Raffi’s Top 11 Tracks of 2011
2011 was a great year for music. My list of the top 11 songs of the year includes tracks by Mac Miller, RHCP, J. Cole, Coldplay, B.o.B., Frank Ocean, Common, Childish Gambino, Alesso, M83, and Avicii. Click ‘Read More’ to check out my favorite tracks of 2011.
11. Donald Trump- Mac Miller
The young new hip hop artist out of Pittsburgh hit over over 200k YouTube Views on his channel alone this year, and he did it completely with his independent label Rostrum Records. How did he do it? Social Media. Mac has been loyal to his fans, releasing a free song after free song on his #road2amillion twitter followers. Donald Trump is his biggest video, reeling in a total of 26k views so far.
10. Brendan’s Death Song- Red Hot Chili Peppers
In the summer RHCP’s new album I’m With You got a spot in my car on the way to work everyday and the most memorable song for me had to be ‘Brendan’s Death Song’. This track has a catchy chorus, great beat, and amazing lyrics. I’ll never forget the chorus-
Like I said you know I’m almost dead, you know I’m almost gone
And when the drummer drums he’s gonna play my song to carry me along
Like I said you know I’m almost dead, you know I’m almost gone
And when the boatman comes to ferry me away to where we all belong
You can feel the emotion in Kiedis’ voice.
9. Lost Ones- J. Cole
Everyone knows the story of Jermaine coming to the big apple with only a dollar in his bag and getting signed with the one and only Jay-Z. The come up story alone made 2011 a huge year for Jay-Z’s protegee since he was releasing his major label debut album Cole World: The Sideline Story. One of the tracks that leaked months in advance to the release date ended up being one of my favorite tracks off the album and of the year! When you listen to a song this deep with a meaningful story about abortion how can you not shed a tear.
8. Paradise- Coldplay
Imma let you finish, but Coldplay is my favorite band of all time…yeah I said all time. I know there are those people who say Coldplay copy Radiohead , but I’ve done my fair share of listening to Coldplay/Radiohead and can say their music isn’t that similar. Yes, they create music that is put in the same genre, but Chris Martin’s voice is incomparable to Thom Yorke’s. I’m not saying it is better or worse, I am just saying it is different. I can keep talking about this, but while typing I realized how I haven’t mentioned ‘Paradise’ yet. Well, Coldplay’s new album Mylo Xyloto was a great offering and ‘Paradise’ stood out to me. I gave this song 20 listens the day I copped it on iTunes and it didn’t get boring. Like I once said in another post, simple is sometimes better.
7. Strange Clouds- B.o.B feat. Lil Wayne
I didn’t expect myself to enjoy ‘Strange Clouds’ this much especially with the Weezy feature. But let me say Lil Wayne surprisingly killed his verse and the catchy chorus only helps the song. B.o.B also delivers nothing less than great verses and the beat (production is handled by Dr. Luke and Cirkut) and this causes it to be a perfect track to play in the whip. The bass heavy, slightly influenced dubstep beat makes for my 7th favorite song of the year.
6. Novacane- Frank Ocean
Next up is Odd Future member Frank Ocean. Ocean dropped a mixtape out of the blue and in about a week had the whole internet looking at him. He got major co-signs throughout the year and literary had every blog backing him. I am not a big R&B listener, but ‘Novacane’ is one of those songs that you cannot just skip over. Frank Ocean showcases his amazing voice in the track. 2012 will be a big year for the OFWGKTA member, keep an eye out for him.
5. Blue Sky- Common
No I.D. handled the production on what is known as my 5th favorite song of the year. Common spit three great verses and this song has honestly been on repeat since the day I bought it. It hasn’t gotten old or repetitive, everyday I have to at least listen to ‘Blue Sky’ once. Although The Dreamer, The Believer dropped towards the end of 2011 it is one of my favorite albums of the year.
4. Bonfire- Childish Gambino
I had been anticipating this track for months from watching it performed in his live sets on Youtube. The beat is perfect for Gambino’s witty lyrics and high pitched voice. Gambino spits quotable lines throughout the song and proves how he is not only a great comedian, but a talented rapper.
3. Pressure (Alesso Remix)- Alex Kenji, Starkillers, Nadia Ali
Alesso’s remix of ‘Pressure’ is one of the most memorable EDM releases of the year. Upcoming Swedish DJ made a worldwide hit in 2011 and the track hasn’t even gotten repetitive one bit yet. You’d be crazy to play a DJ set and not include Alesso’s massive remix. The build ups, drops and vocals are all equally beautiful making this one of the best progressive house releases of the last couple of years.
2. Midnight City- M83
I was lucky enough to get this track on iTunes when they had it up for free for a week. I hit the preview on iTunes and thought I might as well download it. You can’t go wrong with new music when it’s free I thought. But little did I know that this free iTunes track would turn out to be one of my favorite songs of the year. I remember after leaving my computer, the simple melody and chorus were stuck in my head from that day on. M83 created a memorable song that will forever be stuck in my head.
1. Levels- Avicii
This one is pretty self explanatory. 22 year old Swedish DJ lived the life of a rockstar in 2011. He had an amazing year and definitely made a great name for himself. We all have heard the same synths on the radio over and over again, but let me ask you, has ‘Levels’ gotten old? It was dropped as an ID track a year back from one of Avicii’s live sets and has gained popularity worldwide since then. I even saw Hip-Hop/Rap Blogger Amayaa from RapRadar.com once tweet how ‘Levels’ has to be the best song of the year. ’Levels’ was a huge hit and highly benefited the EDM scene. Not everyday do you see Rap bloggers listen/comment on Electro music.
No Beef ft. Miss Palmer (Vocal Mix)- Steve Aoki & Afrojack
Nasty Nas- Nas
Ni**as In Paris- Kanye & Jay
Calling (Original Instrumental Mix)- Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso
This was just a sporadic post that I decided to do randomly at 4:30am and yes, tomorrow is a school day for me.
Follow me on Twitter @iTweetRK and have a great New Year! Sound off in the comments what your favorite songs were.
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