Sunday, April 23, 2017

200 ESSENTIAL 90s SONGS: THE TOP 10. The countdown concludes with this post.  
A new countdown will commence later today: 200 ESSENTIAL ROCK ANTHEMS. 
Caffe` Latte` presents…
200
 ESSENTIAL SONGS
 of the  
1990s
Many new sub-genres were launched during the 1990s as hybrids of various styles were fused to create innovative new sounds. Females infiltrated the once misogynistic world of rap as it evolved into hip-hop. New Jack Swing gave way to New Jill Swing. Grunge exploded around the world. The music industry grappled with dwindling sales and the threat of piracy. Here are the 200 songs that mattered most -in terms of lasting impact, influence and enduring quality- in the final decade of the previous millennium.
10
NUTHIN' BUT A G THANG Dr Dre
Dr.DreTheChronic.jpgG thang.jpgFor those already on board the G Funk train, the arrival of Dr Dre's 'The Chronic' album in 1992 was a watershed. This was the hip hop album that defined the genre for years to come. It also served as an introduction to rising musical force Snoop Doggy Dogg. He is featured on "Nuthin' But A G Thang". The track exposed him to a wide audience before he had launched his own solo career.
9
BACK & FORTH Aaliyah
Backforthaaliyah.jpgAaliyah emerged with her debut album 'Age Ain't Nothing But A Number' in 1994. R. Kelly wrote and produced her material. "Back & Forth" was the first single release. Around the time, controversy began to swell surrounding the significantly older Kelly marrying -in secret- the 15 year old new talent.
Aaliyah-age-aint-94.jpg
As her career progressed, the impact of Aaliyah's recording output and her obvious talent as a performer became the focus. 
Aaliyah only had a few years to make her mark in hip hop and pop music. Tragically, she died in a plane crash on August 25, 2001. A star whose potential was far from fully realized. 
8
ENTER SANDMAN Metallica
Metallica - Enter Sandman cover.jpgHeavy metal needed a reboot after the hair metal craze of the 1980s. Bands such as Poison and Bon Jovi had scored success with a watered down version of hard rock and metal. Metallica was still serving pure metal during that decade. 
As we settled into the 1990s, the group dropped its eponymous album. Also in 1991, the lead single "Enter Sandman" was unleashed. With this track, Metallica redefined the direction and sound of metal/ hard rock. Its influence persists to the present day.
7
DON'T LOOK BACK IN ANGER Oasis
Oasis - (What's The Story) Morning Glory album cover.jpgDontlookbackinanger.jpgOasis led the charge for Britpop during the 1990s. In 1995, the band's 2nd studio album '(What's The Story) Morning Glory' built on the groundwork of debut 'Definitely Maybe'.
Noel Gallagher's songs fused feel-good Beatlesque references with indie rock attitude. "Don't Look Back In Anger" reached #1 on the British chart.
6
WHEN I COME AROUND Green Day
Green Day - When I Come Around cover.jpgAmerican punk group Green Day gradually built itself an impressive string of pop / rock hits that afforded it a lasting credibility. 
"When I Come Around" served as a rallying call for youths in the wake of grunge. Parent album 'Dookie' was issued in 1994. Green Day brought 90s punk into the mainstream. This was largely due to the evolving talent of lyricist and lead singer Billy Joe Armstrong.
5
LOSING MY RELIGION R.E.M.
R.E.M. - Losing My Religion.jpg"Losing My Religion" is one of the exquisite aural delights of 90s music. R.E.M. crafted a classic. Michael Stipe's lyrics remain as intriguing today as they did when the song was released in 1991. It can be open to varied interpretations. Sonically, the band constructed a track of great beauty. 
Image result for rem losing my religion videoWith this single, the group expanded its profile and solidified its place among the best in rock music. 
The track was featured on the 'Out Of Time' album. Its huge sales owes much to the quality of the Grammy Award winning "Losing My Religion".
4
PARANOID ANDROID Radiohead
