#MusicMix: Best of Pop in March

Pop songs in March saw an uplifting change of pace. They feature subjects such as self-love, drowning in love with someone recklessly, and gender equality, and 2 new songs from my faves Hot Chelle Rae.

Does your music library need some fresh blooms? Check out these amazing tracks in pop music:

Music Mix Playlist

Kings and Queens: Ava Max popped on the scene with Sweet but Psycho an EDM track that launched her onto the Billboard Hot 100. Now she’s back with a female empowerment track with the same signature EDM musicality and fire-breathing lyrics.

Oh, no damsel in distress, don't need to save me Once I start breathing fire, you can't tame me And you might think I'm weak without a sword But if I had one, it'd be bigger than you

Feel Me by Selena Gomez: A bonus track for her newest album Rare, it’s a dancy and hypnotic track about a lover you never forget.

Do you stay up late Just so you don't dream_

I Love Me by Demi Lovato: Following her first single Anyone since her near-fatal overdose, Lovato is back with an empowering self-love ballad with a fun and lighthearted musicality that begs the question:

I wonder when I love me is enough.

I'm a 10 out of 10 even when I forget it.
Where Am I At? by MAX: A Piano Ballad by the hitmaking soulful voice behind that song you kept hearing on the radio “Lights Down Low.”
Unlike the love in that track, this one is about the loss of a love that causes you to feel like a piece or part of you died.

Hardly got out of bed this morning Felt this rush, yeah, it lingers and I can't_ignore_it

Wave by Meghan Trainor: The first single off her recent album Treat Myself about a lover who isn’t entirely available but you want anyway, and allow yourself to swept up by the undercurrent of falling in love.

Drown by Martin Garrix: A dance pop track with a similar theme to the previous track about wanting someone so much you would drown in your love for them.

Tonight I wanna drown in an ocean of you

Afterlife by Hailee Steinfield: A song Steinfield wrote for the Apple TV show Dickinson to which she said:

There’s a line in the song that says, “Immortality is bliss,” and it reminded me a lot of Emily Dickinson’s poems. She lived during a time where women were forbidden from voicing their opinions, so the majority of her work wasn’t published until after she died. The inability to express herself fully in life, but to be so revered beyond her death—her writing continues to be remembered and relevant to this day, making her immortal.

It’s a breathy and dark song about someone’s love keeping your spirit alive even in moments when you don’t feel alive.

Every time your name, it leaves my lips Burning still, like words left unsaid

Love Me Anyway by P!nk and Chris Stapleton: A duet between the pop powerhouse singer and country singer Chris Stapleton that turns over the thought of unconditional love.

Old Me by 5SOS : Just another banger by this punk meets pop rock band from Australia about realizing that after all the mistakes you made and things you’ve been through, shoutout to the old you because that person taught you a lot. It is the fourth single off their album (out this Friday March 27) CALM.

Devil at my door Got me knockin', knockin', knockin' on the other side Ashes on the floor But I'm walkin', walkin', walkin' outta here alive

Stay by Hot Chelle Rae: The third single off the forthcoming Tangerine EP about the loneliness and needed someone to fill the void you feel. It’s got an EDM pop musicality while lead singer Follese’s vocals emote every ounce of how much he needs to not be alone.

Honestly I just need you to stay

Don’t Call Me Angel by Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande, and Lana Del Ray: A female empowerment song written for the 2019 Charlie Angel’s remake soundtrack about not needing a man to get by or to fight their battles. Discusses the oversexualization of women based on their body and not in what they have accomplished, the thoughts or brainpower they bring to the table.

Don't You Know I bite when the sun set, yeah_

Tomorrow Me by Hot Chelle Rae: OMG, sorry not sorry that I love this band so much.

Straight after the COV-19 outbreak and pandemic, and deep into the beginning of our science fiction level quarentine in real life, it’s a great track to be released about going all in and letting the mistakes and the problems of the night and all the “sins and debauchery” be something that this person can handle after the hangover subsides the following day. The minor piano chords in the musicality hint at the subtle regret of the speaker’s lack of remorse in the moment. I haven’t stopped listening since it came out last Friday. It’s just that good, and will also be featured on the forthcoming Tangerine EP.

