Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Fat Boy - Max-A-Million

Good morning and Happy Tuesday!  Here's a reggae summer jam that is very pleasing to the ears. It's yet another song from the fabulous 90's by a short-lived, but very successful band called Max-A-Million.  If you don't know it, click play...you're gonna love it!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Sun Is Shining - Bob Marley vs. Funkstar Deluxe

Sun is shining
Weather is sweet, yeah
Makes you wanna move
Your dancing feet now

Alright, well we've got a new theme for this week's summer jams.  Nothing hearkens a warm sunny summer day like reggae music, and there are plenty of great summer reggae jams to fit this bill.  First up is a 1999 reworking of a classic Bob Marley tune, Sun Is Shining.  The song gained a whole new set of fans back when production crew Funkstar Deluxe reworked it into a whole new dance tune, and since the sun IS shining today after several days of overcast skies, it is the perfect summer jam for the day.  So whether you are working or just beginning summer vacation like I am, just take a moment, click play below and appreciate that warm wonderful sun!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Pride Weekend Song of the Day - Pride (A Deeper Love) - C & C Music Factory

Well, better late than never.  I just returned home from an overnight stay in NYC during which I enjoyed the festivities at this year's Gay Pride Parade.  Oh, when this song played the crowd went goose-bump-inducing wild!  Happy Pride!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Pride Song of the Day - Love Is the Healer - Donna Summer

It was four years ago that I attended only my second NYC Gay Pride Parade and it was a massive turnout.  That was because just two days prior, New York State passed the Marriage Equality Act, making it only the 6th state in the nation to have marriage equality for all,  It was a proud day to be a New Yorker and the celebration that Sunday in June of 2011 was amazing.

Yesterday, the final walls came crumbling down as the Supreme Court handed down a 5-4 decision making same sex marriage the law of the land in all 50 states.  The decision sent ripples of pride throughout the country as people everywhere celebrated a long, hard-fought victory.  The catch-phrase of the day was Love Wins, and it couldn't have been truer said.  Finally, love is love, no matter what, and I am as proud to be an American today as I was to be a New Yorker back in 2011...

Friday, June 26, 2015

Flashback Friday Song of the Day - Proud - Heather Small

It's Pride Weekend in New York and in many other places around the globe, and so here's a Flashback Friday post hearkening back to 2000 and M People's Heather Small with one of my favorite songs ever...


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Fancy - Iggy Azalea, with Charli XCX

Who dat?
Who dat?

Though this one was released in February of last year, it became a hot summer jam all season long in 2015.  It took me a long time to like this one, but once I did there was no turning back.  That bass hook is so irresistible, and of course the lyrics and the raps complete the reason why Fancy was such a huge hit.  Check it out and have a great Thursday....   

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Janet Jackson's "No Sleep"

Well, we knew it was coming and yesterday Janet Jackson finally released a new song from her as yet untitled (as far as we know!) forthcoming album.  Well, it's been a loonnngggg time, seven years to be exact, since Miss Janet has put out anything new, and in this case, what is old is new again.  The new song, No Sleep, reunites the singer with friends and longtime collaborators Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and is a sultry, sexy groove taken right out of stuff from her glory days.  If you loved Janet then, you'll surely love her now.  Take a listen... 

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Into the Blue - Kylie Minogue

When I've got my back up against the wall
Don't need no one to rescue me
Cause I ain't waiting up for no miracle
Yeah tonight I'm running free
Into the blue...

Here's the best cut from Kylie's latest album, Kiss Me Once.  Into the Blue fast became one of my favorite tunes of hers when it was released just a few months ago.  Great, uplifting lyrics that make ya feel good.  Enjoy your Tuesday...

