It’s hard to believe how much has happened since I last time posted here. I’m in a new city working in the industry I’ve always dreamed of. I’ve made a ton of new friends, explored new parts of the country, and realized more than ever that I can’t do life without my wife. It’s been a good (almost) 2 years, but I did miss posting on here.
I’m not committing to any type of posting schedule (I would break it), but I’ve decided to randomly jump on here and share some thoughts during 2016. I want to keep my love for music at the forefront of my mind; now more than ever.
With that said, here’s my top 20 singles of 2015. Overall the year was significantly better than it’s predecessor, and we were left with some classic songs. Relax, read, and have fun.
20. “You Know You Like It” – DJ Snake feat. AlunaGeorge
A slick chorus paired with a hard-hitting beat. DJ Snake was at his best here, and AlunaGeorge finally got some much needed recognition.
19. “Coffee” – Miguel feat. Miguel
Miguel’s lead singles are always jams. “Coffee” was a slow-burner, but Miguel continued his winning streak with this one.
18. “Hands to Myself” – Selena Gomez
I’ve never found myself drawn to a Selena Gomez song, but her mysteriously playful delivery mixed with Max Martin’s production is gold. An bonafide guilty please.
17. “Stressed Out” – Twenty One Pilots
It’s all about the outro on this one. A great introduction to the band for mainstream listeners.
16. “Hello” – Adele
The song that literally stopped the world. The perfect choice to start the 25 campaign and welcome back a much needed voice.
15. “Shut Up and Dance” – Walk the Moon
An unexpected hit for a deserving band.
14. “Want You To Want Me” – Jason Derulo
I’m a sucker for a classic sounding pop song, and Jason hit the nail on the head with this one. By far his best performance to date.
13. “Antidote” – Travis Scott
The beat. It’s all about the beat. It will be interesting to see what 2016 brings for Travis after this huge crossover moment.
12. “FourFiveSeconds” – Rihanna, Kanye West, Paul McCartney
A lot of you are going to hate me for this one. It was risk. It slightly paid off, but the chorus is what dreams are made of. Don’t hate on #FolkRihRih.
11. “WTF (Where They From)” – Missy Elliott feat. Pharrell Williams
A comeback 10 years in the making and it was all worth it. The song. The video. The delivery. Everything was on point.
10. “Can’t Feel My Face” – The Weekend
After sliding under the mainstream radar for years, 2015 was for The Weeknd’s taking. “Can’t Feel My Face” was a grand slam. Another Max Martin gem with hooks for days. This was the moment The Weeknd needed to become a superstar and he took full advantage of it.
9. “Cool for the Summer” – Demi Lovato
Here’s the thing, everything Max Martin touches is gold. It’s no surprise that Demi teamed up with him for her infectious lead single. This is the stuff that pop songs are made of; an epic beat, anthemic chorus, and sky-rocketing vocal delivery. Still baffled that this missed the top 10 on the Hot 100. Don’t tell your mother I said so.
8. “What Do You Mean?” – Justin Bieber
I guess you can say that I became a belieber this year. I said early on that I felt that this album would be his FutureSex/LoveSounds moment, and I still stand by that. “What Do You Mean?” took the world by storm, and if you weren’t a fan before you are now.
Side note: How was this song his first #1???
7. “Lean On” – Major Lazer and DJ Snake featuring MØ
Major Lazer and DJ Snake crafted a euphoric anthem with “Lean On.” The song’s lyrics were full of rich imagery, which only intensified when the beat dropped. MØ was the perfect vocal choice. Her airy vocals were a refreshing break to the monotony of the radio.
6. “Trap Queen” – Fetty Wap
Fetty was a runaway success this year with multiple top 10 singles and a #1 album, but none of it would have been possible without “Trap Queen.” This is love rap at its finest. From its quotable lyrics to Fetty’s strange delivery, “Trap Queen” was infectious in every way.
I said hey, what’s up, hello
5. “Stitches” – Shawn Mendes
From vine to the top of the pop chart in one year. “Stitches” was one of the catchiest songs of 2015. It’s the kind of song that got better with each listen. Mendes proved that he’s a force to reckon with when given the right material. Whether he can top “Stitches” in 2016 is yet to be seen, but it was the perfect way to launch his radio career.
4. “Hotline Bling” – Drake
Drake knows how to create a movement. “Hotline Bling” was so much more than a song. The internet was controlled by Drake once the video dropped, and it only strengthened the song’s performance. Drake continues to reinvent his sound, and this cha-cha infused bop proved that he can do whatever he wants and win.
3. “Sorry” – Justin Bieber
Anything that is remotely influenced by Caribbean sound will always win in my book. “Sorry” has the potential to be Bieber’s biggest hit, and it deserves to be. “Sorry” is the kind of song that will still be playing on the radio years past its release. It’s the perfect example of Bieber’s progression as an artist and hints at an even bigger future.
*cue tiny trumpet*
2. “When We Were Young” – Adele
No one captivates emotion like Adele. The 4 year wait for 25 was worth it all for this song along. I would argue that vocally it’s Adele’s strongest to date. She embodies the lyrics with each syllable and delivers them with conviction. Speaking of lyrics, no song has caused an emotional reaction for me like this one – “I’m so mad I’m getting old, It makes me reckless.” So much truth, so much angst, so much beauty.
1. “Where Are Ü Now” – Jack Ü feat. Justin Bieber
Bieber did the impossible. He bounced back from the perceived “brat” reputation that all of America clung on to with one song. “Where Are Ü Now” seemed to come out of no where, but its impact is on-going. The collaboration between Diplo, Skrillex, and Bieber ruled the airwaves with its one of a kind sound and gut wrenching lyrics.
“Where Are Ü Now” left the public with a new respect for Bieber. His album wouldn’t have been this successful without the impact of this song. I wouldn’t have thought that I’d end the year with a Justin Bieber song as my years favorite, but you can’t argue with a game changing song.
Well done, Biebs. Well done.