Paranoid Android CD1.jpgRadiohead revealed the new musical soundscape it was exploring with "Paranoid Android". It served as the lead single for the groundbreaking album 'OK Computer'. 
Image result for Radiohead OK Computer YearsThe British group created a hybrid of art rock, electronica and indie / alternative rock that was a game-changer.
'OK Computer' expanded the band's fanbase, satisfying critics and consumers alike. Its adventurous moods and sound still has resonance on today's music. 
3
CALIFORNIA LOVE 2Pac
California Love (1995), by Tupac Shakur.png2Pac was released from incarceration in 1995. He signed with key hip hop label Death Row. The rapper set out to re-establish his place among the leading rappers. He succeeded with the album 'All Eyez On Me'. 
Alleyezonme.jpgLead single "California Love" was unleashed in December. It featured Dr Dre and Roger Troutman. The album followed in early 1996. It swiftly announced 2Pac's comeback and re-positioned him as an unrivalled force in gangsta rap.  
"California Love" reached #1 on the US Pop, R&B and Rap charts. It also peaked in the Top 10 in the U.K., Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
Less than a year later, 2Pac was murdered. His legacy continues decades later, but the world will never know the full extent of his potential.
2
MY NAME IS Eminem
Eminem - The Slim Shady LP CD cover.jpgAt the dawn of the 1990s when rap was struggling to gain a foothold in mainstream pop, the idea of a white rapper dominating hip hop with sustained credibility was ludicrous. Vanilla Ice proved the point when his massive sales petered out soon after "Ice Ice Baby". Next, Snow failed to maintain momentum following his hit "Informer". 
Eminem's major label debut album 'The Slim Shady LP' hit the market in February 1999. This release changed everything. 
Eminem - My Name Is... CD cover.jpgBorn Marshall Mathers in Kansas, he spent his formative teen years in Detroit. Starting as young as 14, the boy began to rap, under the moniker M&M before adopting the name Eminem. After a stint as a member of D-12, he underwent several setbacks including suicide attempts, drug abuse and a bitter spilt with his girlfriend. This helped Eminem develop his alter ego Slim Shady. 
His career was on track when he was offered a contract with Interscope. With Dr Dre at the helm, the mainstream debut album was readied for release.
Eminem attracted attention, eliciting both praise and harsh derision.
Image result for eminem 1999
Single "What's My Name" targeted women, his mother, the Spice Girls and teachers among other subjects. Explicit language and misogynistic themes aside, it would be wrong to allow this to distract from Eminem's talent. Yes, his lyrics can be offensive. It is equally true that Eminem has done more to expand the audience for rap than anyone. His skill as an MC is undisputed. The narrative within his songs remain a benchmark for hip hop. 
1
SMELLS LIKE TEEN SPIRIT Nirvana
Nirvana had released an album prior to 'Nevermind'. Issued in 1989, 'Bleach' hinted at the Seattle band's potential. The follow-up album, issued 2 years later, was a line in the sand for 90s music. 
Image result for Nirvana Smells Like Teen
Led by its 1st single "Smells Like Teen Spirit", the 'Nevermind' album catapulted grunge into popular culture. Like a siren's song, punters were attracted to the call of Nirvana's signature track. Instantaneously, it grew into an anthem that defined the decade. 
Image result for Nirvana Black and White
On paper, the lyrics seem random and the intent is unclear. Play the track at full volume, and everything appears to be in its appropriate place and flows seamlessly. The genius of lead singer and songwriter Kurt Cobain powers the potent track. He is ably supported by bandmates Dave Grohl and Kris Novoselic. No other song represents the 1990s better than "Smells Like Teen Spirit".
  Sadly, on April 5, 1994, Cobain fatally shot himself. He has been an iconic figure since that tragic day.
Smells Like Teen Spirit.jpg
1990s

