Tag Archives: Ariana Grande

Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

My weekly playlist features five tracks I predict will be future hit singles in the UK.

Tracklisting:

  • Ariana Grande ft. Future – Everyday
  • Stormzy – Big For Your Boots
  • Digital Farm Animals ft. Hailee Steinfeld – Digital Love
  • Rag’n’Bone Man – Skin
  • Train – Play That Song

For more Future Hits, subscribe to my  Spotify playlist, updated weekly with the next big thing.


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

My weekly playlist features five tracks I predict will be future hit singles in the UK.

Tracklisting:

  • Ariana Grande ft. Nicki Minaj – Side To Side
  • Zara Larsson – Ain’t My Fault
  • TIEKS ft. Dan Harkna – Sunshine
  • John Gibbons – Would I Lie to You
  • Dua Lipa – Blow Your Mind (Mwah)

For more Future Hits, subscribe to my  Spotify playlist, updated weekly with the next big thing.


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

My weekly playlist features five tracks I predict will be future hit singles in the UK.

Tracklisting:

  • Ariana Grande – Into You
  • Dua Lipa – Hotter Than Hell
  • Justin Timberlake – Can’t Stop The Feeling
  • Selena Gomez – Kill Em With Kindness
  • High Contrast – Remind Me

For more Future Hits, subscribe to my Spotify playlist, updated weekly with the next big thing.


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

My weekly playlist features five tracks I predict will be future hit singles in the UK.

Tracklisting:

  • Ariana Grande – Dangerous Woman
  • Blonde & Craig David – Nothing Like This
  • Zayn – Like I Would
  • Birdy – Wild Horses
  • twenty one pilots – Ride

For more Future Hits, subscribe to my new Spotify playlist, updated weekly with the next big thing.


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

My weekly playlist features five tracks I predict will be future hit singles.

Tracklisting:

  • Ariana Grande – Focus
  • Martin Solveig ft. Sam White – +1
  • Charlie Puth – One Call Away
  • Pia Mia – Touch
  • Fall Out Boy ft. Demi Lovato – Irresistible

For more Future Hits, subscribe to my new Spotify playlist, updated weekly with the next big thing.


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

This week’s playlist features future hits by female solo artists.

Tracklisting:

  • Ella Henderson – Mirror Man
  • Jess Glynne – Hold My Hand
  • Ariana Grande – One Last Time
  • Jessie J – Masterpiece
  • Natalie La Rose ft. Jeremih – Somebody

Let me know what you think of my choices in the comments box below, or tweet me @Poptastic.

The 5th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

5 Seconds of Summer – Don’t Stop

Released: 9th May (Australia)
Writers: Steve Robson, busbee, Luke Hemmings, Calum Hood
Trivia: 5SOS are one of those bands that walks the line between being a boyband and a “proper” band with instruments. Really, they are both, but if they had to be put on one side I think they deserve the honour of being a boyband. Not only have they released two great pop singles (the less said about the other two, the better) but they also tick some important boyband boxes: They’re all featured equally in photos and interviews (even I, as a semi-fan, can’t remember which one is the lead singer) and they politely take turns to get writing credits. Michael and Ashton got She Looks So Perfect, while Luke and Calum are credited on Don’t Stop. It might seem a bit unfair, as She Looks So Perfect was the lead single and bigger success, but now that Don’t Stop has placed higher in my Top 25, I’d say they’re even.
Best bits: 1. Don’t stoooooop doin’ what you’re doin’
2. And you know it, know it, know it!
3. Everybody wants to take you home tonight, but I’m gonna find a way to make you mine

The 4th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Redlight ft. Lotti – 36

Released: 10th March (UK)
Writers: Unknown
Trivia: Of all the songs in my top 25, 36 is certainly the least well known, and even I know very little about it. I know enough about Redlight (he/she/they have some other songs, one of them did quite well, I can’t remember what it was called) to know better than to dig for more treasures – this is his/her/their shining moment and there’s no way any of his/her/their other songs could be as good, so investigating further would only lead to disappointment. As for Lotti, I literally haven’t a clue who she is. I like to believe it’s the Norwegian singer Annie under a new pseudonym.
Best bits: 1. I can’t, I can’t, I can’t seem to get enough
2. Babe, yeah yeah, oh-ohoh-oh babe, yeah yeah, woo! oh-ohoh-oh
3. 36,000 feet above the clouds and we keep on climbing

