Breathe by #DiamondCafe is a new project by Vancouver’s @TristanTmusic for Michael Jackson and Prince fans

DIAMOND CAFE, Breathe (EP)

I’ve been a big believer in Vancouver singer/songwriter Tristan Thompson since his debut release Here For You in 2014 yielded a soulful piece of pop ear candy called “Tidal Wave”, which also topped the BILLCS Top 30.  That song as well as “Burn Again” and the title track received significant national radio airplay in Canada for an independent performer, and got notice overseas, particularly in New Zealand.  

Fast forward three years, and the singer, who is not even 20, has created a new project called Diamond Cafe, after a second album last year stalled and the label behind it folded. The EP Breathe is full of five lush, soulful pop/dance songs that will appeal mostly to Michael Jackson and Prince fans, but also to fans of performers as diverse as Sade and Adele.  The singer has also taken on production duties, and he’s definitely on the right track though perhaps some songs might benefit from a deeper sound.  His now-richer vocals with some commanding high notes score throughout, and the songs to zero in on are the title track, “Commercial Love”, and “Diamonds”.

I think Diamond Cafe will find friends with club DJ’s, EDM fans, and R&B/soul fans interested in hearing 80’s/90’s sounds mixed in with the style of today.  Some of the songs, like “Diamonds” could benefit from remixes.  Tristan Thompson should find a new and more mature audience with Diamond Cafe.  Check out the entire album on Spotify at the link above.

Published in: on March 11, 2017 at 3:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Pop! goes Spring! British Columbia’s Tristan Thompson (@tristantmusic) returns with “Man Of Your Dreams”

TRISTAN THOMPSON, “Man Of Your Dreams”

“Man Of Your Dreams” is the perfect song to put that Popervescence into your Spring months.  Tristan Thompson is the teenage singer I wrote about two years ago when his  single “Tidal Wave” (from his debut album Here For You) caught my ears at his young age of 15 with its infectious Michael Jackson flavour mixed with a solid pop foundation, scoring a #1 song on the BILLCS Top 30.  Songs from the album found their way to radio stations across Canada, including the hard-to-break Quebec market, as well as far away places such as New Zealand!  Tristan’s second album Love You Can Believe In is on its way, and “Man Of Your Dreams” is a great lead-in featuring a friendly video and a vocal that is only giving you a taste of what Tristan is capable.  The song is produced by veteran production team Boomtang Boys, and Tristan this time gets a co-write with Tylor Johnson, whose words and music Tristan brought to life on Here For You.  Radio stations that enjoyed previous singles such as “Burn Again” will find listeners responding to “Man Of Your Dreams” too.  Pick it up on iTunes.

#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

Your end-of-summer song is here: “Reason To Believe” by Tristan Thompson @TristanTmusic

TRISTAN THOMPSON, “Reason To Believe”

Sometimes it takes five steps backwards to move two more forward and sorting out each other’s feelings to get to that happy ending to a disagreement or misunderstanding.  That’s why Tristan Thompson’s “Reason To Believe” might be your go-to end-of-summer ballad, once again written by Tylor Johnson.  I’ve written about the talented young singer from British Columbia numerous times over the last year since his R&B/pop song “Tidal Wave” got to the top of my personal chart.  Momentum continues to build for the 17 year old after some national radio success with “Burn Again” and the title song from his debut album Here For You.  There’s no reason why “Reason To Believe” shouldn’t find more believers!  The video is likely Tristan’s best visual showcase yet as it unveils a familiar story but you’re still not quite sure if it’s going to get where you would expect it to go.  It’s never too late to discover a most deserving young talent, so head over to iTunes and get “Reason To Believe” and Here For You.

 

Published in: on September 1, 2015 at 11:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Tristan Thompson’s New Single: The Title Song from His Debut Album “Here For You” (@TristanTmusic)

TRISTAN THOMPSON, “Here For You”

As faithful readers of this blog know, I am a big fan of British Columbia singer Tristan Thompson thanks to a stellar set of songs and performances on his debut album Here For You, with his song “Tidal Wave” reaching #1 on my personal chart last year.  The title song has been culled as a third single, a logical follow up to “Burn Again” (which peaked at #10 on my chart), which received a large amount of national radio airplay in Canada.  The video, with the song now in an Alex Greggs mix, is a heart-wrenching watch as a girl comes to grips with a recent loss.  The song acts as a tender backdrop which provides a fine showcase for the 16 year old singer, who is bound to win more fans with this one.  Listen for “Here For You” on the radio stations that played “Burn Again”.  Tristan Thompson continues to grow and attract more attention with each release and recent live concert performances on the west coast.  

