Tag Archives: Jordin Sparks

NEW MUSIC FRIDAY: Releases For The Week of August 21, 2015

You'll really really really really really really enjoy it.

You’ll really really really really really really enjoy it.

This week’s New Music Friday takes us to an e·mo·tion·al level unlike any other this year, as we travel to a great and wild world full of musical mysteries and savage songs. Ooh, sounds good to me. Here’s a look at the week’s new album and single releases:

    • It may be the perfect pop album of 2015, although one that will, sadly, not reach its full potential at both retail and radio. The 29-year-old’s slick songs from her sophomore major label set are grabbing a lot of positive press on the web, with a fair amount of fans and critics scoring the album higher than her debut, 2012’s Kiss. No, a splashy new entry is not in the cards for this one, but #1 in our hearts is better than no #1 at all.
  • DISTURBED — Immortalized (iTunes)
    • These four guys from Chicago have been rocking the music world since the 90’s, and after a hiatus, the group finds themselves disturbing the peace on the Active Rock chart once again. “The Vengeful One” now stands at #1 on that survey. The quartet’s last four albums all debuted at the top, though you can probably up that number to five next week.
  • ROB THOMAS — The Great Unknown (iTunes)
    • “Trust You” may have under-performed at Thomas’s core radio format, Hot AC, but he still has another solid solo effort out this week, including several tracks like “Hold On Forever” and “One Shot” (which you may have heard in the last few weeks as instant grats for pre-ordering his album.) It’ll likely enter in the top 20.
  • KIP MOORE — Wild Ones (iTunes)
    • After three consecutive top five singles at Country radio in 2012-13, Moore has been struggling at the format as of late. The title song from his new set is barely top 20 despite having ranked on the survey for almost seven months. Look for this to open with less than his last album, Up All Night.
  • BON JOVI — Burning Bridges (iTunes)
    • Promoted as a “fan album” and not a regular studio release, this set won’t do nearly as well as the #1 debuts of The Circle or What About Now, but some bigger fans will likely snap it up. Single “We Don’t Run” has yet to make it on any radio chart.
  • More albums out this week: Buckcherry‘s Rock ‘N’ Roll (iTunes), Ghost B.C.‘s Meliora (iTunes), Jordin Sparks‘s Right Here, Right Now (iTunes), Lynch Mob‘s Rebel (iTunes), Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats‘s Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats (iTunes), Noah Gundersen‘s Carry The Ghost (iTunes), P.O.D.‘s The Awakening (iTunes), Pop Evil‘s Up (iTunes), Radkey‘s Dark Black Makeup (iTunes), Rend Collective‘s As Family We Go (iTunes), Tasha Cobbs‘s One Place Live (iTunes), The Bohicas‘s The Making Of (iTunes), The Sword‘s High Country (iTunesTrevor Hall‘s KALA (iTunes)
  • More EPs/other collections out this week: Grace Mitchell‘s Raceday (iTunes), Jojo‘s III (iTunes)

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Break A Sweat”, a new single from Becky G. (iTunes)
  • “Conviction”, the debut single from Mackenzie Thoms. (iTunes)
  • “Levels”, new from Nick Jonas. (iTunes)
  • “One Call Away”, an instant grat track from Charlie Puth. (iTunes)
  • “RIP 2 My Youth”, a new single from The Neighbourhood. (iTunes)
  • “Smoke Break”, new from Carrie Underwood. (iTunes)
  • “The Emotion”, an instant grat track from BØRNS. (iTunes)

Next Friday, our preview will include new albums from Halsey, Maddie & Tae and The Weeknd. See you then!

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SINGLE PREMIERE: Jason Derülo – “Marry Me” (+ Lyrics)

Engaged and ready to smash.

Engaged and ready to smash.

Debuting on On Air With Ryan Seacrest this morning, Jason Derülo‘s followup to “The Other Side” in the U.S. is “Marry Me”, showing a little bit of his softer side. It’s unclear why his recent #1 single in Australia, “Talk Dirty” (featuring 2 Chainz), won’t be his official second single here, but all three songs will appear on his forthcoming album, Tattoos. For now, before the song official premieres, you can listen to a clip of it via Derülo’s Instagram account.

Listen to the premiere of “Marry Me” via KIIS-FM in Los Angeles.


(If there are any corrections, let me know below. Thanks!)