The 3rd Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Jessie J ft. Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj – Bang Bang

Released: 21st September (UK)
Writers: Max Martin, Savan Kotecha, Rickard Göransson, Onika Maraj
Trivia: How Jessie J got to be the lead artist on this pop masterpiece is one of the great mysteries of 2014. Before it was released (or before I’d seen the writing credits, at least) I wondered how Ariana and Nicki had been convinced to collaborate with Jessie J. But then, when I heard Bang Bang, it made sense – who would turn down the chance to appear on such an undeniable hit? However, the mystery still remained – with vocals split pretty evenly, why isn’t the established major international artist, Nicki, or the hot breakthrough star, Ariana, credited as the lead singer? Clearly some behind-the-scenes bartering went on, but that leads to another question – who in the music industry wants Jessie J to succeed so much, even after the flop of her second album and with her diva reputation, that they would offer something to Ariana and Nicki that was valuable enough to convince them to play second/third fiddle to Jessie? We’ll probably never know, but at least we have a poptastic song to listen to while we mull it over.
Best bits: 1. Bang bang into the room!
2. B to the A, to the N, to the G, to the hey-ey
3. Wait a minute let me take you there (ahh-ah), wait a minute ’til ya… ahhh hey!

The 2nd Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Taylor Swift – Shake It Off

Released: 19th August (USA)
Writers: Taylor Swift, Max Martin, Shellback
Trivia: When artists like Ariana and Jessie release Max Martin songs, they’re just vehicles for his talent. It’s a worthwhile job, and an important one throughout pop history, but it’s easy to imagine their Max Martin songs having gone to another artist (and we know many of Max’s hits have changed hands before being released). But when Taylor started working with Max, she got a different honour – she was allowed to bring her own approach to songwriting to the studio, and actually collaborate with him. You can hear both Max and Taylor clearly in these songs: no-one is letting the other join in; instead they are meeting in the middle. Shake It Off, like We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, is a brilliant example of their sounds fitting together like puzzle pieces. Taylor obviously views 1989 as a collaboration, as she includes several photos of Max (and Shellback) in the album booklet, and Max is obviously very proud of their work and fond of Taylor, as he (being notoriously private) let her do so.
Best bits: 1. I’m just gonna shake shake shake shake shake, shake it off! Shake it off!
2. ‘Cos the players gonna play, play, play, and the haters gonna hate, hate, hate
3. My ex man brought his new girlfriend, she’s like “oh my god,” but I’m just gonna shake


Let me know what you think of my choices in the comments box below, or tweet me @Poptastic.

The 10th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Ace Wilder – Busy Doin’ Nothin’

Released: 22nd February (Sweden)
Writers: Ace Wilder, Joy Deb, Linnéa Deb
Trivia: Busy Doin’ Nothin’ came second in this year’s Melodifestivalen, the contest to find Sweden’s Eurovision entry. It missed out by just 2 points, and although Ace isn’t the best live vocalist, I still think it would have gone on to become a big hit across Europe if it had won.
Best bits: 1. Don’t wanna work, work, work! I wanna make money while I sleep!
2. I’m busy, busy, busy doin’ nothin’ at all, I’m stressing over nothing, don’t bother to call
3. Although some might say I throw life away, I just ain’t got time to save

The 9th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Ariana Grande ft. Zedd – Break Free

Released: 3rd July (USA)
Writers: Anton Zaslavski, Max Martin, Savan Kotecha
Trivia: I saw Break Free as the completion of Ariana’s strangely long journey to becoming a proper pop star. After being signed as a teen TV star with huge potential in 2011, she released her first under-performing pop single Put Your Hearts Up (now pretty much written out of history – she even got the video removed from VEVO), then took a detour into cool-but-underwhelming 90s-inspired R&B-pop on her debut album Yours Truly. With Problem, Max Martin took that sound and improved it tenfold (as he usually does), but Break Free was the moment where Ariana finally let go of her need to be in a niche. Break Free isn’t “uniquely Ariana” – it’s a song that could have been a hit for any big star. And getting to release that song is what, in my mind at least, certified Ariana’s place in the top tier of current female pop artists.
Best bits: 1. This is the part when I say I don’t want ya, I’m stronger than I’ve been before
2. I only wanna die alive, never by the hands of a broken heart
3. In my dreams it felt so right, but I woke up every tiiiiiiiiiime… oh baby!

