Zorro is also moving up the chart further down with “Big City Girls (Don’t Fall In Love With Small Town Boys)” at #18 as well!
  • Also new to the Top 10 are Charli XCX’s soon-to-be-seminal-summer-song “Boom Clap” at #8, and Kongos’ rollicking “Hey I Don’t Know” at #9 🙂

Movin’ On Up

  •  UK alt.rock performer E-Mute’s intense, rocking “Miracle” climbs up a few more notches to #12!
  • Don’t be surprised if more songs from Adam Tyler’s deluxe edition of Shattered Ice start appearing on the chart soon!  In the meantime, “Knew You Better” continues to rise up 18-13.
  • Sam Dickinson’s deluxe edition of The Stories That Occurred is coming soon, and just ahead of that is the classic-sounding “When You Left Me”, moving up the chart 19-14.
  • The fastest riser on the chart is no surprise at all, “I Believe” (27-16), the new single by Bright Light Bright Light from his album Life Is Easy.  North American audiences will now be able to see Bright Light Bright Light open for Elton John on select dates 😀
  • We should see Simone Denny’s new album The Stereo Dynamite Sessions Volume One later in the year, but for now enjoy the change of pace for her with the torch ballad “Your Love Fades Away”, climbing 20-17.  It’s available on iTunes.
  • Two of the three performers at #1 this week have their own collaboration jumping up 28-23 – “Music Gods” by Davis Redfield and UK singer Carl Man.  This one’s available on iTunes.

New to the Chart

I’ve written about all three recently, so that’s always a good sign for songs to start appearing on the chart 🙂

  • Dutch producer/DJ Afrojack and American singer/songwriter (Stephen) Wrabel collaborate on “Ten Feet Tall”, bowing at #20, it’s gorgeous and affecting lyrical dance-pop which I still think you will hear soon on your local Top 40 radio station.
  • “No Fun” by Australian duo The Presets is more fun than a lot of songs you will hear right now.  It’s got a great playful funky groove to it that’s different from the lads’ last efforts, while retaining the big stadium-like anthemic feel of many of their songs.  It arrives at #21 as a single available on iTunes.
  • Another slice of funky business, early 80’s style, is “Stranger” by New York producer/DJ Chris Malinchak, pairing up with versatile Mikky Ekko, who has never sounded so soulful.  It debuts at #22.

The full chart can be found further down the page…

Listen for My New Music Pick Of The Week on D-Moos.com!

As many of you are already aware, after many years away from the microphone, I am now pleased to be back as a voice on D-Moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station, which mainly plays a selection of oldies, mostly from the 50’s to the 90’s, with soon to be more intrusions from the 2000’s and other new music.

Do listen in for my New Music Pick of the Week feature on D-Moos.com 8 times per day starting at 2:05 AM EST on Mondays, and while the station is only live in the evenings from 9:00 pm to midnight (with my long-time musical partner in crime “The Musicman” James Rogers), you can hear my voice at other odd times, particularly if you’re an oldies loving night owl on the weekend overnights 🙂

billbanner2

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 chart.

02 01 ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT House Rockerz featuring Davis Redfield & Carl Man
01 02 TIDAL WAVE Tristan Thompson
03 03 TELL IT TO MY HEART Jason Walker featuring Bimbo Jones
06 04 LITTLE ME (Steve Smart & Wildfunk radio edit) Little Mix
09 05 THIS COULD BE SOMETHING Anton Ewald featuring Medina
13 06 TIME HAS COME Hannis
08 07 GOOD NEWS (FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE BAD NEWS) Zorro Blakk featuring Deniz Olivieri
11 08 BOOM CLAP Charli XCX
12 09 HEY I DON’T KNOW Kongos
04 10 STAY WITH ME Sam Smith
07 11 THE DAY YOU LEFT Convulsic
14 12 MIRACLE E-Mute
18 13 KNEW YOU BETTER Adam Tyler
19 14 WHEN YOU LEFT ME Sam Dickinson
05 15 PROXY Martin Garrix
27 16 I BELIEVE Bright Light Bright Light
20 17 YOUR LOVE FADES AWAY Simone Denny
23 18 BIG CITY GIRLS (DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH SMALL TOWN BOYS) Zorro Blakk 
21 19 TRUST IT Nick Hagelin
New 20 TEN FEET TALL Afrojack featuring Wrabel
New 21 NO FUN The Presets
New 22 STRANGER Chris Malinchak featuring Mikky Ekko
28 23 MUSIC GODS Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man
10 24 BACK HOME Andy Grammer
29 25 LOVE IN THE 21ST CENTURY Neon Trees
15 26 NOT IN THAT WAY Sam Smith
17 27 TEENAGER IN LOVE Neon Trees
22 28 ME AND MY BROKEN HEART Rixton
16 29 THIS IS DIRTY DVBBS & MOTi
26 30 SHE LOOKS SO PERFECT 5 Seconds Of Summer

