It’s almost New Year’s Eve, that one, glorious, most hopeful night of the year. It’s also that one night you’re going to party like it’s 1999, so let this week be dedicated to mani-pedis, haircuts, outfit buying, midnight kiss daydreaming, preemptive sleeping and playlist making. When it comes to partying, everyone has a distinctive song, an anthem, if you will — and we’re here to tell you what your New Year’s Eve theme song, that banger you’re going to be cranking at midnight, says about your party style, and what kind of New Year’s Eve you can expect…
Britney Spears – “Til The World Ends”
You’re either a strong believer in Mayan mythology or you just really, really love dancing. Chances are you’re going to be on the dance floor all night — forget about everything else, you just want to dance (until the world ends, heh). We’re going to take a punt and guess that you were going through puberty the first time you heard “… Baby One More Time,” and that Britney just so, like, makes you feel like a teenager again! If you’re anything like us (a Britney stalwart since the start), you’re just completely ecstatic to see Britney get her groove back.
2011 was undoubtedly the year of Adele, with the young singer/songwriter proving that she is, indeed, boss of everything. She was on everyone’s “best of 2011″ list from industry observers, to fans, to VH1′s own staff; she cleaned up in Grammy nominations and sold the most digital copies of any song ever with “Rolling In The Deep.” Now Reuters has reported that Adele’s 21 is not only the top selling album of 2011, but it’s the top selling album since 2004! 21 has sold 5 million copies this year, and is the first album to reach over 5 million in sales since Usher‘s Confessions moved 7.9 million copies in 2004. According to Reuters, Adele’s amazing feat has coincided with a three per cent spike in music sales since 2010, which has us thinking that maybe Adele’s awesome success is partly responsible for stimulating the music consumer market. Given the advent of music sharing devices like Spotify, it’s a wonder that people are buying music at all, given the relative ease and inexpensive nature of sharing, and that there are now perfectly legal ways in which to file share. Reuters speculates that agressive sales tactics by artists and retailers has helped move records this year, but we’ve got an inkling that some of the merit can be attributed to the greatness of this year’s music releases, acting as a testament that fans will still spend hard earned dollars on their favorite artists and on high quality music.
Adele Sells Most Albums In A Year Since 2004 [Reuters]
[Photo: Getty Images]
We officially declare 2011 the year of Adele (as if there was even any question in the first place!). Not only has she made the “top” and “best” lists of both critics and the industry, but she’s also been a favorite with audiences globally, dominating the charts and generally just being played and gushed over absolutely everywhere. As if all the Grammy nominations and accolades weren’t enough, Adele has also made the record of most digital sales in a calendar year for “Rolling In The Deep,” selling more than any song in digital history — 5,572,000 copies so far, to be exact! Of course, there’s still a few weeks left in the year, but nothing short of a freak occurrence could topple Adele, as second place holder, LMFAO‘s “Party Rock Anthem” is still way behind the singer-songwriter, having sold (only?) 4,878,000 copies.
Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” Sold More Digital Copies Than Any Song Ever [Idolator]
[Photo: Getty Images]
2011 was the year of Watch The Throne, the universally hyped phenomenon that took on a life of its own. Yes, it was ‘just’ an album, but how could it have been any less than Biblical with Hov and the prodigal son joining forces for one of the biggest hip hop collaborations in history? The epic collab has got us thinking, as it seems like one really isn’t enough these days (unless you’re Beyoncé, of course) to keep public interest piqued for long, so the high-profile are increasingly joining forces with the high-profile, wingman-ing each other for the hits. After all, doesn’t everyone need a Goose? We’ve put together some of our favorite superstars for the mindboggling collaborations we’d like to see come to fruition in 2012 (hint, hint!).
Lana Del Rey and Nicki Minaj
We already know Nicki Minaj loves a good collaboration, and from what we’ve seen of Lana Del Rey so far, our suspicion tell us her “machine” have the buzz artist pegged for super stardom. Collaborating with LDR would give Nicki the kind of edge she got from “Monster” while for LDR the partnership would open her up to a whole new — not to mention powerful — army of fans/Barbz. We’re imagining this as super dark and sexy with a muddy bass line; lyrically, it would be largely Lana crooning about doing filthy things with her dirt bag lover and having her heart broken, while Nicki’s verse would be a no-holds barred, expletive laden, grimy scratching on Lana’s melancholy. It would probably only be a suitable formula for one song, but we’re anticipating it would be a cross-genre hit, captivating mainstream audiences and the more subversively inclined simultaneously.
Are you sick of “top” and “best of” lists for 2011 yet? Surprisingly enough, we’re not — even though they are getting a bit repetitive in the Adele/Iver global back pat that’s happening right now. With all the glory being attributed to musicians for songs and albums, Songtrust have come right out of left field to say, “Yeah, kudos guys, but let’s have a round of applause for the people who are actually writing these songs.”
Some of our favorite hit machines — including You Oughta Know artists Adele and Bruno Mars, as well as Katy Perry — are seasoned song writers in their own right, but what about the guys and gals behind the music that aren’t also household names? Using data from Billboard Radio Songs and Digital Songs charts, Songtrust have compiled a list of 2011′s most seminal writers — yep, that’s right, these are the people responsible for all those songs you’re putting on your favorites lists. So three cheers for the writers! Songtrust’s Top 20 Songwriters Of 2011 after the jump.