The 8th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Blonde ft. Melissa Steel – I Loved You

Released: 28th November (UK)
Writers: Unknown
Trivia: Although I Loved You sounds quite ’90s, it’s actually a remix (refix? bootleg?) of a song from 2004, More by Tamia. Unfortunately the original isn’t very exciting, but I think it’s a testament to Blonde’s talents that they sensed how brilliant it could be if it was sped up and sprinkled with pop magic. Of all the recent house versions of old R&B songs, this is by far my favourite. In music, you should only join an overcrowded scene if you have something worthwhile to contribute, and Blonde might have just sounded the death knoll for this house-R&B-pop trend by releasing the perfect example of it. I Loved You will be very hard to beat.
Best bits: 1. Give me a reason, to make me wanna stay, wanna go back to the day I loved you more
2. Don’t make me twist your arm to stay, a little me will be OK
3. Let it go, when you’re at home, give me your heart, give me your soul

The 7th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Meghan Trainor – All About That Bass

Released: 30th June (USA)
Writers: Meghan Trainor, Kevin Kadish
Trivia: While her credit on Sledgehammer by Fifth Harmony (another song in my top 25) proves Meghan is a talented songwriter, I believe her co-writer Kevin must have also been a key component to the poptasticness of All About That Bass. He was the man behind a very small pop trend in the early 2000s which I loved – the hits (ranging from minor to non-existent, but all brilliant) of Stacie Orrico and Lucy Woodward. You can definitely hear the relation to Stacie and Lucy’s sounds in All About That Bass, as well as in Meghan’s new single Lips Are Movin. I hope Kevin’s career, which Wikipedia suggests has been pretty slow since Jason Mraz stopped being fun, gets a much-deserved boost from the success of All About That Bass. I’d love 2015 to be filled with songs that sound like (There’s Gotta Be) More To Life.
Best bits: 1. Because you know I’m all about that bass, ’bout that bass, no treble
2. Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top
3. I’m bringing booty baaaack, go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that

The 6th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

5 Seconds Of Summer – She Looks So Perfect

Released: 23rd February (Australia)
Writers: Ashton Irwin, Michael Clifford, Jake Sinclair
Trivia: When I saw 5 Seconds of Summer live at the end of 2013, I was impressed by the strength of their fanbase (they’d sold out two nights at Koko without having ever released a single!) but I’d attended hoping to be convinced they had some great pop hits up their sleeves, ready to capitalise on their popularity. I was disappointed – the only really enjoyable moment was their cover of Teenage Dream. However, it turned out that they actually did have some songs up their sleeves that were as good as a band in their position should have… in fact, She Looks So Perfect was much better than I could have possibly expected. I’d go so far as to say it was (at the time), the best boyband single of the current era. I’ve enjoyed following JLS, One Direction, The Vamps etc, but their music hasn’t been of the same standard as the boybands of my generation (*N Sync and BSBs in particular). Their album may be mostly populated with the dated Busted-style songs I heard at their gig, but with their first two singles, 5SOS made their contemporaries look feeble.
Best bits: 1. I made a mixtape straight out of ’94, I’ve got your ripped skinny jeans lying on the floor
2. She looks so perfect standing there in my American Apparel underwear
3. Hey-ehh-eh-hey, hey-ehh-eh-hey, hey-ehh-eh-hey-eh, hey-ehh-ey


I was spoilt for choice when putting together my list of the most poptastic singles of 2014. I had 124 songs I felt deserved recognition, and once I’d got that down to my top 100 (to be revealed at the end of the month), the task of whittling it down to 25 began. I eventually settled on a very eclectic mix of pop songs, which hops from Europop to indie-pop to pop-rock, and every other genre that begins or ends with “pop.” There’s one girlband, one boyband, seven collaborations, six debut singles, and (the reverse of last year’s trend) four pop songs by country artists.

