RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (August 2014)

The radio airwaves are looking ripe this summer as plenty of new acts and established artists crash the party with new tunes. Which ones will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here are some of my favorites being serviced in August on the AAA, Alternative, CHR and Hot AC formats:

CHR (*) and HOT AC (**)

David Guetta
DAVID GUETTA featuring SAM MARTIN – “Lovers On The Sun” (August 5) (*)
Label: Parlophone/Atlantic
DJ Guetta’s latest U.S. single was co-produced and written by Avicii and features newcomer Martin, who has a couple of songwriting credits with Maroon 5. He hasn’t had a top ten single on the pop chart since 2012’s “Titanium”; have a bevy of younger producers and the ageism of radio caught up to the hitmaker or will the airwaves welcome him again?

Bebe Rexha
BEBE REXHA – “I Can’t Stop Drinking About You” (August 12) (*)
Label: Warner Bros.
24-year-old Rexha got her first taste of the charts earlier this year when her collaboration with Cash Cash, “Take Me Home”, went top 20 at CHR radio. Her first solo single, originally uploaded online this past spring, recently drew some attention when it was remixed by duo The Chainsmokers. We’ll see if this release’s success is worth a #selfie or two.

MKTO
MKTO – “American Dream” (August 12) (*)
Label: Columbia
After months of slowly climbing up the pop chart, this duo finally broken the top ten earlier this summer with the song “Classic”. Now, fueled by that long run, Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller are offering their “Dream” with the hopes that this time around, they won’t be finding a nightmare. No worries; it’s already gone top 40 in Australia and New Zealand.

Phillip Phillips
PHILLIP PHILLIPS – “Unpack Your Heart” (August 12) (**)
Label: Interscope
Following up his recent top five AAA and top ten Hot AC hit, “Raging Fire”, Phillips is moving quickly onto this second single from Behind The Light, written and produced by the same team behind “Fire”. The former American Idol champ should have a simple time landing on both formats and, like his other songs, find placement on television this autumn.

Rixton
RIXTON – “Wait On Me” (August 12) (*)
Label: School Boy/Mad Love/Giant Little Man/Interscope
A little trouble never hurt nobody… and neither does an Ace Of Base inspired followup from this British quartet. “Me And My Broken Heart” hit #1 in the United Kingdom last month and went top ten on a handful of radio formats here. I don’t think the four will have much trouble on the surveys with this or making a few new fans. It was worth the “Wait”.

The Vamps
THE VAMPS featuring DEMI LOVATO – “Somebody To You” (August 19) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
This is the first time in the U.S. for this boy band, but they’ve already taken Europe by storm. All four singles from the debut set by the band, Meet The Vamps, have gone top five on the U.K. Singles Chart. “You” also became their first #1 in Scotland and went top 20 in Australia, their biggest hit to date. With Lovato’s help, they’ll be somebodies here soon.

ALTERNATIVE (*) and AAA (**)

Boy & Bear
BOY & BEAR – “Three Headed Woman” (August 5) (**)
Label: Nettwerk
The Australian quintet based in Sydney launched successfully at AAA radio earlier this year with “Southern Sun”. Also taken from the album Harlequin Dream, “Woman” is another great track and should be at least moderately successful on those same airwaves. After several dates abroad, the group return to the States on their worldwide tour in October.

Jungle
JUNGLE – “Busy Earnin'” (August 5) (*)
Label: XL/Beggars Group
At the moment, this new duo from London is busy earnin’ some decent peaks across the album charts in Europe, going as high as #7 in their native U.K., as well top 40 in Belgium and Switzerland. Their singles haven’t seen any substantial action, but their sound fits in neatly with the current flavor at Alternative radio, even if they themselves aren’t known.

Cold War Kids
COLD WAR KIDS – “All This Could Be Yours” (August 12) (*)
Label: Downtown
These guys have been around for some time, but their Alternative play has been limited to peaks down in the 20’s and 30’s. That may change with this single, which is featured in an advertisement for Milk Music, a new app from Samsung. The exposure’s been pretty wide thus far and with a new album due in October, the timing couldn’t be better for them.

Fitz and the Tantrums
FITZ & THE TANTRUMS – “Fools Gold” (August 12) (*)
Label: Elektra/Atlantic
More Than Just A Dream has been a fantastic era for the sextet from the Golden State, who now claim two consecutive #1’s on the Alternative chart with “Out Of My League” and “The Walker”. Their latest is certainly a standout and could continue to build up their stretch of crossover appeal as they tour the States through the fall. Let’s see how they medal.

Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
ANDREW MCMAHON IN THE WILDERNESS – “Cecilia And The Satellite” (August 19) (*)
Label: Vanguard
With the end of Jack’s Mannequin several years ago, McMahon set out on a solo adventure and the 31-year-old has come up an album due later in 2014. “Cecilia” marks the first new material from the performer since his first daughter, also named Cecilia, was born in February. With a new label backing him and a very passionate base, the sky is the limit.

Paolo Nutini
PAOLO NUTINI – “Let Me Down Easy” (August 19) (**)
Label: Atlantic
Singer/songwriter Nutini continues to be huge across the pond; his album Caustic Love is already Platinum in the U.K. after peaking at #1 in April. Though “Down” missed the top 40 there, unlike first single “Scream (Funk My Life Up)”, it is much better suited for AAA. It’s been a while since “New Shoes” hit the top there, but he still has potential to do well.

Which track(s) would you like to see do well from the list above? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab to find PGTC on social media.

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