It’s a party anthem and a “I Like It Like That” for 2020.

No matter how broke I get, no way Jose I’m still buying that good tequila

The Other Side by Justin Timberlake and SZA: A jazz musicality colors this track about getting to the other side of what is holding you back. The feel good positive pop track is featured on the soundtrack of the new Trolls World Tour movie.

No matter how broke I get, no way Jose I’m still buying that good tequila (1)

Didn’t I by OneRepublic: This next single off of OneRepublic’s fifth album Human features a piano based melody in contrast to earlier singles Rescue Me (dance based) and Wanted (string influenced). It also runs longer, at almost four minutes. Its theme centers around a lost relationship, asking “tell me why good things have to die?”

It is my favorite song out right now and I can’t stop listening to it.

My favorite line:

Never thought we'd ever have to go without Take you over anybody else, hands down We're the type of melody that don't fade out

 

 

 

 

 

#PoeticMuses: Calling All Poets and Poetry Book Authors

The Smart Cookie Philes needs you!

Send me an email below or at smartcookiepr26@gmail.com and I will review your book for FREE during the month of April and also offer FREE social media promotion!

Happy National Poetry Month to any and all poets!

#MusicMix:Grammy Nominated ‘Thank U, Next’ is Grande’s strongest work to date

I’ve always thought Ariana Grande was a star. I first watched her act on Victorious and thought her character Sam was spot on yet likeable. Then, she launched her music career shortly after that and I was blown away that someone who stands about four feet nine inches could have such a booming and powerful voice. Yet, with Thank U, Next she wrote, recorded, and produced this album within six months of her previous work Sweetener.

Before we talk about the Grammy nominated album Thank U, Next, let’s first note the sweetest tracks on Sweetener:

Sweetener

  • Debuted at #1 with three Top 20 singles in the US
  • Finished out the year at #38 on the Billboard Hot 200.
  • First notable track: God is a Woman– a female empowerment track discussing sexual empowerment using spirituality imagery. Musically, it is trap-pop with some reggae elements.
  • Second notable track: Breathin’ a dance pop mental health bop discussing Grande’s overcoming struggles with anxiety.
  • Third notable track: No Tears Left To Cry – A dance pop and disco track about overcoming a tragic event and turning it into a positive.
  • Fourth notable track: Get Well Soon –  a soul-ballad that has a laid back R&B melody with lyrics that talk about Grande’s personal anxiety & trauma following the Manchester Arena bombing.At the end of the song, 40 seconds of silence are played as a tribute to the twenty-two victims of the bombing and the date of which the bombing took place (May 22, 2017).

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Thank U, Next Song by Song Review

Grande’s 5th studio album was released on February 8, 2019, and spent two weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 200, as well as four weeks in the Top 10 of Billboard Hot 200.

Musically, it contains pop, r&b, soul, dance hall, trap and urban. It was nominated for both Album of The Year and Best Pop Vocal Album at the 2020 Grammy Awards.

Thank U Next Giveaway

Ends 3/31/20 and open to an international winner. Sorry for the wonkiness.

 

Win a copy of Thank U Next

Imagine: First promotional single about an unattainable love. About a “now and forever” unreachable love. It’s musicality contains whistle noises and is an R&B trap ballad.pablo (1)

Needy:  mid-tempo minimalistic song with a metronome-like synth in the foreground. Lyrically, it shows that any lover can be insecure and craves emotional support.

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NASA R&B tune featuring a thumping bass and trap drums; a song about needing space or distance to create a “miss you” effect with the person you are in a relationship with.

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Bloodline: My instant favorite off this album about wanting to be friends with benefits. A reggae pop song with R&B influences that contains brassy horns and a pumping bass. The song opens with a sound bite of her grandmother referencing her hearing aid.

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Fake Smile: A hip-hop soul track with a trap groove, Grande discusses her dissatisfaction with life and how she won’t wear a facade to hide her emotions. This is her opening up about the Manchester bombing and the death of her ex Mac Miller.

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Bad Idea: An EDM and trap number opening with an 80’s rock ballad intro compared to David Guetta’s Titanium featuring an orchestra in the bridge and outro. Lyrically, it discusses using a lover to numb her pain.

