Tag Archives: Alex Clare

ADAM’S TOP 40 FLASHBACK: July 22, 2012

Having fun. in 2012…

It’s the start of another weekend, which means it’s time for another trip back into the archives on Adam’s Top 40 Flashback! Every Saturday, the day before my latest top 40 goes up for the week, I feature the highlights of a past countdown. They’re all here — the hit songs, the songs that flopped, and the songs that may be a little embarrassing to reflect on.

This week, we stroll back five years and find out what was topping my chart for the week of July 22, 2012…

37. ELTON JOHN vs. PNAU, “Sad”
34. NO DOUBT, “Settle Down”

Biggest Movers:
THE KILLERS, “Runaways” (39-28, eleven spots)

10. ALEX CLARE, “Too Close” (up 1)
Album: The Lateness Of The Hour (2012, Republic Records)
Peak: #7

09. DANIEL POWTER, “Cupid” (steady, second week)
Album: Turn On The Lights (2012, International Solutions/Avex/Capitol Records)
Peak: #4 for four weeks

08. CARLY RAE JEPSEN, “Call Me Maybe” (down 3)
Album: Kiss (2012, Schoolboy/604/Interscope Records)
Peak: #2 for four weeks

07. MATCHBOX TWENTY, “She’s So Mean” (up 1)
Album: North (2012, Emblem/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #5 for five weeks

06. KATY PERRY, “Wide Awake” (steady, second week)
Album: Teenage Dream: The Complete Confection (2012, Capitol Records)
Peak: #4 for three weeks

05. GRAFFITI6, “Stare Into The Sun” (down 1)
Album: Colours (2012, Capitol Records)
Peak: #1 for three weeks

04. TRAIN, “50 Ways To Say Goodbye” (up 3)
Album: California 37 (2012, Columbia Records)
Peak: #2 for six weeks

03. MAROON 5, “Payphone” (down 1)
Album: Overexposed (2012, A&M/Octone/Interscope Records)
Peak: #1 for one week

02. GROUPLOVE, “Tongue Tied” (down 1)
Album: Never Trust A Happy Song (2011, Canvasback/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #1 for two weeks

01. FUN., “Some Nights” (up 2)
Album: Some Nights (2012, Fueled by Ramen/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #1 for eight weeks

Check back next Saturday for another Adam’s Top 40 Flashback countdown and don’t forget to follow the blog by using the tab below or find PGTC on social media by clicking the “Get Social!” tab at the top of the page.

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ADAM’S TOP 40 FLASHBACK: July 29, 2012

"Close" to the top.

“Close” to the top.

It’s the start of another weekend, which means it’s time for another trip back into the archives on Adam’s Top 40 Flashback! Every Saturday, the day before my latest top 40 goes up for the week, I feature the highlights of a past countdown. They’re all here — the hit songs, the songs that flopped, and the songs that may be a little embarrassing to reflect on.

This week, we stroll back four years and find out what was topping my chart for the week of July 29, 2012…

40. MAT KEARNEY, “Sooner Or Later”
39. BIG TIME RUSH, “Windows Down”
38. GREEN DAY, “Oh Love”
37. ANDY GRAMMER, “Miss Me”
36. THE SCRIPT featuring WILL.I.AM, “Hall Of Fame”

Biggest Mover(s):
NO DOUBT, “Settle Down” (34-24, ten spots)

10. CHRIS WALLACE, “Remember When (Push Rewind)” (up 3)
Album: Push Rewind (2012, ThinkSay Records)
Peak: #4 for three weeks

09. ALEX CLARE, “Too Close” (up 1)
Album: The Lateness Of The Hour (2012, Universal Republic Records)
Peak: #7

08. GRAFFITI6, “Stare Into The Sun” (down 3)
Album: Colours (2012, Capitol Records)
Peak: #1 for three weeks

07. OWL CITY & CARLY RAE JEPSEN, “Good Time” (up 4)
Album: The Midsummer Station (2012, Republic Records) and Kiss (2012, 604/School Boy/Interscope Records)
Peak: #1 for two weeks

