Favorite Songs of 2017

We are just about halfway through Blogmas (Day 12 to be exact) and I appreciate every single one of you that has kept up with daily posts and even left comments along the way. I’ll continuously thank you all. Anytime someone reads what I write, I still get excited like a little kid. Alright, enough sappy stuff, let’s get into today’s blog post. I’m sharing all my music favs of 2017. Let’s get into it.

As always, be sure to click the links throughout this post for related posts and links to purchase items/similar styles featured.

Continue reading “Favorite Songs of 2017”

Original v. Cover [V.11]: ‘B*tch Better Have My Money’ & ‘Trap Queen’

This is a double header of Original v. Cover. I heard covers of both ‘B*tch Better Have My Money’ and ‘Trap Queen.’ Both of which I surprisingly enjoy.

Continue reading “Original v. Cover [V.11]: ‘B*tch Better Have My Money’ & ‘Trap Queen’”

May Favorites: Music & Scandal Fail

PicMonkey CollageIt’s crazy that we’re entering the sixth month of 2015. Before you know it, it’ll be Christmas. Enough of the ramble, let’s get into my favorites of the month. I had quite a few music favorites this month, which is surprising. Check them out below and be sure to click the links to take a listen:

I recently discovered Walk the Moon as I kept hearing ‘Shut Up and Dance’ on the radio and I absolutely LOVE their album, Talking Is Hard. Some of my other favorites from the album are ‘Work This Body,’ ‘Sidekick,’ and ‘Up 2 U.’

As for other favorites of the month I have been obsessed with my planner. I’ve been featuring my planner/etsy purchases along with “Plan With Me” in my Spicy Saturday series. The planner I use is the Me and My Big Ideas, “The Happy Planner.” I’ll be doing an update on the planner in a future post, but it’s really kept me on track with everything I have going on from blogging to grad school. Planning is the best part for sure. Catch up on my planner posts below:

TV, TV, oh TV. Now that all my shows have gone on break I’m excited for the fall, but the BIGGEST disappointment of the month would have to be the Scandal season finale. I’m glad the show has been renewed, but the way it ended left me thinking, “Really Shonda?” Olivia & Fitz end up together. Jake leaves? Melly gets kicked out? Cyrus gets fired? Papa Pope gets locked up? What happens between Huck and Quinn? Those questions alone make it sound like an amazing episode and all of it wasn’t bad, it’s jus that ending. I was really expecting something to happen to the president. I wanted Olivia to chase Jake. I wanted a CLIFFHANGER. Those two ending up together in their never ending love roller coaster is just annoying. I’m over them. I’m ready for a drama filled season. That last minute of the finale just killed me. 

Note: Be sure to click the links in bold to find items mentioned/links to related posts.

February Favorites: Music + More

Another month has come and gone and it’s time for another round of my monthly favorites. I’ve decided to incorporate more than just music in my favorites, but not a lot really stood out to me this month, but here’s my list anyway.

First up, the music. I thought I’d have more songs that I loved, but not many were new. This is more of my monthly rotation.

  • Imagine Dragons, ‘Shots’
  • Taylor Swift, ‘Style’
  • Ed Sheeran, ‘Thinking Out Loud’
  • Ariana Grande, ‘One Last Time’
  • The Weeknd, ‘Earned It’
  • Jidenna, ‘Classic Man’

Moving on to TV shows, I finished all 9 seasons of CSI:NY and I absolutely loved the series. I’ve now moved on to CSI: Miami. I’m not as intrigued as I was with the NY series, but I’m not even through the first season so I’ll keep watching. As for other crime shows, my fav, I’ve caught up on Criminal Minds and SVU. SVU is a hit and miss for me and I’m not into as I used to be, but thanks to Netflix I LOVE Criminal Minds.

Lastly, How To Get Away With Murder season finale was AMAZING!!! Scandal was getting a bit tiresome for me, but I like where it is headed. I’m upset that I have to wait until the fall to figure out (WARNING – SPOILER ALERT) who killed Rebecca? I’m shocked as to who killed Lila, but I knew that Sam had something to do with it. No he didn’t do it, but he was surely an accomplice.

Hopefully Scandal will get more intense and I’ll fall in love with more songs than I did this month.

Until next time…

2015 Grammy Review

Musics biggest night, The Grammy’s, has come and gone and social media has created a lot of buzz surrounding the show from the red carpet to the usual Grammy snubs. This review is not a play by play of the show being that I wasn’t fully interested. A lot of the performances were very somber and nothing made me jump out of my seat. Anyway, here are my highlights.

sam smithFirst of CONGRATS to the biggest winner of the night, Sam Smith. He won 4 Grammy’s: Best New Artist, Best Pop Vocal Album, Record of the Year, and Song of the Year. His feat reminded me of Adele as they both capitalized on breakups to make amazing music.

