Category Archives: Music

Macklemore: A Game Changer

“That guy that sings ‘Thrift Shop’?”

macklemore

Macklemore, ladies and gents, is on the up and up. He is a rapper that is changing the entire music industry, so get on board now before you have to admit that you were a ‘late adopter’.

But let’s start from the beginning.

In the past few months, Macklemore has seen an insane rise in popularity due to his hit song “Thrift Shop.”

The single has sold more than 5. Million. Copies. That’s a hella-big number. (What’s that even called? Penta-Platinum?) It has also allowed Macklemore to break a huge record. Two days ago it hit its 12th week as the #1 single on the Billboard Hot 100 Hip Hop/R&B chart. According to the Billboard website:

“DJ Khaled’s “I’m On One,” featuring Drake, Rick Ross and Lil Wayne, previously held the record with 11 weeks in 2011 and is the only other rap song to post double-digit weeks at the top.”

“But,” you ask, “is he just going to be a one-hit-wonder?”

No. No. No.

He and his creative partner, Ryan Lewis, released an entire album entitled “The Heist” that has hit after hit. (Listen to it in its entirety here. It’s worth it.) The majority of the songs have much more poignant themes, ranging from Macklemore’s recovery from addiction (to ‘Lean’ or ‘Sizzurp’ as some people Lil’ Wayne call it), homophobia and gay rights, gang violence, as well as other controversial topics. His voice is strong and his lyrics stronger.

And what’s even more incredible, they released this album sans a record label. Why? They wanted to be able to retain complete creative control which they found to be in question every time they met with a recording company. It’s not that record labels didn’t want them, they very much did, it’s that they knew they could do it on their own.

In a world where artists (or really anyone who wants to) can promote their work using social media (even Myspace is making a  comeback), will the need for professional record labels with marketing teams continue to be necessary? Highly doubtful. The music industry is going to need an overhaul to keep up. It has been far too slow in making adjustments to mp3s, iTunes, etc. and is suffering greatly because of it.

Maybe Macklemore is the exception to the rule, but regardless, he’s the man.

And he tweets funny things like this:

tweet

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An A-Z Index of Music

I listen to a lot of music. Some good, some bad, and some just darn catchy. So here it is, just what you’ve been waiting for! An A-Z index of my favorite artists and their best songs (in my humble opinion).

A- The Avett Brothers–the entire Emotionalism album. I can’t pick a favorite song.

B- Band of Horses–“The Funeral” is my all-time favorite song

C- Capital Cities–“Safe and Sound”–such a happy song that always makes me feel good. (Celine Dion was a close 2nd, as all of her songs prove beyond-worthy for karaoke, but I had to go with my gut.)

D- Dawes—“When My Time Comes”–I was introduced to Dawes when I went to see Mumford and Sons last year at the Ryman and they were a pleasant surprise. Now they’re on tour with Bob Dylan and have just announced their own headlining tour this summer.

E- Elton John–“Levon”–let’s be honest, was there ever another option?

F- Frightened Rabbit–“The Modern Leper”– My boss introduced me to this band when she learned of my love (obsession) with Mumford. They’re good and they have cute Scottish accents.

G- Garbage–“When I Grow Up”–I have loved this song since elementary school and once even stole the CD from my brother so that I could listen to it on repeat.

H- Hanson–“MMMBop”–obvi.

I- Iggy Azalea–“Work”–I’ve always wished I could rap. SIGH.

J- Jay-Z–“Public Service Announcement”–Saw him live freshman year in Atlanta and it was an interesting evening filled with an accidental attendance at a monster truck rally, but that’s a story for a different time..

K- Kid Cudi–“Pursuit of Happiness”–I love most of his songs so it was kind of a toss-up, but this one started my love for him.

L- Lana Del Rey–“Blue Jeans”–Lana is my giiiiiiiiiiiirl. I love all of her songs and her painfully uncomfortable SNL performance.

M-Mumford & Sons–“Dust Bowl Dance”–I’ve gone through so many favorites with this band but today I’m going with this one. I have seen Mumford twice and I want to go a million more times. They are a-mah-zing live.

M-Macklemore-“White Walls”–‘M’ gets 2 choices because I say so. Macklemore, though rising to fame with his hit “Thriftshop,” covers some serious topics including gay rights, his battle with addiction, and gang violence throughout his debut, self-produced album The Heist.

