Tag Archives: Naughty Boy

RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (October 2015)

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 October, ten of the best from four different radio formats in this month’s Radio Report:

CHR (*) and HOT AC (**)

Naughty Boy, Beyoncé and Arrow Benjamin
NAUGHTY BOY featuring BEYONCÉ and ARROW BENJAMIN – “Runnin’ (Lose It All)” (October 6) (*)
Label: Capitol
English producer Shahid Khan has only one U.S. radio hit to his credit, the top ten “La La La” (with Sam Smith) from last year, an interesting fact considering he’s had four (and perhaps a fifth with this single) top tens on the U.K. chart since 2010 and many big co-writes with notable artists. The 30-year-old may be bound for a win with “Lose” given the featured star. We’ll see pretty soon.

Skrillex, Diplo and AlunaGeorge
SKRILLEX & DIPLO featuring ALUNAGEORGE – “To Ü” (October 6) (*)
Label: Big Beat/Atlantic
Justin Bieber has them to thank for reigniting his music career after a two-year absence from the pop radio chart with the top ten hit “Where Are Ü Now”, and now, it’s up “to ü” (and the rest of the American music-buying public) to make this next effort from a British duo and the two producers another big track. “You Know You Like It” from the duo reached a peak of #7 in May and June.

The Vamps
THE VAMPS – “Wake Up” (October 6) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
This British quartet has seen a fair amount of success in their native U.K. with five top ten singles in a row, but they’ve barely had a presence on the charts here, reaching #50 on the pop radio survey last fall with “Somebody To You”. Satellite station Hits 1 will probably become a leader on this song out of the gate, similar to their past singles, but will this finally be their big U.S. breakout?

Tove Lo
TOVE LO – “Moments” (October 13) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
Back in July, “Timebomb” was supposed to be serviced to the CHR airwaves as the followup to the top five single “Talking Body”. That ended up getting pulled at the last minute: you can’t say that it bombed out, but radio didn’t make time for it either. Now, in the fall, we finally have a third proper radio release from Queen Of The Clouds. The forecast looks slightly brighter for this track.

Jason Derulo, Jennifer Lopez and Matoma
JASON DERULO featuring JENNIFER LOPEZ and MATOMA – “Try Me” (October 20) (*)
Label: Warner Bros.
“Try” came up in a post I put up earlier this week regarding its sampling of Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” and the competition it may face from another new single with the same sample. Derulo will have to work extra hard to get his new era back on track, due in part to “Cheyenne” recently crashing down the chart after a peak in the teens. Perhaps it can do well during the winter months.


Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
ANDREW MCMAHON IN THE WILDERNESS – “High Dive” (October 13) (* + **)
Label: Crush Music/Vanguard/CMG
McMahon’s second single from his self-titled album is already climbing nicely on my top 40 and just came into the top 50 here on the Alternative chart. Of course, you’ll remember that “Cecilia And The Satellite” spent a record number of weeks rising up to the #5 spot on that survey and hit the 40-week mark overall before it was sent recurrent. Let’s hope this can also reach a “High” peak.

Jeff Lynne's ELO
JEFF LYNNE’S ELO – “When I Was A Boy” (October 13) (**)
Label: Columbia
Would you believe that it was back in 1986 that the Electric Light Orchestra had their last national hit? That was the song “Calling America”, and it made the top 20 before the band broke up. Now performing under a slightly different name, Lynne and the boys are back with a new album on Columbia, where they first released Discovery in 1979. It’s another great single from a great group.

X Ambassadors
X AMBASSADORS – “Unsteady” (October 13) (*)
Label: KIDinaKORNER/Interscope
It’s the song that keeps sticking around: “Renegades”. You know it well. It spent 11 weeks at #1 on the Alternative survey, marking the longest run at the top spot so far this year. Now, it’s set to become a huge crossover smash. Of course, the group is now trying to make it two in a row with this song, now above six million streams on Spotify. The title may not be steady, but the gains will be.