BILLCS Top 30 #435 – July 14/14

The new chart has four debuts and the Top 10 is all shaken and stirred…

The New #1

  • He did it!  It’s not easy to trounce Sam Smith from his 7th week at #1 this year (albeit with three songs), but 16 year old British Columbian Tristan Thompson has done just that.  The 70’s through 2000’s retro appeal of “Tidal Wave”, plus the fact that young Tristan has already got a great voice, have it leading the pack, at least for the next two weeks, because there’s a bit of a dance club storm brewing underneath.  I’ll have my thoughts on Tristan’s full album Here For You in the week, in the mean time check out his video for “Tidal Wave” above 🙂

The Rest of the Top 5… Changing Places

  • The rest of the Top 5 is the same as two weeks ago, but all of the songs have changed places.  Imminent challengers for #1 are “Electrify The Night”, the hard-to-find Europop gem from House Rockerz, Davis Redfield and vocalist Carl Man, which plugs into #2, and Jason Walker & Bimbo Jones’ brillo Hi-NRG-inspired take on Taylor Dayne’s “Tell It To My Heart” at #3.  Sam Smith slides to #4 with “Stay With Me” while Martin Garrix’s “Proxy” slowly tumbles to #5.

New To The Top 10

  • That whirling dervish of a remix by Steve Smart & Westfunk of Little Mix’s “Little Me” soars to #6, while Andy Grammer’s “Back Home” (below) continues to find new fans and could take the song through the entire summer, and it’s up to #10.  There’s also a chart debut in the Top 10…

Shakin’ Up The Chart

  • Is it everywhere yet?  “Boom Clap” by Charli XCX vaults up the chart 18-11.
  • Those 4 Kongos lads make a great case for infectious rock songs on their album Lunatic.  “Hey I Don’t Know” climbs 15-12.
  • It’s following a bit of a pattern set by Martin Garrix and Convulsic already, but Finnish singer Hannis has a strange gem of a Europop/Dubstep single with “Time Has Come” charging up the chart as the fastest riser, 23-13!  I’d LOVE dance clubs to make this one their own!!
  • “Miracle” by the UK’s E-Mute is not slowing down as this memorable slice of alt.rock moves up 17-14.
  • Last week’s new entries, “Knew You Better” by Adam Tyler and Sam Dickinson’s “When You Left Me” both make impressive gains, rising 25-18 and 27-19 respectively!

Chart Debuts

  • Could Anton Ewald outdo last year’s “Begging” (#2) and “Can’t Hold Back” (#3)?  The talented young Swedish singer met his match with Danish star Medina, and all parties connected and co-write and recorded “This Could Be Something” from Anton’s new EP On My Way.  All I can say is that Katy Perry would probably kill for this song!  It’s a strong and summery pure pop record with an engaging video that bows on this chart at #9!!

Watch the video here!  For some reason the Internet powers that be are really fussy about You Tube/Vimeo links for videos by Swedish pop stars! 😮

  • Yes, it’s time for another Bright Light Bright Light song on the chart!  Rod Thomas has just released his sophomore album Life Is Easy, which has debuted well on the UK charts, and from it is the follow-up single to his Elton John duet “I Wish We Were Leaving”, but like “Love Part II” from his first album it’s a smashing and breathtakingly upbeat take on the power of love.  “I Believe” starts out at #27.

  • Why look, it’s Davis Redfield and Carl Man, together again (along with some of , if not all of, those same spot-on songwriters)!  Actually I wrote about “Music Gods” a while back but like any good song, you keep coming back to it.  Besides, I’ve always liked the Music Gods myself 😀  “Music Gods” arrives at #28.

  • More Neon Trees?  Yes please, especially after their engaging July 3 concert here in Toronto (and yes, Tyler did crowd surf us 😀 )!  I’m not sure if it will be the next official single or not, but “Love In The 21st Century” joins “Teenager In Love” (#17) on this chart at #29.

The full chart can be found further down the page…

Listen for My New Music Pick Of The Week on D-Moos.com!

As many of you are already aware, after many years away from the microphone, I am now pleased to be back as a voice on http://www.d-moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station, which mainly plays a selection of oldies, mostly from the 50’s to the 90’s, with soon to be more intrusions from the 2000’s and other new music.  

I was asked to do a pre-recorded weekly New Music Pick of The Week, and a number of the songs on this chart – specifically those by Tristan Thompson, Adam Tyler, Zorro Blakk & Deniz Olivieri, Sam Dickinson, and Anton Ewald – have all recently graced the station, every three hours for a week beginning Mondays at 2:05 a.m. EST.  