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Make-Up:  A wonky pop and bubblegum influenced sound with a rap-influenced bridge set up a double entendre about makeup applied to one’s face to enhance one’s features and make-up sex after a heated argument.

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Ghostin’:An emotional synth-and-strings ballad about being with someone while still being in love with someone else.

In My Head: A track with trap pop hybrid musicality with many R&B influences about falling in love with someone she created in her head only to realize that is not who the person is at all.

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7 Rings:  A trap and R&B cover of My Favorite Things by Julia Andrews from The Sound of Music. Instead of the musical reprise, the track has a female empowerment hip-hop flex feel. It’s also acknowledges the power of women friendships and women who support one another.

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Thank U, Next:  The title track  off the album. Self-empowered pop and R&B track discussing being grateful for the lessons learned in past relationships and from past lovers.

Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored: Trap-pop and R&B song that samples “It Makes Me Ill” by NSYNC in the bridge. A song that at first sounds like being attracted to a guy only to realize he has a girlfriend but she really wants to love herself.

Grande hit the nail on the head despite the short time span this album took to create and come out but sometimes, it’s the heaviness of life that creates the most lasting art, song, or story.

Super Pods are here!

Jennifer Ervig’s When My Mind Winds Up Will Help You Conquer Your Anxiety #EndTheStigma #BookReview

FB_IMG_1575832681128.jpgAs someone who has battled anxiety and depression knowingly since the age of twelve, and who also tried to commit suicide at that age, I can tell you that this book was like a cold blast of a Bahamian breeze, an utter rest for my soul. When My Mind Winds Up is written in short devotional style so it is an easy and quick read and a great companion to your daily bible reading/study.

I liked the quoteable wisdom I found throughout especially when she quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson, who happens to be my go-to guy to quote in times of crisis or distress, but overall, Ervig offers real-time solutions and walking each sufferer through their thoughts and helping them process, heal, and evolve.

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Check out our amazing Affiliates!

Get A Handle On Your Love For Willie Handler This Valentine’s Day Weekend

If you have a love affair with everything Willie Handler, you enjoy talk of martians and Mars, and you like to laugh, you should listen in. Author Willie Handler will be doing two interviews this Valentine’s Day Weekend.

“Writers for Readers” is Friday, February 14 on CHOP-FM 102.7 10_00 A.m. Local To Canada Only! (2)

The first will be 10 a.m. on 102.7 FM Chop FM. You can listen to it here LIVE at that time.

Other Storeis

The second is for a fun read of an excerpt from Loved Mars, Hated The Food and an interview that airs via The Other Stories February 17, 2020. If you prefer Itunes, it is available there as well. You can download it and listen to it as much or as often as you like. You can play it loud, you can leave it muted, or you can listen to it at a normal volume. Either way, make room for the martians of Mars with this fun podcast appearance.

 

#BookReview: Partition of Africa by @oliviadeard Plus #Giveaway

Giveaway is Now Closed

Have you ever felt like you made the wrong choice or felt as if everyone was against you?

Or

Struggled to understand why one of your parents chose not to know you?

Ard’s characters walk right off the pages and keep you reading from start to finish.

Harriet Greene is a student at Howard Knox University but as any college campus goes, her life is full of scandal.

Harriet or Hattie is relatable, vulnerable, and brave.

You instantly want her to win and the story and Ard’s way with words pulls you in.

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#SmartCookiePR: Albert Took Flight in January and made some new friends along the way…

Our wise  friend Albert The Albatross reached new heights by making new friends and visiting similar locations but at new times. Sometimes the same town can become brand new if you visit it only an hour or so later or earlier than you did the time before.

Albert encourages young and old to keep a positive attitude in order to soar to heights they have yet reached, and to attract new friends to join them in this journey we call life.

This month, Albert visited a Fishing Tournament and a Block Party.

Both were in Sanford, FL.

The fishing tournament reeled in some brand new friends for Albert and Oscar.

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The Block Party was incredibly lit. It was fun and friendly time to get down. 

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To be the first to know updates on where Albert will be through the rest of 2020, please stay tuned to The Smart Cookie Philes and Like Him on Facebook.

