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Friday, December 30, 2016

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #1 Justin Bieber - Sorry

I'd never thought I'd see the day that Justin Bieber would get the top 2 slots in any of my year-end charts.  But it does happen this year, thanks to his beautiful and exciting Purpose album, which as of now, already has five entries in my personal countdown.

Sorry is not only a catchy song but it also had a very interesting video and I admit I also browsed for tutorials on the dance steps for the video - which were very simple and easy to follow. It becomes the first time Justin Bieber tops any of my year-end charts.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #2 Justin Bieber - Love Yourself

When Justin released Sorry and Love Yourself almost simultaneously earlier this year, the two already dominated the tentative year-end list and the two were able to hold off a lot of challengers. Topping the year-end list very early on rarely happens but a hat trick happens to Justin as he has the top two of my favorite songs for this year.

It did help that he had two very good dance videos for these two songs.  Love Yourself had this popular dance couple interpret the song and their choreography was quite original.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #3 Judy Collins - Gauguin

Folk, country and pop singer Judy Collins sings this song called 'Gauguin' after Paul Gauguin, the French painter who went to Tahiti.  However, the song is very captivating because it talks more about finding happiness.  

I discovered Judy Collins after she sang a song for one of the episodes of the HBO series Girls. Because of that, I bought her album Paradise, released in 2011.  However, I only listened to it this year.  Aside from Gauguin, two of her other songs from the album also became listening staples for me this year - Kingdom Come and Weight of the World.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #4 Chainsmokers / Halsey - Closer

This self-proclaimed millennial anthem was inescapable towards the last quarter of 2016.  The lyrics were easy to memorize, although they don't make so much sense to me. Otherwise, the beat was really good and one can't help snapping to it.

Unfortunately, I was not able to see the Chainsmokers' concert here in Manila, but their live version of this song, based on what I saw in Youtube wasn't worth the ticket price.

Anyhow, this song ends up at #4 in my year-end top 10.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #5 Kungs vs. Cookin' on 3 Burners - This Girl

This dance hit called 'This Girl' from Kungs vs. Cookin' on 3 Burners came to me late this year, around the third week of December, when my niece Laura, played the song on my laptop.  It has since become the most played song in our house for Christmas 2016!

I especially enjoy the carpool choreography of the Superfruit gang!  I can't help but follow it every time the song gets played.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #6 Justin Bieber - What Do You Mean

'What Do You Mean' is the first of the three Justin Bieber songs in my Year-End Top 10 for 2016.  Although this song was released in 2015, I only became interested in it mid-2016 when I saw this video above of this amazing choreography of the song!

Eventually, I watched the choreography countless times - and along with it, listening to the song again and again and again. I am definitely looking forward to the day that I can finally dance it the way it was done in the video.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #7 Gwen Stefani - Truth

2016 marked the return of one of my favorite female singers from the last decade, Gwen Stefani.  I listened to her album, This is What the Truth Feels Like around May 2016, and the title track, Truth, was my most favorite track of them all!

If I were just a talented choreographer, this would be one of the songs that I would dance to, because of its beautiful lyrics and ambient sound.  What I love about Gwen is her bravery in combining her pop sound with the more adventurous sounds available during that time.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #8 Hozier / Alana Henderson - In A Week

I finally listened to Hozier's eponymous album around May 2016, and I discovered what a gem it was - probably one of the most interesting albums I've heard this year!  

Hozier eventually got a Grammy Song of the Year nomination for his hit 'Take Me To Church'.

But the song that really appealed to me, even if it had a macabre theme - death through murder and decomposition and falling in love as corpses - was this gem of a duet - entitled "In A Week".

It reminds me of those simple, melodic duets of Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush, where the voices of the singers are given more importance rather than the lush arrangements.

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #10 Selena Gomez - Survivors

The second Selena Gomez song in my year-end countdown comes in at #9.  There were several radio-friendly hits from her 'Revival' album, but my most favorite of her songs was this relatively unknown track called 'Survivors'.

For some weird reason, I dream of men in drag dancing to this song and vamping it up onstage.  'We are survivors of the wild!' seem to be the line that they are singing as they sashay down the stage. Interesting dream, considering Selena is not really a gay icon yet.

Happily for me, she also sang it in her Revival concert here in Manila!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

MY TEN FAVORITE SONGS OF 2016: #10 Charlie Puth / Selena Gomez - We Don't Talk Anymore

I thought I'd never see the day where Selena Gomez has two songs in my year-end top 10, and with former lover, Justin Bieber with three! So strange things can happen in life.

Well, I first heard this song on a drive from the SSS to my home - and I was immediately hooked.  I did not pay much attention to Charlie Puth's album, till this song.  Too bad I wasn't able to see him live because the concert producers decided he wasn't famous enough to fill up the MOA Arena or Araneta Coliseum.

