I have finally updated the Genre, Untapped Resources and Hybrid charts. All the latest of these charts include info from August and September. These charts will most likely remain available as the update of the site moves forward. The trending charts will probably be eliminated.
As I stated previously there is going to be a shift on the site that is more focused on playlists, recommendations and the podcast with many of the playlists being a mix of nostalgia and discovery, in many ways like the podcast. In addition, there will still be playlists that are genre specific and focus on new music as curated through the analysis of the personal chart community.
The goal here is connect you to the music through more platforms than just music charts. I myself am certainly somewhat chart obsessed (haha understatement!) but what I have learned through the podcast and feedback that there is a more visceral way of connecting to music and that music touches individual souls in very different ways.
I hope that the changes that will be made here help you connect better to music whether you are a new music junkie, a person who thrives on the nostalgia of their youth or who has lost connection to the power of music for a variety of reasons.
As always, I do this from a passionate view with the intention to help you to experience the pure joy and therapeutic essence that listening to music can bring.
Today’s music recommendations start with 2 radical remakes. The first is from the duo The Bird and The Bee. They take Van Halen’s “Panama” and turn it upside down with a quirky, funky and atmospheric version. You can dig deeper into their interpolation of Van Halen as they have a whole album of re-imagined VH tunes. Particularly humorous is “Hot For Teacher”. They had done this previously with Hall & Oates tunes in 2010 but none of those were as radical.
From a different perspective the Americana/Bluegrass/String Band Twisted Pine does a fun version of Blondie’s “Heart of Glass” that made me re-examine a song I had middling feelings about. This plucky and buoyant version of the song offers a great contrast. Towards the end they incorporate a cowbell rhythm that evokes a sound from many disco classics, nice touch.
Power Pop is alive and well courtesy of the Louisville, Kentucky band White Reaper. Reminiscent of artists like Cheap Trick, Donnie Iris, Greg Kihn and even Fountains Of Wayne and Weezer, if you want to bring the fun, they might be your ticket. “Real Long Time” and “Might Be Right” (this one currently moving up the alternative chart) are great examples of an update to the sound. They are playing at the Sinclair in Cambridge, MA on Nov. 2. I might need to go.
This reminded me of one of my favorite songs from last year from the Vancouver band Bend Sinister. Their song “Shannon” from the 2018 album “Foolish Games” was my #6 song of last year. It has a wonderful energetic retro pop rock vibe and in reading an interview with the band it’s no wonder. They said they were listening to a lot of Raspberries (“Overnight Sensation”) and City Boy (“22.214.171.124.”), two power pop bands from the 70’s. Those songs were among my favorites as a teenager so being drawn to this song makes so much sense.
This live version is as good as the original studio version. And I did exactly what Eric Carmen did as a kid with the transistor radio under my pillow. Goosebumps.
This one from Top of The Pops makes me laugh.
Finally this one is courtesy of my friend Colleen. This narrative is about the 90’s but it was my experience in the early 80’s. I went to Boston 40 years ago to attend Boston University and discovered my first used record store, Nuggets, in Kenmore Square. Thousands of albums, 12 inch singles, CD’s and singles later, they mostly sit in my basement, not on display. I treasure the experience from those days but funny, a used record store nowadays has no lure for me. Having music at my fingertips through streaming is just as good, and cheaper. Love the musical homage to the late 60’s.