N- The New Radicals–“Mother We Just Can’t Get Enough”–A classic.

O- Of Monsters and Men–“Little Talks”– It’s getting overplayed, but as of now, I still love this song.

P- Passion Pit–“Moth’s Wings”–I sat through an hour and a half of getting trampled by Flogging Molly fans to be able to see Passion Pit perform my favorite song at Volapalooza freshman year. Was it worth it? Questionable, but I still have a passion for Passion Pit. (Too much?)

Q- weak selection…

R- RATATAT–“17 Years”–It’s pretty much a toss-up here. All of their songs are good.

S- The Strokes–“Is This It”–This is one band whose songs I will never skip when they come on shuffle on my iPod.

T- Third Eye Blind–“Semi-Charmed Life”– 3eb remains, to this day, to be one of my favorite bands. While this song is the obvious choice, there are really no other songs that could possibly beat such an upbeat, catchy song about Crystal Meth. They didn’t even edit it for the radio or tv because people just thought it was a happy song.

U- I can’t think of anything besides Usher and I refuse to put Usher so..n/a

V- The Verve Pipe–“Freshman”– The music video for this song will be forever burned into my brain. I have no idea why.

W- Whitney Houston–“I Will Always Love You”–This is my all-time, forever and always, favorite karaoke song. Man, oh man can I (not) hit those notes!

X- The XX–“Crystalised”– At some point in time, this song was on The OC. Surely.

Y- Yeah Yeah Yeahs–“Gold Lion”– Good band. Good song.

Z- Zac Brown Band–“Chicken Fried”– I’m embarrassed to go out on this song, but it is catchy and delightful and I am from Tennessee so I have to like at least some country…

Well there you have it, folks. What would your choices be?

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Taylor Swift: An Ode

Taylor Swift has had a rough time in the media lately. People, it seems, are no longer falling for the charm and innocence that she was once so widely praised for. And let’s be honest, the only person she truly has to thank for this “charming innocence” facade is Kanye. If he hadn’t interrupted her during his “rant-heard-around-the-world,” she would never have been able to play the victim card. That is her bread and butter.

2009 MTV Video Music Awards - Show

When she first started to get popular on the country music scene she was singing songs like “Teardrops on My Guitar” and everyone was like “Oh poor girl! Some jerk just kept ignoring her! That must be so hard!” Followers gained. Then the whole Joe Jonas “he broke up with me in a 27 second phone call” thing happened and people were like “Oh man! What an a-hole! I’ll never buy another Jonas Brothers CD ever again!!!!” Followers gained. Aaaaand then it started to get a little out of hand.

The line between “looking for love” and “looking for material for my next Platinum hit” started to blur. She began dating people seemingly just to be able to write songs about them. (Even my beloved Harry Styles!) Now I’m not going to say that I don’t love those songs and own all of her CDs…I’m just saying she needs to give up the act. She is no longer the victim of some mean boys trying to break her heart into a million little pieces. She is as equally to blame, if not more so these days, and I’m not buying it anymore.

That brings me to my next point. Taylor Swift, if she wants to people to stop hating her, MUST MUST MUST stop with the surprised face when she wins awards.

Girl has won ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY AWARDS. I think by now, she would probably be more surprised if she didn’t win. (In fact, here is her reaction shot when she lost to Adele at the Golden Globes. I think it says “I will cut you.”)

Taylor-Swift-Reaction-Adele

And now she is trying to play the victim card agaaaaain calling out Tina Fey and Amy Poehler for making jokes about her during their Golden Globes hosting duties. In her Vanity Fair article out this month, our girl Taylor referrenced the quote ‘There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women’ in regards to their quip about her love life. Hmmmmm. I’m pretty sure that Tina and Amy are two of the biggest feminists in Hollywood. If you’re going to pick fights, don’t pick them with some of the most beloved and revered people in the game these days. Just a suggestion..

Anyway Taylor, #luvya, I’m just thinking that this might be a time for a little reflection and perhaps an overhaul of your image. What was once cute and sweet is now just annoying because you. are. a. superstar. No one feels bad for you. I’m rooting for you to do a complete-180 and become so insufferable to be around because of your insane confidence.

Nothing is more annoying than false modesty.

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