Lists & Rankings
As 2017 comes to a close, this marks another year that we’re able to share with you the music that hit home. The beauty of what’s been compiled lies within the tastes of each contributor. Some are rap heavy, while others lean towards indie. It’s a unique playlist that’s crafted by us in hopes that you expand your digital (or physical) library. Continue to keep your ears open for artists, or genres that you have yet to discover. Finding the ~diamond in the rough~ has never been easier, and spreading the love is one click away.
As you think about your goals for the upcoming year, pay it forward by sharing music with those you surround yourself with. I challenge you to find one song on this playlist that you’ve never heard before, and send it to someone you think would enjoy it. The feeling knowing that someone appreciates a song recommendation is unmatched. At the end of the day, there is an absurd amount of talent in this world. Some have yet to crack 1k plays on SoundCloud, and others have the first name of Aubrey. Why not share it? Spread the love.
The Sunset Fam would like to wish everyone a happy and healthy new year. Stay safe, and have fun tonight.
The first playlist is our favorite picks from November. The second playlist is all of our picks from March-October (since the inception of our Spotify playlist). Be sure to subscribe to our playlists on Spotify as they will be continuously updated each month!
For music lovers everywhere summer means one thing: festival season. But just because the days grow shorter and the nights cooler doesn’t mean the fun, or the music has to stop. Across the US great music festivals are constantly taking place, here are some can’t miss fall and winter festivals:
The Growler’s Six
Previously known as Beach Goth, The Growler’s are back again this fall with the renamed Growler’s Six festival. Offering a more eccentric lineup than the typical festival, The Growler’s headline both nights with help from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Dan Auerbach, Modest Mouse and Danny Brown. Grab your costume and head to the L.A. waterfront October 28-29 to catch these acts and more.
Day for Night
Taking place December 15-17 in Houston, Day for Night is described as “an art and music event that explores the deep connections between light, technology, sound and space”. This year’s rosters includes some of the most talented names across all genres such as James Blake, Tyler, the Creator, Jamie xx and Justice. In between sets you can catch several installations and talks from people such as Chelsea Manning and Nadya from Pussy Riot.
If there’s one city that knows how to party, it’s New Orleans and this years Buku lineup is sure to guarantee that. Young Thug, Travis Scott, DEADMAU5, 21 Savage and Run the Jewels top the bill with great supporting acts sure to keep the fun going all weekend long. Head down to the Big Easy, March 10-11 for what is sure to be a can’t miss experience.
South by Southwest
If you’re looking for a film, comedy and music festival offering great interactive experiences, look no farther than South by Southwest. In 2017 SXSW hosted over 2,000 official performers, covering all genres from all over the world. If you find yourself in Austin anytime between March 9-18 make sure to catch a set.
Image courtesy of Day for Night.
Far north past the allure of Coachella and the Governor’s Ball lies one of Canada’s hidden gems, WayHome Music and Arts festival. Held the past two summers at Burls Creek Event Grounds in Oro-Medonte, WayHome may not draw as much attention as other festivals, but year after year they still come wielding some of the biggest and most iconic names in music. It was no secret that ticket sales were down for WayHome this year, but as the weekend went on numbers rose as attendees poured in. With past lineups including headliners such as LCD Soundsystem, Neil Young and Kendrick Lamar this year was no disappointment.
Here are the best Performances of WayHome 2017:
From DJ to bonafide producer, Flume has certainly made a name for himself in the music industry. In 2016 we saw his sophomore studio album Skin take home a grammy for best dance/ electronic album and it’s only been up from there. In between producing for Lorde’s Melodrama, dropping Skin Companion EPs and a world tour, Flume has been hot on the festival circuit bringing us new favorites and old classics.
By far the most sultry performance of the weekend came from Banks. Clad in patent leather thigh-high boots and perfectly in sync with two costumed backup dancers, she didn’t miss a beat while belting out hits like Waiting Game and Brain.
Seemingly out of nowhere came Mura Masa and something tells me he’s here to stay. With only one self-titled album he’s already got features from big names like Charli XCX, Desiigner and A$AP Rocky. Mura Masa gave attendees an energetic, late night set on the WayAway stage featuring all his modern pop classics.
One of electronic music’s most iconic duos, Justice is back after what felt like forever with a new album release last year and a world tour alike. Fans who have waited for months or even years for the opportunity to see them were not disappointed when new tracks like Safe & Sound and timeless favorites like Civilization and We Are Your Friends filled the air. Justice gave an incredibly high-powered live set before jumping down from the stage to shake hands and take some selfies with a few lucky fans.
