Sam Smith

Lollapalooza 2015: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday Recap

For the first time in what seemed like years, a drop of rain didn’t hit the Lollapalooza grounds. Sure, a looming thunderstorm threat caused the festival organizers to evacuate concertgoers Sunday afternoon for a bit (and they even shut down headliners that night 30 minutes early), but Lollapalooza 2015 looked more Coachella than Tough Mudder competition for once. It was three days overflowing with underdressed teenagers melding and moshing to classic rock, new age hip hop, electronic dance, and blissful pop while the sun beamed down and set to a perfect Chicago skyline each evening.

Between A$AP Rocky, Kygo, Paul McCartney, and everybody in between, #SunsetFam was represented over the long Lollapalooza weekend. Below, enjoy a day by day recap of the most righteous sets, and be on the lookout for an official Sunset SoundCloud playlist to relive the sounds from the festival over and over again in the coming days!

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Sam Smith & John Legend – Lay Me Down (Red Nose Day 2015 Duet)

Every year, Comic Relief, a charity based in Britain, hosts a telethon for its Red Nose Day event, aimed to raise awareness and cash for hunger in Africa. This year, they got a boost from award-winners Sam Smith and John Legend, who recorded a beautiful duet version of Smith’s “Lay Me Down” to help promote the cause.

This year, Red Nose Day is Friday, March 13th. If you are able, please consider donating.

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Sam Smith – I’m Not the Only One (Feat. ASAP Rocky)

Sam Smith has been blowing up the world and our hearts so it’s only fair we get a new remake of a song here or there. “I’m Not the Only One” is a track that definitely stands out on his gorgeous debut album, so it’s exciting that he’s managed to add a new twist to it.  When you think Sam Smith, collaborations with hip hop artists may not pop in your mind but that can now end. ASAP Rocky has added his own edge to the beautifully sorrowful track “I’m Not the Only One” and it’s a good one. Listen to the feature below.

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[Music Video] Sam Smith – Stay With Me

After releasing the audio for his latest single, “Stay With Me,” earlier this week, Sam Smith has just released the official music video for the track that I’m claiming will be one of the best songs of the year. There’s not much to compare with the feeling I got after listening to this song for the first time, but it never hurts to have visuals of a man and his accompanying choir of vocalists to depict the aura of authenticity behind Sam Smith’s quest for human accompaniment and compassion. This here digs deep.

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Listen to Sam Smith’s Latest Single, “Stay With Me”

Sam Smith has just released the second single, “Stay With Me,” off his upcoming album. I can tell you guys with confidence that this will be one of my favorite songs of the year. I’m blown away by how beautiful this is.

so wont you stay with me, cuz you’re all i need. this aint love, it’s clear to see. but darling, stay with me.

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[Download MP3] MisterWives – Money on my Mind (Sam Smith Cover)

I have to say I didn’t really like the Sam Smith song “Money on my Mind” the first time I heard it. It didn’t sound like the Sam Smith I had fallen in love with on “Lay Me Down” or “Latch.” It sounded too bubblegum for me, and it didn’t make his voice sound as angelic as I know it can. But I’m coming around to the song, after learning a bit more about the inspiration behind it and how Sam was screwed over by so many agents and managers in the music business. Just as I was starting to warm up to the song, I heard from a friend that another of my recent musical loves, MisterWives, had covered the pop tune.

Listening to it, I think it might be perfection. Lead singer Mandy Lee nails the pitches, harmonizes perfectly, and in the end I’m thinking her voice might even be a better fit for this song than Sam’s. I know that’s saying a lot, but I just don’t think the original emphasizes Sam’s strengths. It strains his voice too much. What do yall think?

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10 Indie Songs That Help Me Relax

Sometimes I get this feeling that my life is speeding ahead in the fast lane and all I can do is try to step back and beg to slow it down. My mind will go a mile a minute while my body stands still, leaving me victim to many sleepless nights. The best I know to do is put on some music (some choose TV, I tend to choose music or a good book) and try to lose myself in that narrative rather than my own. I’m in one of those places right now, so here’s my best attempt to slow my roll. Some of the songs are really slow and minimal, others are a little bit upbeat (because too slow and life can find itself getting too heavy). Soundtrack after the jump.

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[MP3] Sam Smith – Make It To Me

January is all about resolutions, right? It’s probably everybody’s most productive month of the year – you’re trying new things, you’re dusting off old things you used to love, and you’re doing it all to better yourself. (Or maybe you’re doing none of these things, but someday when you get to be as old as I am, you will do these things.)

My first few days of January are typically spent thinking about the things I can do that will make me a better person. It takes time to think about the things that make you happy and that you love. And sometimes you’ll find that there are things you love but you just don’t know how much yet. So far this year (keep in mind it is only January 17th, but I’m not trying to doubt myself here) I’m finding that cooking and eating well is becoming a thing I could learn to love – it makes me feel good about myself. I’ve known that fitness makes me feel good about myself, so I’m going to try to take that to a new level – take more classes, try new things, break out of my comfort zone.