Published in: on February 19, 2015 at 10:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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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 #447 – December 29, 2014

The new chart is actually the first one that counts towards 2015!  There’s a new number one and this post won’t be too long (though I may lie :P), focusing on the five songs which debut 🙂

The Top 10

  • Color Theory scores the top spot with the Matt Mancid Retro Crossover remix of “Headphones” from the album Adjustments Part 2.  I’ve got to hand it to Brian Hazard (aka Color Theory) for this one.  He’s created a song that draws heavily from 80’s new wave, spiced it up with cutting edge sounds, and written a song that anyone who listens to their music with their headphones on can identify with.  Look for it to stay at #1 in two weeks too.
  • The Top 5 remains Party City with both “Goin’ Down” by Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud and “Gold Skies” by Sander van Doorn, Martin Garrix and DVBBS moving up to #3 and #4 respectively.  Both songs are culled from the growing and diverse Spinnin’ Records stable!
  • It’s kind of hard to believe but Erasure scores its biggest hit on my chart since I started it in 1998 with “Reason” from the album The Violet Flame.  The latter is easily their best album since 1997’s Cowboy.
  • Look for the beautiful “Come Back To Me” by New York City singer Reigen to advance in a big way in the coming month.  It climbs 11-8.
  • Also scoring a Top 10 berth for the first time in my chart’s history is Kristine W. with the retrotastic “Love Come Home”, vaulting 15-9.
  • The last new Top 10 entry belongs to 16 year old Canadian Tristan Thompson with the ballad “Burn Again” moving up 12-10.  It’s Tristan’s second Top 10 hit here following “Tidal Wave”, which got to #1 for a single appearance.

Movin’ On Up

  • We are all anxiously awaiting the debut album from Steve Grand, which has now officially wrapped and is on its way 🙂  “Time” will be included on the album and this fine piece of storytelling jumps 14-11.
  • Eli Lieb’s glowing tribute to a special someone “Lightning In A Bottle” has a positive message for everyone to hear, and this infectious slice of pop advances 20-12 on the chart.
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to producer/DJ Antonio Giacca with “Ignited”.  While the song follows a particular formula of songwriting, its passion and soaring chorus drive it home, and it makes its presence known, rising 22-13.
  • I can’t wait to hear what Penguin Prison (aka Chris Glover) has in store for us in 2015, and he’s off to a great start with the poptastic “Calling Out”, rising 17-14.
  • Another song with a much needed positive message and a great vocal too is “Someday” by Toronto’s Neverest, which advances 27-22.

Five Debuts

  • While I like the latest single “You and I (Forever)”, it’s not the strongest song on Tough Love in my estimation, so after “Say You Love Me” departs #1, I’m debuting the stunningly emotional “Pieces” by Jessie Ware at #20.  It’s also one of my favourites from her concert performance.
  • “Thanks For Nothing” leaves the chart after the standard 10 appearances (20 weeks), but I’m glad Brandyn Burnette made “Sleeve”, his ode to love of family, a brief free download last week, because that allowed it to qualify for my chart (yeah, stupid rules 😛 ).  You can read all about my thoughts about “Sleeve” as well as Brandyn’s exclusive back story about the song right here.  It’s one of Brandyn’s best songs, and I don’t know if it will be on his upcoming album, but in any event “Sleeve” bows on my chart at #21.
  • Nope, I haven’t had enough Sam Smith in 2014.  His latest official single “Like I Can” continues his streak on the chart and debuts at #24.
  • While their latest single “I’m Ready” has a worthy message about bullying, I mentioned in my post about Canadian band Eleven Past One’s new EP The World Is Ours that their ballad “There’s Nothing Wrong” is the EP’s secret weapon and it’s wow moment.  I really think it should be the follow up single, and I found out that it was produced by none other than Goo Goo Dolls’ John Rzeznik!!  You can’t hear more than a snippet of it on either Amazon or iTunes, so I’d recommend you stream the EP to hear it on a source such as Spotify.
  • It’s long been a favourite of mine since I heard the unreleased original back earlier in the decade, but Belgium vocal quartet Boycode have full custody of “It’s A Mistake” now and this top notch record bows on my chart at #26.