BANNERS – “Shine A Light” (October 20) (** + * 10/27)
Label: Island/Republic
“Shine” just debuted on my personal chart last week and I’m very excited to see this single from the British performer, now living in Canada, at radio so soon. Los Angeles’s two Alternative outlets are giving major early support to this song, but given his label’s inability to break releases by Brandon Flowers and Neon Trees here earlier in 2015, will that hinder its performance? I hope not.

Tor Miller
TOR MILLER – “Carter & Cash” (October 20) (**)
Label: Glassnote
This Brooklyn newcomer signed to Glassnote last year, but generated a bit of buzz earlier this week when “Carter” made its debut on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 show as Monday’s World Record. Miller’s last single to hit the format was the song “Midnight” earlier this year, which spent several weeks in the top 30 in March and April before descending. How will his latest walk the line? Stay tuned.

Which of these new singles 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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TURN IT UP TUESDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (May 6)

Wants to be a Hunter again.

Wants to be a Hunter again.

One third of the year is over and album sales overall are looking… well, not so great at this point. However, with a bunch of bigger releases this week, you never know what will happen. Here’s what albums and singles are in stores for the week of May 6:

  • After the Platinum-selling success of his self-titled 2011 album, Country youngster Hunter Hayes is back with his followup release, Storyline. Leadoff single and ballad “Invisible” remains bulleted on the Country chart around the top 20. (You may remember Hayes debuted it at the GRAMMY Awards.) Look for it to debut in the top 5 on the Billboard 200 and at #1 on the Country survey. (iTunes)
  • Rapper Tech N9ne has been charting on the Billboard 200 since 2001 and his latest effort is titled Strangeulation. A single from it, “Fragile”, is just below the top ten on Rhythmic radio and ranks as his biggest airplay hit to date. Last year, he had an album debut at #4; expect another high entry from this one, probably in the top 5 again. (iTunes)
  • Last summer, Naughty Boy‘s Hotel Cabana debuted at #2 in the United Kingdom on the strength of a handful of top ten singles, including his current U.S. hit with Sam Smith, “La La La”. That same album, with a slightly altered tracklisting, is now out here. It will likely debut somewhere in the lower regions of the chart – there’s clearly more interest in the single at this point. (iTunes)
  • Though none of its singles have charted Stateside, the first album in five years for singer Lily Allen, Sheezus, is out this week. The effort is currently top ten in over two dozen countries. “Air Balloon” is currently at U.S. radio, but is not showing much action as of recent. (iTunes)
  • Singer/songwriter Sarah McLachlan has been making music for over 25 years now. Her latest effort, Shine On, is her first for Verve after splitting with longtime Canadian label Nettwerk and U.S. label Arista. “In Your Shoes” is the current AC/Hot AC single from the project. (iTunes)
  • It’s also a crazy week for compilation albums, the biggest of which is the 50th (!) edition of the Now! That’s What I Call Music! series (iTunes). Those kids grow up so quickly. Also on the menu: Kidz Bop Party Bop! from the Kidz Bop Kids (iTunes) and the various stars of Nashville with their second music set from the second season of the show (iTunes).
  • Other releases out this week include: Gregg Allman‘s All My Friends: Celebrating The Songs & Voice Of Gregg Allman (iTunes), Lykke Li‘s I Never Learn (iTunes), Natalie Merchant‘s Natalie Merchant (iTunes) and Santana‘s Corazón (iTunes).

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

  • “A Sky Full Of Stars”, the second radio single from Coldplay‘s Ghost Stories. (iTunes)
  • “First Love”, a new CHR radio single from Jennifer Lopez. (iTunes)
  • “Get My Name”, a single from Mark Ballas of Dancing With The Stars fame. (iTunes)
  • “Good Kisser”, new from R&B star Usher. (iTunes)
  • “Love Never Felt So Good”, the first single from the late Michael Jackson‘s Xscape album. (iTunes)
  • “M.F.P.O.T.Y.”, another digital track from Cher Lloyd‘s forthcoming album. (iTunes)
  • “Superbad”, the latest single from Jesse McCartney. (iTunes)
  • “They Don’t Love You No More”, the latest from DJ Khaled featuring Jay Z, Meek Mill, Rick Ross and French Montana. (iTunes)

Michael Jackson, Rascal Flatts and The Black Keys take center stage next week, along with Chromeo, Dolly Parton and more. It’s going to be another busy week — a full preview is coming in seven!