06. MATCHBOX TWENTY, “She’s So Mean” (up 1)
Album: North (2012, Emblem/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #5 for five weeks

05. MAROON 5, “Payphone” (down 3)
Album: Overexposed (2012, A&M/Octone/Interscope Records)
Peak: #1 for one week

04. KATY PERRY, “Wide Awake” (up 2)
Album: Teenage Dream: The Complete Confection (2012, Capitol Records)
Peak: #4 for three weeks

03. TRAIN, “50 Ways To Say Goodbye” (up 1)
Album: California 37 (2012, Columbia Records)
Peak: #2 for six weeks

02. GROUPLOVE, “Tongue Tied” (steady, second week)
Album: Never Trust A Happy Song (2011, Canvasback/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #1 for two weeks

01. FUN., “Some Nights” (steady, second week)
Album: Some Nights (2012, Fueled by Ramen/Atlantic Records)
Peak: #1 for eight weeks

Check back next Saturday for another Adam’s Top 40 Flashback countdown and don’t forget to follow the blog by using the tab below or find PGTC on social media by clicking the “Get Social!” tab at the top of the page.

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PROFILE: John Newman Looks For “Love” In The U.K. And Beyond

He's not giving in.

He’s not giving in.

He became one of last year’s breakout stars on the scene in the United Kingdom with one of the top 20 selling singles of 2012: quite the introduction to the industry from someone who was planning on being a mechanic after his schooling. Meet 23-year-old John Newman, a singer I hope is going to make 2013 shake, rattle and soul with his first release as a solo artist. It’s only a matter of time before he makes the United States fall in “love” with him.

Newman was born in the small town of Settle in the country of North Yorkshire in England and was largely into house music through his early teens, though he soon developed an affection for his mother’s record collection full of R&B music of the 70’s and 80’s. He also found a liking for singer-songwriters like Ben Harper and Damien Rice, so, he learned the guitar and built a small studio in his home in 2005. He went to the College Of Music in Leeds, then moved to London where he played live and was eventually signed by Island Records last year. It was also in 2012 that he got his big break singing on a number-one record.

Newman was approached by the British electronic quartet Rudimental to appear on two of their songs from their album released a few weeks ago, Home. They both became singles from the effort. The first, “Feel The Love”, a dubstep number with a jazzy twist, easily claimed the #1 spot on the Singles Chart in the United Kingdom for a week in May of last year. It also did well in Australia, Belgium and Netherlands. It was never released in the United States. This also occurred with the followup single, “Not Giving In”, which also featured a vocal from Alex Clare. That only rose to #14, but it did feature similar jazz and dubstep elements. Newman could’ve chosen to gone that route with his new solo deal, but he’s decided to go in a more traditional direction, and it serves him well.

With a full-length album in the pipeline and a couple of dates scheduled in July for performances in the United Kingdom, Island Records is releasing the first single from the effort, a song called “Love Me Again”. It gets a U.K. release on July 1. “Love” is one of the songs that represents a huge musical melting pot that doesn’t particularly represent one particular era or style. His voice has the grit and soul of the south in the 60’s, like James Brown or Alex Chilton of The Box Tops. The strings that come in at the end of the chorus are easily late 70’s disco, very much reminiscent of the 1979 hit for Gloria Gaynor, the classic “I Will Survive”. The keys give off an early 90’s house vibe, similar to “How To Dance” by the Bingoboys and Princessa (1991) or “What Is Love?” by Haddaway (1993). Then, there’s the drum, which I attribute to a more modern approach; listen to the 2011 single by Olly Murs and Rizzle Kicks, “Heart Skips A Beat” and you’ll recognize the percussion line.

Now, while this setup is perfect for the United Kingdom and will likely propel his single to the top of the charts, it’s more of a puzzle for our fragmented format system here in the United States. It could be serviced to the AAA format, but it might be seen as too commercial-sounding, especially with the really polished strings part. It could go to the Hot AC format, but again, it might be seen as too edgy because of the much-layered sound of it. Then, there’s the CHR format, who would probably pass on it for sounding too dated. There in lies the problem. I may not be picky when it comes to these kinds of songs, but certainly, a lot of people would skip right over it. However, it’s his most accessible single to date when it comes to worldwide potential. I loved it from the first listen. We’ll see if a U.S. release actually comes to fruition, because we’re definitely missing out on a good thing.