[Verse 1]
105 is the number that comes to my head
When I think of all the years I wanna be with you
Wake up every morning with you in my bed
That’s precisely what I plan to do

And you know one of these days when I get my money right
Buy you everything and show you all the finer things in life
Will forever be enough, so there ain’t no need to rush
But one day, I won’t be able to ask you loud enough

I’ll say will you marry me
I swear that I will mean it
I’ll say will you marry me

[Verse 2]
How many girls in the world can make me feel like this?
Baby I don’t ever plan to find out
The more I look, the more I find the reasons why
You’re the love of my life

You know one of these days when I get my money right
Buy you everything and show you all the finer things in life
Will forever be enough, so there ain’t no need to rush
But one day, I won’t be able to ask you loud enough

I’ll say will you marry me
I swear that I will mean it
I’ll say will you marry me

[Middle 8]
And if I lost everything
In my heart it means nothing
‘Cause I have you, girl I have you
So get right down on bended knee
Nothing else would ever be
Better, better
The day when I say

[Chorus x2]
I’ll say will you marry me
I swear that I will mean it
I’ll say will you marry me

Ooh whoa ooh oh (x3)

[End – repeat Verse 1]
105 is the number that comes to my head
When I think of all the years I wanna be with you
Wake up every morning with you in my bed
That’s precisely what I plan to do

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Take A Bow: Revisiting The Top Tracks From Graduation (5th High School Reunion)

Showing "Love" to 2008.

Showing “Love” to 2008.

When your first high school reunion comes around, you start to realize that you might be getting just a little bit old. Sigh. Next month marks five years since I graduated from high school, but our Reunion Weekend happens to be this upcoming one. It’ll be great to see old friends again, catch up, have a fun time, etc. So, in honor of the Weekend to come and because this is a music blog, I give you a look back at the top songs in the nation when were last together for our Commencement on June 5, 2008. It reflected a mix of music, from pop to rap, and a lot of American Idol entries after the grand finale of season 7 wrapped up. We start off with the top ten:

#10: COLDPLAY – “Viva La Vida”
Ah, yes, the days when an advertisement Apple could give you all the exposure you needed. After falling back to #41 the previous week, “Viva” soared back up to #10 that week, becoming the group’s second top ten hit. It went to #1 for one week in late June. The group’s 2011 Mylo Xyloto album gave them three other top 40 singles, but this is by far their biggest single, having sold in excess of 3 million copies here.

#09: NATASHA BEDINGFIELD – “Pocketful Of Sunshine”
She had a pocketful of harmless pop ditties, including 2006’s “Unwritten” and this 2008 single, which both peaked at #5 on the Hot 100. This was the last time (to date) that Bedingfield had a top 40 single on the Hot 100, though her most recent appearance outside of it was last year on Lifehouse‘s “Between The Raindrops” (#79). She hopes to release a new studio album worldwide this year, her first in three years.

#08: MADONNA featuring JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE – “4 Minutes”
Her Madgesty was always a fan of keeping up with the youth, and so, she enlisted Justin Timberlake and Timbaland for her leadoff single from Hard Candy. Both a hit at retail and on the radio, it leapt to #3 on the Hot 100, which was her first top 5 hit in seven years (and her last to date.) Last year, she visited the top ten for a week with “Give Me All Your Luvin'” after a performance at the Super Bowl halftime show.

#07: RAY J featuring YUNG BERG – “Sexy Can I”
When he wasn’t making sex tapes with ex-girlfriend Kim Kardashian or writing songs about how he “hit it first”, Brandy‘s younger brother had his biggest solo hit with “Sexy”, the leadoff single from his album All I Need. It peaked at #3 and was his last top 40 hit to date; even “I Hit It First” couldn’t become a hit on its own. He’s still recording new music and no doubt, reeking of desperation while doing said action.

#06: USHER featuring YOUNG JEEZY – “Love In This Club”
Leaked on the internet in February of that year, “Love” garnered heavy airplay from the beginning and rose from 51-1 in one week in mid-March when it was released to digital retailers, selling a little under 200,000 downloads in its first week. It spent three weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 and also sent parent album Here I Stand to #1. Usher is currently serving as one of four judges on the television show The Voice.