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

If you follow the radio charts like I do, you’ll want to be on top of only the freshest music being serviced across the nation. So, I’m bringing back an early PGTC feature with a bit of a revamp. With this monthly series, I’ll be highlighting some great tracks at a few different radio formats that will be fighting for airspace over the next few months. So, what are we waiting for? Let the battles begin.

Jason Derulo and 2 Chainz
JASON DERULO featuring 2 CHAINZ“Talk Dirty” (January 7)
Label: Beluga Heights/Warner Bros.
After the questionable release of the slower “Marry Me”, which ultimately lost the singer and his label some momentum here in the U.S., Derulo’s returned with the international hit, a #1 in Australia, the U.K. and many others. The jazzy R&B banger should be his biggest hit of this era so long as it is promoted correctly.

Naughty Boy and Sam Smith

NAUGHTY BOY featuring SAM SMITH“La La La” (January 7)
Label: Capitol
Though both are newcomers to the Stateside market, “La” did superb numbers internationally, giving the producer his biggest single to date and introducing Smith to a wider audience (and a solo U.S. deal also at Capitol.) The early adds on it look promising, and there will certainly be a pressure to break the song here.

Christina Perri

CHRISTINA PERRI“Human” (January 21)
Label: Atlantic/Roadrunner
Already at #5 on my personal chart, this is a surefire smash from Perri, her biggest hit yet on my top 40 and one of the great ballads out right now. Its genuine vocal and beautiful build are lovely, and the lyric set is sincere and well-crafted. “Human” is the first single from sophomore album Head Or Heart, due March 11.


Ready, set, "Go".

GROUPLOVE“Shark Attack” (January 14)
Label: Atlantic/Canvasback
“Ways To Go” did some damage on Alternative radio, going as high as #2, and this followup is already climbing into the top 30 on my personal chart. If a moderate rise is in order, the eccentric and fun “Shark” will be peaking around the start of summer begins. Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…

So far Gone.

HAIM“Forever” (January 21)
Label: Columbia
Currently garnering some minor airplay with “The Wire” at the AAA format, the critically acclaimed sisters out of Los Angeles will be back on U.S. radio with this one, which originally went to a lowly #75 in the U.K. early in 2013. The rock meets 80’s pop track lays down a funky vibe; it’s downright fun retro realness.

Max Frost

MAX FROST“White Lies” (January 21)
Label: Atlantic/Roadrunner
Frost is one of the newest signings to Atlantic, a native of Austin, TX. Garnering top rankings on site The Hype Machine, the performer released an EP, Low High Low, back in October. The song is currently being featured in an ad for Beats By Dre. “White” is an infectious dream pop sound bound for big action, and that’s no lie.


The South's gonna do it again.

BOY & BEAR“Southern Sun” (January 14)
Label: Nettwerk
I first wrote about this song in November and now, we’re just weeks away from the song actually going for adds. With Nettwerk’s recent successes, especially on AAA radio with male-led singles by Family Of The Year and Passenger, I have a feeling this record will be an easy sell. It’s already a big winner on my chart.

The Mowgli's

THE MOWGLI’S“Say It, Just Say It” (January 14)
Label: Photo Finish / Island Def Jam
The eight-piece band out of California are best known for “San Francisco”, which just missed the top ten on Alternative last year. A followup, “The Great Divide”, underperformed, but this next single from Waiting For The Dawn has already seen a lot of play on SiriusXM’s Hits 1. Let’s see if terrestrial radio will “say” anything.

