Music Monday | Country Takeover

Happy Music Monday! Got a case of the I-wish-there-were-a-day-between-Sunday-and-Monday? Me too.

There’s nothing like a solid playlist to get you to work on time and in great spirits. This week, country took over and we’re featuring some of favorite country artists for Music Monday including Kelsea Ballerini, Sam Hunt, Luke Bryan, and more. Check out the line up below:

Spotify users can listen to the full playlist here.

Unapologetically– Kelsea Ballerini

A record breaking artist, Kelsea has been named the next queen of country by Billboard magazine. Think Carrie Underwood meets Kelly Pickler with an edge and killer songwriting chops. Follow her on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Light It Up – Luke Bryan

Already having claimed his place as one of the kings of country. Luke Bryan updates his sound in this recent single while staying true to traditional country. I find that this track appeals to the modern aesthetic but gives you everything a country lover hopes for in a song. Follow him on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Light It Up– Thomas Rhett

This song captures all of the memories you hold onto when you’re falling for someone. Undeniably relatable to anyone who has ever been infatuated, it’s an easy listen and the fun beat makes you want to blast it with the windows down- and who doesn’t want to be called unforgettable by a handsome man? Follow Thomas Rhett on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Body Like A Back Road – Sam Hunt

Sam Hunt’s recent single “Body Like A Backroad” was the song of my summer and it’s carried over into the fall. The song itself has a bounce that feels like the mischief and playfulness of a fresh relationship or summer fling. In the song, Sam compares his lover’s body to a backroad which creates a fun surprise and secluded element to it. Follow Sam Hunt on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

The Long Way– Brett Eldredge

Something I love about country music is how vivid the stories told are. Brett Eldredge’s “The Long Way” is no exception. Unlike Sam’s song, this one perfectly captures the time in a relationship when you’re not only letting your lover see your full present self but also your past self. Follow Brett on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

For Her– Chris Lane

Chris is another amazing example of someone who is perfectly marrying traditional country with the modern influence of electronic music. Though the track sounds mainly live, the percussion alludes to what the modern ear is used to. On top of that Chris’ sweet voice and sweet lyrics to match entrance you for the full four minutes. Follow Chris Lane on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Stay Downtown– Cole Swindell

This is the perfect song to play at “that time of the night” which makes perfect sense because that’s essentially what it’s about. The song perfectly paints the picture of a night out at the local bar. It is at the same time a longing cautionary tale about letting go of a lover who has different priorities than you. Follow Cole Swindell on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Hooked– Dylan Scott

If you’ve ever played a game of eye flirting on a night out, you know exactly how the song Hooked feels. The song goes even further and questions if that atmosphere driven infatuation can last long term. I’m hooked on this song with the stunning guitar solo and uplifting beat. Follow Dylan Scott on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Stupid– Levi Hummon

The first thing I noticed in this song is how incredible Levi’s voice is. I think he’s my new talent crush. The song “Stupid” throws caution to the wind which I feel is something we’re seeing way more often with our generation. As a whole, we seem to crave moments and “Stupid” is the sound of coaxing your lover to forget about complications and to enjoy the present. I’m here for it. Follow Levi Hummon on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

What Ifs– Kane Brown Feat. Lauren Alaina

What Ifs is your quintessential country duet but creates a unique balance of tension and cathartic outbursts. Lauren Alaina known as the runner up on season ten of American Idol provides sweet but powerful vocals to dance with Kane Brown’s rich voice. Follow Kane on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook. Follow Lauren Alaina on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

This Night Back – Canaan Smith

This is the song on the playlist I’d most likely want to sing at the top of my lungs with a bunch of strangers in my favorite dive bars. The song is pure good times urging listeners that you’ll never get “This Night Back,” so live it up to it’s fullest. I’m behind that. Brb adding to my karaoke list. Follow Canaan Smith on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

All On Me– Devin Dawson

All On Me is a sweet love song. It’s everything every girl wants to hear. Devin tells his love to “put it all on [him].” The lyrics and melody are soothing and supportive. Follow Devin Dawson on
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Without You– Mary Sarah

Mary Sarah is giving me Amy Winehouse meets Dolly Parton. She has some serious retro vibes and this song specifically is a testament to that. The song rocks and sways much like a 50’s country song though her youthful voice and the excellent production contrasts that. Follow Mary Sarah on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

All I Ever Do– Bowen

All I Ever Do is the realization that you’re ready to make sacrifices to be with the one you love. It’s a celebration of the average being more than average from your point of view. The killer vocals combined with a smart blend between live and electronic instruments creates a dance-worthy track that you’ll definitely want to blast with your loved one. Follow Bowen on Instagram | Facebook.