Do listen in for the Pick of the Week on D-Moos.com, and while the station is only live in the evenings from 9:00 pm to midnight (with my long-time musical partner in crime “The Musicman” James Rogers), you can hear my voice at other odd times, particularly if you’re an oldies loving night owl on the weekend overnights 🙂

bill_banner_dmoos

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 chart.

02 01 TIDAL WAVE Tristan Thompson
05 02 ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT House Rockerz featuring Davis Redfield & Carl Man
04 03 TELL IT TO MY HEART Jason Walker featuring Bimbo Jones
01 04 STAY WITH ME Sam Smith
03 05 PROXY Martin Garrix
11 06 LITTLE ME (Steve Smart & Wildfunk Radio Edit) Little Mix
07 07 THE DAY YOU LEFT Convulsic
10 08 GOOD NEWS (FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE BAD NEWS) Zorro Blakk featuring Deniz Olivieri
New 09 THIS COULD BE SOMETHING Anton Ewald featuring Medina
12 10 BACK HOME Andy Grammer
18 11 BOOM CLAP Charli XCX
15 12 HEY I DON’T KNOW Kongos
23 13 TIME HAS COME Hannis
17 14 MIRACLE  E-Mute
06 15 NOT IN THAT WAY Sam Smith
09 16 THIS IS DIRTY  DVBBS & MOTi
20 17 TEENAGER IN LOVE Neon Trees
25 18 KNEW YOU BETTER Adam Tyler
27 19 WHEN YOU LEFT ME Sam Dickinson
21 20 YOUR LOVE FADES AWAY Simone Denny
22 21 TRUST IT Nick Hagelin
08 22 ME AND MY BROKEN HEART Rixton
26 23 BIG CITY GIRLS (DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH SMALL TOWN BOYS) Zorro Blakk 
16 24 BLACK LEATHER  SIRPAUL
13 25 LOVE SPACE Convulsic
14 26 SHE LOOKS SO PERFECT 5 Seconds Of Summer
New 27 I BELIEVE Bright Light Bright Light
New 28 MUSIC GODS Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man
New 29 LOVE IN THE 21ST CENTURY Neon Trees
19 30 DEAR NICOLE FrankMusik

 

BILLCS Top 30 #434 – June 30/14

The end of June edition of my personal chart sees plenty of upward movement and four debuts, so I’ll be focusing on those this time.  Plus I have three winning chart ‘extras’!

THE TOP 10 DANCES UP A STORM

Well perhaps except for the songs by the performer of our #1 and #6 songs…

  • Sam Smith is entrenched at #1 for a third appearance with “Stay With Me”, which will go down as a classic for which 2014 will be remembered.  Sam’s also at #6 with the beautiful “Not In That Way”.  Sam’s album In The Lonely Hour is thoroughly enjoyable, though I had already heard most of it anyway, and it’s not entirely a sad song affair, though that does seem to be his specialty 🙂
  • New Canadian boy wonder Tristan Thompson is poised to steal away #1 from Sam Smith in two weeks with “Tidal Wave”.  A great new voice plus a classic melody and infectious arrangement makes “Tidal Wave” an easy sell.

  • Jason Walker’s rendition of “Tell It To My Heart” (up top) moves up 10-4 and is just one of those records that smacks you in the face and changes your mood for the better, every time.  I absolutely adore it!  And whatta voice 🙂
  • Carl Man is a voice to get to know better on his collaboration with House Rockerz and Davis Redfield, “Electrify The Night”, which soars 12-5.  And it’s a great song all ways around too!
  • Convulsic’s crazy pop-inflected one-of-a-kind dubstep of “The Day You Left” climbs 9-7!

  • Attention, attention!  DVBBS & MOTi have arrived in the Top 10 with EDM that commands your attention, “This Is Dirty”, up 11-9.

  • Mr. Zorro Blakk (aka Daniel Volpe) also lands in the Top 10 with the pop-culturiffic “Good News (For People Who Love Bad News)”, climbing 15-10, and features a nice blend of voices with singer Deniz Olivieri.  More on El Zorro later!

UP, UP AND AWAY

  • Stuck. In. My. Head.  That’s a very good reason for it to be the fastest riser, blazing up the chart 23-11.  It’s the Steve Smart and Westfunk radio edit of “Little Me” by Little Mix!

  • While radio is still giving attention to “Come With Me Now”, my preferred song by Kongos at this time is the bass-laden, playful “Hey I Don’t Know”, which moves up 19-15.

  • “Miracle” by E-Mute is no unassuming song, no sirree.  It keeps building and building, carried by Theo Mak’s riveting vocal and a classical piano melody that sticks in memory long after the song ends.  “Miracle” rises 20-17.

