App Spotlight: Official Comedy

7:29Are you ready to laugh? Now you can find your favorite comedians and discover great new comedy talent on Spotify with the new Official Comedy App.

This first of its kind app aggregates our extensive comedy database and offers listeners a curated assortment of entertaining programming.

Now it’s never been easier to get giggling to top comedy performances such as Jerry Seinfeld’s “I’m Telling You For The Last Time” and Aziz Ansari’s “Dangerously Delicious,” along with material from Louis CK, Mike Birbiglia, Kevin Hart, Jeffrey Ross and many others.

Add the Official Comedy app today and be prepared for some side splitting laughs right here!

“Axwell Presents…” — An Exclusive Series of Festival Playlists

7:25Festival fans – you’re in for a treat! We’ve teamed up with Axwell, Swedish superstar DJ/producer and one third of recently split electronic music trio, Swedish House Mafia, to curate a series of exclusive playlists this summer. In the run up to five of this season’s hottest dance festivals, Axwell will release a playlist exclusively on Spotify containing some of his must-hear highlights of the upcoming festival.

The series launches with the first, ‘Axwell Presents… Tomorrowland’, ahead of Belgium’s premier dance festival which kicks off this Friday, 26th July. The playlist includes Axwell’s top acts for the festival such as ‘Resurrection’ by French electronic producer, Michael Calfan, and legendary NYC outfit, Masters at Work’s ‘To Be In Love’.

Tune in here and be sure to ‘Follow’ Axwell on Spotify to receive alerts when forthcoming ‘Axwell Presents…’ playlists are added!

 

 

App Spotlight: RITHM

iPhone fans – we have an awesome app for you! Be sure to check out RITHM, a new free app that allows you to send fun, customizable music messages to friends.

On RITHM, you can:

Send songs to any friend
Customize with videos, photos (free form doodling) and fun animated (dancing) characters to send along with the track
Share to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter
Save songs to Spotify
RITHM is music messaging for friends, so if you want to rock out, share an experience, send something special or make someone laugh, this is the app to express yourself and have fun with your friends! Check it out here!

RITHM – music messaging is here! from RITHM on Vimeo.

Rock-a-Royal Baby

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Union Jacks are flying high and champagne corks are popping as the birth of the Royal Baby boy is announced to the world, and to celebrate we’ve created a commemorative playlist to mark the occasion.

Scouring the web, we’ve found the tracks which were at number one on the birth date of each of the royal lineage, dating back to the Royal Baby boy’s grandparents.

Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge entered the world in 1982, at a time when classic 80s hits were at the top of the UK Charts. Kate’s birthday, 9th January 1982, saw Bucks Fizz pop classic ’Land of Make Believe’ reach the UK top spot and Prince Charming himself, Adam Ant’s ’Goody Two Shoes’ welcomed William into the world later on in the year on 21st June. The most popular hits of 1982 included The Human League’s ’Don’t You Want Me’ and Charlene’s hit ’I’ve Never Been To Me’. The playlist also includes the Royal couple’s first dance song from their wedding Elton John’s ‘Your Song’.

Baby boy’s grandfathers were born in the Big Band era and on the birth of Prince Charles in 1948 Russ Morgan’s Big Bang Orchestra’s ’So Tired’ was reigning the airwaves and post-war baby Michael Middleton was born at the time when Vaughn Monroe and now Dame Vera Lynn ruled the gramophones.

Grandmother Carole Middleton was born during the 50s, and on her birthdate, 31st January 1955, Perry Como’s ’Don’t Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes’ was at number one in the UK charts.

The late Princess Diana, born 1st July 1961 was welcomed with the Elvis era, as his classic ’Surrender’ topped the chart on her birthday. UK heartthrob Adam Faith was also popular that year with his single ’Don’t You Know It?’ a favourite in the UK Charts.

The Rock-a-Royal baby playlist wouldn’t be complete without ’God Save The Queen’ and the number one song when Her Majesty, The Queen was born in 1928, George Olsen’s ’Always’

The Royal Baby boy sees Avicii’s “Wake Me Up” as the number one song being streamed on Spotify today, 22 July.

Our Interview with Laura Jansen

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“I’m very open with my audience – it’s like a free form of therapy…”

Laura is checking over her gear ahead of a session in Spotify’s Amsterdam office when we reach her. The Netherlands-born daughter of a, “pretty cool mom”, was raised on a huge range of music, from “weird Brazilian protest stuff” to vintage Portuguese folk.
“But mostly,” she laughs, “it was Queen. I wore black for a week when Freddie Mercury died. I thought he was straight and I was in love with him…”
Now living in LA, Jansen’s wonderful new album, Elba features appearances from Keane’s Tom Chaplin and the singer-songwriter’s singer-songwriter, Ed Harcourt.

