Saturday, April 16, 2016

See Y'all in May...Europe Here We Come

As many of you know, the crew at GWDJ has had an eventful week. We reached the two common club on hits, which was something we've had in our cross hairs since the site got off the ground. To celebrate, we're going to do some damage on the west coast of Italy. Seeing that we've missed a total of four days in five years posting songs daily, it's time for break to recharge the batteries. Catch y'all on May when the calendar flips to warmer weather...#Celebrare

Friday, April 15, 2016

Videos of the Week April 15th

If you're in the mood for some quirky new videos, you'll be in heaven this week. The only video I'd characterize as "normal" would be Drake's 30 second trailer for his upcoming Views from the 6 album. Yes, it will be annoying when the album is released solely on Apple Music for the first week on April 29th, but sadly, it's something that's become a reality with music releases these days.

Marshmello's video for Keep it Mello reminded me why I'm such a big fan of his. Uplifting, bass heavy, Zelda music is the best comp I have for his style, but I love it. In other news, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis continue to blaze their own path and do fun, creative things with their videos. It is true that tons of people now have the "Macklemore haircut". Speaking of weird and artsy, that's about all the adjectives I have for and Nicole Scherzinger's new video for Smile Mona Lisa. Lots of augmented reality in that one, but it'll appeal to the art buffs for obvious reasons. And last, but certainly not least, holy crap can Common break dance! Daaaaamn man, he put on a surprise, spur of the moment show that had me yellin' at the computer in my living room...#Common
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Brad Pitt's Cousin (Video)

Marshmello feat Omar LinX - Keep it Mello (Video)

Drake Views From the 6 Album Trailer ft. Nicole Scherzinger – Smile Mona Lisa (Video)

This Just in...Common Can Break Dance! (on Fallon)

Photo Credit: YouTube

Thursday, April 14, 2016

What Happens When You Put a GoPro Into Outer Space?

Despite the fact that GoPro's stock continues to take on water, there's no denying it's utility. Video recordings have never seen such mobility, providing new perspectives to life on a daily basis. Without GoPros we wouldn't be able to see what paddle boarding with a dog looks like or even shopping at IKEA.

I hear ya, though, what the hell does this have to do with music? Well, RL Grime decided to attach a GoPro to one of those super balloons that have the ability to rise to outer space. Don't know what it's like to slowly ascend into outer space? Don't worry, RL's got you covered with a full four and a half minutes worth of instrumental ebb and flow to document the trip. Spoiler alert, the balloon popping may or may not coincide with a drop. Contrived-ness aside, when it comes to atmospheric music, it doesn't get any better than RL. His ability to tell a story through instrumentation is unparalleled and Aurora is a perfect exhibit to prove that point...#Aurora

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Spaceships Found in Area21

Haven't heard of Area21? Me either, but that doesn't mean there isn't a well-known artist driving the (space)ship. Let's follow the trail of bread crumbs, shall we?

First, Maejor posted a shot on Instagram with Martin Garrix in studio in late February, saying "it looks like a spaceship". Then, in early March, Martin started his own record label called STMPD RCRDS. Then in mid-March, he debuted an ID track at Ultra around the 37:50 minute mark...

Wait a minute, that track sounds a lot like Area21's new one, Spaceships. Ah hah! So it all comes together, making Area21 a Martin Garrix side project? Whatever the case, the single below straddles that Future Bass-line, settling in as a vulgarity laced party track. Love the collaboration between two incredibly talented artists, but the overtly edgy vocals take away from the brilliance of the production. But, if you're in the mood to get wild, you'll find a way to bounce to it...#Spaceships

Area21 - Spaceships

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

ZHU & Kaskade Save Their Best for the Morning

It may be a subtle difference, but remixing and re-imagining a track can be two different things. Call it semantics, but in my eyes, ZHU and Kaskade didn't just remix the original version of ZHU's In the Morning. To understand what I mean, here's the original version of In the Morning...

ZHU - In the Morning

Above, the original takes on a bubbly, Deep House feel. The quirky samples give it an outer space type of vibe. Even though the remix (below) has the same vocals and a similar Deep House vibe, the addition of acoustic guitar to the equation completely changes the personality of the track. Where the original was very dance-worthy, the remix takes on a much more mellow, easy-listening feel. It's a rare case where you could make a legitimate case for either being more awesome than the other depending on mood. It's a toss up for me, but if push came to shove, I'd give the smoother remix the nod if you forced me to pick...#InTheMorning

Monday, April 11, 2016

"I Think About All the Little Things That Still Remind Me"

Even though Conrad Sewell is closely associated with EDM because of his high profile collaborations with Kygo and Avicii, his talent as a vocalist spans far beyond that. Don't believe me? Well, then I'd ask if you've heard his recent single Remind Me...and if you haven't, check the recently released video below...