#MusicMuses: Pop Music Mix January 2020

I think pop music is a fascinating genre because unlike all the other genres of music it is a mix of them plus constantly evolving. It’s always got a catchy beat, lyrics that grip, and a message based on current issues of the time.

For me, pop music has reminded of certain times with certain people. Or the decade of my birth because 90s pop was pretty dang fun.

Pop music has progressively gotten a lot darker and more deeper, in a genuine reflection of our society and world as a whole.

Yet, it is filled with so many songs that carry you through when nothing else seems to.

Here is a playlist for anyone looking to add something fresh and inviting.

Haunted House:Voice manipulation and Christina’s big band musicality create this dark jazz track about how one’s heart is haunted with past lovers, broken pieces, and twisted walk ways.

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Nice To Meet Ya:  Uptempo pop track with vintage vibes about seeing someone at a club or bar, and feeling a connection but not getting their name.

Adore You:  3rd single from Styles’ Fine Line, features Harry speaking about his love and passion for a significant other, and the extent to which he would do things.

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I’m Fakin’:  An electropop track about two people who have very large energies and disagree often. It’s only an act. The track features a clock ticking in the background on the breakdown.

You Can’t Stop The Girl: A female empowerment track that is from Disney’s second Maleficient movie.

Up All Night:  An uptempo pop track about troubling thoughts that keep you up all night, struggling with anxiety.

Lost My Mind:   The windchimes in the musicality are a perfect touch to a track about feeling winded because someone took your breath away, they left you, and you can’t get them off your mind.  It is a deep exploration of the human heart, and even after you leave someone’s presence they stay with you and you feel like you’ve lost your mind in loving them.

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Keep On: A soft song that shares an encouraging  message for anyone who suffers with any and all symptoms of anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses.

Fall On Me: A cover of Andrea Bocelli’s 2018 song of the same name. The “Say Something” duo is back to create a multilayered piece of music about falling in love or falling on anyone when you can’t carry your burdens alone.

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Fired Up by Grace Carter: A fun pop track about being in love and it fuels your overall passion for life.

This Is On You:  An almight emo girl bop about not feeling responsible for someone else’s happiness.

Poser:  A song about struggling in self-worth and trying not to mess up what you share with someone

Anyone: An emotionally charged piano ballad about needing help as she wants someone to be there through the tough times with her. It was written and recorded four days before her near-fatal overdose in July 2018.

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Underdog: An Uptempo R&B song about people working for a better life, co-written with Ed Sheeran.

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Don’t miss my Billie Eillish giveaway!

 

 

 

 

 

#Grammys Young Creative Billie Eillish Sweeps Four Major Awards For Album When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? (Album Review)

Before 18 year old Billie Eillish was humbly accepted yet confused that her album was 2020 Grammy Winner for Album of The Year she was just a different being altogether. Her vocals are ethereal, haunting, yet heart wrenching. Her lyrics are multidimensional. People wonder who is Billie Eillish. Well, rumors circle and white noise ensues. She’s certainly not a satanist, atheist, or a  psycho who escaped the ward.

In 2016, she burst onto the pop charts with music she wrote and produced with her older brother Finneas. Her first single Ocean Eyes was released via Soundcloud and was written by Finneas for his band but he gave it to Billie since she was looking for a song she could choreograph a dance to.

The rest is her story…

Billie Eillish’s musicality is a mix of pop, alternative, electropop, trap, and EDM.

Her soprano vocals steal the show and grab hold of your insides. They are ethereal, husky, almost whisper-like, a slurring voice that can be thinned out to reedy.

Most people have compared her to Lana Del Ray which she welcomes with a big bright smile saying that one of her biggest musical influences is Del Ray.

When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? Debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 200 on March 29, 2019.

billie grammys

Took home 4 Grammys last night for:

  • Record of the Year: Bad Guy
  • Song of the Year: Bad Guy
  • Best New Artist
  • Best Pop Vocal Album: When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?

FINNEAS also won a Grammy for Best Producer of the Year, Non-Classical.