FAVORITE Performances:

tumblr_njholmKhZ41r7mjwxo1_500The first performance that I loved was Hozier’s ‘Take Me To Church’ alongside Annie Lennox who then performed ‘I Put a Spell On You.’ I’ve heard Hozier’s song before, not any of his other music, but I do like his voice. Annie Lennox MADE the performance with her energy. I absolutely loved it.

giphyThe second performance that I loved is of course from Sia. She brought Maddie Ziegler along with her, of course, and added actress Kristen Wiig. I’m upset ‘Chandelier’ didn’t win anything. I guess she’s invisible to the Acaedmy. 1000 Forms of Fear is still my favorite album of 2014. I’m for any and all things Sia. Unfortunately Sia didn’t win any Grammy’s DESPITE ‘Chandlier’ being an amazing song with amazing performances.

I’m not discussing all performances simply because there’s nothing for me to discuss. I will say that I did like the Target ad being Imagine Dragons performing ‘Shots’ (click HERE for that review) LIVE from Vegas. Other performances were ok. I did like Katy Perry’s ‘By The Grace of God,’ and Miranda Lambert’s, ‘Little Red Wagon,’ but that’s about it.

Performances I DIDN’T Like:

There was talk of Pharrell performing a different version of ‘Happy’ which shouldn’t have been allowed based off the title of the song. He came out looking like a hotel Bell Hop speaking the lyrics and having it spoken in different languages, excuse me, creepily whispered in different languages before the song took a dark turn. What was supposed to be ‘Happy’ sounded like something that belonged on a soundtrack to a scary movie.

Another performance that I didn’t like was Rihanna’s with Paul McCartney and Kanye West. they all came out in suits and what not and did the song. As I stated in my review (click HERE for that), I don’t see this as a comeback track, but I’ll stick around for what’s coming.

Speaking of albums, Album of the Year went to Beck for Morning Phase. Other nominees in the category were: Beyoncè (Beyoncè), Sam Smith (In The Lonely Hour), Pharrell (G I R L), and Ed Sheeran (X). Kanye was about to go on stage and interrupt as he did to Taylor Swift at the VMAs, but he had a change of heart. Beck invited him to come back, but talk about another awkward moment. He did rant in an interview after the show saying:

And Beck needs to respect artistry and he should’ve given his award to Beyoncè.

I can’t sit here and completely agree with that although it would’ve been great to see Beyonce win an award she’s never won before. I will say that every artist has their own form of artistry and that it’s the people who pick the artist as the winner, no the artist that should get the backlash. Another artist that had something to say about Grammy snubs was Trey Songz. He tweeted (see right):

Screenshot_2015-02-09-00-41-18~2

In certain areas of music, I will say that there are a lot of artists that could be nominated yet they do get snubbed in one way or another. There’s not a huge presence of R&B aside from Beyoncè. Speaking of she won Best R&B Song for ‘Drunk In Love’ and fans watched her perform ‘Take My Hand Precious Lord’ as the introduction to the final performance of the night, ‘Glory,’ by John Legend and Common. The song on the Selma soundtrack was performed by Ledisi, a Grammy nominee, but she just sat back and watched as Beyonce did what she should’ve done.

Also Kendrick Lamar might have been snubbed last year in the Best Rap Album category, but he ended up winning not one, but TWO Grammy’s this year for his track ‘i’; Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song. Better late than never.

Overall while the show moved rather quickly with few interruptions, it wasn’t all that entertaining to me. I love that there were a lot of performances, just not any that were upbeat enough to make the crowd dance like last year. Another thing was that these artists need to work on their acceptance speeches and keep them from 30-45 seconds. If you’re nominated you should have a speech prepared just in case.

Click HERE for full list of winners. Until the next award show…

Grammy Performers

It’s three weeks until the grandest stage of them all in the world of music. The 57th Annual Grammy Awards airs on February 8th. CLICK HERE for the list of nominees. Here’s who’s slated to perform:

  • PicMonkey CollagePharrell
  • Sam Smith
  • Madonna
  • Ed Sheeran
  • Ariana Grande
  • Usher
  • AC/DC
  • Erich Church
  • Miranda Lambert

I’m interested in seeing what Madonna will perform. Whether it be something new or a medley. Same with Pharrell, he could take the same route. Then again he’ll probably perform ‘Happy.’ Beyonce and Jay-Z opened the show last year and I can’t wait to see who opens up this year (insert that Madonna medley; wishful thinking). Sam Smith will probably perform ‘Stay With Me’, maybe ‘I’m Not The Only One.’ Usher hasn’t had much of  a buzz with any new music so I’m curious as to what he’ll perform.

