Archive for the ‘Lists’ Category

Spring 2014 Playlist: 11 Hot Imports You Should Be Listening To, From Allie X To Katy B To Zhala

Apr 10th, 2014 // Comment

Ten years ago, you’d have been hard-pressed to find more than two or three artists from outside of the United States border infiltrating our red, white and blue airwaves in any given month. Thankfully, that archaic, temporary sanction has been lifted, and diverse acts from overseas like Adele, Rihanna, Lorde, Icona Pop, Bastille, Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding currently fill playlists across America, whether they be at cross-format radio stations or on the iPods stuffed in our gym shorts during a long run.

Here at Idolator, we’ve always got our eye on new talent, no matter which far-flung territory it hails from. And given the particular quality of new and exciting pop in 2014, we figured it was high time we rounded up the hottest imports of the moment. Head below to hear the tracks from foreign acts that are keeping us grooving as we enter this year’s warm months. More »

St. Patrick’s Day Playlist: Get Lucky With These 17 Green And Golden Songs

Mar 17th, 2014 // Comment

Today, March 17, is St. Patrick’s Day, which means you should expect green beer, loud, party-ready people shouting in the streets and possibly a Shamrock Shake in your immediate future. But before you head off to the pub or the parade, we thought we’d help set the mood early in the day with a nice holiday-themed playlist.

We rounded up 17 green, golden, lucky and rainbow-filled songs to properly sound-track your St. Patty’s Day. (Did we miss any other cliches, readers? No, no — we already have “Top O’ The Mornin’” taken care of, silly.) Head below to get an earful of pop gold! More »

6 Albums That Got Us Through The Polar Vortex In 2014, From Beyonce To Katy B To Kylie Minogue

Mar 11th, 2014 // Comment

We have literally lived through one of the most epically sucktastic winters in recorded history, between the heavy snowfall, rivers of slush, piles of ice and, um, rain (boo hoo, Los Angeles). Over the past three freezing months, America turned to several things for salvation to escape the chill: The convenience of ordering takeout food; the aptly-titled, Oscar-winning animated feature Frozen; True Detective; and, of course, music.

Unfortunately, 2014 has offered pretty slim pickings as far as big releases. But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t new music to be had. In fact, six albums in particular jumped out as early-in-the-year favorites, all of them released between the months of December and March. Below, sift through the six LPs we’ve been using like a heating blanket to warm our super-frosty souls. More »

SXSW 2014: 7 Pop Acts We’re Looking Forward To, From Betty Who To Lady Gaga To Coldplay

Mar 7th, 2014 // Comment

Music festival season has officially begun, with Austin, Texas’ annual South by Southwest kicking things off next Tuesday (March 11).  With 2,200 acts (!!) set to perform over the six-day conference, our favorite artists can easily get lost in the mix. So we’ve combed through the extensive roster and picked out this year’s can’t-miss performers!

A majority of our SXSW picks last year were rooted in pop, but this time around the choices are a bit more varied. From seasoned pop veterans to rising stars from across the pond, these seven performers are definitely worth waiting in long lines for a chance to see them live. More »

Ladies Who Duet: 23 All-Female Songs For A Sapphic Valentine’s Day

Feb 13th, 2014 // Comment
Gaga & Xtina's Duet
lady gaga christina aguilera the voice do what u want 2013 finale
Watch the two divas partner up on The Voice. Read More »

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, not to mention Shakira and Rihanna‘s touchy-feely “Can’t Remember To Forget You” bed romp still fresh on our minds, we couldn’t help but think back to some of the great female pop pair-ups over the years. After all, we love ladies, and we love ladies who love to, er, duet with other ladies.

For this particular roundup, we scoured the most recent crop of diva collabs (Janelle Monae and Erykah Badu, Lady Gaga and Christina Aguilera), went a tiny bit old school (Beyonce and Shakira, Gaga and Bey), went really old school (Salt N Pepa and En Vogue, Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston) and then threw in some straight-up classic female pairings (Donna Summer and Barbra Streisand, Eurythmics and Aretha Franklin). To round things out, we included a couple of tracks from female duos and a pair of separate songs by the same two female pop forces — one a rapstress-turned-actress, the other a tried and true Harajuku Girl enthusiast.

Head below and add a little sugar and spice to your life by hitting play on our special No Boys Allowed Valentine’s Day playlist! More »

10 Artist-Producer Breakups That Prove The Curmudgeons Right This Valentine’s Day

Feb 12th, 2014 // 1 Comment

Sure, it’s easy to celebrate Valentine’s Day on a pop music website. The entire pop industry is built on songs about falling in love sung by attractive, covetable stars. Pop music gives couples “our song” and something to muffle the squeaky bed frame. But pop music is also a playground for the cold-hearted cynics scowling their way through this sappiest of holidays. And we’re here for them.

But instead of just doing another tired list of breakup songs, we’re highlighting professional breakups between artists and their producers (collaborations that, incidentally, are responsible for a fair share of breakup songs). Because an artistic relationship that results in pop music perfection is rare. When that ends, you can’t just take comfort in a pint of ice cream.