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 HEADPHONES (Matt Mancid Retro Crossover Mix) Color Theory
01 02 SAY YOU LOVE ME Jessie Ware
04 03 GOIN’ DOWN Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud
05 04 GOLD SKIES Sander Van Doorn, Martin Garrix & DVBBS featuring Aleesia
03 05 SMILE Mikky Ekko
06 06 ARMS OF ANOTHER Bright Light Bright Light
09 07 REASON Erasure
11 08 COME BACK TO ME Reigen
15 09 LOVE COME HOME Kristine W.
12 10 BURN AGAIN Tristan Thompson
14 11 TIME Steve Grand
20 12 LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE Eli Lieb
22 13 IGNITED Antonio Giacca
17 14 CALLING OUT Penguin Prison
16 15 YELLOW FLICKER BEAT Lorde
21 16 HOUNDS Smashing Satellites
07 17 BRANDO Semi-Precious Weapons
08 18 STAGE FRIGHT Jake Barker
13 19 SUPERHEROES The Script
New 20 PIECES Jessie Ware
New 21 SLEEVE Brandyn
27 22 SOMEDAY Neverest
10 23 LOSING YOU Jane Badler
New 24 LIKE I CAN Sam Smith
New 25 THERE’S NOTHING WRONG Eleven Past One
New 26 IT’S A MISTAKE Boycode
23 27 RESTART Sam Smith
24 28 THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID The Janoskians
25 29 I WON’T LET YOU GO (Aron Friedman remix) Adam Tyler
26 30 PLAY FOR ME Chromatone

The BILLCS Top 30 of 2014 – coming New Year’s Eve on D-Moos.com!

My Top 30 songs of the year (plus 5 more that I really enjoyed) will be broadcast on D-Moos.com starting at 9pm EST New Year’s Eve!

Bill's Top 30 of 2014

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

Every week I feature a New Music Pick of the Week on D-Moos, which is usually either on my chart or may soon be!  Listen in amid the great variety of older music as I bring cutting edge new music to the rotation of over 20,000+ songs!!

BILLCS Top 30 #446 – December 15, 2014

It’s that time of year when chart activity starts to slow down a tad, so there are two debuts in this edition.  But a lot of recent favourites will depart the chart in the coming weeks, so expect an influx of new activity!

The Top 10

  • Jessie Ware’s “Say You Love Me” continues at #1 in a year when there have been more than usual #1’s.  “Say You Love Me” ties “Stay With Me”, “Money On My Mind”, and “I’m Not The Only One”, all by Sam Smith, for 3 appearances (6 weeks) at the top.  Jessie is back on tour in the New Year with a spate of new dates just announced and available for purchase (and why can’t more performers do this) through her website.
  • It looks like “Headphones” by Color Theory will succeed “Say You Love Me” at #1.  It’s one of the most infectious and memorable songs of the year.  Also check out Color Theory’s rendition of Barry Manilow’s “Could It Be Magic” (below) from the Adjustments Part Two album.  It’s one part Donna Summer’s version and two parts Barry’s!  Could it be… chart bound too?  A cover by Britain’s Elouise got to #10 in Spring 2012.

  • Get dancing up a storm to both “Goin’ Down” by Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud and “Gold Skies” by the quartet of Sander van Doorn, Martin Garrix, and the DVBBS lads.  They’re new to my Top 5 at #4 and #5 respectively.  Play loud!!  Oh and those DVBBS guys have sold out three shows this week in Toronto!  Great news for the brothers from just outside of Toronto (Orangeville) who scored a #1 record in the UK earlier in the year.

