I am headed to London late next week for a long girls weekend with one of my college besties, Brandi, so I thought it would be fun to throw together a playlist that focused on British artists. Which, in hindsight, was a bit easier said than done. Other than The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, I didn’t have too many expectations of what would be included, but as I started to dive into my saved music as well as exploring other playlists on Spotify, I discovered that I should have been more specific, and just focused on one era and genre. There were so many artists and bands that I forgot or never realized originated from the UK!
So, my list is a bit eclectic, ranging from the “British Invasion” to current music. To keep the playlist from being too long, I did decide to limit it to artists and bands that were only from England, not from Ireland (sorry U2) or Scotland. However, please don’t go fact checking on me… I’m sure I messed up at least one or two 🙂
Alright, let me know what obvious favorites I missed!
I love music. My taste is very diverse — continually being shaped by an unique combination of people, places and experiences. I never try to pawn myself off as someone who “knows music,” because I have too much respect for those who do. I did dance and took piano lessons growing up, but trust me, you do NOT want to hear me sing. But music is a topic that I never tire of and I love swapping recommendations. Please join in and share your own picks! View past posts HERE.
This album might be the one I have listened to the most in 2015. Imagine Dragons is one of those bands where I love and know every single song on the album. They hit it big with “It’s Time” (their third EP in 2009/10), but once I heard their debut album, Night Visions, in 2012, I knew they were going to be big. I’ve been to a lot of country concerts, but Imagine Dragons at Starlight Theatre in KC is probably my favorite concert (the drums are amazing!) Their sophomore album Smoke + Mirrors is what you hope for from a band that saw so much success with its debut. The song above is my favorite but I also like “I Bet My Life,” “Gold,” “Polaroid” and “The Fall.”
This could have very well been my jam on repeat this week (or summer.) I’d say in the last two years Sia’s voice (and quirky style) has been the go-to obsession for people, and “Golden” does not disappoint. I love the contrast of the artists and their voices here.
Most people recognize George Ezra for his first single “Budapest,” but my favorite is “Blame it On Me,” above. I just love a really deep singing voice that comes across so smoothly (think country music’s Josh Turner.) This guy is young, a true musician and with the successful of this debut album, I hope he stays around. I also like “Barcelona” and the video for “Listen to the Man” is light and funny featuring Sir Ian Mckellen.
BBC’s Live Lounge could probably have its own category on this list. They always have the best covers. I’ve lost track of the amount of times I’ve sent people to go listen to this one. I know I featured Imagine Dragons already in this post but this cover is SO different and fun.
They are talented, but some of A Great Big World’s music is a bit too much for me, so I was a little late to discover this song. But I definitely have it on repeat now. It’s a great song for their sound, stripped down, both silly and sweet, almost making me laugh.
I’ve always been a U2 fan, but this summer I have been watching Friends from start to finish and re-fell in love with this song. I’m well past that episode but the song popped up on my Spotify this week, reminding me how sad I’m going to be when I finish the series. Man, what I would have given to be just a little older when the series was airing. Instead of the music video, I included the clip from the show.
9. Current Beat That Makes Me Want to Dance…in the Car…Jamming With the Windows Down Ugly Heart – G.R.L. Listen HERE
Ugh. Girl bands generally give me a headache and I probably skipped this song at least a dozen times before I finally got all the way through it. But friends… jam to it just once in the car and I promise you’ll be sold.
I might be wrong, but it always seemed to me that this was one of the first songs that made Calvin Harris a well-known name, outside of EDM music. At some point in college I got a new phone and I wanted a fun ringtone that didn’t have a lot of lyrics so I chose this song, somewhat on a whim after hearing it I think on a commercial. It ended up staying as my ringtone for over a year. I’m not generally a huge EDM fan, I don’t know that much about it, but I’ve always liked how universal this song felt. I love words and lyrics, but as a kid who grew up dancing, I also like when the music itself takes care of telling the story.
11. Work, Work it Out Come With Me Now – Kongos Listen HERE
I am really going to have to make an effort to not include Ed Sheeran every week on this series. This song is not considered new anymore and the video is almost a year old. Most people would have probably put this in the “Song That I Originally Loved, But Is Now Overplayed” category, and I don’t blame them, I’m just a bit of a fan girl. Honestly though, the girl does most of the core dancing but his part was probably harder than you think. Props to the awkward white boy.
13.Guilty Listen of the Week Ghost Town – Adam Lambert Listen HERE
So I actually saw most of this video before I heard the song. I was in a bar on the 4th of July that was really loud and it was playing on multiple screens. I remember thinking, “this is slightly creepy, I don’t know that I actually want to hear the song.” Then I did on Spotify and found myself NOT skipping it. Guilty, I know. It’s terrible, but its great.
People, please don’t be mad at me. I love this song, I really do, but I just need to NOT hear it for a while. IT’S EVERYWHERE. I mean I lost track of how many times I heard it while I was in Vegas, whether it was actually the song, or the fact that my sister felt the need to sing it over and over. In my mind, its not supposed to be a song that gets stuck in your head. Let it fade and then we can fall in love with it all over again when we rediscover it.
15.Popular Song That Is Making My Ears Bleed Strip It Down – Luke Bryan Listen HERE
Listen, say what you want about “bro country,” but I like Luke Bryan. His is music is fun and he has pulled off the sexy country slow song before. But not this time. This one is flat and repetitive in a way that is annoying. Also, the lyrics are dumb. “I want to drop the cell phone now, let it shatter on the ground…” Umm WHAT? No, phones are expensive, have two seconds of self control and set it down like a normal person.
It’s kind of hard to believe that Lady Antebellum’s first country single “Love Don’t Live Here” debuted eight years ago. It came out when I was high school and I vividly remember how refreshing this new band was. It’s been fun to follow their success. Expect for them to be a regular over time on this series.
BONUS: 5 More Songs On My 2015 Summer Jam Playlist Some of these first came out last year, but they’ve been my repeats this summer