He has the style in his button down and jacket and he has the sound with his seamless ability to roll through the decades without missing a beat. With a video approaching 500,000 hits on YouTube and 125,000 streams on his SoundCloud account, Newman didn’t have to wait too long for the public to love him again. It’s all right there in front of him.

Watch the video for Newman’s debut solo single, “Love Me Again”. / Pre-order “Love Me Again” on iTunes (U.K. only.)

Are you already fan of Newman’s collaborations with Rudimental and looking forward to his solo material? Are you just discovering him for the first time? Let me know! Comment below or find me on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel.


Filed under Charts/Trade Papers, Music News, Single Reviews

ADAM’S TOP 100 OF 2012 – #20 to #11 (Post 7 of 11)

Quicker than a Rae of light.

Quicker than a Rae of light.

From now until New Year’s Eve, I’ll be counting down my top 100 songs of the year. Every week, I make a top 40 list, and each position gets a certain amount of points, plus, I add in some extra points for weeks at #1, which goes towards their yearly total. The survey period is from December 4, 2011 to November 25, 2012. Ties are broken by (1) peak position, then (2) weeks at peak position, and then (3) number of weeks on chart should it go that far. Somehow, we’ve made it through 80% of the chart. That was fast! Now, without further ado, let’s enter the top twenty singles of the year:

020. One Direction – One Thing (623 points) (PEAK: #5)
All you Directioners, gather ’round. Here’s the last of their four songs in the top 100, the second Stateside and third international single from their debut effort, Up All Night. Though it only rose to #5, it managed to stay on for 24 weeks, thanks in part to a small bounce from its announcement as a U.S. release. So, I’m afraid this is where leave it for this year, but no worries, pint-size pop dreamers. “Little Things” is in my weekly top 20 and still rising. Now you can go back to playing with your Niall and Zayn dolls.

019. The Script – If You Ever Come Back (659 points) (PEAK: #4)
Here’s one of the few acts left on my chart that have only ever peaked in the top ten with their single releases. Six of the seven have hit the top five, and this is, in fact, the lowest peaking of the six thus far, peaking at #4 for two weeks. The seventh single, “Six Degrees Of Separation”, is still climbing up the chart, up to #8 this past week. Two members of the band made their debut on my top 40 back in the spring of 2000 as a part of MyTown, an Irish boy band that reached that lower rungs with a ballad called “Now That I Found You”.

018. Daniel Powter – Cupid (684 points) (PEAK: #4)
No, this is not a hot Sam Cooke remake, but it’s still a good song. I was in love with his major label debut, a 2005 self-titled album, which included two #1’s on my chart, “Bad Day” and “Jimmy Gets High”. 2008’s Under The Radar launched another chart-topper, “Next Plane Home”. This was his ninth top-40 hit, which fell just short of the top spot, though it did become his seventh top five entry. Alas, it doesn’t look like a second single from the effort is happening, so it’s going to be a little bit longer before Powter makes it into the double digits, but I’m sure he’ll get there.

017. Pink – Blow Me (One Last Kiss) (684 points) (PEAK: #2)
She’s the sassy singer from Pennsylvania and it simply wouldn’t be a first single from her if she wasn’t bringing the attitude. From “There You Go” to “Stupid Girls” and “So What” to the #17 song of the year, you know she’s out for blood. Parent album The Truth About Love became the singer’s first to debut at #1 on the album chart in the States, and has been certified platinum for shipments of one million copies, her sixth studio album in a row to reach that level. “Blow” spent two weeks at #2 and as of my most recent chart, has been ranking in the top 40 for 25 weeks.