  • “The Fault In Our Stars” is a huge hit with the teen crowd, and it’s no surprise that Charli XCX’s “Boom Clap” is about to be a defining song of summer.  It climbs 24-18.

DEM DEBUTS

I’ve already wrote about the four debuts in one form or another…

  • One of the most impressive songs I’ve heard in a while is the hybrid of Europop and dubstep in “Time Will Come” by new Finnish singer Hannis. It bows at a high #23!
  • As the deluxe edition of Adam Tyler’s Shattered Ice continues to resonate with me, the first single from the album premieres at #25, just as the long lasting “Electric Valentine” (also on the album, and Adam’s highest charting song to date, peaking at #3) is about to exit the chart.  “Knew You Better” is another Adam Tyler song about to make its mark on my chart 🙂
  • This one just makes you want to dance!  It’s the second entry by Zorro Blakk, taking lessons from hits by Fall Out Boy and Panic At The Disco with his penchant for long song titles!  “Big City Girls (Don’t Fall In Love With Small Town Boys)” will leave you equally breathless while you’re dancing, and it lands on the chart at #26.
  • Sam Dickinson’s debut album The Stories That Occurred is about to get a 37 song reboot, and the first single is an excellent choice that grabs you right from its guitar opening, carried by Sam’s potent voice.  “When You Left Me” debuts at #27.  Sam’s “Learn To Wait” reached #8 on my chart last Fall.  “When You Left Me” gets its official single release on July 7!

 EXTRA! EXTRA! EXTRA!

WRATHSCHILD, “Angeles”

As “Fall Into Love” is about to leave the chart after peaking at #8, the duo of Simon Curtis and Wolfy released their second single together today, “Angeles”.  It couldn’t be a more different affair than “Fall Into Love”, but showcases the power of the pair.  “Angeles” has this beautiful, wistful melody, where you can picture a late night camp fire on an L.A. beach.  But the lyrics are bittersweet, arriving in L.A. with stars in your eyes only to find that the city is remote and disenchanting when all is said and done.  “Angeles” is a pleasing, personalized distraction, and will fit in nicely with this year’s end of summer songs.

ANTON EWALD featuring MEDINA, “This Could Be Something”

“This Could Be Something” is part of 20 year old Swedish singer/dancer/choreographer Anton Ewald’s latest fine EP On My Way, and it’s a danceable pop outing that definitely has designs on radio worldwide, and it could get there.  The talented singer duets with Danish singer Medina, and their combined forces really give an edge to the song’s chorus.  A song full of ‘ooh oohs’ and ‘oh ohs’ might not seem so favourable but for the enthusiasm of these two talents.  Katy Perry watch out, “This Could Be Something” could definitely be just that!

JAKE BARKER, “Stage Fright”

I was really pleased when Jake Barker was added to “The Voice” tour, even though he didn’t finish in the Top 10.  His talent and personality are unmistakeable.  The title song from his independently released EP is an up close recounting of that thing singers dread, whether on stage or about a relationship, and the cure is having his girl by his side.  Remember, Jake had never performed in concert before appearing on “The Voice” – and you’d never know it from the confidence he displays on stage.  The EP doesn’t mince any words, and Jake’s soothing R&B-influenced style makes it both romantic and easy to take in many doses.  You can hear an excerpt of the song only on iTunes.

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 chart.

01 01 STAY WITH ME Sam Smith
02 02 TIDAL WAVE Tristan Thompson
03 03 PROXY Martin Garrix
10 04 TELL IT TO MY HEART Jason Walker featuring Bimbo Jones
12 05 ELECTRIFY THE NIGHT House Rockerz featuring Davis Redfield & Carl Man
08 06 NOT IN THAT WAY Sam Smith
09 07 THE DAY YOU LEFT Convulsic
04 08 ME AND MY BROKEN HEART Rixton
11 09 THIS IS DIRTY   DVBBS & MOTi
15 10 GOOD NEWS (FOR PEOPLE WHO LOVE BAD NEWS) Zorro Blakk featuring Deniz Olivieri
23 11 LITTLE ME (Steve Smart & Wildfunk radio edit) Little Mix
13 12 BACK HOME Andy Grammer
05 13 LOVE SPACE Convulsic
07 14 SHE LOOKS SO PERFECT 5 Seconds Of Summer
19 15 HEY I DON’T KNOW Kongos
18 16 BLACK LEATHER   SIRPAUL
20 17 MIRACLE E-Mute
24 18 BOOM CLAP Charli XCX
06 19 DEAR NICOLE FrankMusik
21 20 TEENAGER IN LOVE Neon Trees
25 21 YOUR LOVE FADES AWAY Simone Denny
26 22 TRUST IT Nick Hagelin
New 23 TIME HAS COME Hannis
14 24 ELECTRIC VALENTINE Adam Tyler
New 25 KNEW YOU BETTER Adam Tyler
New 26 BIG CITY GIRLS (DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH SMALL TOWN BOYS) Zorro Blakk 
New 27 WHEN YOU LEFT ME Sam Dickinson
16 28 BE MINE Kendal Thompson
17 29 FALL INTO LOVE Wrathschild
22 30 LATCH Disclosure featuring Sam Smith