  • “Arms of Another”, the ‘B’ side to “An Open Heart” if you will, continues to climb and advances 8-6 this week for Bright Light Bright Light, now promoting his participation in the sophomore Slow Knights project led by his friend Scissor Sisters’ Del Marquis!
  • Also new to the Top 10 is Erasure’s “Reason”, up 13-9, which you can hear as remixed by the wonderful Parralox!

Movin’ On Up

  • The fastest riser on the chart is last chart’s highest debut, with video up at the top of this blog post, the soulful and gripping “Come Back To Me” by New York City singer Reigen.  It’s an independent release so do your duty and pick up this fabulous song on iTunes as it climbs 22-11!
  • Tristan Thompson’s “Burn Again”, moving up 16-12, has just been remixed by none other than Michael Jackson and Lady GaGa producer Alex Greggs, who puts a nifty spin on the ballad – and it all syncs up in the video too!  Watch below.

  • Kristine W has had a never-ending streak of Top 5 hits on the Billboard Dance Club Play chart as a lead artist – and I’m not sure who else has!  So I asked Billboard chart guru Gary Trust, let’s see if he investigates!  In the meantime, “Love Come Home” climbs 23-15 on my own chart.

  • Eli Lieb’s “Lightning In A Bottle” is perhaps landing on my chart with an even greater splash than his previous entry “Zeppelin”.  This ultra-positive song moves up 27-20.

  • It’s the 12 days of Smashing Satellites giveaways starting Monday December 15, so watch the rock band’s Twitter feed!  “Hounds”, the first single from the EP A-Side (SonicAluzion) rises 25-21.

Those Two Debuts

  • A hot spanking new favourite to add to your dance/EDM repertoire is “Ignited” by L.A. based DJ/producer/performer Antonio Giacca.  It’s got a very European flavour but enough to translate it to radio play alongside David Guetta and the like if it gets to that.  A delightful mix of house and contemporary electronica, “Ignited” arrives on my chart at #22.  I’m anxiously awaiting dance club play action!  Below is the progressive club mix.

  • Joining three previous chart entries, including last year’s #1 Rewind, is “Someday” by Toronto trio Neverest, who have their hearts and thoughts in all of the right places supporting WeDay and through RBC Free The Children.  Tonight (Sunday December 14) is the last day where “Someday” is available for free right here.  Otherwise get it on iTunes.  “Someday” bows at #27.

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 SAY YOU LOVE ME Jessie Ware
03 02 HEADPHONES (Matt Mancid Retro Crossover Mix) Color Theory
02 03 SMILE Mikky Ekko
12 04 GOIN’ DOWN Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud
09 05 GOLD SKIES Sander Van Doorn, Martin Garrix & DVBBS featuring Aleesia
08 06 ARMS OF ANOTHER Bright Light Bright Light
05 07 BRANDO Semi-Precious Weapons
06 08 STAGE FRIGHT Jake Barker
13 09 REASON Erasure
07 10 LOSING YOU Jane Badler
22 11 COME BACK TO ME Reigen
16 12 BURN AGAIN Tristan Thompson
15 13 SUPERHEROES The Script
17 14 TIME Steve Grand
23 15 LOVE COME HOME Kristine W.
20 16 YELLOW FLICKER BEAT Lorde
21 17 CALLING OUT Penguin Prison
04 18 I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE Sam Smith
10 19 THANKS FOR NOTHING Brandyn Burnette
27 20 LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE Eli Lieb
25 21 HOUNDS Smashing Satellites
New 22 IGNITED Antonio Giacca
11 23 RESTART Sam Smith
14 24 THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID The Janoskians
18 25 I WON’T LET YOU GO (Aron Friedman remix) Adam Tyler
24 26 PLAY FOR ME Chromatone
New 27 SOMEDAY Neverest
26 28 AFTERGLOW Harriet
19 29 UNBREAKABLE Jamie Scott
28 30 AMNESIA 5 Seconds Of Summer

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

I am now a radio voice on D-Moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station!  Every week I feature a New Music Pick of the Week, which is usually either on my chart or may soon be!  Listen in amid the great variety of older music as I bring cutting edge new music to the rotation of over 20,000+ songs!!