What a year, right? As we get ready to put the finishing touches on the year that was, it’s time to look back at the music videos that define the year 2011. Tonight, we’ll be airing a supersized edition of the VH1 Top 20 Music Video Countdown that takes a look back at the Top 40 music videos of the year. Be sure to tune-in to VH1 tonight at 7 p.m. ET/PT to see your favorite videos of the year in all of their widescreen, HD glory, but we couldn’t resist giving you guys a sneak peek at the list here on VH1 Tuner this morning.
So, without further ado, here is our list of the Top 40 Videos of 2011…
40. Daughtry – “Crawling Back To You”
39. Jessie J – “Domino”
38. The Civil Wars – “Barton Hollow”
37. Demi Lovato – “Skyscraper”
36. Grace Potter & The Nocturnals – “Paris (Ooh La La)”
35. Britney Spears – “Criminal”
34. Nickelback – “When We Stand Together”
33. Colbie Caillat – “Brighter Than The Sun”
32. Nicki Minaj – “Super Bass”
31. David Guetta featuring Usher – “Without You”
Continue along for the Top 30 videos of 2011!
The strangest thing is looking a “Best Of 2011″ list and not seeing Adele in the Top 10. It’s almost refreshing, although we do love Adele. In fact, Adele doesn’t appear until #23 on Pitchfork’s Top 100 Tracks Of 2011 list, which is quite unsettling given that “Rolling In The Deep” was pivotal in defining 2011 popular music landscape (“Someone Like You” appears at #60). But we guess that’s what makes Pitchfork tastemakers — they don’t follow trends, yet are willing to give credit where credit is due.
More unexpectedly still, Nicki Minaj makes it to #4 on Pitchfork’s list for “Super Bass” — a huge party track that slipped almost completely under the radar on this year’s critical end of year lists. However, the only surprise about Bon Iver‘s “Holocene” coming it at #2 is that it wasn’t #1, lending a painfully predictable air to the inclusion. Most importantly however, coming it at number one is the forgotten hit of the year, the confusingly underrated “Midnight City” by M83. We’re predicting that M83 will be to 2012 what Bon Iver was to 2011, so it makes sense that Pitchfork would deem the electronic master piece a number one. We’re also pretty stoked to see Beyoncé at #7 with “Countdown” — probably the most overlooked track of the year.
The Top 100 Tracks [Pitchfork]
Adele has all become Queen Of The World this year, unanimously placed at the head of “Top” and “Best” lists for her album 21 (ranked by both industry critics and the public), and yet again receiving nominations for a slew of Grammys, which it seems she’s a shoo-in to win a handful of. So how does the international super star plan to follow up her epic year? With a good old fashioned rest, to be sure!
Forget a hastily produced third record (as has been the trend with pop stars of late, resulting generally in quantity of quality), Adele is going to get some much needed R and R before leaping into her next musical offering, which, she predicts, will be when she’s 25 or 26. Of the decision, Adele says, “I’m just gonna lay some concrete, set up home and just ‘be’ for a bit. I’ll disappear and come back with a record when it’s good enough. There will be no new music until it’s good enough and until I’m ready.” On the mend from vocal cord surgery, the move seems like a sensible one for Adele’s voice, and a rather mature one from the perspective of someone who values their art over the dollar value assigned to it.
Adele To Take Much Needed Rest On Laurels [Pop Dust]
[Photo: Getty Images]
If you missed this week’s VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown, you’re in luck. Not only is it re-airing tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. on VH1, but we’ve got this week’s complete list of the week’s 20 hottest videos for you. After narrowly missing out on the top spot to Usher and David Guetta last week, Katy Perry‘s wistful “The One That Got Away” has snatched this week’s top spot. Check out the complete list of videos in the final Top 20 Video Countdown episode of 2011 below.
A reminder: VH1′s Top 40 videos of 2011 will be airing at a special time: Wednesday night, December 14, at 7 p.m. ET/PT. Watch this space for more details!
1. Katy Perry, “The One That Got Away” [WATCH]
2. Kelly Clarkson – “Mr Know It All” [WATCH]
3. Daughtry – “Crawling Back To You”
4. Bruno Mars, “It Will Rain” [WATCH]
5. David Guetta featuring Usher – “Without You” [WATCH]
6. Rihanna, “We Found Love”
7. Coldplay – “Paradise” [WATCH]
8. Safetysuit, “Let Go”
9. Adele – “Someone Like You” [WATCH]
10. The Fray, “Heartbeat” [WATCH]
Each week here on VH1 Tuner, our VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown host Jim Shearer (@jimshearer on Twitter) will be sharing his Shearer’s Spotlight with us. Be sure to tune into the Top 20 Countdown tomorrow morning when it airs on VH1 at 9 a.m. ET/PT.
Because December is a month full of year-end lists, for your blog-viewing pleasure, today I give you my favorite singles of 2011:
10.) “Blow,” Ke$ha
Yes, this single was featured on Ke$ha’s 2010 mini-LP, Cannibal, but the track didn’t fully explode (or blow-ow-ow) until the beginning of this year. Because “Blow” stayed away from Ke$ha’s polarizing sing-annunciate-rap formula, it became her first single that I couldn’t stop listening to.
9.) “Michael Jackson,” Das Racist
For some reason, underground/indie-minded hip-hoppers tend to shy away from slick production and repetitive hooks, but on “Michael Jackson” Das Racist embrace these elements with fantastic results.
8.) “Lonely Boy,” The Black Keys
Dan and Pat of The Black Keys add bass and keys to their two-man sound, creating one of the most fun rock tracks of the year (which will surely still be in heavy rotation come 2012).