Just this morning I read a post at Start.ProDJ.com bemoaning the quality of music so far in 2007. While there is a seasonality to “blockbuster” releases (summer and Christmas holidays), I truly believe the quality remains the same pretty much year-round. Sometimes the good stuff is handed to you, and other times you have to “dig” more for it. Here are some new releases I think you should consider. The tracks I mention may not always be the song(s) that just came out this week, but being “to the minute” current is rarely what makes a great mobile D.J. These are current songs to be aware of, if you’re not already aware of them:
quick cuts (in no order whatsoever)
Chamilionaire with Kelis “Not A Criminal”. The more I hear this, the more I like it. It challenges the stereotypes in hip-hop, and is at a decent 100 bpm tempo, unlike his signature (and Grammy- winning) hit “Ridin'”, a completely different style and tempo. And you can dance to it!
Christina Aguilera “Candy Man”. Christina seems to go for a different look or style with each new song, and this time she’s doing a big band vamp, a la “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”. If you’re looking for something fun, try this one.
Beyonce & Shakira “Beautiful Liar”. With both of these red-hot divas on the same song, it’d be pretty hard to miss. They don’t. Put it on, and watch for womens’ hips on the dance floor.
RDB “Wanna Play”. Youth-oriented bi-lingual act that appears to be breaking through. Being marketed to both English and Spanish speaking audience. Nice reggaeton-inspired beat. Don’t miss it.
G. Love “Beautiful”. G. Love has been part of contemporary blues for around ten years, and had several really cool songs along the way. His latest isn’t blues at all, but doesn’t miss an ounce of “cool”. This is a duet (unfortunately I see no credit for the female who he’s dueting with). If you play Jack Johnson at any point during a party (cocktails or dinner, for the “cool” that Jack brings), you can use this song.
Rob Thomas “Little Wonders” Movies continue to be a good source for new hit music. This one is from “Meet The Robinsons”. Not for the dance floor, but quality music, with a guitar line that reminds me of the Edge from U2. I’m hoping that Matchbox 20 isn’t done.
Sarah McLachlan “Ordinary Miracle”. Another movie moment and a new song from an instantly- recognizable voice. From “Charlotte’s Web,” it’s a simple, sincere, and beautiful ballad. Useable as a slow dance, or part of a playlist for cocktails or dinner. Voices like Rob Thomas’ and Sarah McLachlan come on and it’s like hearing from an old friend.
Billy Joel “All My Life”. Speaking of “old friends”, there’s a new “pop” song by Billy Joel, his first since 1993. This is a love song in a big band, even “Sinatra” style. To prove again how odd of a time we are in for the marketing of music, this song was originally available exclusively on the People magazine website (around Valentine’s Day), and then itunes, and this week: everywhere. I fully expect to need this for a first dance before the end of this summer.
Big & Rich “Lost In The Moment”. If you ever accused this column of being light on country music, I’d have to agree with you. But here’s one not to miss. It’s not kind of country-rock lunacy that made Big & Rich famous, instead it’s a great ballad that I suspect will also be used for weddings. Very good.
Silverspun Pickups “Lazy Eye”. This one has bubbled under for a while. A sinewy (and long) rock song with an insistent groove that easily reminds me of “1979” by Smashing Pumpkins. You might not get hooked by this song at first listen, but after about 3 listens, it’ll have you.
Steve Sharp is a DJ in Southern California who has been spinning since 1981. In addition to running his own successful single-op business, Signature Entertainment, he also creates a weekly radio remix show for Bo’s Saturday Night Party on B95.1 FM. Steve is one of the few people who can not only play the hits, but gets involved in the story behind them and can often tell you who produced, directed and published the song and how their actions affect the music industry.
If you would like to contact Steve, he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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