Carolina – Harry Styles

This is a name I never thought would hit my blog. When I heard “Sign of the Times,” I knew I liked it, but then when I found out who sang it, I was in shock.

I’ve said this before, but sometimes you have to drop the musical snobbery and just enjoy something that’s good. Like, undeniably good. If I weren’t to know this was Harry Styles, it would have been in instant rotation. If I judged it by the fact that it was by Harry Styles, it never would have hit rotation. And that’d be a huge loss.

One Direction fans always sickened me with their obsessiveness. It was like 1D could do no wrong, and that automatically made me leery of them. It didn’t help that their music felt generic and their audience were about 12 years-old.Fans-In-Crowd-Screaming

After leaving One Direction, Harry Styles took a decidedly 60s/70s vibe in both appearance and musical approach. High pitched repetitive vocals, open-chested shirts, and clunky guitars seem to be the name of the game for him now. The best example of this is the ultra-catchy “Carolina,” which is gaining a following already.

He is definitely doing is due-diligence to shed the “boy band” label, and be viewed as a heavy-hitter in the writing/composition side of the industry.

The entire self-titled album he recently released is an easy listen. There’s a constant thread of similarity in songs, but they differ enough to each pique your interest. I’d say give it a listen, even if you’re a Motorhead fan. It’ll soften you to this 1D member. And if that doesn’t do the trick, watch the recent Carpool Karaoke with him. Endearing and talented. Two words I didn’t think would describe Mr. Styles.

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Me and Your Mama – Childish Gambino

On a rainy day, I decided to stop by a friend’s apartment and relax for awhile.

When I walked in, she had Childish Gambino’s newest album streaming through her television.

At first, I didn’t realize who it was. All I’d known him for was rap, and quite honestly, I’ve never been hip to the rap scene.

But when the bass dropped in this song, I immediately yelled out, “WHO IS THIS?!” like someone with Tourette’s. The evil laugh that sounds like a mix of Bowser from Mario and a horror movie, had me hooked.

Following this revelation, I went home and listened to the whole album on Spotify. It’s such a gem.

And it’s no secret to the world, unfortunately. I was a latecomer this time.

The psychedelic roadtrip Gambino takes the listener on is pure joy. It’s laden with rich, sexy, soulful 70s funk. His performance on The Tonight Show of “Redbone,” only further cemented the raw talent and energy he has. Clad in metallic leather pants, no shirt, and a ‘stache for the gods, he belts out “Redbone” in a stunning falsetto.

There’s no denying the sex appeal of Awaken, My Love, but if you need a smooth, soulful album for a rainy day, there’s nothing better.

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