So below, we’ve eulogized 10 successful artist-producer teams that disintegrated because of diminishing returns, squabbles over creative control, alleged body-shaming or, in the case of Ke$ha and Dr. Luke, all three of those things. Happy Valentine’s Day!  More »

Robyn Is Recording With Jimmy Jam: Here’s A 21-Song Jam & Lewis Playlist To Celebrate This News

Feb 4th, 2014 // 1 Comment
Janet Turns 20
janet jackson janet. album cover
A look back at Miss Jackson's sexy hit album. Read More »
Robyn x Royksopp
robyn royksopp studio
They're recording new music together! Read More »
Robyn is Here Turns 15
Robyn Is Here album cover
Denniz Pop and Max Martin team up for a winning effort. Read More »
Robyn Takes Stockholm
Our reviewer watches Robyn perform in her homeland. Read More »

Trying to contain excitement over the fact that Robyn is recording new music for release in 2014 is an exercise in futility, but today things were pushed over the edge entirely when it became known that the Swedish pixie is currently at the famed Flyte Tyme studios with legendary R&B-pop architects Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. Well, at least she’s in the studio with Jam (real name: James Harris III), who tweeted the above photo and noted, “The awesomely talented @robynkonichiwa blessing our brand new vocal booth with her amazing voice! @FEMNRG #808 #SY85″

I’d sit here and rattle off the HIT after HIT after HIT after HIT after HIT that Jam and Lewis crafted — many of which give me such an overflow of giddy, coming of age nostalgia that I can’t help but grin from ear to ear — but instead I just did you, me and the rest of the world a favor and whipped up a Spotify playlist of fantastic Flyte Tyme jams. Hit play below, and shout out a triumphant, “Minneapolis!” More »

15 Forgotten Reasons Why 2000 Was The Best Year In Pop Music

Feb 4th, 2014 // 2 Comments

1999 may have been the year of the ultimate pop takeover, with the quadruple-punch of Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, *NSYNC and Backstreet Boys dominating the airwaves. But it was 2000 that saw the peak of pop music, as the bubblegum hype spilled over to Europe. Sure, there were big songs like *NSYNC‘s “Bye Bye Bye,” Destiny’s Child‘s “Say My Name” and Jennifer Lopez‘s “Waiting For Tonight.” But forget about all that! The true gems came from talented newcomers who tried to make their own mark in the pop world.

While the careers of these pop acts ended up being comically fleeting, their 15 forgotten gems of Y2K pop continue to live on — from the nostalgia playlists on a college girl’s iPod to tacky underground techno clubs. So grab your Discman, throw on your sparkly halter top and journey through a musical time capsule below! More »

Super Bowl 2014: 5 Songs You Didn’t Know Bruno Mars Was Behind

Jan 31st, 2014 // 2 Comments
Bruno Contest!
Enter to win a signed copy of Unorthodox Jukebox. Read More »

Bruno Mars has maintained a steady ascent into Pop Stardom since we first met his smooth vocals, assisting B.o.B. on 2010′s breakout single “Nothin’ On You.” Unbeknownst to the world back then, Bruno was not only an amazing singer, but also a killer songwriter and hitmaking producer. The Los Angeles transplant aligned with creative collective The Smeezingtons (who also include Phillip Lawrence and Ari Levine). Together, The Smeezingtons were responsible for a number of solid tracks (both producing and songwriting) from stars like Alicia Keys, Justin Bieber, Far East Movement, Mike Posner, and many, many more.

Currently, however, we know Bruno Mars for his ability to craft his own hits. Who hasn’t caught a glimpse of the Hawaii native on his Moonshine Jungle Tour by now? Who doesn’t own a copy of Unorthodox Jukebox (and Doo-Wops & Hooligans while we’re at it)? Bruno Mars has evolved into a national treasure, and as he readies his halftime performance at Super Bowl XLVIII, we take a little trip down memory lane. Let’s revisit some songs that you had no idea were either produced, written, or co-written by Bruno Mars (along with The Smeezingtons). You’ll be surprised by some of the hits that had the seal of the almighty pompadour. More »

2013 In Review: 10 Idolator Reads From The Past Year You Absolutely Should Not Miss

Dec 31st, 2013 // Comment
2013: The Year In Music
Follow along as we look back at the year in pop. Read More »

STOP THE CLOCK AND PUT DOWN THE HOOCH, POP FANATICS! We can’t let 2013 end without one last post wishing you all the best for a happy and healthy new year. Likewise, we’re a bit worried you may have missed some of the at-times brash, slightly outrageous and altogether entertaining pop music coverage here on Idolator — and so we rounded up 10 of the biggest culprits from the past 12 months below.

From an in-depth view inside Beyonce‘s insanely loyal Hive of fans to a conspiracy theory on the suspicious similarities between Eminem and Kanye West‘s latest lyrics to a sitdown with one of the most listenable (yet extremely underrated) British music producers of the modern era, these were just two handfuls of the highlights of the writing that appeared on Idolator in 2013. More »