How very wrong they were!!

Sean Paul

Sean Paul has eleven top 10 hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.  Nine of them went all the way to #1.

This week, Hair, his collaboration with Little Mix, debuts this week at #10.

2002 - Gimme the Light (#1)

2002 - Get Busy (#1)

2002 - Shout (Street Respect) (#1)

2002 - Like Glue (#1)

2003 - Baby Boy (with Beyonce) (#1)

2005 - We Be Burnin' (#1)

2005 - Temperature (#1)

2009 - So Fine (#1)

2009 - Do You Remember (with Jay Sean) (#1)

2016 - Trumpets (with Sak Noel & Salvi) (#10)

2016 - Hair (with Little Mix) (#10)

Here is the video of the song.  It already has 170,842,780 views.

Judy Collins

Judy Collins has four hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown. Three of them went all the way to #1

This week, Kingdom Come becomes her third #1 song in My Weekly Top 10 countdown as it ascends to the top.

2013 - Song for Judith (#5)

2016 - Weight of the World (#1)

2016 - Gauguin (#1)

2016 - Kingdom Come (#1)

Here's a video of the song.  It already has 1,592 views.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Mumford and Sons

Mumford and Sons has won the prestigious Grammy Album of the Year for Babel.  They have three top ten hits in My Weekly Top 10.

This week, Roll Away Your Stone moves up to
 #3 in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

2015 - Sigh No More (#2)

2016 - Winter Winds (#1)

2016 - Roll Away Your Stone (#3)

Here's a video of that song.  It already has 2,763,214 views.

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Justin Bieber

Justin Bieber has fourteen top 10 hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.  Six of them went all the way to #1.

2009 - One Time (#7)

2009 - One Less Lonely Girl (#3)

2010 - Baby (with Ludacris) (#1)

2010 - Eenie Meenie (with Sean Kingston) (#1)

2014 - Roller Coaster (#5)

2014 - PYD (with R. Kelly) (#7)

2015 - Where Are U Now (with Diplo and Skrillex) (#4)

2015 - What Do U Mean (#1)

2016 - Sorry (#1)

2016 - Love Yourself (#1)

2016 - I'll Show You (#4)

2016 - Cold Water (with Major Lazer and M0) (#1)

2016 - The Feeling (with Halsey) (#4)

2016 - Company (#8)

This week, The Feeling, his 13th hit, moves up to #4 in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

This is the video of the song.  It already has 50,846,487 views.

He also gets a second song into the top 10, as Company debuts at #8.

Here's a video of the song. It already has 299,649,975 views.

Jess Glynne

Jess Glynne has three hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown. One of them went all the way to #1.

2015 - Rather Be (with Clean Bandit) (#1)

2016 - Don't Be So Hard on Yourself (#5)

2016 - Hold My Hand (#5)

This week, she puts two hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.  Don't Be So Hard on Yourself slips down to #6, while Hold My Hand debuts at #5.

This is the video of the song.  It already has 64,021,090 views.

Here's the video of Hold My Hand. It already has 84,747,976 views.

Monday, December 26, 2016


Daya has one top 10 hit in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

2016 - Don't Let Me Down (with Chainsmokers) (#9)

This is the video of the song.  It already has 523,200,143 views.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

George Michael and His Christmas Hits

There is a trick among songwriters which says that if you don't want your kids to work for the rest of their lives, write a hit Christmas carol!

Well, George Michael did just that, as Last Christmas, is still being played worldwide every year every Christmas - so his estate - will continue to receive royalties for as long as the song is played.

The heirs to his estate should thank their lucky stars!
He was also in the Band Aid single 'Do They Know It's Christmas' but I think all proceeds of that song will go to charity.

Coincidental but ironic, he had two big Christmas-themed hits and he died on Christmas day.

My Most Favorite George Michael Song - Heal the Pain

Interestingly, although George Michael had many hits, including ten #1 songs in the US, he never released my most favorite song of his - from his Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 - it's Heal the Pain.

RIP George Michael - One of the Best Voices in Pop Music

I feel so sad about the passing of George Michael today because I will never see him perform live anymore.

Last decade, nagkakandarapa kami ng brother ko humabol sa concert schedule nya (whether in London or Paris) when he was still actively touring, yun lang our schedules never jived and he never traveled this side of Asia - hanggang Japan lang - e alam mo naman nuon, it was so hard to get a Japan visa, unlike now.

In my list of artists I want to see live, he's up there along with Cher and Tina Turner, but with his death today - hanggang live concert DVDs niya na lang. I've bought some of his latest concerts and grabe, this guy has one of the best voices in pop music of any male artist. I would pay him just to hear him sing the alphabet!

