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My best hit songs of 2017crowdiegal So here's my list of the best hit songs of the year based on the ARIA Singles Chart for 2017
Honourable Mention 5: "Falling" by Jessica Mauboy
It was a toss up between this and "Waves by Dean Lewis for this spot but Jessica won me over because I love a song encapsulates the feeling of being in love and being annoyed by the person but you can't help falling in love with them, "Falling" is also free of a lot of the trap synthesisers but has a gorgeous acoustic guitar, piano texture and melody that just work. A positively dreamy song, well done Jessica!
Speaking of falling...there was one artist who improved markedly last year and yep...he along with his guest stars is getting an honourable mention.
Honourable mention 4: "Feels" by Calvin Harris feat. Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry and Big Sean
2017 was the year Calvin Harris improved markedly...seriously, Harris stopped his habit of making generic EDM bangers for a funkier sound and boy what came as a result of that shift was "Feels"m a funky song that ended up being a top 10 smash in Australia (probably unlucky not to go number 1) and was the BEST thing that Katy Perry did for all of 2017 given the blandness of "Witness". In fact the song seems to lift the performances of all the artists with Big Sean at his best.
Honourable Mention 3: "There's Nothing Holding Me Back" by Shawn Mendes
2017 marked something of a return to form for Shawn Mendes after 2016 saw him release the torturous "Treat You Better" so in 2017 we got the rock pop leaning "There's Nothing Holding Me Back" which should have been on the standard edition of Mendes album "Illuminate" but was instead found on the dueluxe edition of the same album.
It's a pity that this song wasn't on the standard edition of "Illuminate" because it's one of the better songs that Mendes has released to date with it's guitar rollick and Mendes at least trying to put some growl into his vocals which he doesn't get there but all the same this was a good song for 2017 that lacked some decent rock songs on the ARIA singles chart.
Honourable Mention 2: "New Rules" by Dua Lipa
A song I am surprised wasn't bigger in Australia in 2017 however this song is still all kinds of awesome, its about how she's still in love with an ex and she knows getting back with him will more than likely be really dangerous so she is setting up some rules to protect her heart but knows she'll never get over him if she does get back with him and knows she needs to stay away.
Honestly the only reason this song missed the top 10 is that breakdown which is the weak point of an otherwise excellent song.
Honourable Mention 1: "Havana" by Camila Cabello
I wasn't expecting this song to grow so much on me after all Camila Cabello was apart of a pop act that had done nothing but land on songs on my end of year worst list and I wasn't really digging a lot of her solo stuff until "Havana" dropped, a latin tilted song with sunken pianos that don't push too much on Camila's voice or require her to reach notes that are impossible for her so yeah this song was good fun to dance to even though Young Thug sounds like he was phoning it in, he still works within the framing of the song. Just couldn't find a way to get "Havana" into my top 10 unfortunately
So now onto the top 10 and a song that I cannot believe was a hit
10. "Feel It Still" by Portugal. The Man
This really did feel like "Shut up and Dance" by Walk the Moon a few years ago, how this song ended up becoming a hit by an obscure indie act is something that defies understanding but it's oh so justifiable with the production being the best thing,,,that beat at the start still gives me chills. The only thing that does unnerve me a little is that it sounds like a sped up version of "Dear Mr Postman" by the Carpenters but that's a very small thing in my mind because this song is great. Hope to see more Portugal, the Man on the charts in 2018.
I mentioned "Havana" grew on me quite a bit so did a certain other song that includes a female artist that I really haven't bothered with a great deal teaming up with a promising EDM producer.
9. "It Ain't Me" by Kygo and Selena Gomez
I am bemused as to why Selena doesn't make more EDM music rather than the pop R 'n' B lane she chose to go down with "Bad Liar" and "Fetish" because she proved in 2017 that her voice is perfect for songs that don't overly stress her vocals like "It Ain't Me" which some of that comes down to Kygo's ability to ensure the layering of the instrumention is done in such a way that it really suits Selena with guitars and the wistful lyrics recalling the end of a relationship.
Nice job by both!
Speaking of nice jobs, somebody we should certainly see more of on the Australian charts in 2018 is this lady because I adore her break out single.
8. "Adore" by Amy Shark
Bit lower down the list than I had originally thought but no less deserves to be here. Amy Shark's brutally honest lyrics about finding that confidence to be with the person you are in love with in order to make a move and yeah it definitely connects in all the right ways. Should have been a hit in the US but hey I am happy it was a hit in Australia because it means I can put a great song like this from an Australian artist on this list.
Now we've hit a song that was a ton of fun from three artists I didn't know where capable of this kind of fun.