GIVEAWAY!!!
Win a Copy of Billie’s Grammy Winning Album! [Open to 1/27/20 to 2/3/20] International Entries Accepted. Follow both terms to qualify.
Song by Song Review
As always, click the title to be linked to audio of each track.
!!!: A 14 second track that showcases the artist’s sense of humor while simultaneously introducing the album.
Bad Guy:  A pop & trap song which uses a bass, a kick drum, and amplified finger snaps. When I first heard it, I instantly thought it sounded somewhat familiar and recently it has been revealed that this song was based off the theme song for Disney Channel original series Wizards of Waverly Place. Eilish uses anything to create a song as seen throughout this album. The lyrics showcase the meaning of being the “bad guy”: not fitting in, feeling out of place, being more masculine than your male counterparts but both Eillish and her brother have said that this song is about someone who always has to say what they are, aren’t truly bad, etc.
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Who someone is comes off in the way they present themselves and not in what they constantly have to convince themselves they are.
This song was introduced to me by my younger sister and then played often at work by a coworker. It was my first intro into this artist’s music but instantly made me want to uncover all the layers of Billie Eillish as an artist and open every crevice of her musical Pandora’s box.
My favorite thing about this song is the spoken word “Duh” heard throughout the track.
It even inspired me to get this T-shirt which I proudly wore last night while watching the Grammys.
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Xanny: The song’s minimal instrumentation includes sparse bits of bass guitar, piano, and dirty bass synth, along with an heavy 808 bass on the bridge, while Eillish’s vocals are slow-paced and slightly off-beat. It explores irresponsible recreational drug use.
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You Should See Me In A Crown: My favorite song on the entire album because it instantly has that “SHIT IS ABOUT TO GO DOWN” feel. A hip-hop & trap song featuring Billie singing over blaring synths and rapid fire hi-hats. The lyrics were inspired by the show Sherlock.
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All The Good Girls Go To Hell: punchy piano number exploring the idea of God & the Devil observing human beings and wondering what they are truly trying to achieve. When asked for a deeper meaning underneath the symbolism, this track discusses the epidemic of climate change.
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Wish You Were Gay: A goofy song about being rejected by a guy she liked and wanting an explanation.
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After the song came out, she found out the muse behind the track came out to his family and friends because of the song.
When The Party’s Over:Before I heard this full track, I saw it visually on the show So You Think You Can Dance
A heart-wrenching track about the distance between you and another person. A piano ballad with choral influences, it is entirely hauntingly beautiful.
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8: A ukelele-based lullaby in which her vocals are manipulated to sound like a small child. It is written from the perspective of someone she hurt. The lyrics discuss someone not seeing you for you while you would have given them the world just to get them to smile.
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My Strange Addiction: A bass heavy pop song inspired by the American sitcom “The Office.” It contains samples from the episode “Threat Level Midnight,” which the entire cast gave personal permission for Eillish to use.
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Bury A Friend: Minimalist Electronica and Industrial Track written from the perspective of a monster under the bed. It details a confusing relationship.
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Ilomilo: Electropop cut named after a 2010 video game.
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Listen Before I Go: A hard to listen to song based on the idea of Billie committing suicide and what she would say to all her family, friends, and fans. It features a gentle piano accompaniment and jazz influences, containing faint street noises & sirens for ambiance.
Billie recently struggled with the thought of ending her life while struggling with the overwhelming pressures of fame. She talked herself out of it after crying and thinking of her mom.
As someone who also has struggled with, and continues to struggle with mental illness including suicidal thoughts, this song hits home for me because it makes the idea almost real in a sense.
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I Love You: An acoustic ballad that explores the struggles and feelings when you realize you are in love with someone, someone you shouldn’t be.
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Goodbye: It features lyrics from each song on the album reversing as if rewinding a cassette tape to start it over.
Although only included on the Japanese version of the album, my favorite Billie Eillish song is Come out and Play
It’s soft, and the lyrics are timely, almost autobiographical in a sense.
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Overall, we can see now who Billie Eillish is. She’s brillant, an enigma, creative, artistic, and someone who is self-aware of her feelings and how they affect those around her.
She wears loud colors in her hair and is just a young talented female who wants to share her art with the world.
Don’t ever discount or minimize someone’s abilities because they are different than you.
If this year’s Grammy Awards could be summed up in a single sentence, it would be that.