Chris Brown and Rihanna would end up next to one another on our look back. Brown’s duet with the former American Idol winner Sparks gave her the biggest single of her career, peaking at #3, while Brown has gone on to several number-one singles. Though Sparks would see the top ten once more with 2009’s “Battlefield”, her career has been in decline since it. She’s currently romancing singer Jason Derulo.

#04: RIHANNA – “Take A Bow”
After hitting the top with 2006’s “S.O.S. (Rescue Me)” and 2007’s “Umbrella”, the Barbadian beauty took this ballad to #1 from the Reloaded edition of her Good Girl Gone Bad album. It was the second “Take A Bow” song title to hit the spot after Madonna‘s big ballad from 1995. Though her career has had its missteps, she’s still racking up the big hits, including her most recent, “Stay”, featuring vocalist Mikky Ekko.

#03: DAVID COOK – “The Time Of My Life”
It wouldn’t be an American Idol win without a big ballad to start it all off. David Cook won the battle over David Archuleta and this first single of his sold 236,000 copies in the three days after the Idol finale, enabling it to debut all the way up at #3 on the Hot 100, where it also peaked. Ten of his performances from the show also debuted that week, as network FOX withholds sales and chartings during the season.

#02: LEONA LEWIS – “Bleeding Love”
It was the international smash that broke Lewis in America after her win on the U.K. version of The X Factor. It spent four non-consecutive weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 and went to the top in nearly three dozen countries. Lewis could never repeat the success of “Bleeding” in the States, though followup single “Better In Time” did gather significant airplay for a time. She is currently working on a fourth full-length album.

#01: LIL WAYNE featuring STATIC MAJOR – “Lollipop”
He may be in the middle of some health problems at the moment, but back in 2008, this rapper and singer were topping the charts, also at #1 on the Airplay survey. This song marked Lil Wayne‘s only time rising to #1 as a main-credited artist, as well as one of the only times a posthumous release (Major passed away three months before) went to #1, joining a list of others like Janis Joplin and Otis Redding.

David Cook: “The Time Of My Life” (#3), “Dream Big” (#15), “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” (#22), “The World I Know” (#28), “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” (#42), “Billie Jean” (#47), “Always Be My Baby” (#67), “Hello” (#73), “The Music Of The Night” (#77), “Eleanor Rigby” (#92), “I’m Alive” (#99)
David Archuleta: “Imagine” (#36), “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me” (#58), “In This Moment” (#60)
“Should’ve Said No”, Taylor Swift (#84)
“That Song In My Head”, Julianne Hough (#88)
“Girls Around The World”, Lloyd featuring Lil Wayne (#93)
“Homecoming”, Kanye West featuring Chris Martin (#96)

Top 5 (or 6) Big Movers:
“Viva La Vida”, Coldplay (41-10) (+31)
“Dangerous”, Kardinal Offishall featuring Akon (76-51) (+25)
“I Kissed A Girl”, Katy Perry (40-21) (+19)
“Last Name”, Carrie Underwood (37-19) (+18)
“Apologize”, Timbaland presents OneRepublic (32-18) (+14, tie)
“Get Like Me”, David Banner featuring Chris Brown (88-74) (+14, tie)

Check out the full Hot 100 for June 7, 2008 at this link. Happy Reunion to all of you celebrating out there!

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Filed under Charts/Trade Papers, Playlists, Retro

American Idle: Who’s Next On The Chopping Block?

Whataya want from them?

Whataya want from them?

2012 was another rough year from American Idol finalists, many of whom were dropped from their major record label deals due to underperforming releases. The list includes (but isn’t limited to) blues singer Haley Reinhart, country cutie Kellie Pickler, as well as lite rockin’ Season 8 champ Kris Allen. This now means five of the eleven winners from the show have now been dumped; some have signed to independent labels, but that’s resulted in very little. Since the past few years have been especially volatile for singers being dropped, 2013 won’t likely be any different, and so, I present to you a prediction post of who might get the boot from their labels in 2013. This doesn’t necessarily mean they will be; it’s more of just the reasoning behind why one would be considered for a cancellation of their contract.

Now, some Idol contestants are obviously safe: Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson, both winners of their respective seasons, have plenty of more big singles to go. Jennifer Hudson is obviously still in the spotlight because of her Weight Watchers success, and I think that will translate into at least another album or two, maybe another big movie. In short, she’s not going anywhere. Phillip Phillips, the reigning winner, is all over the radio with “Home”. He’ll continue to enjoy some hits… for now. However, I’m not sure about the rest of this crew. Let’s take a look at them by season.