BILLCS Top 30 #445 – December 1, 2014

In some ways the past month or so has plodded along, no thanks to two different bouts of viral illnesses, and then suddenly two weeks go by and it’s time for a new personal chart 🙂

The Top 10

  • There’s no budging Jessie Ware and Mikky Ekko from #1 and #2.  “Say You Love Me” holds for a second appearance at number one as the singer is about to release “You & I (Forever)” as the follow up single and video from her amazing Tough Love album.  “Smile” by Mikky Ekko preceded “Say You Love Me” at #1 and holds tight in anticipation of his debut album Time, due in January.
  • Last edition’s high flying debut is also this edition’s fastest riser on the chart.  Color Theory (aka Brian Hazard) has concocted one of those songs to which you can relate so easily with “Headphones”.  The original mix is up top for your listening pleasure, but do check out the slick Matt Mancid retro crossover remix too right here, well worth purchasing.  “Headphones” glides up the chart 18-3 and will contend for #1 in the coming month.
  • Semi-Precious Weapons slide into #5 with “Brando”, their unconventional love song from an upcoming album.  It’s gone quiet about what’s next for the band in terms of the album release but I’m certain something grand is in the works!

  • “The Voice” underdog from last season, Jake Barker, rises to #6 with the title song from his EP Stage Fright.  Jake has many cover songs on You Tube, including his rendition of Ed Sheeran’s “Photograph”.  Check it out above.
  • The more I listen to “Losing You” by Jane Badler (9-7), the more detail I hear each time.  It’s just one of those hypnotic songs that doesn’t want to let go, from her recent album Opus.
  • Two dance club zingers join the Top 10.  Bright Light Bright Light continues his long line of Top Tenners on this chart with “Arms Of Another” at #8, from the EP An Open Heart.  Then the powerhouse trio of Sander van Doorn, Martin Garrix, and DVBBS lands at #9 with “Gold Skies”.  And while the main vocal is by singer Aleesia, to me it’s the male vocal chorus that is most affecting about this song and just makes you want to jam out!

Movin’ On Up

  • So it appears that Sam Smith’s “Restart” was just a video release!  It climbs 13-11 in a year when he has been nary off my chart (if at all) since “Money On My Mind” bowed earlier in the year.  The new single is the buoyant “Like I Can”, which will take him well into 2015 and long past any Grammy Awards which will find their way to him.
  • Get your New Year’s playlist ready and be sure to include “Goin’ Down” by Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud, sure to make your crowd go BOOOM!  It climbs 21-12.
  • Erasure’s “Reason” is from their latest album The Violet Flame and it has designs on the Top 10, rising 19-13.
  • Tristan Thompson’s “Burn Again” is receiving scorching action at radio in Canada, already #24 on the AC Airplay chart and it’s also entered the Top 40 radio chart too.  Not bad for an independent release from a very talented 16 year old.  Next stop:  USA 🙂  “Burn Again” climbs 20-16.
  • We have always got “Time” till Steve Grand’s album is released in early 2015.  This delightful story is off to a super start, rising 23-17.

  • Lorde certainly dazzled us with her kinetic performance of “Yellow Flicker Beat” (above) last week on the American Music Awards.  As a result I think this song will get a second look by radio, and it moves up in this edition 24-20.
  • “Calling You” by Penguin Prison continues the many chart appearances here for NYC singer/songwriter/producer/DJ Chris Glover, as it rises 26-21.
  • Smashing Satellites gave a powerful performance opening for Moist last week in Toronto.  The quartet will soon be headlining its own mid-sized club venues judging by audience response.  In the meantime, “Hounds” climbs 30-25.

New to the Chart

I’ve already gushed about each of these songs in blog posts over the past few weeks, so it’s no surprise to see them chart so quickly.

  • Reigen’s soulful and emotional EDM ballad “Come Back With Me” is simple food for your musical soul, and debuts at #22 for the New York based singer.
  • It’s her first appearance on my chart in 10 years, but the unmistakable Kristine W. is back in full force with “Love Come Home”, a redux of an early UK hit for her.  It makes a memorable impact, recalling her Land Of The Living days, and arrives at #23.  It has also landed in the Top 5 of the Billboard Dance Club Play chart this past week, and I hope DJ’s will send it to the top.  And if you buy the EP, it contains no less than 14 remixes!
  • While “Zeppelin” leaves the chart, Eli Lieb has perhaps gone even one better with the feel good story and vibe of “Lightning In A Bottle”, which lands at #27.  And do I hear an album is forthcoming in 2015?  Even more to which we can look forward!