What do you remember of that Brazilian and Portuguese music from your childhood?
More than anything, the sentiment. In Portuguese music they call it saudade, it translates to melancholy and longing, but it’s like you can feel it in your body. That’s a big part of why almost everything I do is sort of in that vein – I totally relate to that emotion, it’s quite sweeping and dramatic. I’m always longing for something that never was.

What was the first music that was all yours?
The Prodigy! I was a good little school girl until someone gave me a tape of theirs. I remember listening to that in art class while I was painting, and just going, “What is happening here and why am I so drawn to it?” That same year I got into Rage Against the Machine and Pearl Jam’s Ten. That combination of puberty and really good, angry music properly opened my brain up because right after that I found Portishead, which was super mind-blowing.

 

Do you think the perfect song exists?
I do, but I don’t think there’s just one – it could be something that I think is really crap, and you think it’s perfect. For me, the perfect music will forever be Kate Bush, she is my line through life. The Hounds of Love, Big Sky, The Man With the Child in his Eyes and Running up that Hill. Those four are basically perfect.

What was the last amazing record you heard?
James Blake’s Retrograde, that single. I’m really into Stromae too. He’s the first artist that I’ve come across in a long time where I had to like Google him and find out everything there was to know about him, I think what he’s doing is really exciting. Oh, and The National’s new one really struck a chord with me – that’s such a beautiful follow-up record.

If I could drop you into any band in history …
Oh yes! Could you arrange it for me to be a backing singer for Bob Marley? I’d want to be one of the three women that kind of goes through the whole touring experience with him, witnessing all the political upheaval. He seemed like a prophet in his message, that would be kind of fascinating.

Tell me about Elba. How did it begin?
Elba started as a conversation about sentences that are the same forwards and backwards – the first one I ever learned was “Able was I ere I saw Elba”. And it was credited to Napoleon. You know, when he was exiled after destroying Europe he landed on this little rock of a place called Elba where he crowned himself king, and imposed a tax system. He built a palace for his lover and designed a flag with little golden bees on it. I just thought that was a really great way to go about feeling like shit! Turn it around and make it awesome. I had just gone through quite a heavy break-up last year while I was writing this album – I was being kicked out of my old life – so I had to step into this new life with only my new record and my suitcase, and just kind of figure it all out. So I changed it up and said, OK, I’m going to crown myself the Queen of this little domain of mine, everything I’m left with, and make the best of it. Elba became a symbol for me of myself and everyone else as an island.

You’re telling me it’s a concept album?
I’m not!! Really the album is about exploring the place that you’re in right now.

Does it get easier or harder to share your most intimate feelings?
I’m used to it. All my music has been autobiographical, and I’m quite open with my audience because it’s like a free form of therapy, and it makes me feel less alone, like my dramas aren’t that unique.

What five artists couldn’t you exist without?
Kate Bush. Queen. Peter Gabriel. Joni Mitchell. James Blake and can I have one more? George Harrison – I was going to say The Beatles, but I think just George.

Why George?
He was the most attractive! No, he just took the most chances lyrically, and approached songwriting from a really spiritual place without ever being preachy.

And he had great hair.
He really did! He had great hair! The women just loved him.

What song was playing in your head when you woke up this morning?
Oh, god, I’m so embarrassed I just bought The Best of the Backstreet Boys for a road trip – when you have more than two girls in a car, you have to play the Backstreet Boys – and I fell for Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely. That’s what I woke up to this morning.
Definitely a diamond in their catalogue.

How do you find new music?
Well, Spotify, for one! I like the social media aspect of it now. I’ve always been interested in making playlists and sharing mixtapes. Often I’ll post something online, like “OK, I need new music, I’ve got a 26 hour flight ahead of me, help!”, and then people will send me stuff. I’ve got 40 really trusted tastemakers kind that I follow and I constantly check what they’re listening to. I think I’ve discovered more music through Spotify than I have through traditional means. The last ones were Cashmere Cat, Disclosure and Caribou. Oh, and Timbre Timbre – their song Bad Ritual is brilliant.