That, my friends, is a power ballad. Other than Sam Smith, I can't think of another vocalist who could pull off a track like that. Now it's time for me to be contradictory and talk about how much I like what Steve James did remixing the original. Picture for a minute an uplifting tempo backing the power vocals. Add to that thought a refreshingly vibrant beat breakdown between verses. Now press play and see if it meets those expectations. Such a great remix, give it some love on hypem...#RemindMe

Conrad Sewell - Remind Me (Steve James Remix)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

With You Brings the Heat Remixing Janet's No Sleep

Anybody who can transform a Janet Jackson hit into something better than the original deserves a lot of dap. Her recent single, No Sleep, is what you'd expect from one of the best R&B artists of all time. Her sultry voice always adds the perfect touch to slow jams and J Cole's verse fits like glove. Check the video for reference...

So what happens when you crank up the tempo and add in an unstoppable rolling bassline? You end up with an addicting remix from Major Lazer co-founder Dave "Switch" Taylor. If you've got an air tight memory, you might remember his recent track (Ghost) with up and coming rapper Vince Staples. Both tracks are heavy and rhythmic, but showcase two different sounds from With You. There's a clear Deep House flavor on both, but the No Sleep (Remix) takes it up another level. No word on how you can go about copping this new one, but if it leads to an avalanche of new music from With You, you won't hear me complaining...#WithYou

Janet Jackson - No Sleep (With You Remix)

Friday, April 08, 2016

Videos of the Week April 8th

This week was some kind of special awesome video wise. Not only did we have Bert and Ernie goin' in on Warren G and Nate Dogg's Regulate, we also had 2 Chainz dropping ghetto analogies to explain Super Pacs in politics. Doesn't get much more random than those two videos, but that's why they got some love in the top five.

In the music world, both Benny Benassi and Lido released visuals for their latest singles. While Benny and Chris Brown went the typical party/beach route on their video, Lido went for more of an EDM opus on his video for Crazy. I love the Blackstreet sample on the that track. Kudos to Lido for the creativity on that. And last, but certainly not least, we've got a Jimmy Fallon and Melissa McCarthy karaoke war. Some videos don't need much setup and this one falls into that category...#LipSyncBattle
Sesame Street Covers Nate Dogg & Warren G's Regulate

2 Chainz Explains How Super Pacs are Trap Queens for Presidential Campaigns
Benny Benassi feat Chris Brown - Paradise (Video)

Lido - Crazy (Video)

Jimmy Fallon Lip Sync Battles Melissa McCarthy

Photo Credit: YouTube

Thursday, April 07, 2016

"I Wanna Know, I Wanna Know, Hey-ey-ey, Hey-ey-ey"

When I see "new Alesso single", excitement follows. Add in Nico & Vinz on the vocals and I'm all the sudden rushing to hit the play button. I gained a lot of respect for the Norwegian duo when they opened for Kygo and brought a ton of energy to the stage. If you're expecting a made for radio hit, you're in luck with I Wanna Know. It's much more melodic pop than electronic, but I have no issues with that given my expectations prior to pressing play. It's easy on the ears and you'll ultimately find yourself nodding your head to it if it's on in the background. Love to see talented people collaborate to make better music collectively than they'd make alone...#IWannaKnow

Alesso feat Nico & Vinz - I Wanna Know

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

What So Not Turns Over New Leaf With Lone

Now that What So Not has lost it's Flume and gone 100% Emoh, there are a lot of questions surrounding the creative direction of the former group. How will the music change or evolve now that it's a solo effort? Will it be the same?

Luckily, we have a new original to chew on featuring GANZ and JOY. Lone follows a familiar melodic Trap sound, but succeeds in creating an enticing ebb and flow of vocals and drops. The vocals ramp up from a whisper to ethereal vibe that ramps up toward the drop. It has it's exciting points, but is much more mellow than hard hitting. Word has it, the new single will be landing on iTunes on April 8th. Until then we'll have to keep watching the feather dance on the water below...#Lone

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

"Got So Many Chains They Call Me Chaining Tatum"

Songs like Pop Style don't need any introduction. You're going to press play regardless of what I say about it because of the immense star power on it. Both Drake and Kanye did everything in their power to deliver memorable verses. The way they were both able to duck and weave between tough talk and creative one liners is why they're two of the best. Do I wish Hov would have gotten more mic time than his short cameo? Sure, in a perfect world, but between the verses and eerie beat by SEVN Thomas and Frank Dukes, the song finds a way to be memorable. I say memorable because there's a decent chance I'm going to end up liking the more uptempo, reggaeton tinged One Dance more than Pop Style. The jury isn't out yet on picking a favorite, but I want to personally thank Drake for taking me across the finish line to a million hits. Cheers to hoping Views From the 6 will be every bit as memorable as the 2332 posts that eventually took this small property on the internet to something noteworthy to a few folks...#PopStyle

Drake ft The Throne (Kanye West & Jay Z) - Pop Style (prod by SEVN Thomas & Frank Dukes)
Streamable links dap to 2dopeboyz

Monday, April 04, 2016

Alan Walker's Faded is a Modern Day Classic

First off, I have no clue how I slept on Alan Walker's Fade when it was released a year ago. Mesmerizing doesn't begin to explain the impact of the instrumental. It sits comfortably in that sweet spot between calm and energetic. I'm still in awe that the original beat is available on Soundcloud for free. Check it out if you haven't fallen victim to awe inspiring original...