He had so many hits but what is unique about him, in my observation, is that all the collaborations he has done with some of music's A-list singers (Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Elton John, Freddie Mercury, Mary J. Blige), hindi niya sinasapawan ang ka-duet niya, unlike other singers. He allows both of them to shine and bring their best performance to the song. He always complements the other singer.

He was also unique in my book because in 1988, his album Faith, won both the Grammy Album of the year and the Pop/Soul Album award from the American Music Awards.

These two award-giving bodies are polar opposites, especially in the 80s, so for him to please both the snooty Grammy voters and the masa who votes for the AMAs, shows how universally loved his work was - and Faith was an amazing album - cohesive, walang tapon na kanta - and hit-filled as well.

Three of my musical heroes dead in 2016 - Bowie, Prince and George Michael. Hayy, the cycle of life....

Naku, if the women start dying as well, novena na sa simbahan mangyayari!

Justin Bieber's Purpose: My Choice for Grammy 2017 Album of the Year Award

I don't know who the other 13,000 Grammy voters are going to pick for this year's Album of the Year, but for me, I already knew the best work for this year very early on.
I'm sure I was not the only one who was blown away by the beauty of Justin Bieber's Purpose album.
I'm a big fan of dance music and to see Justin segue so beautifully to the magic done by great DJs like Skrillex and Diplo reminded me of how Madonna made that great move merging her music with the electronica music of William Orbit.
The album sounds like Justin's diary as each song talks or talked about his comments on fame, his former girlfriends, and his realizations - much like a Taylor Swift album - only this time, it's a boy singing.
There are many great songs in the album, but I feel I'll Show You is his way of saying to the world, "I'm not just a piece of meat, or gossip fodder, I'm more talented than most of today's pop wannabe's, I'll show you", and this album is proof of that talent.

Beyonce: Will She Be the Queen of Grammy's 2017?

Beyonce may finally win her first Grammy Album of the Year award for Lemonade, which for most music performers, is THE award to win.
However, except for two songs in that album, this one and All Night, none of the other songs appealed to me. I find this work a bit pretentious and although they say it preaches feminism and women doing for themselves, I could name ten other albums of women that showed real feminism without having to preach it to the rest of the world.
I feel that her previous album, the self-titled album, Beyonce, SHOULD'VE won the Album of the Year, the year it was nominated!
Now, that album was hiphop music on an operatic scale! The album was such a beauty I would listen to it for days, discovering new bits of grooves here and there, every time I listened to it.
And I loved each one of the songs there - walang filler - as they say.

Rihanna's Work: My Choice for Grammy Record of the Year 2017

The first time I heard this song, I had a feeling that the Grammy voters would choose it as one of the nominees for Record of the Year.
It's Rihanna at her sexiest and most adventurous in terms of phrasing her lines and giving that distinct reggae way of singing the words - making you wonder if they're real lines or just the way West Indian women say their words!
Too bad ANTI was a bit of uneven album, the only other song I liked there was Same Ol' Mistakes.
I think her best album ever was 2007's Good Girl Gone Bad where each just segued effortlessly with the next one, creating a very cohesive pile of dance songs and some ballads.
Well, Work is getting my vote for Grammy Record of the Year.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Lunar Lights

Local band Lunar Lights get their very first hit in My OPM Top 10 countdown.  This week, Lihim, debuts at #10.

Here's the video of the song.  It already has 58,159 views.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Julie Anne San Jose

Julie Anne San Jose has eight top 10 hits in My OPM Top 10 countdown. Three of them went all the way to #1.

This week, Naririnig Mo Ba becomes her 3rd #1 song in My OPM Top 10 countdown.  The second top 10 hit from her this week is Chasing the Light which jumps to #4.

2014 - Right Where You Belong (#7)

2015 - Kung Maibabalik Ko Lang (#8)

2015 - Tidal Wave (#1)

2015 - Cruisin' (with Christian Bautista) (#9)

2015 - Not Impressed (#1)

2016 - Forever (#5)

2016 - Naririnig Mo Ba (#1)

2016 - Chasing the Light (#4)

Here's the video for Naririnig Mo Ba.  It already has 519,140 views.

Here's the video for Chasing the Light.  It already has 68,500 views.


The local band Itchyworms has six top 10 hits in My OPM Top 10 countdown.  Four of them went all the way to #1.

This week, Pariwara, their collaboration with Ely Buendia, stays put at #2.

2012 - Suplado Ka Pala Sa Personal (#1)

2012 - Misis Fely Nimfa ang Pangalan (#1) 

2012 - Awitin Para Sa mga Nagmumuni-muni (#1)

2013 - After All This Time (#1)

2016 - Dalawang Letra (#6)

2016 - Pariwara (with Ely Buendia) (#2)

Here's the video of the song.  It already has 31,839 views.