Ridin’ to the Beat – David Fanning

Ridin’ To The Beat makes me think of late summer days back home on the river eating seafood and dancing with friends. The guitar riff and percussion give you a reggae feel but the song stays true to country with David’s rich voice and relatable lyrics. Follow David Fanning on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

Nothin Like Us– Josh Gracin

Nothin Like Us instantly transported me from a crowded coffee shop in NYC to the South, barefoot at a BBQ. The song sounds like a carefree day of BBQ-ing and dips in the pool. Follow Josh Gracin on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook.

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Fourteen Fires Devastate Northern California including Napa Wine Country

Governor Jerry Brown declares a state of emergency, as the fires of destruction wreak havoc on the much-loved landscape.

Fourteen large wildfires burn across wine country uprooting an estimated 20,000 residents and consumed 57,000 acres by Monday afternoon. The fires have ignited since Sunday night, Cal Fire Director Ken Pimlott said at a news conference. The fires have destroyed more than 1,500 homes and businesses.









The most massive fires are burning in the Napa wine country. Evacuation is the first concern on fire officials’ minds as the fires move rapidly toward residential neighborhoods. Two hospitals in Santa Rosa were already evacuated. Napa, Sonoma and Yuba Counties have been hit the hardest.

“We need every resident to heed evacuation warnings and orders and move out quickly,” Pimlott said. Fire officials pooling efforts to combat the blaze, which unfortunately, show no end in sight. High winds and dry climate are another element that are working against the fire fighters.

At least one person is dead and more suffer serious burns. Other fatalities are expected, but it is hard to determine as the fires continue to burn. More than 100 people were treated for burns and smoke inhalation. Napa County Fire Chief Barry Biermann said, “As of right now, with these conditions, we can’t get in front of this fire and do anything about the forward progress,” he said, adding that resources from across California were to begin arriving in the area later Monday. The National Guard has sent 3 medical evacuation helicopters, 6 firefighting helicopters and 100 military police personnel to assist local law enforcement.

“These fires have destroyed structures and continue to threaten thousands of homes, necessitating the evacuation of thousands of residents,” said Governor Jerry Brown. “These fires have damaged and continue to threaten critical infrastructure and have forced the closure of major highways and local roads.”

“Fires continue today. We have a red sun, very eerie,” one resident reports. “We have friends who lost their winery and their grapes. Sad day for Napa Valley.”


Taken from home before evacuating, looking toward Sears Point in Sonoma County, CA

The Tubbs Fire between Santa Rosa and Calistoga alone grew from 200 acres to 20,000 acres by Monday morning, CalFire Battalion Chief Jonathan Cox according to KTVU. “This fire is explosive,” he said

In Santa Rosa, Ron Dodds, who told KTVU he was helping his uncle evacuate said people were running red lights, and “there is chaos ensuing.”

“It’s a scary time,” said Dodds. “It looks like Armageddon.”

PREMIERE | Katie Costello appreciates “New York Graffiti”

REBEL POP co-founder and pop songstress Katie Costello is releasing her third LP, Twice the Love, and celebrating such with the premiere of a video that expresses her loving and rebellious, pop music style.

Premiering exclusively on Popdust, “New York Graffiti” will bring any New Yorker warm and fuzzy feelings, seeing some famous spots in Manhattan and Brooklyn that were likely wandered into in the first few months after moving, enjoyed with hope and wonder in your eyes. And it’s extremely appropriate because those are exactly the kind of sentiments expressed in the video. It turns something as common and seemingly unlovely as graffiti into something well-known and notable.

You can check out the video below.

Katie also spoke with Popdust about the release of “New York Graffiti” and Twice the Love, sharing her favorite things about music and New York.


You’ve been writing and performing songs since you were thirteen. What have you learned about the music industry in that time?

The music industry is an ever-changing, evolving sphere. Even since I first began writing and performing it’s gone from chiefly CD’s to downloads to streaming presently. As an artist, it’s required adjustment and adaptation. Then, there’s the human element… Many come to this industry bright-eyed, but as a result of let downs and encountering the scheming of others they themselves become schemers… I’ve been disappointed many times by what I’ve learned about people and what they are willing to do to make money and fulfill their blind ambitions. I’ve come to learn about the lobbying that various large entities carry out that doesn’t help artists. Despite these truths, I’ve also found new strength within myself to see through the challenges anyway. It’s worth the reward of doing what I truly love. That doesn’t mean things always go the way I wish for, but that’s also part of the journey. A big part of the music industry is uncertainty and the wonder of being an artist in the face of it. Although the music industry is not easy to navigate. The rewards, both personal and professional, make it worth the rigors.

