Do What You Wanna Do
December 3, 2014 11:07 AM   Subscribe

 
Aaaaaaaaand slowly and gradually, I have lost all knowledge of current pop music. I know precisely one song on this list.
posted by nevercalm at 11:18 AM on December 3, 2014 [7 favorites]


That's a really great mashup, feels more like a real song than some previous years. The video is clever, too, using rhyming visual elements between disparate sources to create unity.

DJ Earworm's annual offerings are always an end-of-year treat for me. Thanks for posting!
posted by hippybear at 11:20 AM on December 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


I also enjoy how different this is from another one he made using five of the same songs: Mash Up For What
posted by hades at 11:20 AM on December 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


In b4 get off my lawn comments... oh wait.


Honestly I liked it as a mashup but it kinda helps that I actually like quite a bit of current pop music. What's kinda interesting is that Hozier and oddly enough Taylor Swift stood out as the most easily definable cuts with quite a number of the other artists having a very similar musical accompainment.
posted by vuron at 11:21 AM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


It is interesting that we're finally not getting an EDM track. There must be a coherent theory of macroeconomic trends vs popular music. EDM got huge during the economic downturn - are we due for a return to less frenetic music now that the economy is improving?
posted by GuyZero at 11:25 AM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


The State of Pop Music is strong.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:37 AM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Maybe it's because I spent more time listening this year, but I do think it was a reasonably strong year for pop, even if I'd like Maroon 5 and Magic! to disappear into a black hole, or maybe just be locked together in a soundproof bunker, singing karaoke.

"All About That Bass" might be my favorite (which is to say, most fun) song of the year, but I don't think it will have staying power, even from a one-hit-wonder perspective. Which is a shame, because I'd like to be reminded of it in ten or fifteen years.
posted by uncleozzy at 11:46 AM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Aaaaaaaaand slowly and gradually, I have lost all knowledge of current pop music. I know precisely one song on this list.

My uncool destiny is fulfilled at last! I have heard none of these songs, not on the radio, not in elevators or shopping centers, not even from the Muzak covers.

DJ Earworm's annual offerings are my only exposure to contemporary pop, which makes his bricolage seem instead like finished works that Top 40 artists pick apart, stretch out, and generally expand into more conventional and less entertaining music.
posted by Doktor Zed at 11:53 AM on December 3, 2014 [6 favorites]


I just joined (been meaning to for at least the past 5 years, probably more) to drop Local H's cover of Team. I'd love to see some other solid covers of pop hits from musicians that are primarily from other genres.
posted by WacoKid at 11:54 AM on December 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


Local H's cover of Team

The first time I heard that, I thought, shit, "I'm kinda over getting told to throw my hands up in the air" might as well be a Local H lyric, anyway.
posted by uncleozzy at 12:00 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


I understand not listening to pop, but what sort of insane hermit bubble do you people live in that you've managed to go the whole year and not hear at least one 8-year-old singing Let It Go?
posted by Wretch729 at 12:00 PM on December 3, 2014 [10 favorites]


I have heard none of these songs

Do you not have kids, not know anyone who has kids, and never go anywhere there might be kids? Because that damn "Let It Go" song from Frozen was everywhere.
posted by hades at 12:01 PM on December 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


Aaaaaaaaand slowly and gradually, I have lost all knowledge of current pop music. I know precisely one song on this list.

Is that one "Happy"? I even couldn't avoid that one. Other than that, I'm sure that I've a few of these by accident but didn't know what they were.
posted by octothorpe at 12:01 PM on December 3, 2014


I think it was a GREAT year for pop, especially women in pop music. Lotta cool ladies dropping a lot of different music.

Best cover I've heard this year is Taylor Swift covering Riptide.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 12:03 PM on December 3, 2014 [4 favorites]


Do you not have kids, not know anyone who has kids, and never go anywhere there might be kids? Because that damn "Let It Go" song from Frozen was everywhere.

No, no, and no, get off my goddam lawn! Frozen was evidently everywhere except within earshot of your fellow MeFite.

One day, I hope, I will become so uncool that I will come around the other end. Then again, maybe my uncoolness is finite but unbounded: The further it goes, the further it reaches...
posted by Doktor Zed at 12:18 PM on December 3, 2014


Do you not have kids, not know anyone who has kids, and never go anywhere there might be kids? Because that damn "Let It Go" song from Frozen was everywhere.