Saturday, April 22, 2017

The Caffe` Latte` Top 10 Tracks this week

1 7 Days ALANAS  1wk                                                                              4 3

2 Her Kiss BORIS RENE`                                                                      5 3

3 A Lonely Night THE WEEKND                                                                      8 2

4 Kiss You Goodbye ANTON HAGMAN                                                                      1 4

5 Sign Of The Times HARRY STYLES                                                                     6 2

6 As I Lay Me Down WIKTORIA                                                                            3 6

7 Heatstroke CALVIN HARRIS ftg. YOUNG THUG, PHARRELL & ARIANA GRANDE                  NEW

8 On My Mind DISCIPLES                                                                    NEW

9 Summer Girl JAMIROQUAI                                                                    2 3

10 Starving HAILEE STEINFELD & GREY ftg. ZEDD                                                          NEW

https://open.spotify.com/user/alanrosscaffelatte
 
200 ESSENTIAL 90s SONGS: #20-11. This countdown concludes tomorrow. The next countdown will also commence tomorrow: 200 ESSENTIAL ROCK ANTHEMS. 
Caffe` Latte` presents…
200
 ESSENTIAL SONGS
 of the  
1990s
Many new sub-genres were launched during the 1990s as hybrids of various styles were fused to create innovative new sounds. Females infiltrated the once misogynistic world of rap as it evolved into hip-hop. New Jack Swing gave way to New Jill Swing. Grunge exploded around the world. The music industry grappled with dwindling sales and the threat of piracy. Here are the 200 songs that mattered most -in terms of lasting impact, influence and enduring quality- in the final decade of the previous millennium.
20
HALLELUJAH Jeff Buckley
Jeff-Buckley-Hallelujah-400186.jpg
Leonard Cohen originally recorded "Hallelujah" in 1984. Jeff Buckley immortalized it on his 1994 album 'Grace'. A new generation discovered the beauty of Cohen's lyrics thanks to the younger musician's beautiful interpretation. Countless remakes have followed since then, but Buckley's version remains the benchmark. His cover is one of the most enduring recordings of the 1990s.
19
KARMA POLICE Radiohead
KarmaPolice.jpgRadiohead dropped its game-changing album 'OK Computer' in 1997. "Karma Police" was the 2nd single lifted off the new release.Structurally, the track breaks all the rules. This only serves to make the song distinct and more arresting. Thom Yorke's vocals add drama to its gradual build. 
18
HEY BOY HEY GIRL The Chemical Brothers
The Chemical Brothers - Hey Boy Hey Girl single cover.png
The Chemical Brothers issued "Hey Boy Hey Girl" during 1999. As the '90s approached its denoument, the British big beat duo served the decade's final progressive dance track. Using samples and the latest sounds in electronica, the Chemical Brothers created a #3 British chart hit. It was included on the 'Surrender' album.
17
VISION OF LOVE Mariah Carey
A curly-haired young brunette woman with black straps around her shoulders. The words "MARIAH CAREY" on the top of the image, upper-cased.The world was introduced to Mariah Carey via the single "Vision Of Love" in the first months of the 1990s. Her vocal talent was obvious from the start. By the end of the decade, she had established herself as one of the leading female recording artists in history. Carey's debut single was featured on her self-titled 1st album. "Vision Of Love", which the vocalist co-wrote, reached #1 on the American Pop, R&B and Adult Contemporary charts.
16
JEREMY Pearl Jam
Pearl Jam Jeremy.jpgPearl Jam's arrival on the music landscape in 1991 saw them grouped alongside Nirvana. This was because their sound fit into the grunge genre and the band was also from Seattle. "Jeremy" served as a bridge from that categorization to its evolution into a hard rock/ alternative group. 
Its subject matter dealt with a student shooting himself in front of his class. The theme is tackled head on by Eddie Vedder's potent lyrics. "Jeremy" was lifted off the group's 'Ten' album as a single in 1992.
15
LOSER Beck
Beck Loser.jpg
The song that transported Beck from indie act to major label artist was "Loser". This was the track that first drew attention to his creative and unique songcraft. "Loser" swiftly became an anthem upon its re-issue on Geffen's DGC label in 1994. The single reached the Top 10 in America, Canada, Australia, Scandinavia and New Zealand.
14
KILLING IN THE NAME Rage Against The Machine
Black-and-white photo of man in flames. In black letterbox border is white text "rage against the machine; killing in the name."
Rap and heavy metal seemed worlds apart until Rage Against The Machine's eponymous debut album. Unleashed in 1992, the recording fused the 2 genres and created a new sound. Buoyed by the single "Killing In The Name", Rage Against The Machine's approach has been emulated by numerous subsequent bands.  
13
I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU Whitney Houston
I Will Always Love You by Whitney Houston US CD single.jpgSinger Whitney Houston's film debut was in the 1992 box office hit 'The Bodyguard'. Her cover of Dolly Parton's 1970s ballad "I Will Always Love You" became a defining moment of the 1990s. Houston is captured at the peak of her vocal ability, re-interpreting a country love song into a stellar soul / adult contemporary re-interpretation.
TheBodyguardSoundtrack.jpg
The single was so popular, it ruled the U.S. chart for a (then) record-breaking 14 weeks. It enjoyed similarly lengthy reigns in most parts of the world, most notably in Europe, Australia and Britain.
'The Bodyguard', which included the remake, soon became one of the best selling soundtrack albums of all-time. It collected a Grammy Award for Album of the Year.   
12
WHAT'S MY NAME Snoop Doggy Dogg
What's My Name.jpgPrior to the release of his debut solo album in 1993, Snoop Doggy Dogg had already been featured on Dr Dre's widely acclaimed G-Funk classic 'The Chronic'. This helped stir up enthusiasm for new music from rap's rising new talent. 
Snoop soon established himself as one of the fundamental artists in the gangsta rap genre. 
11
UNDER THE BRIDGE Red Hot Chili Peppers
UndertheBridge.jpgRed Hot Chili Peppers finally cracked the mainstream in 1992 with the single "Under The Bridge". The track deals with the Los Angeles location where lead singer Anthony Kiedis would go to purchase drugs. 
Lifted off the group's 'Blood Sex Sugar Magik' album, the single topped the charts in America, parts of Europe and Australia. 
Its success set off a string of hit singles that continues to produce brilliance, including "Breaking The Girl", "Soul To Squeeze" "Scar Tissue" and "Californication" from the same decade. RHCP created a sound that is a hybrid known as funk metal. 
1990s

