Song I Liked in 2010…oh Ke$ha…

Finally, it’s here! No, not Ke$ha’s dead eyes, but my top songs of the year.  2010 saw a lot of new artists break on the scene and it saw a lot of established artists kick up their game.  So, in no particular order, here we go.
“Tik Tok”-Ke$ha…this song, according to Billboard is the number one song of the year, or most played, but I’m pretty sure it was a hanger-on from late ’09.  No matter, Ke$ha is an interesting gal; she probably uses way too much auto-tune, and she can’t dress for shit, but she makes some catchy pop.  Her latest hit, “We R Who We R” is in the running for next year’s list. 
“Hey Soul Sister”-Train…Oh God, where do I start?  Lead singer Patrick Monahan co-wrote the tune with Norwegian producers, Espen Lind and Amund Bjorlund, the team also known as Espionage.  They were behind Beyonce’s 2006 hit, “Irreplacable”, which became the best selling single of 2007.  If you haven’t heard this song in the past five minutes, just turn on your TV, and wait for a commercial break; chances are, you’ll hear it!  I liked the song at first and I especially liked it when the Dixie Chicks covered it in concert this summer; however, by now, it’s really annoying, but no doubt a solid hit.
“Need You Now”-Lady Antebellum…this is another hanger-on which started dominating in late ’09.  It’s plain to see, Lady A is not just a country group anymore, as “Need You Now” finished at number 2 on the Billboard year-end singles chart.  It also claimed the number one spot throughout the year, on the Adult Contemporary chart, not to mention late last year, it spent 5 weeks at number one on the country chart.  It will be interesting to see where the group goes next musically.
“Teenage Dream”-Katy Perry/Darren Criss of GLEE…Personally, I prefer the GLEE version of this song, as it toppled the GLEE download record held by “Don’t Stop Believin” and it made Criss an instant star.  Katy Perry was not too shabby herself this year.  I didn’t like “California Gurls” because I thought it sounded too much like “Tik Tok”.  “Firework” is really good. And she married Russell Brand; hmmm? 
“Bad Romance” “Alejandro” “Telephone”-Lady GaGa, “Telephone” with Beyonce’…yes, GaGa is ruling the world and she shows no slowing down.  Her new album, Born This Way, is set to drop in May, and for the first time, we’ll hear GaGa duet with Elton John on a track from the new Disney film, Gnomeo and Juliet next year.  GaGa’s videos sold these tracks and I cannot wait to see what comes next.
“Just The Way You Are”-Bruno Mars…This is maybe the biggest breakout star of the year.  Mars not only made his own hits, he helped other artists out.  B.o.B, Cee Lo Green, and Travie McCoy all had big hits this year co-written by Mars. I was impressed with Mars when I saw him on SNL in October.  He did have a slight mishap when he was arrested for cocaine possession in September; oh that fame.
“Fuck You”-Cee Lo Green…or “Forget You” if you watched GLEE or heard it on the radio.  Cee Lo has been building an eclectic  fan base beyond his Goodie Mob days since he joined forces with Danger Mouse in 2006 to form Gnarls Barkley.  And his music since then, has taken on many facets; funk, blues, pop, old school.  The Lady Killer is excellent!
“Whip My Hair”-Willow Smith…Is Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith’s now 10-year-old daughter a rising music force?  Maybe.  This is catchy pop at its best.  However, I don’t forsee a thriving career in Willow’s future.  But who knows, she always has acting to fall back on.
“Only Girl in the World” “Love The Way You Lie” w/Eminem-Rihanna…I was worried about Rihanna in 2009; after monster hits for a few years, her album Rated R bombed big time.  And she also had that little Chris Brown domestic abuse thing hanging over her head.  But this year, she rebounded, first with Eminem on “Love The Way You Lie” and then she released her fifth album, Loud which has so far produced two number one hits. Rihanna is back!
“Radioactive”-Kings of Leon…Okay, so this song hasn’t quite reached the fever pitch of 2009’s “Use Somebody” but it’s a fine rock track.  They have extended their sound just enough to straddle the pop and rock formats.  It’s not just about guitar, bass,and drums anymore.
“Raise Your Glass”-Pink…Turning to constant co-writers, Max Martin and Shellback, Pink released one of two new songs on her first greatest hits collection.  In my eyes, Pink can do no wrong when it comes lyrics, music, and all in all fun.  Her next production? Her first child with on-again-off-again husband Carey Hart; wow!
“Bulletproof”-La Roux…I wasn’t aware, until I saw the group live, that La Roux is NOT the name of the lead singer.  Elly Jackson is the voice of the British synth-pop band.  This wasn’t your normal pop hit, but this band turned out to be one I believe I will be following from now on.  They are nominated for two Grammys in the Best Electronic/Dance Album and Best Dance Recording categories.
“Dog Days are Over”-Florence + The Machine…OMG! This song rules! and the video is amazing; that’s another album I’m picking up soon!…Look this group up and marvel!
Honorable Mention-Scissor Sisters!  No, you won’t see their name on any year-end charts or see them perform live much on TV, but they produced their best album yet with Night Work…oh, and they are joining Lady GaGa in February on the road!!!! Here’s their year that was.

Out for the Holidays…

It’s happened; in case you didn’t know, the Indigo Girls have put out their very first Christmas album, Holly Happy Days.  And just this morning, the ladies performed a song from the album written by Chely Wright, “(It Really Is) A Wonderful Life”, and wouldn’t you know, Wright, who is a part-time resident of NYC, stopped by the CBS Early Show to perform with the duo:
I really love the song, but I have two issues with this performance.  One, Emily Sailers, God bless her, is looking ROUGH!  However, she’s awesome as is Amy Ray.  My second issue?  Chely Wright was very nervous, and I bet she’s really hasn’t done a performance like this on TV in over 10 years and not since her coming out party earlier this year.  She’s been such a fan of the ladies for such a long time, she just couldn’t help her nerves, but she’s honored of course they included her delightful tune on their new album.  It’s great to see her out there, so to speak, again.  Season’s Greetings!

Glee (And/Or Gay) Until Graduation…

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Yep, here’s another Glee post, but this one is quite serious.  Creator/Writer/Director Ryan Murphy has put out the word that when his current New Directions members graduate at the end of the 2012 season, they’re outta there!  The one new member who is rumored to remain is Sam (Chord Overstreet), since he just joined up.  No, it won’t affect Sue Sylvester’s perpetual “get rid of the Glee club” agenda, but it will affect viewership.  It’s just a general rule of thumb that if you start a series with a core cast, you end it with them, no matter how old they are in real life, which many cast members are in their 20’s.  Then again, it might be a good idea to bring in new blood.  I just fear Glee will meet with what is going to happen to American Idol, sure, you can bring in new people/judges, but it’s not going to fully recover your ratings.  Murphy should take a lesson since his series, in my opinion, has replaced Idol in the Fox food chain.  I mean The Simpsons kids have all remained the same age for over 20 years and they are still going strong; which yes, it’s animated, I get it.  However, there are problems with Murphy’s dream scenario.  Will another Lea Michele come along, no less, a newly-named Billboard triple-threat Lea Michele will come along?  Absolutely not!  Where will we be without Brittany and Santana?  I guess new Cheerios will rule the school.  Kurt has moved on to Dalton Academy, but where will we go from there, add another gay kid who gets bullied???  It’s all really silly, but I do see a hint of sense in Murphy’s logic.  Maybe Murphy senses his show has met some harsh criticisms this season and he’s preparing with a back-up plan, who knows.  I just hope nothing happens to Jane Lynch in the next two years, no Sue, no Glee!  Am I wrong?