Monday, June 22, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Somebody - Natalie La Rose, featuring Jeremiah

It's Monday and we're back to some non-90's summer jams with a nice R&B groove to start off your week.  Can anybody say "Whitney?" Enjoy!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - Step By Step - Whitney Houston (Junior Vasquez Remix)

Here's one of the lesser known Whitney Houston jams.  The song is called Step By Step and it's from the 1997 soundtrack to the film The Preacher's Wife.  The tune was originally written and recorded by diva Annie Lennox, and Houston's version was the brightest spot on the soundtrack.  It's gospel-infused, of course, and Lennox, who provided background vocals on the chorus here, has the perfect voice to match that theme.  While the original is inspirational and pleasant, this remix by Junior Vasquez takes it up a notch higher to fit the dance floor setting and gives it that summer jam feel that we've been highlighting all week.  So click play below and check out Whitney's Step By Step... 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - Love Is In the Air - Milk n Sugar Vs. John Paul Young

Love is in the air
Everywhere I look around
Love is in the air
Every sight and every sound


And I don't know if I'm being foolish
I don't know if I'm being wise
But it's something that I must believe in
And it's there when I look in your eyes

Today's summer jam is not technically a 90's tune, but it's close enough.  The song, by Aussie singer John Paul Young, was a smash way back in the disco era of the late 70's and was resurrected by German production team Milk n Sugar in 2001.  The familiarity of the tune, coupled with a new groovy beat made this one a big smash again and Young's original vocals clinched the deal.  Click play below to relive a classic and perhaps a memory or two...

Friday, June 19, 2015

Madge's Star-Studded Video for "Bitch I'm Madonna"...Meh!

Have you seen Madonna's new video for Bitch I'm Madonna, yet?  Well the vid for the third single off Rebel Heart dropped with great fanfare earlier this week and reviews are decidedly mixed.  First of all, as I said earlier, this tune is not my favorite track off of the album, though I don't hate it either...  

This one's similar in scope to the MDNA track, I Don't Give a F***, which also featured Minaj, and is even more frenzied than their prior collaboration. Bitch I'm Madonna is a lighthearted and fun track, and it sounds like they all had a good time making it. It's not my favorite of the new tracks, but it does remain in the brain for awhile after a listen and it does have a great hook, too!

Much of the fanfare the video received was its star-studded guest cameos, including the likes of Beyoncé, Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, Kanye West, Chris Rock, Diplo, Rita Ora, Alexander Wang, sons Rocco and David, and of course guest vocalist on the song Nicki Minaj.  The scene is as frenzied as the song, a wild frenzied party in a high rise building, with bathing Asian beauties, scantily clad hunks, breakdancing and shot taking...and, and...ah well, check it out for yourself.  As for me, meh! It was fun watching it once...

Flashback Friday Summer Jams Song of the Day - Groove Is In the Heart - Dee-Lite

We're going to dance
We're going to dance
We're going to dance
And have some fun!

In the summer of 1990, a trio of New York deejays took the world by storm with a collaborative project known as Dee-lite and a record called World Clique.  The collection of groovalicious tracks by Lady Miss Kier, DJ Dmitry and DJ Towa Tei became a big smash all over the world, and its lead single, featuring funk legend Bootsy Collins, became a de-groovy #1 hit in several countries and an enduring dance floor filler, still working its magic whenever it's played.  So click play, and have a de-gorgeous Friday and a de-lovely weekend... 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - Fired Up - Funky Green Dogs

Well this week so far has been all about the ladies and now it's time for a hot hot summer jam from 1996 with a male-voiced lead.  The group is known as Funky Green Dogs, and boy were they hot in the mid to late nineties.  This was their very first big hit, and I've actually tried posting this one before but couldn't find it.  And now, voila!  Here's Fired Up...so hot!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - Free - Ultra Nate

Cause you're free 
To do what you want to do
You've got to live your life
Do what you want to do

Ooh, this was one of THE dance anthems of the 90's and it still sounds great.  Click play and have an awesome Hump Day...

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Janet Jackson's Top Ten Songs of All Time

With yesterday's big announcement out of Janet Jackson's camp, I thought I'd do a little resurrecting of an old piece I wrote for Yahoo Voices.  You see, I used to do a lot of musical "top ten" lists, on all sorts of things, from artists to themes and more, and they always got great page views.  I've been contemplating re-posting several of my old pieces, as they are no longer found anywhere on the Internet, and this is an opportunity for my opening.