7. "Slide" by Calvin Harris, Frank Ocean and Migos
So this is Calvin Harris second song on this list which is testament to how much he improved in 2017, Frank Ocean was an artist I'd never really found fascinating and Migos had been apart of the abomination that was "Bad and Boujee" amongst other generic hip hop mess so this song could have been a mess of epic proportions but what we got instead was a bright, colourful fun 80s retro funk song placing lasting connections between people under the spotlight with Migos doing a great job of coasting on the groove and Frank Ocean's vocal delivery being quite a lovely counterpoint even if it does at points feel like he is droning but who cares when the song is so much fun!
A song about being home on time from a night out partying would become a major hit this year and my god, it was good.
6. "Mama" by Jonas Blue feat. William Singe
Who'd have thought a song all about getting home from a big party to mum so she doesn't stress would become a hit? Well, in 2017, "Mama" by Jonas Blue featuring Australian singer William Singe did become that hit. The multitracking of William Singe's vocals to the point where the vocals are literally a one person boy band and a clearly defined melody (something that has seemed to become an optinal extra in mainstream music in the last year or so). Songs like "Mama" and Calvin Harris's "Slide" are examples of when EDM can be absolutely great, hope it continues into 2018
2017 was the year female pop stars struggled, Katy Perry made one of the worst albums of her career while Selena Gomez and Demi Lovato also experienced limited success with their efforts however there were two female pop stars who returned, the first of which is a comeback that I am so glad actually happened, welcome back Kesha.
5. "Praying" by Kesha
This song is a healing one at least for me and I would hope in part that Kesha found some healing in terms of writing this song after the horror she experienced for five years. "Praying" provees beyond a shadow of a doubt that Kesha has an amazing voice without abusing auto tune, she comes across as extremely raw especially in that opening verse which for me is something that really does connect on an emotional scale. "Praying" also really did go close to be something fitting of the indie singer/songwriter scene.
The Weeknd had a weird 2017, he only had one hit for the year off Starboy and man, it was GOOD.
4. "I Feel It Coming" by The Weeknd and Daft Punk
This song was my most listened to song on Spotify for the whole year that's how much I love it with The Weeknd singing about wanting more from his relationship with a girl. Yes, it does feel very Michael Jackson esque in its vibe but as The Weeknd has pointed out he was inspired by Michael and a lot of artists do seem to hold their inspirations for their music through their music eg: Harry Styles and Niall Horan's debut albums.
Daft Punk do a great job at anchoring the song in 80s soul and R 'n' B which supports The Weeknd's vocals but "I Feel It Coming" wasn't in my top 3 songs of the year...somehow...
So I said there were two female pop stars who didn't mess up their returns in 2017, one was Kesha, the other? Lorde, you didn't get the hits that an album like Melodrama richly deserved!
3. "Green Light" by Lorde
So yet another song that just does the job. Lorde singing about her first heartbreak as the lead off single for "Melodrama" and its just the most blatantly pop as you can possibly get courtesy of Jack Antonoff's production with blend of piano and bass as Lorde seeks that green light from her heart so she can go out and find a new love after an ex dumped her and a chorus that just rings in your head. Come on, if you haven't shouted at a traffic light "That green light! I want it!" you haven't lived. In all seriousness though, how "Green Light" didn't make number one is a mystery I'll never understand.
When it comes to charismatic performers, I think this guy comes pretty close to the top of that charismatic list but he is also on this list.
2. "That's What I Like" by Bruno Mars
Don't get me wrong, I know "That's What I Like" isn't the best song from the way too short 24k Magic but this song does a heck of a lot right in terms of the late 70s early 80s throwback soul r'n'b, Mars just brings a whole load of charisma to his music that is impossible to deny which makes this song impossible to deny given his vocal delivery especially on the verses. Yes, it's a song about Bruno's incredible wealth that his love interest can share in but it's just so much fun that yeah I had no choice but to put it high on this list.
However Bruno was just pipped by a man who had a mega 2017 on the charts and yeah he is going to top this list...
1. "Castle on the Hill" by Ed Sheeran
I find this song hard to listen to sometimes because it resonates so deeply with me and on occasions has teared me thinking about it. Growing up, making those friends then one day becoming an adult resulting in being thrown into a world where some people lose those connections and sometimes going home to catch up with those friends you made in your childhood to restore those connections and catch up with what they have been doing with themselves since, something Ed Sheeran has captured so well in an almost U2 esque pop rock song.
Ed, please forget the romantic gunk of "Perfect" and do a rough edged rock album. "Castle on the Hill" the best hit song of 2017.
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