Graham Colton

GRAHAM COLTON“Hands Untied” (January 21)
Label: United For Opportunity
He’s a talented guy and he’s responsible for two big hits on my chart — the #1 “Best Days” in 2008 and the #5 “Pacific Coast Eyes” in 2011. “Hands” is the first release from Colton’s Lonely Ones, due on that same date, which was funded by a Kickstarter campaign. He may be the underdog in this race, but this is a quality song.

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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PROFILE: Will The U.S. “Latch” Onto Sam Smith In 2014?

La la late to the party, we are.

La la late to the party, we are.

At the tender age of 21, British performer Sam Smith has already accomplished a lot in his still budding musical career. Through a series of solo songs and a pair of hit singles with other acts, Smith has accrued a big international fan base that is hoping to expand into the United States in the next year, where he’s yet to become a household name. Most recently, the singer collaborated with Disclosure, Nile Rodgers and Jimmy Napes on a song called “Together”, which lit up the blogosphere and has achieved minor chart placement throughout Europe. Now, Smith’s about to get his lucky break in the U.S. with his features on two songs being issued to radio at the same time: “La La La” by Naughty Boy, which is serviced to CHR radio on Tuesday via Capitol, and “Latch” by Disclosure, coming to the same format in January via Interscope.

Born in the small village of Bishop’s Stortford, Smith’s been singing since age 8, first training with a jazz vocalist before moving onto work with musical theater while passing his school work. After moving to London at age 18, he began a regular job at a bar before signing to PMR Records last year and making his mark in the music industry. Unfortunately, once again, the U.S. is behind the rest of the world when it comes to this talented guy, so I’ll catch you up to speed on his success so far.

His first big appearance on Disclosure‘s “Latch” made its debut on the U.K. Singles Chart in October 2012, climbing to #11 the next month and charting in the top 40 for 18 consecutive weeks, a very large sum for a song that just missed the top ten. In most countries, the song barely scratched the top 40, if at all. Though it hasn’t ranked on the Hot 100 yet, “Latch” has thus far reached a peak of #27 on Billboard’s Dance/Electronic Songs chart, which began in January. It’s a chilled-out house track that’s been a little too different for many audiences, but the U.S. could turn things around for it.

“La La La”, however, is a different story, a more globally recognized hit single. It was producer Naughty Boy‘s first single to be released outside of Europe and it was a smash, achieving top ten rankings in over 20 countries. It also earned the two acts their first #1 in the U.K. back in May and turned out an eleven week run in the top ten. Pretty impressive. I’m sure the year-end tabulations over in Europe will be good to it. We’ll see how it fares on next year’s American surveys. Satellite radio should be all over it in the next few weeks before the majority of the CHR panel even considers it. However, the soulful vocal meets tribal dance arrangement track should prove to be a winner with a good label backing.

To add to the madness, all eyes are on what label Smith will end up on here in the States, as that has yet to be determined. Will he end up at Capitol, as evidenced by this Billboard report in which CEO Steve Barnett notes that “we’re in final talks to sign another artist affiliated with [Naughty Boy‘s Hotel Cabana]”? Will he sign at Interscope, where many acts from his U.K. label, PMR Records, are currently under contract? There’s also Republic Records, who have taken in singer John Newman and DJ/producer Martin Garrix in the last few months — could they steal another solo performer with some U.K. success? Time will tell on this one and your guess is as good as mine. However, things couldn’t be better for the young performer, one who has a lot to be thankful for this year and a lot to anticipate during the next year on the worldwide front.

(EDIT: Smith has officially signed with Capitol Records for his solo material. Way to go!)

Look out for more announcements from Smith, including more collaborations and solo releases, in the next coming months. He’s come a long way from his beginnings; let’s see if he’s “got you shackled” along with the rest of the mainstream music market here by the end of next year.

Download via iTunes: “La La La” (Addicted To Bass Remix) :: “La La La” (Ibiza 2013 Edit) :: “Latch” :: “Together”


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