2013 was one of the better years of music. “Blurred Lines”, “Royals”, “Get Lucky” and others stole the show as best records of the year, while Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ironically stole the spotlight with their popular rap album “The Heist”. Even Kanye West got our attention with hated albums like “Yeezus” that got our attention with all the drama and mind-puzzling controversy.
Although all of these songs and albums were great, music is about preference and I’m here to highlight some of the lesser known artist and songs that made 2013 memorable for me.
First of all, let’s start out with “Power Trip” by J. Cole featuring Miguel. The song, released on Feb. 14, 2013 captured the audience of hip-hop fans and managed to grab the attention of the mainstream media. “Power Trip” climbed as high as 19th in the Billboard Hot 100 while eventually reaching Platinum Certification by the Recording Industry Association of America. Cole, who produced the song, brings a mix of modern hip-hop style while also accompanying the song with classical R&B vocals to create a timeless hit. “Power Trip” was awarded a Grammy nomination for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, losing to the overplayed “Holy Grail” by Jay-Z featuring Justin Timberlake.
Although “Because the Internet” was released in December, it did not take long for rap fans watch Childish Gambino make a statement in the growing dog-eat-dog culture. Childish Gambino, or Donald Glover started off screenwriting for popular NBC sitcom “30 Rock”, before moving on to his own acting career on “Community”. Even before that, Glover traveled as a comedian before eventually bringing his plethora of talents to the music industry where he worked under Wu-Tang generated name “Childish Gambino”. Although known for comedy, Gambino’s witty lines and R&B style throughout Because the Internet became a hit over the holiday season. Gambino also created an original screenplay to accompany his album “Because the Internet” to allow fans to dive further in-depth to his artistic experience.
In the dance genre, Zedd, a music DJ from Germany, fell victim to the shadows of mainstream summer hits like “We Can’t Stop” or “Gas Pedal”. However, Zedd should be noted not only for his Grammy winning song “Clarity”, but also the fact that he keeps popping out hits like “Stay the Night” and “Find You”. Despite the redundancy in the dance music genre, Zedd manages to produce original catchy choruses that make me hold-off the skip button whenever one of his records sings out of the stereo.