With new music coming out very soon from Miss Janet, now's a great time to revisit some of the songs that made her the superstar she is, and here are my choices for her very best.  Of course, there's much more to the Janet catalog than what appears here, and I'm sure that some of my picks won't match yours, but please read on, just for fun, and if there are songs I didn't include, feel free to leave a comment...


Straight out of the very large shadow of her big brother, Janet Jackson emerged in the mid 1980’s to achieve her own status as a bona fide superstar.  Over the last two-plus decades, Miss Jackson has amassed an incredible array of music, adding her own voice to the thread of American culture.

Though her success has waned in recent years, (ostensibly ever since the backlash against her “Wardrobe Malfunction” at the 2004 Super Bowl), Janet Jackson has continued to entertain us with her keen aptitude for making great music.  It’s difficult to pare her catalog down to a top ten, but the following is my personal best of Miss Jackson.  I’ve included the popular and the not so popular, the ballad and the up tempo, the happy and the hopeful.  Surely some will hearken memories in your own minds.

10- Feedback – Janet’s most recent hit from 2008’s Discipline album reached #19 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and #1 on its Hot Dance Tracks.  The song is a throwback to past Jackson songs, with up tempo beats and great vocals to match.     
9- Son of a Gun – As with many Janet Jackson songs, this one reflects her love for the music she grew up listening to.  Oftentimes, she’s employed the use of samples, lyrics, and even guest vocals by the original artist to make her homage instantly familiar to the listener.  Son of a Gun, coupled with its prelude Clouds is loosely based on Carly Simon’s hit You’re So Vain.  Ms. Simon provides original guest vocals on both tracks, and its bass-driven beat is an irresistible sensation  Unfortunately, the use of vulgar language in the chorus didn’t convert well to a radio-friendly version (which featured the likes of Missy Elliot, as well) prevented the tune from becoming a successful hit.  It’s a great song anyway!

8- Again – This ballad, off the 1993 album, janet, is a beautiful love song that’s easy on the ears.  The tune was featured on the soundtrack to Poetic Justice (in which Jackson starred) and garnered an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song.

7- (tie) When I Think of You / Escapade – (Yes I know this is a top ten list, but these two songs, to me, are similar in nature and I just couldn’t decide between them.)

When I Think of You – This song is classic Janet Jackson from a younger, more innocent period in her life and career.  The fun hit was the third release off of her 1986 Control album and was her first #1 single.

Escapade – Much like the previous song, Escapade is another fun ditty that’s simply irresistible.  The carnival-like music of the song and its catchy chorus make this one a fan favorite.

6- Black Cat – This one showcases the rocker side of Miss Janet, with memorable guitar riffs and blazing vocals.  Off the Rhythm Nation set, this fan favorite reached #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and is always enthusiastically received in all of her shows.

5- Got Til It’s Gone – Though not a major smash by Janet’s standards, this song is an innovative veneration of Joni Mitchell’s hit Big Yellow Taxi.  This is yet another example of Janet’s reverence for the wide variety of music she listened to growing up and its arrangements are created to update the song to accurately reflect the sounds of the day.  Featuring a guest appearance by rapper Q-Tip and a groove reminiscent of That’s the Way (Love Goes), this one’s a Jackson classic in my eyes. 

4- Nasty – Who can forget this naughty tune from Janet’s 1986 breakout Control?  The song typified the popular sounds coming out of Minneapolis at the time and begat the catchphrase, No, my first name ain’t baby…It’s Janet! Miss Jackson if you’re nasty.

3- Together Again – Although the music to this #1 hit, from 1997’s Velvet Rope, is upbeat and danceable, the reasoning behind its composition is not as pleasant.  The song represents the dream of a day when Janet will be reunited with the many loved ones in her circle lost to the specter of AIDs. Together Again hearkens within all of us a relevant yearning to be together once again with people we’ve lost.    

2- That’s the Way (Love Goes) –

Like a moth to a flame, burned by the fire…
My love is blind, can’t you see my desire.

So begins the sultry groove that garnered Janet a Grammy Award for Best R&B Song in 1994.  The tune is a feel-good song from beginning to end and surely belongs towards the top of any Janet Jackson fan’s list.

