#BILLCSTop30 #625, October 25/21

There are occasions on which, for reasons unknown, temporary writer’s block sets in, and I have to rely on the music and the facts behind them to help get me by. So, do forgive me for the lack of personal insights in this blog post. It’s actually been a pretty busy week for new songs, which will send some fine additions to the chart in the coming weeks. And because of the recent change by Spotify on how its song links interact with the free WordPress website-making format, I will not be using Spotify links in my blog posts until further notice, unless there is no other available link to a song.

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

For now, “Sanctuary” (above) by Dutch producer Howen and NYC singer/songwriter and “American Idol” contestant Robbie Rosen rules my chart for a second appearance, with no sign yet of what might succeed it.  Robbie also has the inspiring anthem led by a flute-sounding hook “To The Top” (below) moving up 25-18 for him and German producers Natixx and Lyonbrotherz.

Out to challenge in two weeks is “Never Going Home” (above), the brisk, summery dance track by French producer Kungs, which climbs 6-3.  Out to thwart it is the fun track with a fierce vocal sample called “Nonchalant” (below) by Duck Sauce, which rises 8-4.  But it’s the choice music sample that seals this one for me, a song called “Queen Of The Rapping Scene” by British new wave group Modern Romance, a favourite of mine back in 1981.

The Fastest Riser on the chart also has eyes on #1, and that’s “Microdose” by Danish producers Boye & Sigvardt with vocalist Jordan Shaw, soaring 13-5.  It beats Boye & Sigvardt’s previous peak of #6 four years ago with “Astronauts”.

The other new entries to the Top 10 are “Only One” (above) by Felix Cartal and Karen Harding, up 11-9, which is Felix’s third Top 10 and Karen’s fourth, and The Weeknd’s “Take My Breath” (below), climbing 12-10, from his forthcoming album.  You can also check out The Weeknd’s new collaboration with Swedish House Mafia called “Moth To A Flame”, also below.

Cutting through the middle of the chart is “Almost Home” by legendary trance trio Above & Beyond and their frequent vocalist Justine Suissa, who sounds as amazing live in concert as she does on record (I saw A&B five years ago in concert, and Justine was on tour with them).  “Almost Home” climbs 18-12.

The rest of the chart is in a bit of a log jam because of all of the new music that arrived within the last month.  “Turn Off My Mind” by Morgan Page and Lights makes the most of it and moves up 20-15.

One to keep your eyes and ears on in the coming weeks is the impressive and funky “Play It Cool” by UK/Irish duo Menrva and singer Island Banks, which rises 30-23.

The highest of four debuts is the second appearance on the chart by UK sensational dance music singer/songwriter Karen Harding.  She recently released her new EP Sweet Vibrations and from it comes “You & I (All I Need)”, a wonderful, happy song for our times, which bows at #27. New video coming this week!

Next up is the sinewy alternative electronic sound of Nashville-based indie singer/songwriter stef with “sicc”, which hits the chart at #28.

Then at #29 there is Manchester, England-born, Kansas-based indie singer/songwriter Tommy Newport with one of his unique songs “Bubblegum” from his new EP Liquid.

And joining the chart at #30 is “Everything”, by frequent charter Brandyn Burnette, with his collaborator Charlotte Sands (with her trademark blue hair).  “Everything” is culled from Brandyn’s new EP F.A.T.E. and is his 19th chart appearance since 2014, including features as well as one song billed under his alias EMAN8.

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

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! You can also follow me on Spotify at the following link: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

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

ONLINE RADIO AFFILIATES

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

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

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

My New Music Pick of the Week also now airs on Radio GTA Saturdays and Sundays at 3pm EST, and on Halton Hills Online on Saturdays and Sundays at 10pm EST!