Finally – crucially! – what’s your favourite noise?
The sound of wind blowing through sailboats in a harbour. That tinkling metal and the snapping of sails. But my second favourite noise is the squeaking of tulip fields – when they rub together, they squeak…

Such a Dutch answer!
What can I say?

James Anderson’s Top 10

7:17James Anderson, Lancashire and England cricketer, and the man responsible for taking 10 wickets during the first Ashes test, helping England to victory, shares his top 10 favourite tracks of the moment to mark his ambassadorship of music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins.

Tune in to his playlist here!

 

Speaking about Nordoff Robbins’ work, James says:

“Nordoff Robbins’ music therapy work struck a real chord with me. I’m a really big music fan so to see a charity using music to transform lives is really special to me. During a visit to their centre, I got to see first-hand the difference music therapy can make to all kinds of people. Their work is really unique and I’m proud to support them.”.

Learn more about Nordiff Robbins’ incredible work here.

Our Interview With Robin Thicke

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“95% of the world didn’t think the Blurred Lines video was controversial at all…”

Robin Thicke’s (really rather good) band lean into Blurred Lines about 30 seconds before The Man Himself wanders out of a side room at Spotify London – pitch-black Aviators firmly in place – and begins to sing. The temperature rises. Screaming happens. People smile a lot. This is showbiz in action, something 36-year-old Canadian-American Robin knows all about. He released his debut album nearly 11 years ago – so, as you can imagine, now he finally does have the hottest record in the world, he’s quite keen on enjoying it with as many people as humanly possible.

“I love performing,” he laughs. “I’m just really pleased now everyone else likes it too…”


Who taught you a lot?
Tell us Robin, what music was playing in the house when you were growing up?
A lot of the same things I listen to now. Music has always been a bit like college for me, I really study it. I went through a Prince phase and listened only to him for six months. Then I did Marvin Gaye, then The Beatles, then Biggie Smalls and each time I soaked up their whole catalogue. I like to learn whatever I can from people.

 

Definitely Otis Redding, it was listening to him that I learnt you have to live in the moment. Don’t be over rehearsed, let things breathe, you want to create something unexpected and individual. Prince taught me there are no boundaries to music – you can mix and blend it all.

So, does the perfect song exist?
It certainly does and The Beatles wrote a few of them! A great song comes from a very pure emotion – so often the best songs are written very quickly; it’s the ones you labour over that tend to fall short. John Lennon’s Imagine is perfect, so is Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On. Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds and Stevie Wonder’s Ribbon in the Sky are both perfect. All four of those songs are about hope and love – they have a purity to them and that purity tries to show you how, despite it all, the world is a beautiful place. Listen to Otis Redding’s Try A Little Tenderness - that just says it all. You can feel every note, every moment of pain and hope in that one song. The realities of life’s struggles and the possibilities of hope are all in there.

What was the last amazing record you heard?
Oh well, some of my favourite albums are from way back, but I can tell you that OK Computer blew my mind, as did the Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. I’ve always loved Fiona Apple’s first LP too.

What band in history would you have most loved to have been a part of?

The Beatles! I’d have loved to have been part of making Sgt Pepper. That really is an immaculate piece of art – the songs, the melodies, the production, the creation itself is so pure. These are not artists worrying about the radio or the old fans or the new fans or the record label – they’re out there, they’re experimenting.

We’re throwing a big house party this weekend and you’re DJing at midnight – what five records are you going to play?
Oh man, good question! I’d start with Kanye West’s Mercy and then go straight into Clique. Then I’d play Got To Give It Up by Marvin Gaye and Prince’s Kiss. Then I’d finish my set with Blurred Lines! That would keep the party going.

You know Andy Murray played Blurred Lines while preparing for the Wimbledon final…
Really? Wow! So it’s all because of me? Then I want a little piece of that Wimbledon trophy, just a little chip!

What did you make of the controversy surrounding the video?
Not a lot, to be honest. 95% of the world didn’t think it was controversial at all.

Any plans to top it for the next single?
You can’t top that; you’d have to go completely the other way.


How has good old London town been treating you this summer?
You mean, get a bunch of models to put their clothes back on?
Exactly – that would surprise people!

I feel like I’ve been very lucky – the sun is shining and it’s hot and all everyone’s walking around in their bathing suits. We’ve been blessed! London has such a great sense of humour too – everyone you meet makes you laugh.

