1. Peter Bjorn and John pick “Grammys” by Drake feat. Future
Every week we ask one artist that we love to talk about a song that they love. This week we are here with Bjorn Yttling from Peter Bjorn and John.
Justin: Bjorn, what’s one song that you can’t stop listening to?
Bjorn: Actually, so right now. It’s a Drake song.
Justin: Really? So what song?
Bjorn: Uh, I can’t stop listening to, “Grammys” by Drake. It’s about him not getting a Grammy and everybody thinks he should have a Grammy. “People can’t believe I didn’t win a Grammy,” or something like that just over and over and then he’s like, “I’m sitting in my car with the panorama,” or something. He’s got…he’s got such a compelling voice I think on that guy too.
Justin: What do you like about Drake?
Bjorn: I think he’s got-I mean, except for being a good rapper and having great lyrics-I think he’s got really good melodies. I like his melodies a lot; like on those pop tracks too like “Hotline Bling” and “Pop Style.” I actually really like his melodies, I think they’re really great. I like the whole, sorta the half, other…. Ok, if you’re listening Drake, the other half of that album is really great. First half, I’m not so…I think is…I think it kicks off after four or five tracks.
- Drake’s album, “Views” was released earlier this year on Young Money/Cash Money/Republic.
- Listen if you like: Future, Lil Wayne, Top 40 hip-hop
2. Devil Met Contention – “Before the Horse”
Breaking up with someone can be a really isolating thing. Like…that is the definition of breaking up with someone. You are being isolated. I think that that’s kinda like what hurts the most about breaking up with someone. I think it’s hard to forget that breaking up happens with everyone and it happens to everyone.
I always think of this story from “This American Life” that I heard and Ira Glass is talking to this woman. Her name is Lauren Waterman and she says this about breaking up.
“Breaking up with someone is literally the most common thing. Like, everyone you know broke up with everyone they ever dated until maybe the person they’re with right now, if they’re with someone right now. But when it happens to you, it feels so specific, like…its, you know? I don’t wanna say that I can’t get over it, but like in a flippant way, you kinda can’t get over it. Like you’re like, “What? This is what’s happening? Its so shocking!”
And because its such a common thing, I think that’s what makes listening to break-up songs really cathartic; knowing that its happening to other people too.
And I think that’s what Ehson Rad really hits in this song. Especially with his lyrics “Before the Horse” and just the name of this song is like, “Before the Horse;” its this phrase that we have for messing things up. It’s like its happened so many times and so many people have made this mistake that we have this cultural shorthand and this phrase to indicate that you are doing things wrong. And I think it really works in this application to a break-up where its happened to everybody and it happens to everybody. It’s a normal thing and we’ll get through it.
- Devil Met Contention’s new album, “Fuel the Lights” is out now.
- Listen if you like: Johnny Cash, Ending piano bits in Tom Waits songs, Nick Cave
Towkio – Tear Drop (prod. Garren)
This is a song about a world gone mad. About frustration and pain. This song is about making black lives matter.
This was released just days before Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, and Dallas. Since this song was released we’ve let more tears drop. It makes you wonder when it will stop.
- Listen if you like: Marvin Gaye, Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper
4. Foxy Shazam – “Second Floor”
Community Stories producer Makenzie Boettcher picks this song.
Justin: Makenzie, what’s one song that you cant stop listening to?
Makenzie: I can’t stop listening to “Second Floor” by Foxy Shazam. I discovered Foxy Shazam… I was listening to that song “Downtown” with Macklemore and featured in the song was like, this crazy artist that was singing the refrain.
Justin: You discovered Foxy Shazam through that Macklemore song?
Makenzie: Through that Macklemore song. I had no idea who Foxy Shazam was before that.
Justin: Wow! I saw Foxy Shazam eat a cigarette once.
Makenzie: I was just going to say that! Yea, every show he eats a cigarette on stage.
Justin: Yup. Seen it.
Makenzie: He like, is known for being a “snake-man” and climbs all over stuff during shows.
Justin: A “snake-man?”
Makenzie: He’s like a “snake-man!”
Justin: What is a-?
Makenzie: Well like he told a story of like, he scaled-he was in this venue-and he like scaled the wall and there was like a cable and he was like swinging from it and all the engineers that were there were like getting pissed at him because they’re like, “man you can’t do that. Like, you’re gonna break our equipment!” And he was like, “Oh, whatever. I thought the audience would really like it and they did.”
This is just all I want from my musicians too. I want to be entertained and the artists that can do it using just their voice; like not even having to see. Just like, through sound, you can be so incredibly entertained, like that is talent.
- Foxy Shazam’s album, “Foxy Shazam” was released in 2010.
- Listen if you like: Diane Coffee, Kyle Craft, showmanship
5. Francis and the Lights – Friends ft. Bon Iver and Kanye West
Friends are the best. There needs to be more songs like this. This is a great song about having friends. And about friends being the best. It’s about the power of friendship. “Put your head on my shoulder, we can be friends,” says this song. In hard times, in soft times, in good and in bad. Friends are the best. And so is this song.
- This song has not been released as part of a larger project, but they will be performing it together at Eaux Claires music festival this year. Will Kanye show up? We can only hope so.
- Listen if you like: friends, having friends, being a friend