Like 2012 and 2013, but somehow not last year, here are 50 great songs from this year. In no particular order.
Machel Montano & Angela Hunte, "Party Done"
Rae Sremmurd, "This Could Be Us"
Novelist, "Ignorant & Wot"
The Weeknd, "The Hills"
Ty Dolla $ign Ft. Future & Rae Sremmurd, "Blase"
Empress Of, "Standard"
T-Pain, "Classic Man"
Freddie Gibbs, "Fuckin' Up The Count"
YG, "Twist My Fingaz"
Jlin, "Mansa Musa"
Drake & Future, "Jumpman" (WTF IS THIS VIDEO!)
Tory Lanez, "In For It"
Popcaan & Freddie Gibbs, "Born Bad"
Janet Jackson, "No Sleeep"
Justin Bieber, "Sorry"
Boogie, "Oh My"
Erykah Badu Ft. Andre 3000, "Hello"
Fetty Wap, "Again"
Arca, "Sad Bitch"
Kanye West Ft. Vic Mensa & Sia, "Wolves"
Junglepussy, "Pop For You"
Zora Jones, "First Light"
Isaiah Rashad, "Nelly"
D'Angelo, "Really Love"
WizKid Ft. Drake & Skepta, "Ojuelegba"
Porgie & Murda, "Ben Up"
Petite Noir, "Drown"
Dexta Daps, "7Eleven"
Earl Sweatshirt, "DNA"
D.R.A.M. Ft. Donnie Trumpet, "$"
Pusha T Ft. Beenie Siegel, "Keep Dealing"
Young Thug, "Constantly Hating"
Miguel Ft. Lenny Kravitz, "Face The Sun"
Vince Staples, "CNB"
JME, "Man Don't Care"
Travis Scott Ft. Young Thug & Justin Bieber, "Maria I'm Drunk"
Bryson Tiller, "Don't"
Future, "March Madness"
WOKE Ft. George Clinton, "The Lavishment of Looking In"
Kendrick Lamar, "Alright"
Jazmine Sullivan, "Dumb"
Braids, "Sore Eyes"
Top 15 Toronto Tracks
I realized so much of my fav music this year came from home, I thought I'd offset these songs to give the rest of yall a chance.
Keita Juma, "Come Over"
River Tiber, "No Talk"
Keita Juma, "Call Me Juma"
Birthday Boy & Allie, "I Can't Wait"
Daniel Caesar, "Streetcar"
Roy Woods, "Get You Good"
Majid Jordan, "My Love"
Jay Whiss, "Watch This"
FIJI Ft. Castro Guapo, "Wrist"
DVSN, "The Line"
Dilly Dally, "Desire"
Jazz Cartier, "Dead or Alive"
WILDE, "100 Days"
The Best Shit I Wrote
An essay on friendship and the French film Girlhood.
A review of Jlin's debut album, Dark Energy.
About Jennifer Hodge's seminal Toronto documentary, Home Feeling, and creating your own canon.
A personal essay on selfies and Kim Kardashian's Selfish.
A track review of Blood Orange's "Do You See My Skin Through The Flames?"
A blurb on Tracy Chapman's "Fast Car" for P4K's Top 200 songs of the 80s list
A story about the Weeknd and my city.
On M.I.A. and fear
Trinidad Carnival kicks off at 3AM on the Monday before Ash Wednesday. At that time this year, Rawiya, Karega, Zindzi and I were squished onto a double bed trying to manage some rest before going on to party for 48 hours straight. Trucks with Jenga-like stacks of speakers rolled slowly through different neighbourhoods, shaking the city awake and keeping us from rest. One of us (Karega) began humming a melody booming off a truck three blocks away and it set off fits of laughter. We tossed and turned and roasted each other like little kids at sleepover. At 4, Zindzi's sisters -- professional partiers -- arrived to kit up and roll out. By 5, we'd pulled on jean shorts and sneakers and left the house, minus Karega. We ran through the mild black of early morning to catch up and storm a Jouvert band, weaving past truck after truck surrounded by hundreds covered in paint and mud and powder. Young families and police officers stood around watching bemusedly. We raced past the few cars foolish enough to chance the streets on the two days of year they belong to the people. We caught up to Onika near the Savannah; she and her friend were wearing pink tutus making them easy to spot as they chipped and twirled down the road. Chippin' isn't easy but after a few minutes, spurred on by the camaraderie of getting smeared in paint by strangers, we were stomping and shuffling and, occasionally, backing it up to the beat as we crested the northern border of the Savannah. We finished off a half-filled water bottle of rum just so we'd have our hands free: the thrill of occupying the streets in the half-light was enough. The sun was rising in the east and thousands of us danced around the bend in the direction of the hulking, hazy green silhouette of the Laventille Hills. The trucks played every song over and over, wheeling the big tunes back more times than Drake did "Know Yourself" or Jay and Kanye did with "Paris." Those lyrics were a command, and we just whooped louder and chipped harder every time.