016. Owl City & Carly Rae Jepsen – Good Time (730 points) (PEAK: #1 for two weeks)
It was one of the top collaborations of the year: a feel-good summer single that gave both performers their second big national hit. Owl City first topped my chart in 2009 with “Fireflies”, which held the top spot for six weeks. This one held the top spot for two weeks in mid-September. “Time” only lasted 23 weeks in the top 40, one of the shorter runs for a chart-topping song this year, but, a #1 is a #1.

015. Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe (735 points) (PEAK: #2)
Well, well, well. Miss Jepsen strikes again with the most overused pick-up line of the year. It’s no lyrical masterpiece, but it’s easily one of the catchiest songs of the year. Jepsen made her debut on Canadian Idol in 2007, placing third, but it was Justin Bieber and his manager Scooter Braun who gave her a bigger breakout with “Maybe”. It spent four weeks at #2 on my chart, while topping the national charts in over a dozen countries, including the United States.

014. Alex Clare – Too Close (741 points) (PEAK: #7)
What’s a song that peaked so low in the top ten doing all the way up here? Well, not only did it reach its peak nearly four mouths into its chart run, but it also became the first song to peak outside of the top five and spend 30 weeks in the top 40. Also, this is his debut single. You probably recognize it from all those Internet Explorer 9 commercials over the past year. Clare’s now charted with a second single, “Up All Night”, so he likely won’t be a one-hit wonder for me, but in terms of national popularity, I can’t see how he wouldn’t be one.

013. Maroon 5 – Payphone (753 points) (PEAK: #1 for one week)
1889 marked the invention of the public payphone by William Gray, but by 2012, the Gray had turned to Maroon. Though it managed a top 30 debut on impact, the song only spent one week at #1 before falling down the chart. Perhaps they didn’t have enough change to put into the chart machine. It still managed to help their album, Overexposed, debut at #2 on the album chart.

012. Keane – Silenced By The Night (764 points) (PEAK: #1 for four weeks)
The only one thing that’s alluded this band since they made their debut back in 2004 was a #1 single. The highest they came was back in 2006, when they hit the #2 spot with “Is It Any Wonder?” Well, this year, they finally hit the peak of pop perfection for four weeks with this leadoff single from Strangeland. “Silenced” wasn’t a huge international smash, only reaching the top 40 in two countries (Belgium and The Netherlands), but as far as my chart’s concerned, it may be their biggest single ever.

011. Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) (769 points) (PEAK: #2)
Last one on the countdown for the most successful singer to come out of American Idol on my chart. This was her 18th top-40 hit, though she’s now hit the big 2-0 with her most recent entry, “Catch My Breath”. Originally billed as “What Doesn’t Kill You (Stronger)”, then swapped around for the single release, it spent four weeks at #2 on the chart and half a year on. Only one song by a solo female is left in the countdown.

It’s about to get really good tomorrow. The top ten is coming, starting off with three records that, get this — all spent the same number of weeks at #1, the same number of weeks in the top 40, and all came within three points of one another. We’ll sort out the disoriented digits and more when the chart rolls on.

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Highlights from Adam’s Top 40: December 16, 2012

Holding up the #1 spot. Carry on, boys.

Another week at the top was fun.damental.

40. Alex Clare – Up All Night
39. Britt Nicole – Gold
36. Phillip Phillips – Gone, Gone, Gone | HIGHEST DEBUT

31. Robbie Williams (38) | BIGGEST MOVER
26. Christina Aguilera with Blake Shelton – Just A Fool (31)
24. Matt Cardle – Anyone Else (29)

10. Kelly Clarkson – Catch My Breath (11) | PEAK: #10
09. The Script – Six Degrees Of Separation (12) | PEAK: #09
08. Lifehouse featuring Natasha Bedingfield – Between The Raindrops (09) | PEAK: #08
07. Jason Mraz – 93 Million Miles (07) | PEAK: #07
06. Andy Grammer – Miss Me (06) | PEAK: #01 for two weeks
05. Robbie Williams – Candy (04) | PEAK: #04
04. Adele – Skyfall (02) | PEAK: #01 for three weeks
03. Olly Murs – Troublemaker (05) | PEAK: #03
02. Pink – Try (03) | PEAK: #02
01. fun. – Carry On (01) | PEAK: #01 for three weeks