1-Love Will Never Do (Without You) – This irresistible charmer from 1991 was an unprecedented fifth Top Five single off of the previous year’s Rhythm Nation album.  Coupled with the typical Minneapolis sounds made popular by Prince, (taken to further heights by Prince alum and the album’s producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis), and Janet’s nasally vocals, was a memorable black and white video (produced by Herb Ritts) and featuring Antonio Sabato Jr. and Djimon Hounsou, two popular male models of the time.  The video was stylistically produced and is as memorable as the song.    

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - I'm Leaving - Lisa Stansfield (Hex Hector Remix)

You shouldn't have done me babe
Now watch what I do to you
Baby I'm Leavin' I'm Leavin' I'm Leavin'
Leavin' you

Ooh, here's an all time favorite!  I tell ya, this 1997 tune is great without the dance beats thrown in, but Hex Hector worked such magic with Lisa Stansfield's wonderful vocals I'm still listening, and singing along, on a regular basis.  Love the lyrics, love the vocals, love the beats...a perfect song! Whatever happened to Lisa Stansfield anyway?  Ah well, maybe I'll try and find out...in the meantime, click play and get groovealicious....

Monday, June 15, 2015

Yes, Janet Is Coming


Talk about an announcement coming out of nowhere!  I mentioned in a Song of the Day post of Janet Jackson's Feedback last month that she had tweeted about a new album and concert tour coming soon.  Well, the time is now!  Janet's official website  posted an announcement this morning that the Unbreakable World Tour will kick off its first leg on August 31st in Vancouver, British Columbia, followed by 35 more shows throughout the U.S. and Canada.  

The tour will be in support of the singer's new unnamed album, which, according to the announcement, is due out in the fall.  The first sets of tickets will go on sale next Monday, June 22nd through LiveNation.  American Express cardmembers already have dibs on the shows beginning today, June 15th through Friday, the 19th before the full sale on Monday.  Ooh, I am officially excited!

Check out Janet's website below for full details on this fantabulous announcement.

90's Summer Jams Song of the Day - Dreamer - Livin' Joy

,, Love, life and laughter
Is all I believe
My savior is pure now
Because my lonely heart would bleed

I never learned how to hold love
And stay strong to love
Now I close my eyes now
And I'm dreaming right where I belong

Welcome to the first of several very special weeks of time-themed summer jams here on John's World.  Some of the songs I've been posting lately have had me listening to my 90's dance music folder on my iPod.  There's so much good stuff there, I decided to do an entire week of 90's summer jams, with other decades (and more 90's!) to come.  

If you were around in 1994, then you'll certainly remember this one from Italian dance production team Livin' Joy.  The lyrics and the vocals are great here, but that oh so danceable music during the chorus was what made this one so irresistible.  So click play and get your Monday started off right...

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Burnin' Up - Jessie J & 2 Chainz

Here's a hot song for a hot summer Sunday!  Love everything about this one, thumping bass, accompanying claps, and of course Jessie's powerful voice...

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Spiderwebs - No Doubt

You know, summer jams aren't always about dance music in the club sense like I usually tend to gravitate towards.  No, there are other types of tunes that can be considered summer jams, like this one, No Doubt's classic 1995 smash Spiderwebs.  Gwen Stefani and company were all about the ska, descendant of  reggae, and so most ot their tunes fit right in with beaches and sunshine and warm weather.  So if you were around in the mid-nineties you're certainly going to remember this...

Friday, June 12, 2015

Flashback Friday Summer Jams Song of the Day - Shake Your Body - The Jacksons

Here's a classic summer jam from none other than The Jacksons...one of the best dance tunes of all time and featuring Michael at the very top of his dancing game.  Enjoy and Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Love At First Sight - Kylie Minogue

And everything went from wrong to right
And the stars came out, filled up the sky
The music you were plaing really blew my mind
It was love, at first sight

Cause baby when I heard you
For the first time I knew
We were meant to be as one

Thirteen years ago yesterday, June 10th, 2002, Kylie Minogue released her third single from her breakout Fever album.  The song was called Love At First Sight and it followed the smashes Can't Get You Out of My Head and In Your Eyes and solidified the Aussie's bona fide explosion on to the dance music scene here in the U.S.  Fever was my first Kylie album, and I've been following her faithfully ever since.  This tune certainly fills the bill as a summer jam, and so...