You managed to merely "have heard the song?" I know every song from Frozen as well as the names of the two female leads and the little snowman thing as well as the plot of the movie and I haven't fucking seen Frozen.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:27 PM on December 3, 2014 [5 favorites]


I have heard none of these songs, not on the radio, not in elevators or shopping centers, not even from the Muzak covers.

Okay, if you live in the US, I call bullshit on that. I would bet so much money you've heard them, you just haven't noticed them. Some of these songs are utterly inescapable if you've been in any public shop or public space in the past few months. It's the top 25 singles of the year! It's not like they're confined to teenyboppers sitting in their bedrooms.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 12:29 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


There must be a coherent theory of macroeconomic trends vs popular music. EDM got huge during the economic downturn

EDM was huge in the non-US portion of the world long before the downturn hit. As far as I can tell, American pop spent a long time slowly drifting toward global EDM, until finally reaching a tipping point where the two were more or less compatible.
posted by schmod at 12:29 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Reading the lists from the prior links, I'm bizarrely amused how Taylor Swift has been on each one for the last five years, except this is the first year it's not for a song about one of her breakups but instead is a song about how everyone talks about all her breakups.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:30 PM on December 3, 2014 [8 favorites]


Do you not have kids, not know anyone who has kids, and never go anywhere there might be kids? Because that damn "Let It Go" song from Frozen was everywhere.

That's one of those that I've heard of constantly but not actually heard. My kid is grown up and no, I guess that I haven't been around too many kids lately.
posted by octothorpe at 12:42 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


You managed to merely "have heard the song?"

Oh, I've heard of some of these songs—I'm an insufferable snob, not a pop cultural illiterate. (I'm working under the assumption that John Legends' "All of Me" is his original composition, not a cover of the jazz standard, though.) Browsing the Internets has exposed me to GIF clips of what I assume to be the ubiquitous song from Frozen, for example, but no one can make me click on a Youtube link to it. It's not like being Rick-rolled.

Okay, if you live in the US, I call bullshit on that. I would bet so much money you've heard them, you just haven't noticed them.

Isn't this what most people use iPods for? For completely drowning out the piped-in soundtracks that is a ubiquitous part of modern life? I'm in complete agreement with Nabokov about noise pollution—"I would abolish trucks and transistors, I would outlaw the diabolical roar of motorcycles, I would wring the neck of soft music in public places."—but I'm fighting fire with fire.

At the soonest opportunity, I'll download "Do What You Wanna Do" and employ it in blocking out the full versions of the sampled songs.
posted by Doktor Zed at 12:51 PM on December 3, 2014


I have heard none of these songs . . .

Then you really missed something. Because John Oliver had A Great Big World on his show to play the incredibly mournful Say Something, live, in tribute to five geckos who tragically perished in a Russian space-sex expermient and it was, I can safely say, one of the most sublime pieces of television I have ever seen.
posted by The Bellman at 1:05 PM on December 3, 2014 [11 favorites]


even if I'd like Maroon 5 and Magic! to disappear into a black hole

To add to this: I'm sure Sam Smith and John Legend are both delightful people IRL, but their contributions to this year in pop were absurdly tenacious dirges that I really didn't want to be reminded of yet again.

On the upside, this thread taught me that Local H are still kicking and that makes my eternally-'90s heart happy.
posted by psoas at 1:25 PM on December 3, 2014


Isn't this what most people use iPods for? For completely drowning out the piped-in soundtracks that is a ubiquitous part of modern life?

In my case, I use it to make sure I never have to suffer the indignity of being in a public space and not being able to listen to Taylor Swift.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 1:34 PM on December 3, 2014 [6 favorites]


I love these (my favorite is still 2011's World Go Boom) . Though I still adore Happy despite hearing it the same gazillionbillion times as everyone else, and barely recognized the piece of it he grabbed for this song. Not sure if that's a testament to how well he does his job, or how much the fun I find in this comes from recognizing my old friends in new clothes - when it's too different, it's not the same kick.
posted by Mchelly at 1:48 PM on December 3, 2014


I am amazed how consistently my enjoyment of this annual auditory tradition is directly proportional to how strong the year in music was.

Also ... yay mashups!
posted by DrAstroZoom at 2:19 PM on December 3, 2014


> Aaaaaaaaand slowly and gradually, I have lost all knowledge of current pop music. I know precisely one song on this list.

I can't believe I'm not the least hip person in a current-pop thread, but I know two of them!