It didn’t take any soul searching to figure out that I love Sam Smith‘s voice. The purity of his voice was what led the guy’s name to be written all over our Best of 2013 lists – he had multiple appearances on our Best Songs of 2013 list, and he’d likely be on more lists, but he didn’t release an album in 2013. Luckily he let out a new song this week (which is simply stunning) and he’s got an album on its way. (Pre-order Money On My Mind, due out February 16th.) Bring it on, 2014!

I wanted you to know that you’re the one designed for me/ a distant stranger that I will complete/ I know you’re out there, we’re meant to be/ So keep your head down and make it to me

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[MP3] Sam Smith – Money On My Mind (MK Remix)

What’s better than getting the year started with some seriously fabulous remixes? I’ll tell you… nothing. Sam Smith has us at the edge of our seats to hear his debut album but luckily for now he’s here to tease us with a remix of his tune “Money On My Mind”. Are we still a bit impatient for more? Of  course, but will this do for now? It will, let’s dance away to this goodie.

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[MP3] Sam Smith – Money On My Mind

I have to be honest with yall, I got a little nervous when I saw that Sam Smith released a song called “Money On My Mind.” It was one of those “noooo, not another one,” feelings, as though I was about to be bombarded with another song about the riches and fame. But surprisingly, the chorus of this song actually goes “I don’t have money on my mind, money on my mind. I do it for, I do it for the love.” So that’s good. The problem here is that this song is way too poppy for me. I started feeling things for Sam Smith (I don’t even think it was too soon to call it love) when I first heard “Lay Me Down.” His voice is almost too much to handle, that’s how good it is. It’s got a quivery and luminous vibe that few others can parallel (off the top of my head I’d pick Adele as the only rival). But this song seems more about the poppy production than the vocals, and that’s a direction that I don’t think Sam Smith would be well-advised to go in. When he sings “money on my mind,” it’s just a bit too reminiscent of Cee-Lo, who, don’t get me wrong, is a standout in pop music. But I beg of you, Sam Smith, don’t lose yourself in the pop scene. You’re too good for that. Keep the production minimal and play off the strengths of your vocals.

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Best of August 2013

The “Best of Series” is a playlist generated every month providing you with quality, sounding music across all genres that were released during that month. Whether you’re too busy to visit daily, or just need some music, this is our way of helping you stay current.

Well, I’m back in college for my junior year. This is some scary stuff. One more year? Don’t get me started. Also, I turned 21 today so that’s a great thing as well. Here’s my gift to you!

Download Best of August 2013

Jordan’s Top 5:

Sam Smith – Nirvana

He is unbelievable. I would let him sing to me, one on one, clothing optional, and not feel weird about. Sorry if that was slightly weird. Nirvana will give you that feeling, too.

Big Sean ft. Kendrick Lamar & Jay Electronica – Control

Well, if you haven’t heard, Kendrick Lamar calls out a ton of rappers, and it’s fantastic. Even two rappers that he’s on the same song with! Wowza!

Antonio Paul – Coloured Screens

Arjun is the big Antonio Paul guy, but I’m becoming one as quality release after quality release is becoming a consistent thing for them. Let Coloured Screens dazzle you.

Cass Lowe – Birthmark

You know what? It’s just good, so just listen.

The Hard Knocks – Hosana

Blast it, jam it, sing it, loudly. This is one of those “why isn’t it at least four minutes long” scenarios. You rock out at only 2 minutes and 40 seconds, but it’ll feel like an eternity with one of my favorite songs of the year.

Hit the jump for the track list Continue reading “Best of August 2013” »

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Songs of the Week: August 19 – August 25

Another week, another batch of fabulous tunes that’ll have you feelin’ good.

1. [MP3] Lolo – Year Round Summer of Love

(Posted by Alicia)

Is Lolo a serious star in the making? I’m going to go ahead and say yes. “Year Round Summer of Love” is sassy, pop goodness. It’s basically impossible to not adore. I’m personally always ready for more powerful female artists, so let’s have some more of this!


2. [MP3] Ta-Ku – Closet Drake Fans

(Posted by Dusty)

We all love a bit of Drake deep down, whether we like to admit it or not. This revive of Drake’s “Over” is something anyone would probably go insane to in the club. It brings the original to life in a new way, in the best way possible. Thank you Ta-ku, you did this some serious justice.


3.[Stream + Lyrics] Sam Smith – Nirvana

(Posted by Andy)

Will Sam Smith ever disappoint? Sure he only has a couple of songs but DAMN are they amazing. “Nirvana” is sexy, smooth and just beautifully perfect. Anyone else want to be serenaded by this man? I know I do.


4.[MP3] Jaymes Young – One Last Time

(Posted by Lydia)

Jaymes Young has been getting our attention for the last couple of months and it’s not stopping now. He’s got that cool vibe and it definitely shows in a more tender way in “One Last Time”. It’s a calming, mesmerizing track that you can find on his equally awesome mixtape.


5.[MP3] Lorde – Royals (The Weeknd Remix)

(Posted by Arjun)

I think we can all agree “Royals” has become the soundtrack of the summer. Lorde is blowing up so it only makes sense someone remixes some of her pop anthems right? The Weeknd just happened to step up with this one and it sure did work out well. He takes “Royals” and gives it a new twist and flavor. Oh boy, do we love it!

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