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 SAY YOU LOVE ME Jessie Ware
02 02 SMILE Mikky Ekko
18 03 HEADPHONES (Matt Mancid Retro Crossover Mix) Color Theory
03 04 I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE Sam Smith
06 05 BRANDO Semi-Precious Weapons
08 06 STAGE FRIGHT Jake Barker
09 07 LOSING YOU Jane Badler
11 08 ARMS OF ANOTHER Bright Light Bright Light
14 09 GOLD SKIES Sander Van Doorn, Martin Garrix & DVBBS featuring Aleesia
04 10 THANKS FOR NOTHING Brandyn Burnette
13 11 RESTART Sam Smith
21 12 GOIN’ DOWN Deniz Koyu vs Twoloud
19 13 REASON Erasure
16 14 THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID The Janoskians
17 15 SUPERHEROES The Script
20 16 BURN AGAIN Tristan Thompson
23 17 TIME Steve Grand
05 18 I WON’T LET YOU GO (Aron Friedman remix) Adam Tyler
07 19 UNBREAKABLE Jamie Scott
24 20 YELLOW FLICKER BEAT Lorde
26 21 CALLING OUT Penguin Prison
New 22 COME BACK TO ME Reigen
New 23 LOVE COME HOME Kristine W.
10 24 PLAY FOR ME Chromatone
30 25 HOUNDS Smashing Satellites
12 26 AFTERGLOW Harriet
New 27 LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE Eli Lieb
15 28 AMNESIA 5 Seconds Of Summer
22 29 CRIMINAL Adam Tyler
27 30 GET TO KNOW YOU Corey Niles featuring Ish

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

I am now a radio voice on D-Moos.com Canada’s National Internet Radio Station!  Every week I feature a New Music Pick of the Week, which is usually either on my chart or may soon be!  Listen in amid the great variety of older music as I bring cutting edge new music to the rotation of over 20,000+ songs!!

BILLCS Top 30 #443 – November 3, 2014

After 6 weeks of having a lock on the chart, making it some of the best music weeks of the year thus far, the Top 3 songs have faltered and an influx of new songs is on the way, but that will probably still take another month or so, with the exception of one song which has its sights on #1.  A list of the complete chart follows the blog post further down 🙂

The Top 10

  • “Smile” by Mikky Ekko gets an appearance at #1 after holding down the fort at #2 for six weeks.  I’m looking forward to hearing the singer’s album Time when it surfaces – not sure of a release date now, and I’d be surprised if it wasn’t shoved back till the new year after he completes his tour with Alt-J.  Ironically the singer’s collaboration with Chris Malinchak, “Stranger” (which peaked at #8) is #30 in this edition.

  • After killer performances in a four city North American tour – including Toronto, where I was fortunate to bear witness to her amazing voice and show – Jessie Ware’s “Say You Love Me” soars 6-2 to challenge “Smile” for #1 in two weeks.  I don’t understand why “Say You Love Me” isn’t tearing up charts everywhere (it did reach the Top 25 in the UK), but there’s a dearth of beautiful songs on her album Tough Love too!
  • While Sam Smith’s “I’m Not The Only One” slips to #3, do not fear, fans, “Restart” is on its way up at #15!

  • He continues to post a lot of new music on his Soundcloud page, but for now “Thanks For Nothing” by Brandyn Burnette holds its own at #4.

  • Jamie Scott’s “Unbreakable” is slowly attracting friends at radio, and the song climbs this week 9-7, as his album My Hurricane will see release this month.

  • 5 Seconds Of Summer’s memorable ballad “Amnesia” enters the Top 10, right behind the #7 peak of “She Looks So Perfect” at #8.

  • Oh look!  Two Adam Tyler songs in the Top 10!  No surprise that, I believe he’s done it before 🙂  So we have the Aron Friedman remix of “I Won’t Let You Go” at #5, and the Paul Hetherington 80’s retro-styled production of “Criminal” becomes yet another Top Tenner for Adam at #9!