The only season 2 contestant of note that’s still on a major label is Clay Aiken, who has recorded a pair of albums for Decca Records after his drop from RCA. Tried And True made the top ten on the album chart, but barely passed 20,000 copies sold in its first week. Steadfast was released last year to capitalize on Aiken’s appearance on The Apprentice, but it faded away fast. He can’t get any sort of adult contemporary airplay anymore (unless it’s his 2003 hit, “Invisible”) and even though he still has a big fan base, they’re not buying his releases. He’ll likely get dropped and return to the theater. I would think that’s a more natural home for him at this point.

Fantasia Barrino recently released a new single entitled “Lose To Win”, which samples “Nightshift” by the Commodores, and it’s really underwhelming, getting mixed fan reaction online. Plus, the whole scandal’s she been going through right now concerning an Instagram photo and a statement about the gay community isn’t exactly going down well. You know what’ll be going down well? Her sales. I bet you saw that one coming. Her album will do OK in the short-term, but I think this will probably be the last one for her, at least on RCA. She may try to sign to an independent label afterwards, but I don’t see anything coming of it.

This is probably one of the more unlikely ones, but keep an eye out for a potential drop of Daughtry. Their last album, Break The Spell, was indeed certified Gold for shipments of 500,000 copies, but “Crawling Back To You” wasn’t a major hit (at least not to the effect that “It’s Not Over” and “Home” were) and the followup singles did even worse, becoming the band’s first mainstream releases to not crack the Hot 100. None of the three made the top 40 at CHR radio, which is a really bad sign as well. They may have one album left in them, or RCA could cut the cord after their tour with 3 Doors Down is over. It’s all up to them.

Let’s be honest, Sparkle wasn’t the big hit a lot of people were expecting given the unfortunate passing of Whitney Houston. As it turns out, the name Jordin Sparks wasn’t selling tickets either. Sparks still has a recording contract with RCA, but her last release, “I Am Woman”, was a big failure despite a new sound for the singer. I think she’ll release an album this year with perhaps one mid-charting single and another that doesn’t do well at all, then, get the cut. I don’t think it’s worth keeping her around; the dance genre doesn’t fit her voice, and if that’s what is going to continue to be big on the charts, she’ll get lost in the shuffle.

Alright, Glamberts, hold your horses for one second. I like both of Adam Lambert‘s albums. The singles, for the most part, did pretty well on my personal chart. However, radio doesn’t want him, and the general public, for the most part, can’t be fussed with him. Second album Trespassing debuted at #1 on the album chart. Impressive, fair enough. However, his first week sales were south of 80,000 copies and the album hasn’t been certified. Not great. “Better Than I Know Myself” was a minor Hot AC hit; “Never Close Our Eyes” did even less; the title track didn’t chart at any radio format. Boys and girls, it’s just not going to work out. Since the album’s promotion has ended, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see an announcement from him early on in 2013. I can see him going to an exclusively dance label, but his success will be limited to the Dance/Club Play charts.

Casey James has seen a few minor entries on the Country chart, but nothing really notable. Second single “Crying On A Suitcase” has been in the top 50 for nearly thirty weeks, so it’s likely to get pulled soon. He’s just no match for Carrie Underwood. He has a second album in the works at this point. He may get signed again to a smaller label and try getting ranked on the Music Row charts. Something might work out for him there.

Alright, this is where it’s going to hurt. I see three additional people getting cut from last season. James Durbin is an obvious drop from Wind-up Records after his next album; “Love Me Bad” and “Stand Up” got some minor airplay, but nothing substantial. Nobody’s really interested in the Hinder/Nickelback-lite material at this point. Lauren Alaina still has a deal with 19/Mercury/Interscope and is in the process of finishing a second album, but considering how badly the three singles from her first album did on the Country survey, there’s no way she’ll make it to a third with the label. Lastly, Stefano Langone is still set to release a debut album with Hollywood Records in 2013, but does anyone even care about him anymore? “I’m On A Roll” dented the CHR top 50, but that was months ago. Next.

You may not necessarily agree with all of this, but just keep an open mind if one of these performers is a favorite of yours. Some things just weren’t meant to be, and this isn’t meant to be cruel. It’s just the music business nowadays. Too many music competition shows, not enough long-term superstars.


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