 

 

 

 

“Bubblegum” is top notch alt.pop from Manchester-born @TommyNewport

TOMMY NEWPORT, “Bubblegum”

With each single that he releases, I’m having fun trying to figure out where Manchester-born, Kansas-based singer/actor Tommy Newport is coming from.  From the alt.rock/hip hop flavoured “Stargazer” and the topical and soulful “Vanilla & Light”, he really is rather unpredictable.  So with “Bubblegum”, his pleasing falsetto returns but in gentle, world-weary slice of alt.pop that basks in the power of sweet love. Add some funky bass rhythms and “Bubblegum” turns out to be an understated anthem of sorts. We don’t have enough love in the world, so if the song presents 60’s summer of love vibes to you too, then all the better. Whatever your take, this kind of “Bubblegum” is the kind you can swallow, and I’m happy to keep listening as Tommy takes us for a different ride every time.

UK-born singer/songwriter @TommyNewport is back with soulful and topical “Vanilla & Light”

TOMMY NEWPORT, “Vanilla & Light”

I first brought UK-born, Kansas-based singer and actor Tommy Newport to your attention this summer with his hip-hop flavoured track “Stargazer”, which features Grammy-nominated duo EARTHGANG.  “Vanilla & Light” takes a sidestep into 70’s soul with a melody and song structure that would not seem out of place next to music by R&B greats like Luther Ingram or Major Harris, and follows a reintroduction of this style to today’s audience by Bruno Mars and Anderson.Paak through the recent “Leave The Door Open”. With an earnest falsetto intact, Tommy melds this backdrop with indie pop trappings and lyrics that spotlight individuals who struggle day-to-day with internalized thoughts, overthinking that they can never be good enough. So many young people with mental health challenges will be able to relate to “Vanilla & Light” and its unique presentation.  Tommy Newport is certainly one to watch in 2021/22. Check out the video, which he wrote and edited, above.

It’s 10/10 #17: @NuelaCharles, @Kislawmusic & @wallflowerperry, #Anzano & @RobbieRosenlive, @CrashAdamsmusic, @Prizmofficial, @KenBauersweden, @Febmusic & @Lexie_official, #Dega, @TommyNewport & @EARTHGANG, and @DJChrisDamas

My 10/10 feature returns with edition #17.  I can’t believe it’s been six months since I wrote the last one.  But the time has come where very good songs for consideration for this blog are overwhelming the weaker ones, so I want to make sure the good ones get their due.  And as usual, the choices are a global cornucopia of releases.

For those not familiar with10/10,  I write about 10 hot and fresh songs in no particular order, for your kind consideration and attention.

I continue to write individual blog posts about certain songs.  That does not mean that songs in the 10/10 lists are any less than those featured individually, and they are not listed in any particular order.  

Writing 10/10 posts means I can cover more songs in one shot.  So you get to learn about more new music that I hear but don’t always get a chance to write about. 

  • NUELA CHARLES, “Space”

Singer/songwriter Nuela Charles has been prominent in her native Canada, conquering the Adult Contemporary genre with Juno Awards nominations three years in a row for that category.  “Space” is a welcome change of pace for her, showcasing her effortless classic R&B-influenced voice with a sassy and funky backdrop. While “Space” was written as a response to the pandemic, it’s clear that we all need space from each other, even those closest to it. “Space” sails away with that idea and Nuela flourishes in this setting.

  • KISLAW and VICTOR PERRY, “Slip Away”

NYC singer/songwriter Victor Perry continues to be one of the most prolific independent performers, releasing new music every week where possible and showcasing it with different collaborators.  “Slip Away” is a unique partnership with new Africa-born French producer Kislaw, who embraces a sophisticated backdrop where you’ll hear the underutilized flute among other sounds.  And a funky edge allows Victor’s brilliant vocal – which reminds me of when either Michael or Janet Jackson are at their most playful – to lilt through the story and soar in the ad libs too.  Released by Bonfire Records, this one is very deserving of a follow up soon.

  • ANZANO and ROBBIE ROSEN, “Waves”

Like Victor Perry, “American Idol” Top 16 contestant Robbie Rosen is on a mission to release music every week right now (yes, it’s no surprise with similar ideals that the two collaborate as well).  Robbie’s recent songs and performances are so consistently strong it’s hard to pick out what are the strongest ones.  “Waves” finds Robbie working with Belgian producer Anzano for a chipper-sounding song that recognizes when you’ve lost a friend or partner to a better relationship or situation (“forever you’ll be one with the waves”).  It’s a quick mix of classic pop and bright, friendly electropop that goes down easily.

