Editor’s note: With the shocking and sudden death of Prince, the best way we know how to mourn is share his songs that we loved the most. With that, here is our list from 2014 of our favorite Prince songs of all time. Let all the doves cry out.
I am sure that if you told Prince that you could order ten of his best all-time songs onto a list of ten, he would make the exact face above and sink it deep into your soul. It is hard to put together a list of such a beloved artist’s songs, especially after releasing thirty-three albums. His thirty-third and thirty-second of which were recently simultaneously released on September 30th. For the occasion (although late), we decided to take on the daunting task of trying to list our favorites anyways. The result is quite a crowd-pleasing list I would say. If you are looking for some serious deep tracks you should probably look elsewhere, but if you can argue the legitimacy of these legendary wonders of pop music, we would love to hear those arguments below. Now onto the list:
Continue reading “The 10 Best Prince Songs or: The List Formerly Known as Our Favorite Songs by the Artist Prince”
Editors note: This originally published in 2013. With the release of the new Walking Dead spin-off series Fear the Walking Dead, we revisit one of our favorite lists, our ten favorite apocalyptic tunes.
We all love us some Edgar Wright (and Simon Pegg and Nick Frost for that matter), so with the opening of The World’s End this weekend, we thought it appropriate to dig up the top ten apocalyptic songs. A few words about The World’s End first though. I am endlessly excited to see this movie, but it just has the worst title ever. The title is not bad in and of itself. It is descriptive. It is succinct. But unfortunately it is too similar to another apocalyptic comedy from earlier this summer (This Is The End) as well as a Pirates of the Caribbean poopcicle (At World’s End). This obviously won’t effect the quality of the movie, but its a pet peeve of mine from a differentiation standpoint.
Now that all that is out of the way, enjoy these top ten tracks for the end of times.
10. Prince – “1999”
Continue reading “Apocalypse NOW: The 10 Best Apocalyptic Tracks”
My fall has been filled listening to two seemingly very different types of music: electronic music and soulful R&B. While on the surface this seems very much like a war between human and machine, the two find themselves in each others’ worlds quite often. So this is a mix of body (danceable electronic music) and soul (soul and R&B), and some that is both body and soul. While this has nothing in common with what I usually listen to in the fall, this is inevitably where I find myself, even though I am one of the least soulful and rhythmic people you will ever meet.
Continue reading “LxListening: Body and Soul”
Not only are movie and stage actors flocking to TV for more stable and quality roles, musicians have begun to get in on this golden age of television. Musicians are putting down their instruments and picking up their acting chops, getting major and minor roles on sitcoms and procedurals. We have always had late night television performances, but those have even been ratcheted up with the help of the Roots and more artists eager to collaborate on live television. So in honor of this trend, I decided to put together a 2014 Musicians on TV Power Rankings. One disclaimer is I clearly can’t watch everything, so things like E-Street guitar player’s Steven Van Zandt’s starring role in the crime-drama Lilyhammer and Ice-T’s ongoing role in Law & Order: SVU are outside my purview. Also, I decided to leave off reality and live TV shows, so the late night magnificence of the Roots won’t be recognized on this list, either will any role from anything like The Voice or American Idol. So this isn’t a comprehensive list, but it’s my best attempt based what I’ve seen and what I enjoy.
Continue reading “2014 Musicians on TV Power Rankings”
Mo’ Meta Blues
Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Ben Greenman
One of the most admirable acts of the last 20 years has to be the Roots, a hip hop band that is really the last of its kind remaining, that sticks true to its convictions even though they now have a cushy gig on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Arguably the brains behind the operation, drummer and producer Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, not only has piloted the group to gradual greater and greater successes, but has taken on a variety of other notable projects over the years, from producing D’Angelo’s modern touchstones like Voodoo and Erykah Badu’s New Amerykah Pt. 1 and 2 to musical director on the Chappelle Show. Questlove’s new memoir, Mo’ Meta Blues, is a refreshingly creative memoir that not only gives great insight into who Questlove is but also tells numerous insider stories that are fascinating and humorous.
Continue reading “Mo’ Meta Blues Review”
The Electric Lady
The abundantly-talented Janelle Monáe burst onto the scene in 2010 with her full-length debut The ArchAndroid, an ambitious sci-fi neo-soul opera that was my favorite album of that year. For those unfamiliar with Monáe, the Kansas-born R&B star in some ways is sort of an ultra-talented female Bruno Mars: what Mars does in doo-wop and soul revue channeling Jackie Wilson and Frankie Valli, Monáe does in a similar fashion but channels Stevie Wonder, Judy Garland, Prince, Lauryn Hill, Outkast, Michael Jackson, James Brown, and even George Lucas. Monáe not only has an insane rock ‘n’ roll vocabulary, but she flips from sounding like Jimi Hendrix to James Brown to Judy Garland as effortlessly as an Olympic gymnast. On her second full-length album and third chapter of her sci-fi adventure, The Electric Lady (which shares a name with Hendrix’s famous New York studio), Monáe recruits R&B’s finest for an album that shows more of her versatility but also more of her heart and attitude.
Continue reading “Janelle Monáe Review: The Electric Lady”
Super Bowl halftime shows have had a pretty wide range over the years; starting out with mostly college marching bands and currently sometimes ending up in huge controversy (like the above or M.I.A. last year). For the past twenty years or so, though, the halftime show has settled into two categories for the most part: aging rock star or in-the-moment pop sensations. There just hasn’t been a lot of imagination. I truly believe, and so do Todd and Wes deep down even though they won’t admit it, the combination of Aerosmith, N’Sync, and Nelly was pretty electric, and a legitimate combination of current and aging talents. Alas, they didn’t make the list. Neither did The Who (decrepit), Madonna (mummified), or the Shania Twain, No Doubt, Sting combination (puzzling). In fact, this list is not nearly as strong as we would have expected, so I ripped to some degree on several acts. Enjoy, and as always let us know what you think in the comments.
10. 2006 – The Rolling Stones
After the 2004 Janet Jackson debacle (blessing?), the NFL decided to trot out a lot of very “safe” acts for some time. Hence, a bunch of old bags of bones (stones?) took the stage in 2006 and sounded much smaller than the event demands. As a consolation, the stage is phenomenal, and Keith Richards puppet-master continues to get paid for his superb work.
Continue reading “Top Ten Thursday: Best Super Bowl Halftime Shows”