What did the Robin Thicke who was releasing his debut album over a decade ago think would happen to him?
I didn’t know all I was trying to do was make my own version of Sgt Pepper! I had a lot of hope and ambition and I thought I could do anything I wanted, but then reality kicked in and the album didn’t sell. I thought that maybe I would never be as good as the legends I worship, but this is now my sixth album and having this success has really excited me again. This album this album is about escaping my fears and insecurities, it takes me out of my daily grind and lets me fly for a little bit. You have to believe you are making your best music; you have to fall in love with it. I’m proud and excited about this record, but it’s also my job to believe I can do better.

Who are you listening to right now?
Well, I really love the Disclosure album. I plan on reaching out to them for my next album. I think they’re so talented and so young! Everything is still fresh for them – they haven’t been jaded yet…

What song was playing in your head when you woke up this morning?
That was Icona Pop’s I Love It - right in the middle of my brain.

Tell us a secret about life on the road with Robin Thicke.
I’m a very happily married man, so it’s all about the show. Sometimes we’ll go to the gym to play basketball or do some jet skiing if we’re near the beach, but we just want to put on a great show every night. It’s our job to give everything we’ve got.

Finally – crucially! – what’s your favourite noise?
Oh man. Definitely when my wife moans.

You don’t mean in a why-haven’t-you-taken-out-the-rubbish-yet way either, do you?
No, I mean when she happily moans! That’s my favourite noise for sure.

All Star Game Songs

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With the 2013 All Star Game taking place tonight at the New York Mets’ home, Citi Field, we put together this playlist of the walk out music for the 2013 All Star Game starting lineups. The list runs the gamut from The Rolling Stones to 90’s superstars House of Pain (David Wright), to JAY Z. The list also features two appearances of Flower by Moby (Bryce Harper and JJ Hardy).

Listen here!

National League

1. Brandon Phillips, Reds 2B, –> R.I.P. [Feat. 2 Chainz], Young Jeezy

2. Carlos Beltran, Cardinals, RF, –> Echa Pa’lla Pitbull

3. Joey Votto, Reds, 1B, –> Paint It Black, The Rolling Stones

4. David Wright, Mets, 3B, –> Jump Around, House of Pain

5. Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies, LF Flow, –> Violoento, Arcangel

6. Yadier Molina, Cardinals, C, –> Sigan Bailando, Wisin Y Yandel

7. Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies, SS, –> Public Service Announcement, JAY Z

8. Michael Cuddyer, Rockies DH, –> Got To Know, Flux Pavilion

9. Bryce Harper, Nationals, CF, –> Flower, Moby

American League

1. Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels, CF, –> H.A.M, Kanye West + JAY Z

2. Robinson Cano, New York Yankees, 2B, –> Te Prendo, Chimbala

3. Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers, 3B, –> Mercy, Kanye West

4. Chris Davis, Baltimore Orioles, 1B, –> I Get Wicked, Thousand Foot Krutch

5. Jose Bautista, Toronto Blue Jays, RF, –> Ven Conmigo, Daddy Yankee

6. David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox, DH, –> The Motto, Drake

7. Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles, CF, –> Show Out, Juicy J Feat. Big Sean & Young Jeezy

8. Joe Mauer, Minnesota Twins, C, –> What You Know, T.I.

9. JJ Hardy, Baltimore Orioles, SS, –> Flower, Moby

 

#MusicMonday – La chronique d’Edouard du 15 Juillet

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L’été est là et déploie chaque jour un peu plus son ciel azur et son soleil étincelant. La chaleur sera pour les uns dynamisante et pour les autres soporifique. Trouver la musique idéale entre survoltage et léthargie s’avère alors être un véritable casse-tête. Pour tenter de coller à votre tension artérielle, les musiques seront ni trop vives ni trop lentes. Voilà donc une playlist au tempo estival…

Ugress, ce musicien norvégien de musique électronique, a publié récemment un nouvel EP « Another Planet ». Dans la lignée des précédents singles et albums, le titre éponyme réutilise même quelques airs (très légèrement modifiés) du titre Panetfall paru en 2011. Inutile de vous dire qu’on retrouve donc cet univers inchangé mais toujours plaisant. Peut-être aurons-nous plus de surprises dans son prochain album.

Beth Rowley est une chanteuse anglaise (d’origine péruvienne) à la voix douce et trentenaire. Elle dévoile un EP « Wretched Body » d’une infinie beauté. A la fois planantes, aériennes et travaillées, ses chansons naviguent d’un genre à l’autre sans que l’oreille s’en rende vraiment compte. Oscillant entre une ambiance jazz, blues, folk et même pop, Beth est avant tout une voix et un style influencé par Aretha FranklinWillie NelsonBob Dylan et d’autres.