  • CRASH ADAMS, “Symphony”

Your friendly neighbourhood Toronto pop/rock duo Crash Adams are back with another song to make you think while putting a smile on your face. “Symphony” is about that instant state of attraction when all of the vibes and conversation just seem oh so right.  It’s another tight production with a winning vocal, and another cool video (above) to boot.  Crash Adams continue to release quality songs, and their talent and flair for spot-on visuals will take them far.

  • THE PRIZM, “Darkness Is A Friend”

“Darkness Is A Friend” is the centerpiece song of L.A.-based producer The Prizm’s latest album New Beginnings.  In fact the album is a third chapter to a complex story, but focuses on new beginnings for anyone who’s experienced recent hard times, whether they be through relationships, the pandemic, and more.  The uplifting melody and vocal will help you realize that there is a way out of the darkness if you embrace it and move on.  The album is a significant progressive stretch when looking back on last year’s catchy electronic dance single “I Don’t Wanna Go Home” (with ARTFCAL), but The Prizm (Gabriel Garcia) is taking his time to create stories and atmosphere that will have a deeper effect on the listener.

  • KEN BAUER, “Free”

Sweden’s Ken Bauer is hardly a new name to the electronic dance music scene, releasing regular music since 2016.  Though he’s had support from big names like David Guetta, Sam Feldt, and Nicky Romero, all it takes is one song that could open more doors internationally.  “Free” has that potential, with complex synths surrounding a basic but infectious hook.  The uncredited vocal helps the song soar, and “Free” would go over very well indeed at festivals.

  • FEB & LEXIE, “Last Night A DJ Saved My Life”

Though it’s a far cry from the funky classic grooves of the 1982 Indeep classic, Italian producer Feb and British vocalist Lexie spin “Last Night A DJ Saved My Life” into a slick Eurohouse track.  Lexie’s alluring vocal makes it perfectly pronounced that she’s moved on and looking for someone else who won’t break her heart.  Feb’s production captures the essence of the song, making it a fitting surprise that works well.

  • DEGA, “Bad Burn”

Italy’s Dega brings us some dreamy, trance-soaked Europop with “Bad Burn”.  The song effectively mixes in thoughtful vocals, an underlying and very catchy melody, and a build up to a swell drop for cohesive results.  “Bad Burn” is definitely one of those songs where you might not know the artist, but the song solidly stands steadfast on its own and has festival anthem potential.

  • TOMMY NEWPORT and EARTHGANG, “Stargazer”

“Stargazer” is a cool slice of alternative rock that’s laced with hip hop that is out to challenge listeners while sublimely drawing them in with its warm hook.  At only 20 years old, Manchester-born singer/guitarist Tommy Newport has already acquired fans through not only his music, but appearances on TV and internet shows as well as movies.  His voice has a soulful undercurrent beneath a weary, journeyman kind of approach.  His collaborators on “Stargazer” are recent Grammy Awards nominees for Best R&B Song, Atlanta’s EARTHGANG, who continue to show why hip hop and soul are so welcome in an alternative rock-oriented release, and how much more pliable the genre walls need to become.  

  • CHRISTOPHER DAMAS, “Tekila”

Get that big plate of nachos ready because some “Tekila” is about to infiltrate the mix!  It’s a tidy and spicy song that should easily fit into sets next to “Despacito” and “Mi Gente”, but there is a twist.  The “k” in “Tekila” might give it away, but it’s brought to you by veteran Russian electronic dance producer Christopher Damas, which continues to prove that the boundaries within dance music itself are extremely limited.  My only gripe about “Tekila” is that it’s way too short at only 2:10, making it a bit of a novelty. It flies by so quickly that listeners will be begging to know what that “Tekila” song is!