Also, did the post title make anyone else think of Eddie and the Hot Rods? (Sorry, but 1977 was a better year for music, and get off my lawn.)
posted by languagehat at 2:23 PM on December 3, 2014


Also holy crap, I just watched that Hozier video after wondering if I'd heard their song before and that thing deserves its own FPP.
posted by psoas at 2:25 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yeah, Hozier's Take Me to Church is pretty much the one song on this list that I'm not at least a little sick of (and indeed, Hozier's album is probably my favorite pop album of the year), but I can't watch that video again. It's just too upsetting.
posted by yasaman at 2:34 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Always like to hear this mashup. This year's is 'meh.' There wasn't a lot of great material to work with. 2011 is my favorite. I'm a sucker for 'four on the floor.'

side note: 'Let it Go' came out in 2013. We've discussed why it has endured. I find it amusing that the song was recorded in 2012. So for more than a year the dozens of people involved in its production were walking around with that song in their head. I imagine some audio tech belting it out in the shower and their spouse saying, "Whats that song? Sounds great."
"Oh nothing." They say. Knowing they can't reveal this awesome song til 2013.
Makes me giggle.

posted by hot_monster at 4:08 PM on December 3, 2014


I know all these songs! Me and DJ Earworm must listen to the same radio stations.
posted by subdee at 4:23 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


But...but...no Tom Petty? No Bruce Springsteen? NO U2!? How could DJ Earworm possibly have managed to overlook Rolling Stones' Number One Hit of the Year?
posted by happyroach at 5:32 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yeah, Hozier's Take Me to Church is pretty much the one song on this list that I'm not at least a little sick of (and indeed, Hozier's album is probably my favorite pop album of the year), but I can't watch that video again. It's just too upsetting.

Oh, wow. You weren't kidding.

That said I kind of love that a song whose key lyric is "Take me to church" - even if it's not actually about religion - has a music video about violent homophobia, because all these homophobic people are googling it thinking it's about religion and getting their undies in a bunch over it.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 6:57 PM on December 3, 2014


Me too! I'm pretty sure we are all listening to Clear Channel. Oh, excuse me, the "I [HEART] Radio Network."

Gasp! Maybe DJ Earworm is a Clear Channel operative!
posted by hot_monster at 6:58 PM on December 3, 2014


No Weird Al? Will not listen!
posted by Snowishberlin at 7:14 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


No Beyonce?!?!?
posted by hepta at 7:33 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


I love this every year (though 2009's Blame It On The Pop is my favorite), thanks for posting!
posted by triggerfinger at 7:50 PM on December 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yeah, every year I listen to the DJ Earworm mix hoping it's as good as Blame It On The Pop, and every year I come away a little disappointed. It has a cohesion that's never been matched. I think it was helped by the fact that there were several common themes that year, like the word "down" and the Beyoncé/Miley lines which use similar rhymes, which were cut together to such clever effect.
posted by Georgina at 8:55 PM on December 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


Not that I'm really up to speed on the pop music, but I kinda expected to hear Clean Bandit's Rather be somewhere in there?
No?
That upsets me a little bit and I don't even know why.
posted by we are the music makers at 6:13 AM on December 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


No?

N-n-no, no, no.
posted by uncleozzy at 6:19 AM on December 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


This was a good year and I maybe knew three songs (Frozen was not one of them) and a couple of the videos. Really felt like a song this year, which they sometimes don't. I'm happy to be middle-aged and let this and Postmodern Jukebox be my intros to current pop.

There were two guys at the (solo) piano at different points. One of them is John Legend and I clearly need to check his current album out. I don't know who the other one is, but I want to figure it out and check him out too. And this has reminded me to check out Hozier again--he was in an early/classical music ensemble I love.

It's also really interesting to contrast this with the Rolling Stone thread (not the list). I know we skew middle-aged and, if not hipster, eclectic, but other than the Swift, there doesn't seem to be a lot of/any overlap.
posted by immlass at 7:25 AM on December 4, 2014


That said I kind of love that a song whose key lyric is "Take me to church" - even if it's not actually about religion

This is the last I'll say on this particular cul-de-sac, but I read a couple of interviews with Hozier and he very specifically intended the song to reference the Catholic Church's influence in his native Ireland, and it's kind of fascinating overall.
posted by psoas at 7:36 AM on December 4, 2014


For those of you really into that Hozier song, have you heard the Neon Jungle cover of it?

I actually heard this before the original and fell in love.
posted by pseudonymph at 7:25 PM on December 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


I don't know who the other one is, but I want to figure it out and check him out too.

That's the artist known as A Great Big World doing the fairly heartbreaking and quite effective duet with Christina Aguilera "Say Something" It's the top link in the song list at in the FPP.
posted by hippybear at 2:17 AM on December 5, 2014


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