Top 10 Next In Line:
1. Youngblood Hawke – We Come Running (1)
2. Ed Sheeran – Give Me Love (5)
3. Train – Joy To The World (8)
4. The Killers – Miss Atomic Bomb (2)
5. The All-American Rejects – Heartbeat Slowing Down (7)
6. Of Monsters And Men – Mountain Sound (10)
7. Colbie Caillat featuring Gavin DeGraw – We Both Know (-)
8. Taylor Swift – 22 (-)
9. Pink featuring Nate Reuss – Just Give Me A Reason (-)
10. John Mayer – Something Like Olivia (6)

In The Mix:
Aerosmith featuring Carrie Underwood – Can’t Stop Lovin’ You (new)
Carly Rae Jepsen – Tonight I’m Getting Over You
Ellie Goulding – Figure 8
Lawson – Learn To Love Again (new)
Owl City – Shooting Star (re-entry)

Christmas Corner:
Christina Perri – Something About December
Colbie Caillat featuring Justin Young – The Christmas Song
Daniel Powter – Cupid (Christmas Remix) (re-entry)
Karmin – Sleigh Ride
Lady Antebellum – A Holly Jolly Christmas

See my full chart on the M4BCC message board.

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Wondering About One-Hit Wonders: 2012’s Potential List

That's just his "Style".

That’s just his “Style”.

As 2012 draws to a close, some singers and acts have been more successful than their counterparts. Of course, established acts like Adele, Flo Rida and Maroon 5, who have consistently done well, once again showed that they have some major chart muscle. Others, like Jessie J, LMFAO and Owl City, artists who were generally considered one-hit wonders in the U.S. despite minor entries and/or international success, scored a second big hit, thus, opening up the possibility for more success in the future. Then, there is a category of artists who will be doomed to one big hit only… the dreaded title of one-hit wonder.

Now, not everybody who gets predicted to be a one-hit wonder actually ends up being one. I, myself, thought Carly Rae Jepsen would score her only hit with the catchy “Call Me Maybe”, but she made it to the top ten once again with, now, another two-hit wonder, Owl City, on “Good Time”. I was also wrong about a certain girl’s whose first major single was “Pon De Replay”. Look at Rihanna now. Look at that song now; you barely hear it. So, bloggers, fans, artists, take these predictions with a grain of salt, but prepare yourselves just in case it does happen. Also, remember, I’m strictly talking about one-hit wonders in the United States and mainly on mainstream and Top 40 stations; some may apply worldwide, but I’ll elaborate on everything as I go through each example.

Several acts on the charts at this moment are looking for their second big single. On CHR radio, Ellie Goulding is up to #25 with “Anything Could Happen”, her second top-40 hit following “Lights”. Even though her current single has brick walled right now, she’s most likely capable of securing another hit, especially with her collaboration with Calvin Harris, “I Need Your Love”. Cher Lloyd is up to #28 with “Oath” featuring Becky G, her followup to a top ten record, “Want U Back”. It’s not doing amazingly at the moment, but Lloyd is young and has a lot of potential, so she’ll probably stay around for a while. Both Goulding and Lloyd have been much bigger in the United Kingdom.

Then, we have acts who are in with their first big hit: Phillip Phillips with “Home” at #10, Ed Sheeran with “The A-Team” at #15, etc. It’s too early to call on some of the acts further down than that. These two should be safe to have at least one more hit, however. Phillips will be releasing “Gone, Gone, Gone” as his next single in early 2013, and Sheeran is already climbing at AAA radio with “Lego House”, which was a big U.K. release for him. Sheeran is also opening for Taylor Swift on her tour, which will keep him familiar with American audiences for some time. I think can both do particularly well, especially in the upcoming Spring season.

Now, the list. Well, five examples of could-be’s.