Let me know what you think of my choices in the comments box below, or tweet me @Poptastic.

The 25th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Ariana Grande ft. Iggy Azalea – Problem

Released: 28th April (USA)
Writers: Ilya Salmanzadeh, Max Martin, Savan Kotecha, Iggy Azalea, Ariana Grande
Trivia: This is the first of six Max Martin productions in my top 25 this year, proving that he can move with the times like no other producer. Choosing my all-time favourite artist is an impossible task, but choosing my all-time favourite producer doesn’t require even a moment’s thought. You can read his story of the creation of Problem here.
Best bits: 1. There’s a million yous baby boo so don’t be dumb, I got 99 problems but you won’t be one
2. One less, one less problem
3. Head in the clouds, got no weight on my shoulders

The 24th Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Tove Lo – Talking Body

Released: 30th September (Sweden)
Writers: Tove Nilsson, Jakob Jerlström, Ludvig Söderberg
Trivia: Tove only got to enjoy having the best album of the year for a few weeks, as Queen of the Clouds came out just before 1989, but she should be proud to come second to that masterpiece, especially with her debut album.
Best bits: 1. Now if we’re talking body, you got a perfect one
2. Day drunk into the night, wanna keep you here, cos you dry my tears
3. On and on and on

The 23rd Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Years and Years – Real

Released: 19th February (UK)
Writers: Emre Turkmen, Mikey Goldsworthy, Olly Alexander
Trivia: I love Real and Years and Years are great as an electro-pop act, but I’m really hoping that in 2015 they will release the piano ballad Olly performed when I first saw them live in early 2014. That was the moment where I realised he is a true pop star, not just a lead singer of a cool band, and he deserves to have that breakout moment.
Best bits: 1. Oh, I, I think I’m into you, how much do you want it too?
2. If I had been enough for you, I’d be better, would I be good?
3. You’re just my type, what’s a boy to do?

The 22nd Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Fifth Harmony – Sledgehammer

Released: 28th October (USA)
Writers: Jonas Jeberg, Meghan Trainor, Sean Douglas
Trivia: I’ve decided not to include any Neon Jungle songs in my chart as I can’t be objective, but I’m pleased that girlbands are represented by this pop anthem from Fifth Harmony. You may be familiar with the debacle surrounding the UK release of this song: It was meant to be the lead single and would have been performed on The X Factor, but was swapped for BO$$ at the last minute. I understand why they made that decision (BO$$ is an example of the holy grail of chart success: a cool novelty song – see also Uptown Funk) but what completely baffled me was why Sledgehammer was then made a b-side. Clearly it should have been the more poptastic follow-up single, to be released early 2015 after BO$$ provided a fun introduction. If the next single isn’t a pop triumph of Sledgehammer proportions, that X Factor moment is likely to be their first and last UK TV performance, and they can keep dreaming of cracking the top 20.
Best bits: 1. If you could take my pulse right now, it would feel just like a sledgehammer
2. If you take my puuuuuuuulse
3. I struggle to contain the love that’s in my veins and how it circulates

The 21st Most Poptastic Single of 2014

Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – Uptown Funk

Released: 10th November (USA)
Writers: Mark Ronson, Jeff Bhasker, Bruno Mars, Philip Lawrence, Devon Gallaspy, Nicholaus Williams
Trivia: Uptown Funk took 82 takes to record, and Mark was so stressed about getting it perfect that he fainted at lunch. Obviously, it was worth it!
Best bits: 1. Saturday night and we in the spot, don’t believe me just watch!
2. Uptown funk you up, uptown funk you up
3. I’m too hot (hot damn), call the police and the firemen


Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

This week’s playlist features five tracks from new albums that should be singles in the future.

Tracklisting:

  • Iggy Azalea ft. Ellie Goulding – Heavy Crown
  • Hozier – Something New
  • Ariana Grande – One Last Time
  • One Direction – Where Do Broken Hearts Go
  • David Guetta ft. Nicki Minaj & Afrojack – Hey Mama