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Too Original - Major Lazer, feat. Elliphant & Jovi Rockwell

I've always associated Jamaican style music with summer, and this dancehall jam is fast and furious, with twinges of reggae, hip hop, funk and hardcore dance beats, and the vocals of Elliphant and Jovi Rockwell are simply slammin'!  This one's more suitable for a summer evening jam at the club than for a more relaxing beach tune.  Check out Too Original...

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the day - You Make Me - Avicii

It's simple,  It's got simple lyrics, a steady beat, and some really big Oh oh oh oh's.  Ooh, I just loved Avicii's True album...so many good ones there to choose from, but going with the theme of summer jams, I think this one fits the bill just great.  Now if we could only get some steady sunshine and warm temps to go with all the hot music...

Monday, June 8, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the day - Through the Night - Cedric Gervais, featuring Coco

Here's a hot tune that I first posted a couple of months back.  It's by Grammy-winning French deejay/producer Cedric Gervais and it's got all of the elements of a great summer jam, with great beats and awesome vocals by Coco.  Check this one out...

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - In For the Kill - Shamir

Here's a Spotify discovery I made recently that I liked the very first time I heard it.  It's by Las Vegas native and relative newcomer Shamir, and it is feel good music through and through.  It's sort of neo-disco with a lil bit o funk thrown in for good measure.  I'd easily relegate it to summer jam status. Please check it out and then go out and have a great Sunday...

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Nobody's Supposed to Be Here - Deborah Cox

How did you get here
Nobody's supposed to be here

I've tried that love thing for the last time

I said in yesterday's Flashback Friday post that the 90's was a great time for dance music and I've got a whole folder of great 90's dance jams in my iTunes library to prove it.  For me, only the best feel-good dance tunes would qualify to be included on a list of great summer dance jams and this definitely fits the bill.  Like Whitney Houston or Mary J. Blige, Deborah Cox's powerful set of pipes works very well in any remixed version of a ballad, and Nobody's Supposed to Be Here is a classic! So click play below and start shaking what your mama gave ya... 

Friday, June 5, 2015

Flashback Friday Summer Jam Song of the Day - Be My Lover - La Bouche

It's hard to believe that this song is 20 years old, but there you have it.  La Bouche's smash was representative of some really great sounds coming out of the mid-nineties and it definitely serves as a great summer jam.  Check out Be My Lover and go out and have a great start to your weekend...

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Song of the Day - Delilah - Florence + The Machine

We take a break from Summer Jams today in celebration of new music from Florence + The Machine.  Yes, after more than three years since their last smash, Ceremonials, was released, we finally have the band's third studio album, How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful.  Here's one of the latest singles from that record, a typically strong Florence + The Machine track of high highs and soft lows.  Check out the amazing Delilah...

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Summer Jam Song of the Day - Waka Waka - Shakira

Here's a great summer jam for your Wednesday.  I remember this one from my days at Splash...such a happy song!  Oh so danceable, too!  Here's Shakira's Waka Waka...

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Summer Jams Song of the Day - Check It Out - will.i.am & Nicki Minaj

To me, summer jams are songs that make you feel good, and here's one that always makes me feel good.  It's an early one for both will.i.am as a solo artist and Nicki Minaj as well, released towards the end of summer in 2010.  It's a signature tune for will, employing the samplingly familiar track from the Buggles' Video Killed the Radio Star and giving it new life, something that he does so well.  Oh, yeah, this one's a summer jam!  I love it...

Monday, June 1, 2015

Song of the Day - Partition - Beyoncé

It's a dreary, rainy day here in the Northeast and I think it's a good time to slow it down a bit.  This is my favorite tune off of Bey's latest eponymous album.  Partition is the ultimate sexy jam, heavy on bass, and soulful, down n dirty lyrics.  Perfect for a rainy day... oh, and I LOVE the French part!