Stay tuned for Grammy updates and as always I’ll be doing a review of the performances. CLICK HERE for my review of last years show.

2015 Grammy Nominees

57th-grammy-awards-header-2014-billboard-990x90

It’s been quite the year for music, album sales might not show it, but there’s been a lot of newcomers and the usuals that have topped the charts. The 2015 Grammy nominees were announced by Pharrell and Ed Sheeran LIVE on CBS today (Friday,12/5). Album of the Year will be announced on an hour long special , “A VERY Grammy Christmas” on CBS 9 ET/ 10 PT.

Here’s some of the nominees (from my fav categories):

RECORD OF THE YEAR

  • Iggy Azalea x Charlie XCX, ‘Fancy’
  • Sia, ‘Chandelier’
  • Sam Smith, ‘Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)’
  • Taylor Swift, ‘Shake It Off’
  • Meghan Trainor, ‘All About That Bass’

SONG OF THE YEAR

  • ‘All About That Bass’
  • ‘Chandelier’
  • ‘Shake It Off’
  • ‘Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)’
  • ‘Take Me to Church’

BEST NEW ARTIST

  • Iggy Azalea
  • Bastille
  • Brandy Clark
  • Haim
  • Sam Smith

BEST POP VOCAL ALBUM

  • Coldplay, Ghost Stories
  • Miley Cyrus, Bangerz
  • Ariana Grande, My Everything
  • Katy Perry, Prism
  • Ed Sheeran, X
  • Sam Smith, In The Lonely Hour 

BEST URBAN CONTEMPORARY ALBUM

  • Jhene Aiko, Sail Out
  • Beyoncé, Beyoncé
  • Chris Brown, X
  • Mali Music, Mali Is…
  • Pharrell Williams, Girl

BEST RAP ALBUM

  • Iggy Azalea, The New Classic
  • Childish Gambino, Because The Internet 
  • Common, Nobody’s Smiling
  • Eminem, The Marshall Mathers LP2
  • Schoolboy Q, Oxymoron 
  • Wiz Khalifa, Blacc Hollywood 

 

The 57th Annual Grammy’s will air LIVE on Sunday, February 8, 2015. Check out the full list of nominees HERE.

Stay tuned for a post later featuring the Album of the Year nominees.

 

Sia Tops the Billboard 200

sia-1000-forms-of-fear-2I recently posted my album review of Sia‘s latest album, 1000 Forms of Fear, and it has topped the Billboard 200. With a mere 52,000 copies sold it seems to have done the job of getting Sia her first number one album on the chart.

Frozen has surged back up the charts from #5 to #2 with 46,000 copies sold. Sam Smith’s, In The Lonely Hour, holds tight at #3 with an additional 42,000 copies sold. Dropping from #2 to #4 is Ed Sheeran’s, X, which sold an additional 35,000 copies in its third week. Last weeks chart topper, Trey Songz has fallen four spots to #5 with his latest album, Trigga selling only 34,000 copies.

Judas Priest debuts with their highest mark on the chart coming in at #6 with their latest album, Redeemer of Souls, worth 33,000 copies sold. Now 50 rises from #11 to #7 while Miranda Lamberts, Platinum, falls from #7 to #9. Dirty Heads, Sounds of Change, comes in at #8 and rounding of the top 10 is Lana Del Rey’s, Ultraviolence.

magic-rudeMagic!’s album, Don’t Kill The Magic, debuted at #6 on the Billboard 200 last week and although it’s fallen out of the top 10 their smash, ‘Rude’ has knocked Iggy Azalea’s ‘Fancy’ out of the top spot; a spot she had been holding for eight weeks. Iggy doesn’t fall much as she only drops to #2. Ariana Grande’s in at #3 with ‘Problem’, Nico & VInz come in at #4 with ‘Am I Wrong’, and in at #5 is Sam Smith’s ‘Stay With Me’

Trigga Tops and Robin Thicke Flops

trigga-coverAll things are great in the world of Trey Songz. His sixth album, Triggahas landed atop the Billboard 200 after selling 105,000 copies in its first week. This is a decline in sales from his fifth album, Chapter V, which sold 135,000 copies in its first week. Trigga has become his second highest album in sales, his lowest was 2007s Trey Day which sold 73,000. The lack of sales in that one was due to lack of promotion. in my opinion, along with Trey Songz not being as relevant as he is today. His lead single, ‘Na Na’, has peaked into the top 10 at #7 making it his 19th top 10 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.

