WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO? – CHRIS STAPLETON

What am I listening to these days? I never thought I’d say this, but the answer is country music. Why? Probably has something to do with a guy I dated in the spring. He was really into country and I guess it kinda/sorta/maybe rubbed off on me. (See what happens when you let your guard down?) For most of my life, I’ve unabashedly bashed country for it’s southern twang and tunes about pick up trucks, whiskey and daisy dukes. But, like most things in life, I can be quick to judge. There’s actually a lot of quality country tunes and artists that I have willfully ignored for much of my twenty-three years. When you get down to it, there’s so much grit and soul in this genre. Take Chris Stapleton for example. He’s well known around town for his songwriting skills (top hits for both Luke Bryan and Kenny Chesney), but recently put out his own debut album in 2015. Traveller is such a great listen! It kinda/sorta/maybe even has me revaluating my stance on country.

GIRL (FEAT. KAYTRANADA) – THE INTERNET

And so my girl crush on Syd continues to intensify. “Girl” is a single off the band’s latest album Ego Death and features the one and only Kaytranada. It goes without saying that anything The Internet produces is fire, but this album kicks it up a notch with some seriously sumptuous beats. On top of that, Kaytranada can do no wrong right now. The Canadian producer and beat maker extraordinaire from Montreal is having a stellar year of collabs and original material to put it lightly. I’m a huge fan of pairing The Internet and Kaytranada together. It’s like packing neo-soul into a spaceship and letting it chill in the sub-zero temperatures of outer space. I highly recommend the whole album.

SIMPLE LOVE (FEAT J’DANNA) – JULIO BASHMORE

I know I’ve said it before, but Bristol always brings it! I swear, that town is where I need to be reborn in my next life in order to exponentially improve my chances of becoming a grossly talented musician. I picked up this Julio Bashmore track off one of BBC Radio 1’s dedicated 2015 Ibiza mixes. Now, before I go drooling about Ibiza’s dance music scene, let me just say that this tune has me feeling seriously sun kissed. It’s the perfect song to insert into your playlists as we move into August and start to get nostalgic about the end of patio weather and beach days. “Simple Love” wants to you hold onto summer for as long as possible. I fully intend to!

CALIFORNIA NIGHTS – BEST COAST

Inspired by such bands as the Beach Boys, Mazzy Star and My Bloody Valentine, Los Angeles duo Bethany Cosentino and Bobb Bruno have consistently delivered a fresh spin on lo-fi pop since they formed Best Coast in 2009. “California Nights” is the kind of song I imagine countless L.A. film students would loop over their demo reels or something (cue the band’s own music video here). The eponymously titled album is a great listen, but “California Nights” is a standout for me. Bethany’s voice simply soars! If you’re looking for a great summer single, give this Best Coast track a shot.