You’re originally from L.A. but you’ve been in New York for a few years now. What do you think about the New York music scene?

Yes! I’m from the Los Angeles area and I’ve been in Brooklyn for 8 years now. I think the New York music scene is very special and unlike other cities. Because of the well-connected public transit system and the proximity of live venues in New York City, it’s quite accessible and easy to catch live shows. This provides a unique type of night life that is hard to replicate in L.A. with the nature of driving being the primary mode of transit. New York is a place where, if you’re open to it, you can discover very special and top-notch music taking place in the most unexpected places. Sometimes a dive bar in the West Village will have a master guitar player doing his thing in the basement and it’ll be the most mind-blowing thing you’ve every seen or heard. That kind of stuff has happened to me in New York City. It’s a very spontaneous and magical place in that way.

Let’s talk about a video all about New York, your new video for “New York Graffiti.” What inspired its production?

It’s perfect that we were just talking about the West Village in New York City because that’s the main location of my new video for “New York Graffiti”. It is also an area that has remained one of my favorites in the city. A lot of creative inspiration as well as important life events have taken place for me in New York City. I moved there basically the day after I turned 18 and I feel that living there, and the inspiration it’s provided me, has given me greater confidence as a person as well as an artist. For that reason, myself, Vivekan and Bill Mejia (the directors of the video) collaborated to capture a day in the life of an artist in New York City who is living out their dream. You can say it’s somewhat auto-biographical.

The video features you in some cool spots around the city, including some notorious graffiti. Do you have any favorite spots that you shot at?

So much of my musical and artistic exploration in New York City has taken place in and around Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, especially the East and West Village. These are also significant places for the other directors of the video in addition to myself – Vivekan and Bill Mejia. Because of this, as well as the iconic and legendary nature of this part of New York City, most of the video is shot in and around Washington Square Park, and Park Slope, Brooklyn. These are places that hold a very special place in my heart.

Today, you’re also releasing your album, Twice the Love. What was the writing and recording process for this project like?

Making my third full-length album Twice the Love was unlike anything else I’ve released before. Aside from one or two tracks here and there, all of my other records are songs that I wrote by myself with piano or guitar. After the songs were composed, I’d record them. With my album Twice the Love, I collaborated with a different songwriter/producer for almost every track. You’ll see there are some people I collaborated with for multiple songs on this album. However, for the most part, each song is written in a different city and had a completely different creative conception. These differently produced tracks have a common thread that makes Twice the Love an album I’m very happy and proud to share with people. That thread is finding happiness from inside, rather than it being based on outer circumstances. This LP has all the aspects of what made me unique as an artist before, but now with more confidence and pop flare.

Besides “New York Graffiti,” what are some of your other favorite songs off the record?

My favorite song always changes, but right now, I’d say it’s Track 11 on the album “Holiday.” I collaborated with producer Justyn Pilbrow to write and record this song in Brooklyn; and I feel it is very unique and special. It’s the first song we wrote together. For me, it’s about sitting with your mind and your inner experience of desire as a human being. Sometimes desire is painful. It’s easy to run towards a vacation, a lover, a drink, a meal, etc., but it’s not easy being present throughout life’s ups and downs. My song “Holiday” captures a sentiment I haven’t heard in other contemporary pop.

Can you tell us a little bit about what’s in store for you next now that’s the album has dropped?

I’m always writing new songs. Since collaborating with so many different songwriter/producers, I’ve enjoyed writing by myself again too. It’s nice to enjoy both collaboration as well as solo creative inspiration! I’m finishing more new records at the moment and I hope to continue to share my evolving music and inspiration with people!


“New York Graffiti” is featured on Katie Costello’s new album Twice the Love out today. Katie will be performing in Los Angeles at Hotel Cafe on the 6th to celebrate its release.

Follow Katie Costello on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Rachel A.G. Gilman is a writer, a radio producer, and probably the girl wearing the Kinks shirt. Visit her website for more.

Get Ready for Halloween!! Find Your Costumes at TIPSY ELVES!

INTERVIEW | “Hold Tight,” great things ahead for Felix Cartal

Canada is the land of musical talent: Drake, Justin Bieber, and now Felix Cartal.