80’s Soul Revival: “When You Left Me” by @SamDickinson (official video)

samdickinson2

SAM DICKINSON, “When You Left Me” (official video)

One of the most pleasing debut albums I heard last year was Sam Dickinson’s The Stories That Occurred.  It’s full of both traditional and 80s/90s soul influences much of which come from the unique sounds of his fellow Brits.  It’s almost a year later, and The Stories That Occurred is about to get a reboot.  “When You Left Me” is the emotional and energetic trigger, if you will, full of 80s-styled horns and rhythms that will send you back to records by Paul Young, Simply Red, Culture Club, and particularly to me, The Style Council.  The video puts Sam back in front of you too, because this reboot involves a reissued 37 song album – with numerous remixes coming – due in August, as well as a number of upcoming opportunities to see Sam perform in and around the north east part of England.  “When You Left Me” was just featured on BBC2’s The Graham Norton Show over the past few days, so there’s keen interest in Sam Dickinson and his many talents.  You can purchase “When You Left Me” from the standard edition of The Stories That Occurred on iTunes, but watch for all the news to come at Sam’s website!

Published in: on June 22, 2014 at 2:14 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , , ,

Bill’s Top 75 Songs of 2013 – Part I – 75-41

It Was All About The Great Voices

More than any other year that I can think of in recent memory, 2013’s best songs were all about terrific vocal performances.  Of course, any song with an insanely catchy rhythm can win you over on that alone, with vocals and lyrics coming in distant second and third.  I think what I hear is great singers who really should be receiving far more recognition than they are getting.  They can’t tour much, have dedicated fan bases, and spend a lot of time cultivating their path online.  It’s too expensive for performers to travel great distances to play for 150 people unless they can get a break with the costs involved.

In the commentary that follows, I’m not talking about all of the songs between 75 and 41, particularly those where performers also had songs higher up.  So consider what follows to be some highlights of the year 🙂

  • One performer who set the tone from the beginning to the end of 2013 is FrankMusik.  Granted Vincent Frank does have some moderate success behind him, but to do what he achieved in 2013 stretched his resources.  And achieve he did – two albums, Between and Between Us, an EP Far From Over, as well as two tours in the US and shows in the UK.  I was happy to ride the FrankMusik train in 2013 even though I didn’t get to see him perform this time because you never knew what to expect next.  Plus there’s his unbridled enthusiasm in creating his music, which ranged from frenetic to pensive.  And the stories he told, mainly so very sad but cathartic at the same time.  Two more FrankMusik songs appear higher up on my list. “Chasing Shadows” #72; “Life (Is My Revenge)” #69; “Fast As I Can” #56.
  • Another performer who had a great year, but with all of the bells and whistles possible, is Justin Timberlake.  He hinted that he would release his first album since 2006 at the end of last year, which was quickly followed by his single “Suit & Tie”, featuring Jay-Z (#73).  The powerful R&B/pop album The 20/20 Experience arrived soon after, the best selling album of 2013 no less, full of a varied set of songs that averaged in the 7 minute range, kind of risky in itself, but definitely a whole lot of fun when they weren’t too ambitious like the raucous “Let The Groove Get In” (#53).  By the time second single “Mirrors” arrived, it was already known that The 20/20 Experience Part II was on deck, and the very 80’s and Michael Jackson-influenced single “Take Back The Night” (#49) was upon us.  And with Jay-Z’s Holy Grail album, we were pretty much assured of hearing new Justin Timberlake music every day in 2013.  But even with all of the money behind this project, was it a total success?  I would say Part I achieved what it should have, and more.  I think there were missteps with Part II arriving so soon after Part I even though many of its songs were stronger than those on Part I.  But unlike recordings by independent artists, Parts I and II will pay for each other over time.  It was great to have Justin Timberlake back though as his voice was in fine, fine form.