The most intimate set of the weekend, if not the most intimate set ever, was from no other than Frank Ocean. After cancelling several festival performances earlier in the summer due to production delays it was easy to see why it was worth the wait. With a cover of Steve Monite’s Only You and a tour debut of Forrest Gump the entire crowd seemed to relish in each moment. He also strayed from his typical festival setlist when he performed bonafide classics Thinkin’ Bout You and Pyramids. Frank along with his four piece band took to the mic in between songs to remind us that he’s “only human” and sometimes still gets nervous performing for such large crowds.
Celebrate your 4th of July with SITR’s Best of June playlist! Throw this playlist on as your soundtrack on your boat, at your bbq, in your backyard, wherever, whenever! Your friends and family will be impressed by how in tune you are with current music.
NBA Finals game starts in five minutes. As a result, I don’t have much to say other than here’s this months playlist! #GoCavs
Can we all take a second to realize that Frank Ocean has been dropping singles left, and right? We went years without new music before Blond became a reality. Does this mean more Frank in the near future? Who knows. Kendrick also took over the Billboard 100 with every track off of DAMN. April was good to us. We shared what was so good about it below.
I’m sad to report that this will be the last time we provide you a “Best of” playlist for the month. It’s been great run over the years of being able to provide you a monthly recap, but sometimes we have to embrace change. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for visiting and supporting us. It means the world to me being able to share music with others. While this might be bad news, the good news is if you made it this far, you’re the real MVP because this is all a joke. Today marks April 1st, which means it’s April Fool’s day. This might be a late joke at this point…unless you’re on the west coast where you might be having your morning coffee and have yet to realize what day it is. At this point i’m just typing out more words to make this seem longer. I do have excellent news, as you might notice our playlist has a different look. This slight change allows us to share even more music with you. It also makes it easier to save certain songs you like. Like I said earlier, we have to embrace change!
The only important thing to mention here is that Chance The Rapper won three Grammy’s in February. I remember the days when I was bumping #10Day, which was five years ago, and thinking this guy just gets it. Five years later, he’s won three Grammy’s, has yet to sell any music (never will), and has become a public figure on social issues for Chicago by recently donating 1 million to public schools. You want to talk about a Best of February? New releases aside, that award goes to Chano. Incredible what this guy has done over the course of five years.
We also have a playlist of 30 songs for you, so check that out below.
A new year doesn’t always mean “new me.” It’s hard for people to change, however, a new year does mean new music! If you haven’t, check out our favorites from 2016. While you’re at it, listen to some of the tunes that has the SITR impressed in 2017 thus far. SoundCloud playlist below:
You could say that 2016 was a weird year, or a year of change. It was a year where 3-1 leads were no longer safe, Kermit The Frog ran the internet, Snapchat took over the world, dabbing continued to exist, an inebriated Bill Murray took you out to the ballgame, and much, much more. In music, it was the year of the “surprise” release. Long gone are the days where we’re told an album is due ahead of time. You wake up, brew your coffee, check Twitter, and there you find a live video feed of Frank Ocean taking on a DIY project, while simultaneously setting the world on fire to burn in speculation about what is happening.
Welcome to our best songs of 2016. A list of 149 songs spanning the course of a completely reasonable 9.5 hours. We picked songs from 113 different artists, but there were a handful* of artists who seemed to win the year, landing the highest number of songs in our list. Most of these artists had songs chosen as a top song of 2016 by multiple members of our team.
Here are those winners, ranked with their number of song nominations in parenthesis:
- Frank Ocean (14)
- Francis and the Lights (7)
- Chance The Rapper (7)
- Drake (7)
- Kanye West (6)
- Bon Iver (6)
- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (5)
- Allan Kingdom (4)
*We listed the top 8 because there were many artists who tied for #9.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: life will throw you curve balls any chance it can. How you take that curve ball is one thing, but the music in your life will always be your constant among infinite variables. It will be there when you’re at your best and at your worst. Find your vibe, and spread the love. That’s the best part about blogging; being able to share and open other people’s eyes to different artists and genres. That is the point of this list. We are sharing what we loved about 2016. Despite all the weirdness that happened, whether for good or bad, 2016 was an incredible year for music, and it will only get better in 2017.
NOTE: Original cover image by Samantha Friend.
We have finally hit the final month of 2016. Despite this being a November playlist, the early parts of December have been FIRE. The Weeknd, Childish Gambino, Drake, CuDi, & J. Cole?! What did we do to deserve this? While we’re working hard to provide you a list from our favorites from the year, enjoy what we’ve prepared for November, and the influx of quality albums! Hopefully, this will keep you busy until then. Stay tuned…