The DJ has 45+ million streams on Spotify, has climbed the charts on numerous radio station playlists, and has worked with some of today’s top pop princesses (Rihanna, Selena Gomez). Now, Cartal is releasing his own tracks, including “Hold Tight,” for which he will release a music video tomorrow. He’s also hitting the road on a North American tour and having some amazing experiences along the way as his popularity only grows all over the world.

Felix answered some questions for Popdust via email about his journey to music producing and the long, exciting road ahead.


How did you become interested in music?

I’ve always loved listening to music growing up, and when I was 13 years old I bullied my way into my friends’ band when they fired their singer. Throughout high school we wrote and made music and after we disbanded I started to do my own thing.

You’ve become known for producing music. What led to your becoming interested in that side of the business?

Producing electronic music was really fascinating to me because it felt way more free than being in a band. I liked the idea that you could make a multitude of different sounds and pull from a wider range of influences rather than being pigeonholed to one thing.

You’ve remixed songs by artists like Rihanna and Selena Gomez. What is that experience like? How much contact do you have with the original artist?

It was great, working with pop vocals from bigger artists is always a treat because the songwriting is already so strong and the vocal is produced so well, it amplifies whatever I contribute to it. A few artists i’ve remixed i’ve been in touch with, but not always.

Your latest release is “Hold Tight.” What can you tell us about that song and inspirations behind it?

I really wanted to make something euphoric and uplifting for my sets. My last few songs have been a bit more typical in a verse-chorus structure, so I wanted to flip that and make an entire theme around one repeated vocal line. I sample my own previous single “get what you give,” and built it around the lyric ‘hold tight.’ It’s about the power of togetherness.

It also has a music video coming out tomorrow. What was the production process for that like?

I made it with my good friend Kasey Lum — we’ve done a few projects together throughout my career. We were fortunate enough to have a larger budget for this and filmed it at the iconic sugar refinery in my hometown Vancouver. The location was insane, some horror film Saw-esque rooms scattered amongst a factory that I always thought was abandoned. The video is more of a vibe than a narrative, to compliment the nature of the song.

Currently, you’re also on the road touring North America. What have you learned and what have you enjoyed from being out there and sharing your music?

I’ve been fortunate to do this for a while and I feel like i’ve really started to find my style lyrically with my songs. I feel like they are connecting with audiences in stronger ways than before… a few people have tattooed lyrics on themselves. it’s extremely flattering. also there’s no better feeling than hearing a crowd sing along to a song i wrote in my apartment. it’s a crazy feeling that’s really hard to explain.

You’re a big fan of The Simpsons and I’ve heard that you had an interesting experience with this animated sitcom. Could you share the details?

I was lucky enough to go watch a table read. It was insane, all the voice actors doing the character voices live at a room in Fox Studios. a truly one of a kind experience

What will be the next project we can expect from you?

A follow up single and then an album 🙂


Follow Felix Cartal on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Rachel A.G. Gilman is a writer, a radio producer, and probably the girl wearing the Kinks shirt. Visit her website for more.

Why Tom Petty’s Death Feels Personal: To You, Me, & America

The death of Tom Petty shook Americans this week. It didn’t just feel like we lost a rock and roll legend (even though we did). It felt like we lost a friend. We lost a part of the American soul. Other great artists that have died were mourned for things like their influence (Michael Jackson), their star power (Prince) or their boundary-pushing oddities (Bowie). But Petty’s loss is different. Because Petty was different, and so was his music.

Rolling Stone

He wasn’t just an artist or a musician; he was a poet. He scribbled down in minutes what people struggled lifetimes to find the words to express. And he made it seem simple. His tracks cut to the chase and often to the quick- slicing open some part of our hearts that was left unspoken.

No matter your emotion, it has always been easy to find a Tom Petty song to amplify what you were feeling. You didn’t have to squint and cherry pick from his words, forcing a melody or a stanza to fit your situation. Somehow his music always seemed tailor-made to your own personal experience. And that is because Petty managed to craft tracks that were both deeply personal to himself and entirely relatable.

CBS News

His catalogue was crammed with words that made Americans feel understood. Brokenhearted and feel like wallowing? “Hard To Find A Friend,” or “Letting You Go” will do just fine. Brokenhearted, feel like your ex was an asshole but maybe you’ll get back together anyway? Spin “Crawling Back To You,” or “Even The Losers.” On the precipice of a life change? “Time To Move On,” and “Into The Great Wide Open” will have you both at peace and energized. Full of yearning and the type of existential angst that only a teenager can truly internalize? “The Waiting” on repeat is just what you need.

The American psyche was unlocked by Tom Petty, and when he discovered our deepest secrets, hopes and fears, he treated us gently. He told us that he understood what it was to not be understood.

