Ed Sheeran’s ‘Perfect’ climbs to #3 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in its 14th week on the chart. This is Sheeran’s sixth top ten hit, and the highest climber outside of ‘Shape of You,’ his only #1 hit, and ‘Thinking Out Loud,’ which reached #2.
‘Perfect,’ like ‘Thinking Out Loud,’ is a straightforward love ballad destined to play at weddings for years to come. Sheeran says he thinks he topped the former hit with this one, but I’d have to give the edge to ‘Thinking Out Loud,’ which feels like a new standard. I say that having only heard ‘Perfect’ a couple of times, though.
Singer Camila Cabello unexpectedly left girl group Fifth Harmony one year ago (the band’s official press release noted that they had been informed “via her representatives”) to embark on a solo career. Good move on her part, it seems, as her first single sits at #2 on Billboard’s Hot 100.
‘Havana’ is a sultry fusion of Latin influences and American pop and hip-hop. Cabelo, who was born in Cuba and spent her childhood moving between her home country and Mexico before relocating to Miami, manages to pay effective tribute to her culture while delivering a massive radio hit.
After two weeks spent on what my kids are listening to, it’s time for one last 2017 installment of ‘What the Kids are Listening To’ — featuring the songs currently at the top of Billboard’s Hot 100.
In the top spot is ‘Rockstar’ by rapper Post Malone (featuring 21 Savage). This track has occupied #1 for eight straight weeks, the longest span for any hip-hop song this year.
An interesting pairing this weekend by the Randon iTunes Fairy. Selena Gomez is another pop artist, like Ariana Grande, who has released an excellent album in recent years that I wouldn’t have appreciated back in the day.
In Gomez’s case, it was 2015’s Revival, which very effectively launched the sexy new phase of her career. Several tracks on her good pal Taylor Swift’s new album borrowed the sound and feel of that record. Selena did it first, and better.
It took me many years to finally embrace pop music. I realize this every time a classic Madonna song plays on the radio and I think to myself “this is damn good” while recalling my utter disdain for all things Madonna when she actually mattered.
Failing to appreciate good pop music is like saying a comedic film is somehow innately inferior to a dramatic one. I was probably guilty of that for a long time, too.
Closing out my week of songs favored by my daughter Fiona is another 80s hit, Elton John’s ‘I’m Still Standing.’ This one didn’t come courtesy of her neighborhood friend, however, but through an animated film.
Specifically, the 2016 movie Sing, which features a group of animals competing in an American Idol-style singing competition.
Fiona’s friend down the street, a boy she’s known since kindergarten, has recently demonstrated a real appreciation of 80s music. An appreciation that has rubbed off on her. Thank god he isn’t into heavy metal.
Apart from a healthy dose of Bon Jovi, one of the songs Fiona has (re)discovered through this kid is Rick Springfield’s ‘Jesse’s Girl.’