Movin’ Up

  •  Chromatone’s pop-rock-R&B flavoured song “Play For Me” continues to climb to a new peak, at #11 in this edition!
  • The last chart’s fastest riser, Jake Barker’s “Stage Fright”, moves up just outside the Top 10 at #12.
  • Semi-Precious Weapons look to follow “Aviation High” into the Top 10 with the unconventional love song “Brando”, moving up 17-13.

  • Actress and singer Jane Badler’s hypnotic and stylish “Losing You” makes a big move this week, rising 20-14!
  • The fastest riser on the chart this week can only be found within the new EP An Open Heart by Bright Light Bright Light.  It’s “Arms Of Another” (musically inspired by Crystal Waters’ classic “Gypsy Woman (She’s Homeless)”, climbing 24-16.

  • It debuted inside the Top 50 this week on the UK Official Singles Chart so “Gold Skies” by the triple threat of Sander van Doorn, Martin Garrix and DVBBS (featuring Aleesia) is proving to be an international chart threat, and it rises 27-20 on my chart in this edition.

  • It took a while to reach the chart, but “Superheroes” by The Script is well on its way, rising 28-22, from their 4th album No Sound Without Silence.

Chart Newcomers

  • Erasure has been one of my favourite groups since I first saw their show in 1986 (!), and their latest album The Violet Flame is one of their finest, harkening back to their classic late 80’s period.  They’ve only surfaced on my chart three times since 2003, but each time it’s with a personal Top Tenner:  Their cover of “Solsbury Hill”, “I Could Fall In Love With You”, and “Then I Go Twisting”.  Can “Reason” join this trio?  It arrives at #26 as the group completes its recent four.

  • Arriving at #27 is the initial single from the intriguing-looking soundtrack to the latest edition of “The Hunger Games” called “Mockingjay” (Part 1).  I wasn’t a fan of the first movie, but award-winning singer/songwriter Ella Yelich-O’Connor, aka Lorde, is the curator of the soundtrack (not bad for turning 18 years old this coming week!) and the alluring “Yellow Flicker Beat” debuts on the chart.  Lorde’s “Royals” only got to #11 before I tired of it; perhaps “Yellow Flicker Beat” will do better!

  • Lastly at #28, is the second official single by British Columbia singer Tristan Thompson, “Burn Again”, which I wrote about recently.  This 16 year old will be a contender in the next year, mark my words!

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 SMILE Mikky Ekko
06 02 SAY YOU LOVE ME Jessie Ware
01 03 I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE Sam Smith
04 04 THANKS FOR NOTHING Brandyn Burnette
05 05 I WON’T LET YOU GO (Aron Friedman remix) Adam Tyler
03 06 AFTERGLOW Harriet
09 07 UNBREAKABLE Jamie Scott
11 08 AMNESIA 5 Seconds Of Summer
12 09 CRIMINAL Adam Tyler
10 10 ZEPPELIN Eli Lieb
13 11 PLAY FOR ME Chromatone
15 12 STAGE FRIGHT Jake Barker
17 13 BRANDO Semi-Precious Weapons
20 14 LOSING YOU Jane Badler
22 15 RESTART Sam Smith
24 16 ARMS OF ANOTHER Bright Light Bright Light
18 17 KILLER WHALES Smallpools
21 18 THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID The Janoskians
07 19 GET TO KNOW YOU Corey Niles featuring Ish
27 20 GOLD SKIES Sander Van Doorn, Martin Garrix & DVBBS featuring Aleesia
08 21 NO FUN The Presets
28 22 SUPERHEROES The Script
16 23 THIS COULD BE SOMETHING Anton Ewald featuring Medina
19 24 HANG ON TO YOUR LOVE Penguin Prison
14 25 MUSIC GODS Davis Redfield featuring Carl Man
New 26 REASON Erasure
New 27 YELLOW FLICKER BEAT Lorde
New 28 BURN AGAIN Tristan Thompson
25 29 I BELIEVE Bright Light Bright Light
26 30 STRANGER Chris Malinchak featuring Mikky Ekko

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 🙂