Newcomers:

  • UK soul singer Charlie Brown had been featured on many songs and mixtapes over the last five years, but broke into the UK Top 10 with his uplifting “On My Way” (#75).
  • 17 year old New Zealand singer Lorde topped charts worldwide with her lyrically and melodically clever “Royals” (#68).  I couldn’t get enough of it for the first several weeks before it ran its course and peaked at #11.
  • New York dance duo Ghost Beach arrived on my chart with a unique sound that bridges punk and dance in the Penguin Prison remix of “Too Young”, which is #70 for 2013.
  • 20 year old Florida-born Ariana Grande was already well known to the teen set for her roles on “Victorious” and “Sam and Cat” as Cat Valentine.  But her stunning vocal range came to prominence over the last few years, and her debut album Yours Truly saw release in late summer.  It was however preceded by a winning single called “The Way”, featuring rapper Mac Miller, which got to #8 on my chart and is #66 for 2013.
  • UK pop singer James William has established himself with his Olly Murs tribute shows, but is also quite the astute songwriter as well.  His bright and shiny “Lay Your Love On Me” ranks #54 for 2013.
  • Another UK pop singer draws more from classic R&B influences to arrive at a contemporary sound that recalls Simply Red a lot of the time.  Sam Dickinson released his debut album The Stories That Occurred and “Learn To Wait”, its second single, is #50 for 2013.
  • L.A.-based Jarell Perry released one of the most sensational albums for free download in early 2013, Simple Things.  It’s full of powerful songs that make a really cohesive listening party as an album as a whole, which is unusual considering most performers are opting for EP’s.  The song that stuck with me most throughout 2013 was “9 2 5”, which tells why it’s so important to break out of a regular routine and experience life.  “9 2 5” is #45 for 2013.  Expect great things from Jarell in 2014, starting with the EP White.
  • NYC trio Andy Suzuki & The Method built on their existing east coast following (as well as a dedicated one in Brunei!) by releasing a full album, Born Out Of Mischief, which transcends rock, pop, jazz and country styles, led by fine vocals by Andy Suzuki.  The impressive “Dirty Floors”, which could be the theme song for any indie musician, got to #7 on my chart and is #42 for 2013.

Continuing from 2012…

  • UK duo Bim released their Lifelines EP in late 2012, and one of its best and lyrically most powerful songs was turned into a video featuring comic book images.  “Burn” is #74 for 2013.
  • UK teen favourite Conor Maynard paired up with Ne-Yo for the dance hit “Turn Around”, which is #64, while Ne-Yo himself brought some emotionally-charged R&B/dance to charts with “Let Me Love You (Till You Can Learn To Love Yourself)”, which is #61 for the year.
  • Daniel Bedingfield found much online success with his Secret Fear-Stop The Traffik EP and the award-winning video for last year’s “Secret Fear”, which he also directed.  More good things are coming from Daniel in 2014!  Joining the class of 2013 from that project is “O.V.E.R. U.” at #55.
  • Cambridge, MA quartet Passion Pit continued with singles from their 2012 album Gossamer, which often seemed to offer emotionally loaded lyrics over slight and bright melodies.  “Take A Walk” is a little different and stands out from the rest of the songs on the album.  It reached #6 on my chart and is #46 for 2013.
  • Australian dance duo The Presets offer synth-drenched otherworldly dance music which sounds like nothing else.  Their album Pacifica wasn’t always successful but the focal point to me was the intense album track “A.O.” (which stands for ‘adults only’), which is an unmade science fiction movie unto itself.  It’s #47 for 2013.

Returning Favourites:

  • At end of 2012, US quartet One Republic issued the single “If I Lose Myself”, which was eventually included on the band’s first album in 3 years, Native.  The single signaled a more synth-led sound than usual which I found to be very appealing, though it wasn’t until later in the year with “Counting Stars” that the group once again achieved massive success, reaching #1 in the UK and Top 5 in the US.  “If I Lose Myself” is #71 for 2013 – it may be re-released to follow up “Counting Stars”.
  • 2012 was absent of music from our favourite boy robot, Simon Curtis.  So the singer gifted us with an EP of songs written for others, called WWW, full of the expected electronic pop and dance bliss but somewhat different from what we had heard in RA and 8bit Heart previously.  But “Berlin Wall” (#63) is an unforgettable singalong anthem paired alongside the likes of “Laser Guns Up”, while “Do I Have To Dance” (#48) is a shattering dance epic as the singer pleads “notice me” but alternately screams “how long do I have to dance?” as if it’s the worst thing in the world.  Simon has a new song and dance video funded by fans which will appear in 2014.
  • Adam Tyler has been busy writing and recording his follow up to 2011’s Shattered Ice album after spending a lot of 2012 touring.  He gave us a taste of what he’s working on with the dubstep-influenced “Fade Into The Light” at #58.  The song was also featured on the essential dance compilation This Beat Is Poptronik… Volume 2… along with three others on this list!
  • L.A.-based Semi-Precious Weapons toned down their rowdy rock style a few notches for the anthemic ballad “Aviation High” early in 2013, which also serves as a lead-in to their upcoming release in early 2014.  Can’t wait to hear what these boys have to offer us!  Of note:  Jarell Perry also recorded a spot-on soulful cover of “Aviation High”, proving the song’s instant versatility.
  • And at #41 for 2013 is the Oscar-winning “Skyfall” from Adele, which got to #7 at the top of the year.