Ed Sheeran topped the chart last week with X and has fallen to the #2 spot selling an additional 53,000 copies in its second week. With his drop of a spot, Sam Smith’s In The Lonely Hour drops to #3 which is the same spot he debuted at 3 weeks ago.

The Frozen Soundtrack holds still at #5 for the second week and in the top 5  for the 28th consecutive week. Overall its spent 30 consecutive weeks in the top 10 since it hit the chart on December 28, 2013. I find this to be the most impressive feat of the year thus far.

As for the rest of the top 10 Seether lands at #4 with their album, Isolate and Medicate. Magic! debut, Don’t Kill The Magichit #6 on the chart barely selling 36,000 copies. Miranda Lambert’s, Platinum, comes in at #7 and Lana Del Rey’s, Ultraviolence, continues to decline in the top 10 since her debut at #1 to #8.

Then there’s Robin Thicke who managed to go on this huge promo tour in attempt to get his wife back with an album dedicated to her, but if her decision was based on album sales, the answer would be no. Paula landed in the top 10, barely, debuting at #8 with just 24,000 copies sold. That is a roughly 15% of what was sold for his previous album, Blurred Lines ,which sold 177,000 copies in its first week. I personally think he shouldn’t have rushed to put out an album with so much behind it so fast as a result of this. He was riding so high off Blurred Lines that the sales of this album are not just an insult to him, but to Paula as well. I mean the album was named after her.

Moving on from the flop of Paula, rounding off the top 10 is Colt Ford with his album, Thanks for Listening

Be sure to click the links to the album titles for direct purchase and be sure to look out for the following album reviews:

  • Trey Songz, Trigga
  • Sam Smith, In The Lonely Hour
  • Sia, 1000 Forms of Fear
  • Magic!, Don’t Kill The Magic

Until next week…

 

Iggy Azalea Sets a Record & Ed Sheeran Tops Billboard 200

Iggy Azalea has been holding down the #1 spot on the Hot 100 with ‘Fancy’ and even if her track were to fall off next week it wouldn’t matter because SHE has set a record as the longest reigning female rapper on the Hot 100. With her reign reaching it’s 6th week she has surpassed Lil Kim who was in the top spot for 5 weeks for the ‘Lady Marmalade’ collab.

She’s living sky high right now. ‘Fancy’ and ‘Problem’ are doing well not only on the charts, but on the radio as well. She just performed at the BET Awards, yet social media is EGGING on a feud between her and Nicki Minaj. It was said that in Nicki’s speech for her win of Best Female Hip Hop Artist that she threw shots at Iggy Azalea who had performed previously before her win. In her speech Nicki said that if Nicki Minaj spits it, Nicki Minaj wrote it. As the crowd hyped her comment she went on to say “No, no shade, no shade.”

That sure did get an arousal out the crowd, but Iggy seems to not be bothered by it and Nicki Minaj tweeted there were no shots thrown at anyone.

The media puts words in my mouth all the time and this is no different. I will always take a stance on women b/c I believe in us!

I believe we’re smart enough to write down our own thoughts and perspective, just like the men do. I’ve been saying this for 5 YEARS

She went on to talk about how much she respected and admired Lauryn Hill and Missy Elliot before tweeting about Iggy:

I’ve congratulated Iggy on the success of Fancy, publicly. She should be very proud of that. All the women nominated should be proud.

Iggy went on to post her reaction to the whole thing via Instagram:

Untitled
(via @thenewclassic)

I think the whole thing is being blown out of proportion, BUT all Nicki Mianj did was damage control. Nicki made that comment after Iggy’s performance and whether you congratulated someone publicly or not there was still hella shade in that comment she made and tweeting about it did not make the situation any better. Iggy clearly has no beef and wants no problems and I say hell, throw these two on a track together. Nicki could give Iggy pointers, who knows. The situation is over and done with and yes the media misconstrues all the time, but Nicki meant what she said and it doesn’t matter how much she talks about empowering women, shots were fired. How do you say “no shade, no shade” yet you weren’t throwing shots. No ones dumb here.

MOVING ON —

In other chart news, Ed Sheeran’s latest album, X, has debutd at #1 on the Billboard 200. The album sold 210,000 copies making him the largest debut for a pop album this year and the 4th largest opening in 2014.

Sam Smith’s, In The Lonely Hour, moves from #3 to #2 as Lana Del Rey’s, Ultraviolence drops three spots to #4. In at #3 is G-Eazy’s, These Things Happen. Frozen still remains in the top 10 rounding off the top 5.

Relive ‘Fancy’ and ‘Sing’ below: