Tag Archives: Hot AC

RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (June 2017)

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in June in this month’s Radio Report:

ANDREW MCMAHON IN THE WILDERNESS – “So Close” (Crush/Vanguard/Concord, June 6 – Alternative)
Album: Zombies On Broadway (2017)
Past ALT History: McMahon has the distinction of reaching the top 40 at the format with three acts: Something Corporate, Jack’s Mannequin and his latest solo project. He has two top five hits to date, including “Fire Escape”, which went to #4 earlier this year.

ARCADE FIRE – “Everything Now” (Columbia, June 6 – Alternative)
Album: Everything Now (2017)
Past ALT History: Since 2007, this Canadian act has entered the Alternative survey with a handful of singles, two of which made it through the top 20: “Ready To Start” (#16, 2010) and “Reflektor” (#17, 2013). Though reaction is mixed, it should do nicely here.

LORDE – “Perfect Places” (Lava/Republic, June 6 – Alternative)
Album: Melodrama (2017)
Past ALT History: This is the second single from the New Zealand performer’s forthcoming set, with “Green Light” riding up to its #8 peak several weeks ago. Out of six top 40 entries at the format, her first was her biggest, “Royals”, a seven-week #1 from 2013.

BEBE REXHA featuring LIL’ WAYNE – “The Way I Are (Dance With Somebody)” (Warner Bros., June 6 – Top 40)
Album: All Your Fault: Pt. 2 (EP) (2017)
Past T40 History: Rexha is still struggling at the format as a main-credited artist, though she continues to get closer to the top ten with each single release. She’ll get there! Most recently, “In The Name Of Love” (with Martin Garrix) and “I Got You” reached #14.

CHORD OVERSTREET & DEEPEND – “Hold On (Remix)” (4th & Broadway/Safehouse/Island/Republic, June 6 – Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past T40 History: Singer/songwriter Overstreet was one member of the credited Glee Cast, who made the top 50 twice with “Last Christmas” (#50, 2010) and “Loser Like Me” (#42, 2011). This is the first collaboration between he and the Dutch DJs/producers.

BRUNO MARS – “Versace On The Floor” (Atlantic, June 12 – Hot AC and June 13 – Top 40)
Album: 24K Magic (2016)
Past T40 History: Mars is coming off a #1 hit (three weeks) at Top 40 with “That’s What I Like”, which also reached #2 at Hot AC. Before “Like” was announced as a single, “Floor” received significant unsolicited spins at the Top 40 format. Summer smash alert!

ROBIN SCHULZ featuring JAMES BLUNT – “OK” (Big Beat/RRP, June 19 – Hot AC)
Album: Uncovered (2017)
Past HAC History: Schulz has charted as a main artist or producer of three top 40 entries at the format, his most recent being last year’s “Sugar” (#38) with singer Francesco Yates. Blunt spent five weeks at #1 in 2006 with the soft pop ballad “You’re Beautiful”.

TOM WALKER – “Just You And I” (Epic, June 19 – Hot AC)
Album: Blessings (EP) (2017)
Past HAC History: This is Walker’s first song to impact at the format, and it’s already seen some light and/or specialty airplay at a handful of stations on the panel. It’s accumulated nearly 17 million streams on Spotify, much of that coming from a U.K. audience.

JULIA MICHAELS – “Uh Huh” (Republic, June 20 – Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past T40 History: Michaels is still in the top ten on the chart (and gaining) with “Issues”, though it is eligible to go recurrent soon. She’s also co-written over a dozen top 40 entries at the format since 2013, including Selena Gomez’s current radio hit, “Bad Liar”.

ALL TIME LOW – “Good Times” (Fueled By Ramen/RRP, June 26 – Hot AC and June 27 – Top 40)
Album: Last Young Renegade (2017)
Past T40 History: Nearly six years ago, this band’s only charting song, “I Feel Like Dancin'”, spent three consecutive weeks at #41. One additional single, “Something’s Gotta Give”, narrowly missed the top 50 in 2015. Will this track become their first top 40 hit?

Plenty of unreleased summer singles are still on the way, so make sure you watch out for them as they debut…

Which of these new songs would you like to see on the charts later this year? Let me know!

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (May 2017)

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in May in this month’s Radio Report:

TRAIN – “Drink Up” (Columbia, May 1 – Hot AC)
Album: a girl a bottle a boat (2017)
Past HAC History: Leader Pat Monahan and the San Francisco group have been a mainstay on the Hot AC chart since 1999, and at the beginning of the year, “Play That Song” became their 14th top ten single on the survey. We’ll see if the panel takes a sip of this.

FOSTER THE PEOPLE – “Doing It For The Money” (Columbia, May 2 – Alternative)
Album: III (EP) (2017)
Past ALT History: The California quartet, who previously charted as a trio, has a total of six top 40 hits to date at the format, with four breaking into the top ten. The lone #1, “Pumped Up Kicks”, spent six sensational weeks at the summit in the summer of 2011.

OH WONDER – “Ultralife” (Republic, May 2 – Alternative)
Album: Ultralife (2017)
Past ALT History: This London duo, who built a following on various streaming services and Hype Machine blogs, put out a single per month for one year, which began in the fall of 2014. One of them, “Lose It”, received some minor airplay in the spring of 2016.

HAILEE STEINFELD – “Most Girls” (Republic, May 2 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Actress and singer Steinfeld’s had three top 40 pop hits since 2015, including the #14 single “Love Myself” and the Zedd and Grey-assisted “Starving”, which held for three weeks at #5 earlier this year. There’s no word yet on her debut album.

KATY PERRY featuring MIGOS – “Bon Appétit” (Capitol, May 2 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Perry’s “Chained To The Rhythm” lost its rhythm in the #8 spot recently, despite one of the biggest batches of first week adds (174) in the history of the PPW era. Even with a few social media missteps, the singer (and rap trio) will soldier on.

CLEAN BANDIT featuring ZARA LARSSON – “Symphony” (Big Beat/Atlantic, May 16 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Daily struggle! This English trio’s “Rockabye”, featuring Anne-Marie and Sean Paul, recently reached #4 at the format. They have yet to hit #1. Larsson got to #5 in a duet with MNEK last year, “Never Forget You”, and has five entries to date.

SHAWN HOOK featuring VANESSA HUDGENS – “Reminding Me” (Hollywood, May 16 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Canadian singer Hook reached #21 last year with “Sound Of Your Heart”, a single that also made the top 30 on the Hot AC chart. American actress and singer Hudgens last hit the top 40 in 2006 with “Come Back To Me”, which peaked at #18.

RAG’N’BONE MAN – “Skin” (Columbia, May 23 – Alternative)
Album: Human (2017)
Past ALT History: The 32-year-old English performer is still climbing at the Hot AC and Top 40 formats with title track “Human”. The global hit, initially boosted by iHeartMedia’s On The Verge program, spent two weeks at #1 on the Alternative chart in March.

Plenty of unreleased summer singles are still on the way, so make sure you watch out for them as they debut…

Which of these new songs would you like to see on the charts later this year? Let me know!

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (April 2017)

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in April in this month’s Radio Report:

BLEACHERS – “Don’t Take The Money” (RCA, April 4 – Alternative)
Album: Everybody Lost Somebody (2017)
Past ALT History: Jack Antonoff’s popular project has stormed the top five on the Alternative chart with two tracks: “I Wanna Get Better” (#1, one week) and “Rollercoaster” (#3). With a strong start over the past few days, I expect this release to join them soon.

COIN – “I Don’t Wanna Dance” (Columbia, April 4 – Alternative)
Album: How Will You Know If You Never Try (2017)
Past ALT History: This Nashville group’s breakout hit, “Talk Too Much”, talked its way up to #8 earlier this year. Despite the slow run of that song, the band now has some momentum ahead of their album release later this month. We’ll see how this tune moves.

HEY VIOLET – “Break My Heart” (Caroline, April 4 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: The California group, previously known as Cherri Bomb, reached a peak of #18 earlier this year with “Guys My Age”. Their label, also responsible for Ben Rector’s “Brand New” (#26) from last summer, doesn’t have much pull on the pop side.

MIKE POSNER – “In The Arms Of A Stranger” (Island/Republic, April 4 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: At Night. Alone. (2016)
Past CHR History: Posner has eight top 50 appearances to date, half failing to reach the top 40. However, his 2016 comeback will be remembered as one of the most impressive of the decade, with a remix of “I Took A Pill In Ibiza” spending two weeks at the top.

OLIVIA HOLT – “History” (Hollywood, April 4 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: Olivia (EP) (2016)
Past CHR History: This is Holt’s first track to impact here. Is another classic top 30 brick wall in the works for Hollywood’s latest? Considering the results of other pop acts on their roster, like Jordan Fisher, Sabrina Carpenter and Shawn Hook, it could happen.

JAMES TW – “Ex” (Island/Republic, April 10 – Hot AC)
Album: TBA
Past HAC History: I was really rooting for his ballad “When You Love Someone”, which spent seven weeks atop my personal chart in 2016, when it was at the format. Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be, just edging into the top 30. I’m hoping this has a nice run.

RUTH B – “Superficial Love” (Columbia, April 10 – Hot AC)
Album: Safe Haven (2017)
Past HAC History: From Vine star to radio star, the Canadian singer and songwriter’s “Lost Boy” got found in the top ten, peaking at #6 last year. There’s been an unusually long amount of time between the two singles at Hot AC. How will it affect the chart run?

SIGRID – “Don’t Kill My Vibe” (Island/Republic, April 11 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: This Norwegian performer is headed to U.S. radio for the first time, and her debut single is already a sales and streaming hit in her home country. We’ll see if the newcomer can match the heights of a-ha and their #1 from 1985, “Take On Me”.

TINASHE – “Flame” (RCA, April 11 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: While not yet a prominent name on the CHR airwaves, this performer has achieved some success at the format in the last few years, including the #20 hit “2 On” in 2014. Plus, who doesn’t love an artist promoting her new song on a fire truck?

LANY – “ILYSB” (Interscope, April 17 – Hot AC)
Album: Make Out (EP) (2015)
Past HAC History: If you’re a happenin’ hipster in the SoundCloud universe, you’re probably wondering why a track from 2014 is headed to radio. Honestly, I am too, but it’s nice to see this California trio is finally getting their first shot at some notable airplay.

THE 1975 – “A Change Of Heart” (Interscope, April 18 – Alternative)
Album: I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it (2016)
Past ALT History: The four guys from Manchester must’ve been pretty frustrated seeing song after song of theirs miss the top ten at the format, so they did something about it. “Somebody Else”, their fifth top 40 single here, took its time and reached a #3 peak.

YOUNGR – “Out Of My System” (Island/Republic, April 25 – Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past ALT History: What happens when the kid of Kid Creole takes on the playground we call Alternative radio? Format newcomer Dario Darnell is out to prove that his single is a wonderful thing, baby. This song’s been around for a year, but it still sounds fresh.

Which of these new songs would you like to see on the charts later this year? Let me know!

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (March 2017)

Radio Report - March 2017

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in March in this month’s Radio Report:

SHERYL CROW – “Halfway There” (Warner Bros., March 6 – Triple A)
Album: Be Myself (2017)
Past AAA History: She’s had a long history at the format, including five #1 hits. 2002’s “Soak Up The Sun” spent eight weeks there.

LORDE – “Green Light” (Lava/Republic, March 6 / 7 – Hot AC and CHR/Top 40)
Album: Melodrama (2017)
Past CHR/HAC History: “Royals” (2013) and “Team” (2014) were #1 songs at both formats. Will “Green” speed its way to the top?

NOAH KAHAN – “Young Blood” (Republic, March 13 – Triple A)
Album: TBA
Past AAA History: This is the Vermont native’s debut release, making it his first ever adds date! It’s climbing on my personal chart.

BEA MILLER – “Song Like You” (Hollywood, March 13 / 14 – Hot AC and CHR/Top 40)
Album: Chapter One: Blue (EP) (2017)
Past CHR/HAC History: Miller’s had minor success at the two formats so far. On the CHR list, 2014’s “Young Blood” reached #38.

MISTERWIVES  – “Machine” (Republic, March 14 – Alternative)
Album: Connect The Dots (2017)
Past ALT History: “Reflections” and “Our Own House” fizzled below the top 30 at the format, but there’s early action for this tune.

DUA LIPA – “Be The One” (Warner Bros., March 21 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: Dua Lipa (2017)
Past CHR History: “Blow Your Mind (Mwah)” was pulled in January, narrowly missing the top 20. We’ll see how this “One” charts.

SAINT MOTEL – “Born Again” (Elektra/Atlantic, March 21 – Alternative)
Album: saintmotelevision (2016)
Past ALT History: “Born” is likely to become the band’s fourth top 40 song at the format. Their biggest, “My Type”, hit #9 in 2015.

Which of these new songs would you like to see on the charts later this year? Let me know!

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (January 2017)

Radio Report - January 2017

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in January in this month’s Radio Report:

ONEREPUBLIC – “Let’s Hurt Tonight” (Mosley/Interscope, January 9 – Hot AC)
Album: Oh My My (2016)
Past HAC History: Since 2007, Ryan Tedder and crew have been regulars on the chart. This should become their 14th top 40 song.

HEMBREE – “Holy Water” (Ribbon Music, January 10 – Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past ALT History: From Kansas City, this male trio is a new name here. A handful of tastemakers on the panel have started to air it.

NOAH CYRUS featuring LABRINTH – “Make Me (Cry)” (RECORDS, January 10 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Cyrus will become the fourth member of that family to chart with her first hit. Labrinth had a minor hit in 2013.

BROODS – “Heartlines” (Capitol, January 16 – Hot AC)
Album: Conscious (2016)
Past HAC History: This New Zealand sibling duo has no prior history at this format, but they do have three top 40 Alternative hits.

BASTILLE – “Blame” (Capitol, January 17 – Alternative)
Album: Wild World (2016)
Past ALT History: This quartet is 4-for-4 as far as top five singles at the format, with two reaching #1: “Pompeii” and “Good Grief”.

LITTLE MIX – “Shout Out To My Ex” (Syco/Columbia, January 17 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: Glory Days (2016)
Past CHR History: The popular U.K. girl group has three top 40 hits so far, the biggest being “Black Magic”, which hit #23 in 2015.

MAGGIE LINDEMANN – “Pretty Girl” (300 Entertainment/in2une, January 17 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: It’s the first time at the format for the 18-year-old artist. The track is approaching six million streams at Spotify.

LINDSEY STIRLING featuring ZZ WARD – “Hold My Heart” (Lindseystomp/in2une, January 23 – Hot AC)
Album: Brave Enough (2016)
Past HAC History: This is the first collaboration for the two female soloists, who each have two minor top 40 singles at the format.

PASSENGER – “Anywhere” (Nettwerk, January 30 – Triple A)
Album: Young As The Morning, Old As The Sea (2016)
Past AAA History: Mike Rosenberg got to #1 in 2013 with a reissue of “Let Her Go”. “Somebody’s Love” went top five late last year.

OCEAN PARK STANDOFF – “Good News” (Hollywood, January 31 – Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past ALT History: California’s had many acts make their debut at the format. We’ll see if this Santa Monica trio is the next to chart.

These past picks are headed to additional formats this month:
CALUM SCOTT – “Dancing On My Own” (Capitol, 1/10 – CHR/Top 40) (See October 2016 Report for Hot AC date)
KALEO – “All The Pretty Girls” (Elektra/Atlantic, 1/17 – Alternative)
(See April 2015 Report for Triple A date)
LP – “Lost On You” (Vagrant/BMG, 1/17 – Alternative)
(See November 2016 Report for Triple A date)
THE SCORE – “Unstoppable” (Republic, 1/24 re-service – Alternative)
(See September 2016 Report for initial Alternative date)

Which of these new songs would you like to see on the charts later this year? Let me know!

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (December 2016)

Radio Report - December 2016

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in December in this month’s Radio Report.

BEBE REXHA – “I Got You” (Warner Bros., December 6 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Despite her various accomplishments as a writer and a featured singer, Rexha’s two main-credited chart entries have barely scratched the top 30 at the format. This one is gaining some solid early stations, but will radio give her another chance?

PHANTOGRAM – “Same Old Blues” (Republic, December 6 – Alternative)
Album: Three (2016)
Past ALT History: This New York City duo, consisting of Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter, recently hit the top ten on this format with a song that also reached #2 on my personal chart, “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore”. Their latest single should be another winner.

RAG’N’BONE MAN – “Human” (RCA, December 6 – Alternative)
Album: Human (2017)
Past ALT History: This massive international single is currently top ten on iTunes in at least 20 countries around the globe, with #1 peaks in Austria, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland. Needless to say, all that momentum should help spread the buzz here quickly.

LOST KINGS featuring EMILY WARREN – “Phone Down” (Disruptor/RCA, December 13 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: Robert Gainley and Dr. No are best known for their remixes, much like how The Chainsmokers began. (The two acts share a manager.) Warren was the featured vocalist on FRENSHIP’s “Capsize”, which just missed the top 20 several weeks ago.

Which of these new songs would you like to see atop the charts? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab above to find PGTC on social media.

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (November 2016)

Radio Report - November 2016

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in November in this month’s Radio Report.

CAPTAIN CUTS featuring NATEUR – “Love Like We Used To” (Epic, November 1 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: The Los Angeles songwriting/production trio has achieved some success at the format, most notably with “Shut Up And Dance” for Walk The Moon, which reached #2 for three weeks last year. Nateur, writer Nate Cyphert, has not charted here.

JACOB WHITESIDES – “Focus” (Double U/ADA, November 1 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: Why? (2016)
Past CHR History: Tennessee teen Whitesides, who turns 19 later this month, stalled out just below the top 50 here earlier in 2016 with “Lovesick”. Though it likely won’t do much heading into the holidays, the singer has a large group of fans to support the single.

ALEX DA KID featuring X AMBASSADORS & ELLE KING – “Not Easy” (RCA, November 7 / 8 – Triple A / Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past AAA/ALT History: Both featured acts are known at the two formats, the former for hits like “Renegades” and “Unsteady”, and the latter for “Ex’s And Oh’s” and “Under The Influence”. With a strong team, it should be an “Easy” sell for crossover play in 2017.

LP – “Lost On You” (Vagrant/BMG, November 7 – Triple A)
Album: Death Valley (EP) (2016)
Past AAA History: Four years ago, “Into The Wild” achieved some airplay at the format after being featured in a Citibank ad, and it had a brief run in the top 40. However, this release comes to the U.S. with huge chart success across Europe. Don’t let it get “Lost”.

LUKAS GRAHAM – “You’re Not There” (Warner Bros., November 7 / 8 – Hot AC / CHR/Top 40)
Album: Lukas Graham (2016)
Past HAC/CHR History: The Danish band has two U.S. hits to date, the larger of the two being chart-topper “7 Years”, which spent three weeks at #1 on the Hot AC chart and one week on the CHR chart. Their newest single will be “There” in the top 40 quite soon.

STING – “I Can’t Stop Thinking About You” (A&M/Interscope, November 7 – Hot AC)
Album: 57th & 9th (2016)
Past HAC History: The 65-year-old musician was last on the chart a decade ago, when he collaborated with Sheryl Crow on “Always On Your Side”. It reached #10. His biggest Hot AC hit is “Desert Rose”, featuring Cheb Mami, which spent ten weeks at #3 in 2000.

CHARLI XCX featuring LIL YACHTY – “After The Afterparty” (Atlantic, November 15 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: TBA
Past CHR History: It’s been nearly two years since this English singer appeared in the top 40 with “Break The Rules”, which peaked at #23 (and was largely forgotten about after the holiday freeze.) With two #1 songs to her credit, we’ll see how this party plays out.

MIIKE SNOW – “The Heart Of Me” (Downtown/Atlantic, November 15 – Alternative)
Album: iii (2016)
Past ALT History: After a year of tragic and senseless gun violence around the world, a single with a title like “My Trigger” had very little opportunity to become a huge hit at Alternative radio. Still, it made the top 40. Now, the trio hopes to reach the top ten again.

Which of these new songs would you like to see atop the charts? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab above to find PGTC on social media.

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RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (October 2016)

Radio Report - October 2016

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new releases will be lighting up your local station’s playlist during the month. Which tunes will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a selection of new singles being serviced in October in this month’s Radio Report.

CALUM SCOTT – “Dancing On My Own” (Capitol, October 3 – Hot AC)
Album: TBA
Past HAC History: This is Scott’s first single to be serviced to the format. The original song, recorded by Robyn, did not chart here.

TRAIN – “Play That Song” (Columbia, October 3 – Hot AC and Triple A)
Album: A Girl, A Bottle, A Boat. (2017)
Past HAC/AAA History: They first charted with 1999’s “Meet Virginia”, and the California group is ready for its latest chart “song”.

DNCE – “Body Moves” (Republic, October 4 – CHR/Top 40)
Album: DNCE (2016)
Past CHR History: “Cake By The Ocean” spent 27 weeks in the top 40 to reach its #2 peak. Let’s hope this song “moves” a bit faster.

ROYAL TEETH – “Kids Conspire” (Round Hill/CO5, October 4 – Alternative)
Album: Amateurs (EP) (2016)
Past ALT History: These Louisiana “Kids” have never made the top 40 at the format, but this release fits the sound at the moment.

GOO GOO DOLLS – “Over & Over” (Warner Bros., October 10 – Hot AC)
Album: Boxes (2016)
Past HAC History: With two decades of charting tracks, and a recent top 15 hit in “So Alive”, the format isn’t “over” them quite yet.

JAMES TW – “When You Love Someone” (Island/Republic, October 10 – Hot AC)
Album: First Impressions (EP) (2016)
Past HAC History: This is the 18-year-old singer’s first single to be serviced to Hot AC radio, and it’s a quality ballad for the format.

RIHANNA – “Love On The Brain” (Roc Nation/Def Jam, October 10/11 – CHR/Top 40 and Hot AC)
Album: Anti (2016)
Past CHR/HAC History: With a plentiful amount of hit singles at both formats, this ballad might become a career song for the star.

CAPITAL CITIES – “Vowels” (Lazy Hooks/Capitol, October 18 – Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past ALT History: A, E, I, O and U better believe that this duo is “safe and sound” at the format. Y? They have another catchy track.

FOR KING & COUNTRY – “Priceless” (Word/ADA, October 24 – Hot AC)
Album: RUN WILD. LIVE FREE. LOVE STRONG. (Deluxe Anniversary Edition) (2015)
Past HAC History: “Fix My Eyes” set its sights on the top 40, and it spent four weeks there. Put some faith in this song to chart too.

BISHOP BRIGGS – “Wild Horses” (Island/Republic, October 25 – Alternative)
Album: TBA
Past ALT History: “River” (#3) made Briggs one of the top newcomers here this year. She’ll be galloping for chart glory once more.

Which of these new songs would you like to see atop the charts? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab above to find PGTC on social media.

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Filed under POP! Goes The Picks (Radio), Single Reviews

RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (August 2015) (Part One)

It’s time once again to analyze the airwaves and find out if your favorite new singles will be lighting up the national charts during the month. Which tracks will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here’s a small selection of new songs being serviced in August on the CHR and Hot AC formats in the first part of this month’s Radio Report:

CHR (*) and HOT AC (**)

Felix Jaehn and Jasmine Thompson
FELIX JAEHN featuring JASMINE THOMPSON – “Ain’t Nobody (Loves Me Better)” (August 4) (*)
Label: Casablanca/Republic
14-year-old Thompson has been covering songs for years, and one such remake of the 1983 Rufus and Chaka Khan hit is taking a second chart run on. In October 2013, her original version peaked at #32 in the U.K. thanks to a Sainsbury’s ad for pizza. Now, a tropical house remix by the German DJ/producer Jaehn hopes to chew on the charts globally. Yummy. Ready for a musical meal?

Conrad Swwell
CONRAD SEWELL – “Hold Me Up” (August 11) (*)
Label: 300 Entertainment
After blazing a “Firestone” of a song up the European charts with DJ/producer Kygo, the 27-year-old Australian singer is looking to set pop radio chart on fire in the U.S. without the help of that introduction. (RCA’s Stateside release is just below the top 50 on the format.) His solo single went to #1 in his native country in June, where it is certified Platinum. He can only go “Up” from here.

Disclosure and Sam Smith
DISCLOSURE featuring SAM SMITH – “Omen” (August 11) (*)
Label: Capitol
Some say that lightning doesn’t strike twice, but in the case of the English duo out of Reigate and their good pal from London, it is perhaps a good time to try and dispel that notion. The brother act was previously on Interscope in the U.S., though they opted for a label switch to Capitol for their new set; Smith is already on there, and his In The Lonely Hour era was massive. Watch out for it.

Echosmith
ECHOSMITH – “Let’s Love” (August 11) (* + **)
Label: Warner Bros.
The four Sierota siblings keep it all in the family, and their Warner family is issuing this third single from Talking Dreams to both radio formats this month as the followup to recent hit “Bright”. Several live videos for the song were released in late 2013, but it’s unclear when an official music video for it will be premiering given its new status. Will the dream continue for this young quartet?

Hailee Steinfeld
HAILEE STEINFELD – “Love Myself” (August 11) (*)
Label: Republic
Earlier this week, the Pitch Perfect 2 actress and singer appeared in a clip with Canadian singer and Vine star Shawn Mendes, as the two teens sang a new acoustic version of his latest single, “Stitches”. Now, her first solo single, which will be released to iTunes next Friday, looks like it could be a fall hit based on some early radio reaction. Yet, it’s still too soon to tell if the “Love” continues.

Robin Thicke and Nicki Minaj
ROBIN THICKE featuring NICKI MINAJ – “Back Together” (August 11) (*)
Label: Star Trek/Interscope
Thicke is currently climbing up the Urban AC survey with “Morning Sun”, which seems to be responding nicely given the response to his legal issues earlier this year over the case concerning his hit “Blurred Lines”. Now, he looks to capture the pop audience and he’ll be bringing in Minaj to help. You may remember that the two worked together before on his 2009 song “Shakin’ It 4 Daddy”.

Gavin James
GAVIN JAMES – “Bitter Pill” (August 25) (**)
Label: Capitol
With the huge support of Beats 1 beginning a month ago and his current U.S. tour with the aforementioned Smith (see “Omen”), a push at the Hot AC format seems like the next logical step for this Irish newcomer and his label. Of course, his lovely cover of “The Book Of Love” has been #1 on my personal chart for two weeks, but this “Pill” isn’t hard to swallow, and it should be ranking soon.

Ryn Weaver
RYN WEAVER – “Promises” (August 25) (*)
Label: Mad Love/Interscope
After a surge of blog coverage and notable hype in the summer of 2014, it was disappointing to see Weaver’s song “OctaHate” stall down in the 20’s on the pop radio chart earlier this year after an initial bump from a Cumulus block add. Nevertheless, her second radio single is being serviced later this month in both its original version and a new dance mix by French producer Norman Doray.

Which of these new songs would you like to see on top of the charts? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab to find PGTC on social media.

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“Along” For The Ride: The Road To Vicci Martinez’s First Airplay Hit

Oh, Vicci, you're so fine.

Oh, Vicci, you’re so fine.

28-year-old Vicci Martinez has come a long way from her days on the television show The Voice. The Tacoma, WA born singer looks to finally be achieving her first big mainstream breakthrough after appearing on that launching pad. It’s been a long struggle for the performer, who has been attempting to find her first big hit for the better part of ten years.

Martinez originally auditioned for American Idol back in the spring of 2002 and placed well regionally, but because of how strict a contract the contestants were placed under, she didn’t want to be bound by all the limitations of it, and decided to part ways. She then appeared on the revived Star Search in 2003, but the showcase didn’t amount to much career-wise, and thus, she went the independent route, recording several albums in 2005 and 2006. It wasn’t until 2011 that she gained notoriety on the first season of a new singing competition at the time, The Voice. She auditioned with Adele‘s “Rolling In The Deep”, which got the attention of both Cee-Lo Green and Christina Aguilera, and Martinez ultimately chose Green to coach her. With memorable performances like “Dog Days Are Over”, “Jolene”, and a duet with coach Green, “Love Is A Battlefield”, she ended up make the top 4 of the season, with an original song, “Afraid To Sleep”, becoming a moderate digital single.

Fast forward to February of this year when I first heard a song by Martinez that wasn’t getting an immediate push to radio, but was getting some sort of promotional appearance of The Voice later in the season. I equate it to a modern-day musical equivalent of an old Western cowboy flick. I suppose it’s just the guitar in the beginning that establishes the flashback feel of it. “Come Along”, in fact, is not an original song; it was first recorded by Titiyo in 2002, but Martinez’s version fleshes the song out to where it should’ve been in the first place. The vocals are crispy, even a little edgy at times, and even Green’s featured vocals work on this hybrid folk-influenced pop record. Plus, who can’t relate to the message: “Time flies, make a statement, make a stand.” Powerful little thing right there about independence and control. I have to admit, I was expecting Martinez’s radio introduction to be with more of a rock single, but this one sounds really nice on the air on a format that’s becoming increasingly dance-oriented based on the sheer number of records coming off of the CHR survey.

The song charted for several weeks at Hot AC radio in mid-July and August, but never went beyond a daily peak of #45 and wasn’t making very much headway in terms of building spin detections or an audience. It quickly fell off the radar as several songs pushed it out of the top 50. That was, until early November, when the song suddenly appeared back in the Hot AC chart with a moderate-sized gain in airplay. Though it’s facing an uphill battle just as the first time around, it easily made the top 40 within a month, and has now achieved larger gains and double the audience that it did during its first run a few months ago, currently at #34. Perhaps it’s because of her recent appearance of The Voice where she performed with the finalists from Green’s team in a Christmas music showcase. Perhaps program and music directors are more open to her sound now. Perhaps it’s because of all the other twangy folk singles by The Lumineers, Mumford & Sons and Phillip Phillps doing so well that this got an unexpected boost. Whatever the case may be, Martinez’s song may just be the dark horse hit of 2013 on the format at the rate it’s going. It’s different, it’s appealing, it’s meaningful, and it’s not auto-tuned to death.

Martinez released an EP in May and a full length album, Vicci, back in June. Considering “Along” has become the biggest airplay single to come out from any contestant out of The Voice so far, she may well be remembered next year as the biggest overall success from it. It’s a nice way to believe that there’s a chance out there for singers from the show, other than the judges, to become well-known singers in their own right. She keeps breaking ground each week, and there’s no stopping her now. Time to “come along” for the ride. –AFS

Stream clips and Buy “Come Along” and/or Vicci on AmazonMP3.

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Filed under Charts/Trade Papers, Single Reviews