Friday, April 21, 2017

200 SONGS WITH THE BEST LYRICS. This post: #174- I WON'T BACK DOWN. 
Continues: next week.
CAFFE` LATTE` PRESENTS
200 SONGS
WITH THE
BEST LYRICS
A countdown of the 200 songs possessing the best lyrics of all-time. A playlist on spotify will be added at the end of the week.
#174
I WON’T BACK DOWN
“…You can stand me up
at the gates of hell,
but I won’t back down...
Tom Petty cemented his place among America's best songwriters with the defiant song "I Won't Back Down". He penned the song with ELO's Jeff Lynne. It was included on the former's 1989 album 'Full Moon Fever'. 
The empowering track was written following a period of adversity for Petty and is regarded as one of his signature songs.
As new songs are covered on this blog, a definitive version will be added to a spotify playlist. Find it and the other Caffé Latté playlists at:

spotify:user:alanrosscaffelatte
EUROVISION 2017: Running Order of the 42 songs...
EUROVISION
SONG CONTEST
2017
KIEV
The ESC begins on May. There will be 2 Semi-Finals with 10 from each night joining the defending country and the 'Big 5' nations in the Grand Final. This is the running order for the 42 competing countries with the ranking given by this blog in terms of preference:
SEMI-FINAL 1
SEMI-FINAL 2
SWEDENRobin Bengtsson - I Can't Go On.jpeg
SERBIA
In Too Deep - Tijana Bogićević.png
26- GEORGIAKeep the Faith - Tamara Gachechiladze.jpeg
AUSTRIA
Nathan Trent - Running on Air.jpg
AUSTRALIADon't Come Easy by Isaiah Firebrace.jpg
MACEDONIA
Dance Alone cover.png
25- ALBANIAWorld - Lindita.jpeg
24- MALTA
Breathlessly - Claudia Faniello.jpg
BELGIUM
Blanche - City Lights.png
36- ROMANIA
Yodel It 2017.jpg
MONTENEGROSpace - Slavko Kalezić.jpeg
31- NETHERLANDS
O'G3NE - Lights and Shadows.jpg
FINLANDNorma John - Blackbird.jpg
37- HUNGARY
Joci Papai - Origo.jpg
AZERBAIJANSkeletons - Dihaj.png
DENMARK
Where I Am - Anja Nissen.jpg
33- PORTUGALAmar pelos dois - Salvador Sobral.jpg
IRELAND
Dying to Try - Brendan Murray.jpeg
GREECE
This Is Love - Demy.jpg
38- SAN MARINO
Spirit of the Night.jpg
POLANDFlashlight - Kasia Moś.png
42- CROATIA
Jacques Houdek - My Friend.jpeg
40- MOLDOVAHey Mamma - SunStroke Project.jpeg
27- NORWAY
Grab the Moment - JOWST.jpeg
ICELANDSvala - Paper.jpg
28- SWITZERLAND
Apollo - Timebelle.jpeg
CZECH REPUBLICMy Turn - Martina Bárta.jpeg
34- BELARUS
Historyja majho žyccia - Naviband.jpg
CYPRUS
Hovig - Gravity.jpg
BULGARIA
Beautiful Mess - Kristian Kostov.jpeg
35- ARMENIAFly with Me - Artsvik.jpg
39- LITHUANIA
Rain of Revolution - Fusedmarc.jpg
30- SLOVENIAEMA 2017 Omar Naber.jpg
ESTONIA
Verona - Koit Toome & Laura.jpeg
23- LATVIA
Triana Park - Line.jpg
ISRAEL
Imri Ziv - I Feel Alive.jpg
THE GRAND FINAL

32- UKRAINE
O.Torvald - Time.jpg
ITALY
Occidentali's Karma - Francesco Gabbani.jpeg
FRANCE
Alma - Requiem.jpg
GERMANY
Levina - Perfect Life.jpeg
29- UNITED KINGDOM
Lucie Jones - Never Give Up On You.png
41- SPAIN
Do It for Your Lover - Manel Navarro.jpg