Welcome back fam! Here’s a playlist to kick off Senior Spring. A playlist for those lazy afternoons spent laying out in the sun. For those Corona-with-lunch days. For those #darty, beer-games-under-the-sun days. For those fine afternoons on the lawn of Alpha Sigma Sigma when the beer is flowing but that fourth “Closer” remix just isn’t getting you there anymore. Ignore the SU alerts and open your first-floor windows wide.
“Incredible” – Future
The sunny island beat on “Incredible” feels like warm rays of morning sun washing away the cloudy, brooding, drug-fueled nightmares that defined Future’s earlier works and persona. In “Incredible,” #trustnoone Future now sings about being #cuffed and loving it.
“Madiba Riddim” – Drake
Straight from Drake’s new playlist “More Life,” “Madiba Riddim” smells of tanning oil and piña coladas, gently burning the edges of the cloudy tracks that bookend the sunny five-song sequence it inhabits within the album. Just as in Top 40 mainstays “One Dance” and “Controlla”, Canadian Aubrey “Drake” Graham unapologetically taps into Popcaan-esque Carribean vibes and rhythmic Jamaican Patois in “Madiba Riddim” and “More Life.”
“Gwan Big up Urself” – Roy Woods
Much like his boss Drake, 20-year-old rapper/singer and member of Drake-owned record label OVO seems to conveniently forget his snowy Canadian heritage in radiant, Patois-riddled island tune “Gwan Big up Urself.” According to Genius.com, “Big up yourself” is a Jamaican expression meaning to give yourself praise and celebrate yourself. And upbeat, glowing “Gwan Big up Urself” feels like just that: a celebration.
“Slide” – Calvin Harris
As we sliiide into spring quarter, it’s unlikely that you haven’t heard Harris’s new hit “Slide.” We really loved the seemingly-impossible yet seamless transition between smooth Frank Ocean and Migos’ unrefined Offset.
“Embody” – Sebastian
Infectious, effervescent “Embody”, with its sizzling, engorged electronic riff and Jackson-esque vocals, is sure to get folks on their feet. Both the song’s lyrics and bubbly music video remind us that music and dance are everywhere and that you can only ignore the fun for so long.
“Come Down” – Anderson .Paak
A groovy bass line and Kendrick-y chant vocals help provide the irresistible energy of “Come Down,” the leading single from 31-year-old native-Californian Anderson .Paak. .Paak’s musical beginnings as the drummer in a local gospel choir help lend “Malibu” a soulful, irresistibly-groovy feel.
“Aries (YuGo)” – Mike Will Made It
You have to respect Mike Will’s ability to coax absolute heat out of 43(!)-year-old, “Happy” Pharrell Williams in 2017’s “Aries (YuGo).” Certified banger “Aries” features Pharrell Williams and Station Wagon P, who, it turns out, is actually Pharrell’s hard-hitting, take-no-prisoners alter ego. YuGo YuGo YuGo, Mike Will!
“Throw Myself A Party” – Cashmere Cat
Norwegian DJ Cashmere Cat teams up with 2 Chainz, Tory Lanez and Starrah (catch her in Jeremih’s “Pass Dat” or G-Eazy’s “Order More”) to keep Woods’ self-celebration. I just wanna get drunk and throw myself a party!
“Blem” – Drake
In the words of Genius.com contributors, in “Blem,” Drake continues his Caribbean-pillaged flow from “Madiba Riddim,” using the situation of being “blem,” or high, to be fully sincere with the woman he’s singing to. The song samples Lionel Richie’s “All Night Long.”
“Cherry On Top” – Felix Snow
Released on March 31, 2017, “Cherry On Top” is an infectious, brand new single from Swedish hitmaker Felix Snow. Snow’s sunny jam, with its light, shimmering instrumental and glittering chorus, is sure to get you dancing.
“Not Nice” – PartyNextDoor
While Future rejoices the “incredible” relationship he shares with his unknown lover, PartyNextDoor laments his struggle with his not-nice companion. Like many recent songs from the Drake-led OVO squad, “Not Nice” employs a dancehall, island-inspired vibe. Yet unlike his OVO peers, PND is of Caribbean descent, recalling his upbringing in a “super Jamaican household.”
“Run Up” – Major Lazer
Alright, we’ve said it enough by now; we are in the age of dance-hall/island beats, and “Run Up” is no exception. Thankfully, Nicki Minaj and PartyNextDoor add an authentic Caribbean sound to the catchy, wide-open summer jam.
“Aftergold” – Big Wild
Again according to Genius, “Aftergold” was originally released in April 2015 as an instrumental; it wasn’t until March 2016 that “Aftergold” was re-released to feature the vocals of bubbly Swedish singer Tove Styrke, bringing a new summer jam into the mix. We promise you will be “chi-katching, chi-katching!”-ing along with Styrke the whole 3-ish minutes.
Contact Gabe Knight at gknight2 ‘at’ stanford.edu and Abdulla Janahi at ajanhi ‘at’ stanford.edu.