SONGS 75 to 41

The prettier web version should be online by the end of Sunday.

75 CHARLIE BROWN On My Way
74 BIM Burn
73 JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE featuring Jay-Z Suit & Tie
72 FRANKMUSIK Chasing Shadows
71 ONE REPUBLIC If I Lose Myself
70 GHOST BEACH Too Young (Penguin Prison Remix)
69 FRANKMUSIK Life (Is My Revenge)
68 LORDE Royals
67 OSVALDO SUPINO Ma Radio
66 ARIANA GRANDE featuring MAC MILLER The Way
65 MATTHEW KOMA One Night
64 CONOR MAYNARD featuring NE-YO Turn Around
63 SIMON CURTIS Berlin Wall
62 SEMI-PRECIOUS WEAPONS Aviation High
61 NE-YO Let Me Love You (Till You Learn To Love Yourself)
60 LAWSON Juliet
59 PARRALOX Headhunter
58 ADAM TYLER Fade Into The Light
57 RIVER TIBER What Are You Afraid Of
56 FRANKMUSIK Fast As I Can
55 DANIEL BEDINGFIELD   O.V.E.R. U.
54 JAMES WILLIAM Lay Your Love On Me
53 JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE Let The Groove Get In
52 LAWSON featuring B.o.B. Brokenhearted
51 PET SHOP BOYS Love Is A Bourgeois Construct
50 SAM DICKINSON Learn To Wait
49 JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE Take Back The Night
48 SIMON CURTIS Do I Have To Dance
47 THE PRESETS A.O.
46 PASSION PIT Take A Walk
45 JARELL PERRY 9 2 5
44 CHRIS WALLACE Keep Me Crazy
43 WILLY MOON My Girl
42 ANDY SUZUKI & THE METHOD Dirty Floors
41 ADELE Skyfall

BILLCS Top 30 #416 – October 21/13

Number One:

  • In a powerful Top 5 last week, I was uncertain who would emerge at #1 on the new chart.  But it’s Neverest whose latest single “Rewind” moves 3-1 this week.  Neverest is in good company with River Tiber and Kwik Fiks & Bongiovanni as Canadian performers with #1’s on my chart this year.  The quartet is also on a triple bill with Shawn Desman and Tyler Shaw at The Mod Club on November 16 in Toronto.  Do catch their show if you haven’t!  Always full of surprises and positive energy.  PLUS near the bottom of this post (but before you look at the full chart) I am featuring a new song by the writer of “Rewind”!

The Rest Of The Top 10:

  • Ryan Adamés has a 3rd appearance at #2 with his warm and fuzzy cover of Justin Bieber’s “As Long As You Love Me”.  That song is suddenly emerging on many TV talent shows but none of the covers that I’ve heard have the unique appeal of this rendition.  It’s available for free if you go and like Ryan’s Facebook page 🙂

  • ARTPOP and new single(s) approach in the coming weeks, but Lady GaGa’s “Applause” is still climbing my chart at #3.
  • It looks like Miguel & Jessie Ware’s duet of “Adorn” is eye-ing #1 in two weeks.  My excuse for being a latehead on the song earlier this year 😛 It climbs 8-4.
  • Kaden’s “Black Light” falls to #5, but he has another song, the title track from the compilation Fuel For The Machine on deck!  You can listen to a preview of it right here.
  • Betty Who’s “Somebody Loves You” is one of the most joyous songs you’ll hear this year, and the Aussie-born New York-based singer climbs 10-6.

  • While we await what sounds like will be a compelling video for his song “Lift Your Head”, Sam Dickinson’s soulful and energetic “Learn To Wait” climbs another notch to #8.
  • Pet Shop Boys score their second Top Tenner from Electric with the sublime “Love Is A Bourgeois Construct” at #9.
  • Australians Parralox created one of the most interesting album of cover versions this year with Recovery.  Excellent choices include Front 242’s memorable industrial club hit “Headhunter”, here given a full blown electronica dance treatment.  It lands at #10 on the chart 🙂

Fast Risers:

  • The more I listen to Osvaldo Supino’s “I Have A Name”, the more I appreciate the honest beauty of the lyrics and the arrangement.  It’s the fastest riser on the chart, soaring 21-11, while Osvaldo-with-a-boombox creates fun and havoc with “Ma Radio” further down at #15.

  • I can’t wait for more new music proper from DATABOY, but in the meantime their stellar mashup “We Can’t Stop Summertime Sadness” is doing the trick just fine thank you, and moves up to #12.
  • FrankMusik’s gorgeous “Hymn” from his acoustic piano album Between Us rises to #17.  He’s playing two shows in NYC this week, on Thursday October 24 at Rockwood (which I will miss, dammit, because I arrive in NYC the next evening 😦 ) and Saturday October 26 for a Hallowe’en DJ set at Fox & Jane.  More stops in Washington DC and Philadelphia afterwards for you fans!