Alexis Dendiével est sans doute autant poète et rêveur que chanteur. Peu connu du grand public, son dernier album Bouteilles à la mer est une belle démonstration de chanson française, un recueil de textes ciselés associé à une musique intelligente. Accompagnées de piano ou de guitare rafraichissante, ces chansons accompagneront vos moments de détentes estivales pour un repos assuré.

George Lewis était un clarinettiste et saxophoniste de jazz américain. Il a bercé le siècle dernier au son de grands classiques jazz Dixieland et New Orleans. Pour célébrer notre fête nationale, encore toute fraîche, laissez-vous surprendre par une interprétation originale de notre hymne national, La Marseillaise ! D’autres surprises ska et reggae sont aussi à découvrir dans cette playlist d’été.

Pour terminer, et en hommage à notre cher et talentueux accordéoniste disparu la semaine dernière, vous pourrez écouter un titre d’actualité (plus fiscale que de santé publique) d’André Verchuren, la fête du tabac. Qu’il repose en paix et merci à lui !

Bonne écoute et à lundi prochain sur Spotify.

Edouard

Pour plus de playlists, suivez-moi sur Spotify.
Pour plus de tweets, suivez-moi sur Twitter .

Si vous voulez retrouver tous les titres proposés par Edouard dans ses chroniques, cliquez-ici !

The Eagles: Breakup, The Reunion, & The Long Road Out Of Eden

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After a dramatic breakup following a physical confrontation backstage, it would be 14 years before the Eagles would perform together again. Another 14 years passed before the 2007 release of their seventh album, “Long Road Out Of Eden.”

With two chart topping albums and one of the highest selling compilation albums of all time, the Eagles had secured their place in rock music history. However, the decadence reflected in “Hotel California” had become something of an everyday reality for the band members, for whom severe drug abuse and the worldwide tour that followed “Hotel California” was strenuous on a personal, as well as creative, level.

Glenn Frey and Randy Meisner often ran afoul of each other due to the latter’s unwillingness to perform his highlight number, “Take it to the Limit,” during the tour. This tense situation led to Meisner leaving the band after the tour’s final concert. To replace him, the band recruited Timothy B. Schmit, the same bass player that eight years earlier had replaced him when he left Poco.

It took three years before the Eagles followed up “Hotel California” with 1979′s “The Long Run.” The pressure to deliver an album in the same class as its predecessor made their already scuffling egos even more sensitive. Frey was particularly despondent and considered breaking up the band.

In 1980, during a benefit concert for Senator Alan Cranston, Glenn Frey and Don Felder exchanged threats on stage, which after the show degenerated into a physical confrontation. Thus, the band’s inevitable breakup occurred immediately following the tumultuous event.

The Eagles had split up, but were still obligated by their record label to make one more album. Therefore, in November 1980, they released “Eagles Live.” The album was mixed by Glenn Frey and Don Henley, but the relationship between the two was so strained that they couldn’t even stand to work in the same studio. Instead, they worked on separate coasts and sent their material to one another via Federal Express.

Country singer Travis Tritt could be seen as the catalyst for the Eagles’ reunion. He contributed a rendition of “Take it Easy” to the tribute album “Common Thread: The Songs of the Eagles” and wanted the band to appear in its music video, which they did.

In April 1994, after several years of dismissing rumors and speculations about their reunion, the Eagles stepped on stage together for the first time in 14 years. The following tour resulted in the live album “Hell Freezes Over,” the title a reference to Don Henley’s comment that the Eagles would reunite “when hell freezes over.”

Despite their history, the mood within the band appeared to be fine. They toured throughout 1996, and, two years later, all seven of the group’s current and former members performed together, when they were elected to the prestigious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. That situation, however, took a turn in 2001, when Don Felder was fired after a monetary feud. He responded by suing the Eagles, as well as Don Henley and Glenn Frey individually. The lawsuit lasted until May 2007, when all parties finally reached a settlement.

On October 30, 2007, 28 years after “The Long Run” hit the airwaves, the Eagles released their seventh studio album, the double album “Long Road Out Of Eden.” 35 years older than at the time of their debut, the Eagles proved that they were still some of country rock’s most skilled musicians, vocalists, and songwriters. Just like their three previous studio releases, “Long Road Out Of Eden” rose to the top of the sales charts in the U.S., Canada, and Australia.