Once upon a time, a long time ago… okay, fine, it was ten years ago, a little trio named Dirty Vegas scored a top ten record at CHR radio with a song called “Days Go By” that got widespread exposure through an advertisement for the Mitsubishi Eclipse. Though it was lyrically a breakup song, it had a danceable beat and it ascended the charts up to a high of #7 before falling off. Consider Alex Clare this decade’s version of that particular example. His song, “Too Close”, reached a high of #4 on the same airplay chart after being prominently featured in an advertisement for Internet Explorer. Though it’s lyrically a breakup song, it has a danceable beat and it ascended the charts and is just dropping in spins now. Déjà vu? Point is, his followup single in the States, “Up All Night”, is very unlikely to crossover to CHR radio, so he will likely have to settle with his one hit. This is happening globally too as none of his other singles have caught on. In other words, the coast is Clare.

As of April 2013, Clare has yet to score another mainstream hit here in the States.

This one shouldn’t be any surprise considering that Gotye has basically accepted the fact that he’s going to be a one-hit wonder. In an article with NME, he said, “If I was to become a one-hit wonder, I’d be in some good company.” Well, “Somebody That I Used To Know” was a big #1 hit in the United States, and even though the followup, “Eyes Wide Open”, was a mid-charter at Alternative radio, it never became a national smash, and he hasn’t charted since. Kimbra is going to end up in the same category here in the States, but she’s managed to score a few chart singles in her native New Zealand, including one top ten earlier this year.

As of April 2013, neither singer has charted here.

Originally a hit in Australia in 2011, “We Run The Night” was Brown’s debut single, remixed for American audiences by successful producer RedOne and featuring rapper Pitbull. The result was a #1 Dance hit and a top twenty hit on CHR radio that was quite the slow burner. Brown has had better success as a DJ in Australian nightclubs. Her album, When The Lights Go Out, only hit a high of #16 on Australia’s Album Chart and second single, “Get It”, barely scratched the top 40 there. I guess very few people actually got it. Well, even if she gives up as a singer, she still has her other profession to fall back on.

As of April 2013, Brown managed to have another moderate single in her native Australia, the top 20 “Big Banana”. She has yet to issue any other releases here.

Have you turned on your radio lately to find a folky song playing? You think, “Hmmm, that’s not Mumford & Sons. It’s not Phillip Phillips either. Who could it be?” Congratulations, you’ve just found yourself another one-hit wonder, The Lumineers. Don’t blame this trio for stealing the particular sound that’s become the rage lately; “Ho Hey” has been around for a while. It, too, has been the subject of an advertisement campaign, but an online one for Bing. Also, correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe this song is the shortest song to hit the CHR chart this decade. It clocks in at 2:35. It’s the shortest one to hit the top 40 since 2007, when the Jonas Brothers clocked in at 2:33 with the debut charting single, “S.O.S.”, a #23 hit. Followup single “Stubborn Love” is gaining minor airplay at Alternative radio, but it won’t do anything at Pop radio stations. “Ho Hey” is simpler and much easier to digest.

As of April 2013, “Stubborn Love” has received very little crossover play, and it peaked at a lowly #70 on the Hot 100. Who knows if the third single, “Submarines”, can do any better?

OK, guys, the fun is over: “Gangnam Style”, which will shortly be surpassing 900 million views on YouTube, is falling in both sales and airplay here in the States. Hey, it was no “Macarena”, though it did hit #2 on the Hot 100 and #10 on CHR radio. PSY has had multiple hits in South Korea for over a decade, so he won’t be a one-hit wonder there, but outside of there, he is the most obvious one-hit wonder with a dance craze-related single since Los Del Rio. Are you really expecting this guy to take the charts by storm again here in the States? Justin Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, will try as he might to get some sort of second single on the charts, possibly featuring Bieber, but it’s not going to work whatsoever. 안녕, PSY. (That was goodbye, by the way.)

As of April 2013, PSY managed to have another hit! “Gentleman” made the top 5 on the Hot 100, but it was largely due to YouTube plays and not from airplay or sales. Oh well. He’ll still always be remembered for “Gangnam Style”.

Am I totally wrong? Right on? Missed a big one? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel.

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