  • “Can’t Hold Back” by Anton Ewald is the last fast riser, moving 28-21.  I’m thoroughly impressed with his EP, called A.  It’s really contemporary and diverse pop, and only the Swedes can seem to get this right!!

New to the Chart:

As older songs reach their maximum amount of appearances (10 = 20 weeks) and drop off, it helps make way for lots of fresh new tunes to dazzle you.

  • It’s no surprise to regular readers of this blog that two new songs by Simon Curtis make their debuts.  Last week Simon unleashed a free mixtape called WWW which I wrote about.  Forever our boy robot, Simon continues to impress – and this is the music that didn’t make the cut for his upcoming album, but were songs instead written for others.  Fans are so glad these are available for download through the MuuMuse website.  First at #19 we have the unexpected, hypnotic, and stunning dance epic “Do I Have To Dance”.  Further down it’s a call to arms once again for the raucous, energetic “Berlin Wall” at #28.

  • I actually wrote about this next debut quite a while back, but the more I hear it, the more it resonates with me.  It’s also one of the rare songs that leaves a big lump in my throat at the end every time after “I want it more than ever”, followed by the saddest firework sounds you’ll ever hear.  Beautifully sung by LA-based singer Jarell Perry, “4th of July” debuts at #25.  And it’s also a free download right here.
  • Travis Garland is on tour and is coming to my town on November 7!  Ticket bought!  His Spanish-flavoured, seductive disco in the form of “Easy” is a departure for him in the songs on his self-titled album, but it works beautifully and bows at #26.

  • The final debut at #30 comes from a NYC dance troubadour whose songs are most often about fun and sex, and fun and sex 🙂 Nothing wrong with that.  His new album is on deck for a November release called Seventh Star, and I’m talking about SIRPAUL with his single “Every Single Moment”, which I wrote about recently.  You can buy it on iTunes.  Two of SIRPAUL’s songs are also available on both volumes of This Beat Is…Poptronik 🙂

Bonus Feature:

The writer of Neverest’s “Rewind” is former basketball player and Toronto singer Corey Niles.  Having a mentor in fellow Canadian singer Dru (noted for his own hits “She Can Ride” as well as his appearance on Doman & Gooding’s dance smash “Runnin'”, which got to #15 on this chart in 2009) who is featured in Corey’s song “Rollercoaster” is a huge plus.  Don’t underestimate the presence of this song.  It’s going to lend a fresh urban sound to radio here in Canada that you don’t get to hear much by Canadians beyond songs by Drake.  “Rollercoaster” does not let up, it slams pretty hard in a sizzling blend of contemporary R&B styles, and gives a great introduction to the solo Corey Niles.  Watch for what sounds to be an intriguing video debuting this week on MuchMusic.  Listen and watch the lyric video below.  BOOOM!

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and details web edition of my chart.

Here’s the full BILLCS Top 30 :)

03 01 REWIND Neverest
02 02 AS LONG AS YOU LOVE ME Ryan Adamés
04 03 APPLAUSE Lady Gaga
08 04 ADORN Miguel F/ Jessie Ware
01 05 BLACK LIGHT (Stormby remix) Kaden
10 06 SOMEBODY LOVES YOU Betty Who
07 07 TAKE BACK THE NIGHT Justin Timberlake
09 08 LEARN TO WAIT Sam Dickinson
12 09 LOVE IS A BOURGEOIS CONSTRUCT Pet Shop Boys
15 10 HEADHUNTER Parralox
21 11 I HAVE A NAME Osvaldo Supino
18 12 WE CAN’T STOP SUMMERTIME SADNESS   DATABOY
11 13 ROYALS Lorde
16 14 I REMEMBER Nick Pes
17 15 MA RADIO Osvaldo Supino
05 16 SKIRT Kylie Minogue
20 17 HYMN FrankMusik
06 18 HOMEWRECKER Travis Garland
New 19 DO I HAVE TO DANCE Simon Curtis
14 20 PROBLEM (Kat Krazy remix) Natalia Kills
28 21 CAN’T HOLD BACK Anton Ewald
24 22 IMPOSSIBLE Ryan Star
26 23 JULIET Lawson
27 24 REPLAY Zendaya
New 25 4TH OF JULY Jarell Perry
New 26 EASY Travis Garland
13 27 VOCAL Pet Shop Boys
New 28 BERLIN WALL Simon Curtis
19 29 DIRTY FLOORS Andy Suzuki & The Method
New 30 EVERY SINGLE MOMENT   SIRPAUL