Now fast forward to a month ago when Alan debuted a new ballad version of Fade at X Games Oslo. The track is appropriately titled Faded and features vocals from Iselin Solheim. I'm still torn on whether or not the vocals are a major boost to the original, but you're not going to hear me complaining. If anything the two versions provides different experiences that cater toward different moods. Fade for zoning out and Faded if you're in the mood for singing along. That being said, go ahead and sing along to the live version debuted in Norway last month...#Faded

Sunday, April 03, 2016

"You Talk Like You Got the Juice and the Squeeze"

First off, the irony isn't lost on me that the two posts leading up to a million hits on this blog are The Chainsmokers and Drake tracks. The two of them combined have fueled an immense amount of daily reflection that has kept the wheels turning on this steady whip of a blog. Let's not discount those who have fallen too because even though we're going on 8 years since Pimp C passed in his sleep, his influence on my love for Southern Hip Hop back in high school can't be understated. Times change, people change, music changes, but there's always been an emotional component to artists' music that resonates with me. I spend too much time classifying music in hopes of putting it in a nice, neat container that will be easy to understand, but the underlying point is that music I write about moves me. I could spend just as much time, if not more, writing about music I don't like, but I literally don't have the resources to write about music that doesn't resonate with me. If you want that, you wouldn't come back here on a daily basis, you'd go to another blog that has the means to be much more critical and thorough.

What I'm trying to say is...thanks! For listening to me wax poetic two paragraphs at a time every night and giving the tracks that move me a chance to find their rotation into your music source. It means a lot and although it's taken five plus years to hit a goal I set out for on day one, the repetition of constant reflection has been just as beneficial to me as it has been for those of you who ended up pressing play below.

end_reflective_rantMoving on to the new 40 produced track below that will presumably land on Drake's upcoming Views From the 6 album. Despite the fact that the Pimp C verse has been recycled a few times, hearing his tough, calculated tone on a new Drake track was refreshing. The Amber Rose cameo at the beginning was appropriate given the context of the track, but Drizzy put in work with the sing-songy raps that got him to where he's at today. Seamlessly going between hook and verses is what he does best and he showed it on Faithful. While there's no firm release date on his new album, the best guess to date is April (this month). We'll see if the three leaked tracks this week have any impact on that, but my guess is we'll be getting a new package in the mail sooner than later...#Faithful

Drake feat Pimp C - Faithful (prod by Noah "40" Shebib)

Saturday, April 02, 2016

"I'm Gonna Love You Inside Out"

Looking back, I remember the days when we used to yearn for original tracks from The Chainsmokers. They were so good at re-imagining tracks that you may not have heard of into stellar remixes. Now that they're ten plus original singles deep, questioning whether they could carve out their own style sounds outlandish. Sure, Roses going double platinum definitely helped solidify their place in EDM's elite, but their steady stream of great new singles speaks to their staying power.

Their latest creation, Inside Out, is yet another destined for mainstream success. Featuring the vocals of Charlee, it fits the model of a ballad disguised in EDM form. The sappy vocals will lure you in, but the calming excitement post drop is what people will remember. Time will tell whether or not it has the ceiling of Roses, but there's no doubt that this is another huge step in the right direction from everyone's favorite lovable duo...#InsideOut

The Chainsmokers feat Charlee - Inside Out

Friday, April 01, 2016

Videos of the Week April 1st

All in all, it was an eclectic mix of videos this week. There wasn't a real discernible pattern to the top five, just a bunch of randomness, which is fun if you're in the mood. Leading the way was the internet bending Ariana Grande video for Dangerous Woman. That video needs no intro if you're a guy as you may find some enjoyment in seeing Ariana in lingerie for about four minutes straight. A natural segue from that video is to another woman who is equally sexy, Jennifer Lopez. She, on the other hand, is clothed for the entirety of the video, but her and James Corden had a lot of fun singing karaoke and texting Leo DiCaprio.

If Hip Hop and animation is what you're after, you'll enjoy the more than a little weird double video for Big Grams' Born to Shine and Run for Your Life. Simply put, nobody does weird like Adult Swim. Moving on to the world of live performances where Zedd and Aloe Blacc performed their latest hit Candyman on GMA. The horns section with Zedd on the keys was definitely a good look. And rounding out the top five was a new gem from Skylar Grey in the form of Moving Mountains. I'm not used to hearing her sing over acoustic guitar, but that's not a problem when you've got her voice...#MovingMountains
Ariana Grande - Dangerous Woman (Video)

Jennifer Lopez & James Corden Carpool Karaoke

Big Grams + Run the Jewels - Born to Shine/Run for your Life

Zedd & Aloe Blacc Perform Candyman on Good Morning America

Skylar Grey - Moving Mountains (Video)

Photo Credit: YouTube

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