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TJ Monterde

TJ Monterde has three top 10 hits in My OPM Top 10 countdown.

2015 - Tulad Mo (#7)

2016 - Dating Tayo (#9)

2016 - Imahinasyon (#10)

This week, he has two hits in My OPM Top 10 countdown.  Imahinasyon debuts at #10. 

Here's the video of the song.  It already has 1,894,862 views.

Dating Tayo moves up this week to #8 in My OPM Top 10 countdown.

Here's the video of the song.  It already has 793,624 views.

Best Christmas Gift 2016 - David Guetta Tickets

I know we're not supposed to compare gifts but I can't resist! Best Christmas gift yet! I'm so ready to party so early in 2017!
Merci beaucoup mon cher amie! You know who you are! Love you lots! Gros bizu!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Tori Kelly

Tori Kelly has two top 10 hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown. One of them went all the way to #1.

2016 - Nobody Love (#1)

2016 - Expensive (#3)

This week, Expensive moves up to #3 in My Weekly Top 10. 

Here's the video of the song. It already has 2,186,277 views.

Dolly Parton

Country legend Dolly Parton has eight top ten hits in My Weekly Top 10, including three number one songs.  I listened to her 2011 album Better Days and there are a lot of good songs there that should increase the top 10 haul for this legendary artist.

1980 - 9 to 5 (#1)

1983 - Islands in the Stream (with Kenny Rogers) #1)

2001 - Travelin Prayer (#1)

2012 - Travelin' Thru (#6)

2016 - Together You and I (#6)

2016 - Hard Candy Christmas (#6)

2016 - Shine Like the Sun (#10)

2016 - Holding Everything (#9)

This week, her latest hit, Holding Everything, debuts at #9 in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.  

This is a video of the song.  It already has 5,115 views.

Josh Groban

Josh Groban has eight top ten hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown. Four of them went all the way to #1.

2002 - To Where You Are (#7)

2003 - You're Still You (#1)

2003 - The Prayer (with Celine Dion) (#1)

2004 - You Raise Me Up (#8)

2014 - Happy in My Heartache (#1)

2016 - Below the Line (#1)

2016 - Brave (#3)

2016 - Falling Slowly (#10)

This week, Falling Slowly debuts at #10, giving him his 8th hit in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

This is a Youtube video of that song. It already has 226,337 views.

Bonnie Raitt

Dig In Deep is Bonnie Raitt's 20th album and from this album comes her fourteenth top 10 in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.  Nine of them went all the way to #1.

Here are Bonnie Raitt's hits in my personal countdown -

1990 - Nick of Time (#1)

1990 - Have A Heart (#1)

1990 - I Ain't Gonna Let You Break My Heart Again (#1)

1990 - Too Soon to Tell (#2)

1990 - Love Letter (#3)

1991 - Something to Talk About (#1)

1992 - I Can't Make You Love Me (#1)

1992 - All At Once (#1)

1992 - Luck of the Draw (#1)

1992 - Not the Only One (#3)

2015 - Steal Your Heart Away (#8)

2015 - So Close (#1)

2016 - Trinkets (#6)

2016 - The Ones We Couldn't Be (#1)

The song becomes her ninth #1 song in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

Here is the video of the song.  It already has 32,153 views.


Adele has three top 10 hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown.

This week, All I Ask, stays put at #3.

2008 - Make You Feel My Love (#1)

2011 - Someone Like You (#1)

2016 - All I Ask (#3)

Here's a video of the song.  It already has 28,284,085 views.

Paul Simon

Paul Simon has 19 hits in My Weekly Top 10 countdown. Nine of them went all the way to #1.

This week, Wristband marks his return to my countdown after an absence of 16 years.  The song moves up this week to #4.

1986 - Boy in the Bubble (#9)

1986 - Graceland (#1)

1986 - I Know What I Know (#2)

1986 - Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes (#1)

1986 - Under African Skies (#1)

1986 - Homeless (#7)

1986 - Crazy Love Vol. II (#1)

1986 - All Around the World or The Myth of Fingerprints (#1)

1990 - The Obvious Child (#1)

1990 - The Coast (#3)

1990 - Born at the Right Time (#1)

1990 - The Cool, Cool River (#7)

1990 - Proof (#5)

1990 - She Moves On (#3)

1990 - Can't Run But (#1)

1990 - Spirit Voices (#7)

1990 - The Rhythm of the Saints (#1)

1990 - Further to Fly (#9)

2016 - Wristband (#4)

Here's a video of the song.  It already has 262,952 views.