Mudcrutch Farm

His words gave us comfort when we had broken hearts. They gave us a kick in the ass when we needed one. They gave us markers for the type of love worth letting go of and the type worth holding on to. And they gave us strength in too many ways to count. His music extended each listener a hand. A hand to pull you up, a hand on the back for a job well done, a hand to hold in the darkness.

Sydney Morning Herald

His music was loved across genders, states and eras. His music played in beat up old trucks and in spotless Teslas. His words echoed in the gymnasiums of both my parents’ and my proms. His loss will be felt across all these boundaries too. The death of Petty had me at a loss for my own words. So I looked where I always do when I find myself struggling. I looked to Petty. “I’ve spent my life travelin, I’ve spent my life free. I could not repay all you’ve done for me.”

On behalf of myself, on behalf of all of us, thanks. Thanks for everything.

tompetty.com


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POPDUST PRESENTS | Boy Radio wows us with the sound of love

He’s always been a lover not a fighter, but feels that this a fight worth fighting and using music and showing up is the way he can do his part.

Striking is the word I’d most quickly use to describe Boy Radio. When I greeted him in the lobby of Popdust that’s just what I was- struck. I was immediately excited to talk to the man behind the silky smooth, empowering music I had just been streaming on Spotify. His presence was just as impactful as his music and that is the first thing I noticed. We small talked over our matching outfits. He explained that he’s a romantic and loves flowers and showed me how the flowers on his pants matched the ones on my dress. We talked about music a little and I found out that he’s been inspired by the music his mother would have him listen to on her record player as a child. One name that came up was Boy George. I wondered if he had anything to do with Boy Radio’s unique pseudonym. Turns out it did. Being one of Boy Radio’s, or “Radio” as his friends call him, biggest inspirations, Radio confirmed that it definitely inspired the name.

Already entranced by the patchwork that is Boy Radio, I was eager to find out about other things that contributed to his interesting sound. Though he spoke with ease, from his music and the passion in his voice, I knew that there was a lot of complexity to his work and him as a person. We spoke about his favorite music movements trying to stay focused and faltering here and there because we were fully prepared to nerd out. We spoke about the seventies and the anti-punk, romantic movement around the time of Prince and Boy George where though the artists still wore eccentric garb it was less aggressive, softer, and that in turn reflected their music and the political climate. We talked about the climate we’re in now and how we’re seeing a similar juxtaposition in pop culture. Both of us coming from a generation of people fed up with violence and intolerance and invigorated by the opportunity to make our voices heard, we discussed how important it is to use our positions to resist. Radio told me that it’s no coincidence that he’s into romanticism. He’s always been a lover not a fighter, but feels that this a fight worth fighting and using music and showing up is the way he can do his part. We also spoke about Grace Jones who Radio noted as one of his favorite artists. He spoke fondly of how she took the music industry by storm and paved a path for women in the business which he noted is harder because of the systemic male dominance in the industry.

Vanity Fair

I found myself wanting to ask more and more questions but before I knew it, it was time for Boy Radio to perform, which I was equally excited for. Boy Radio performed his song Danse Du Renegat. His voice is just as stunning in person as it is recorded. I loved the stripped down version of the song. While the original track was an intoxicating orchestration of sound that is the perfect solo commute power-walking song, the unplugged version was more tender. The song is really interesting because it is bilingual. The lyric that resonated the most is “I watched you go out of my life just as quick as you came. Can’t call you baby anymore just call you by your chosen name.” I think back to a time when I broke up with an ex and repeatedly called him “babe” on accident. His ability to capture that very specific feeling proves that not only is he a fantastic vocalist but also a fantastic lyricist. Check out Boy Radio’s performance here, and check him out at House of Yes in NYC at their Art Pop event on October 6th.


Anie Delgado is a contributor to Popdust and is an actress and musician based in NYC. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @anie_delgado and on Facebook and check out her music on Spotify.

Tom Petty’s passing was more than just a heart break. It was Cardiac Arrest.

Anything but petty… he was an American Boy!

Another one bites the dust. Too soon? The rocker who had a musical career that lasted decades, has now moved on…

Hand on his heart (Chicago Tribune)

Petty was found unconscious, not breathing and in full cardiac arrest at his Malibu home Sunday night, according to TMZ, and rushed to the hospital and placed on life support. EMTs got a weak pulse when they found him, but TMZ reported that the hospital found no brain activity when they arrived. They decided to pull life support not long after. CBS confirmed Petty’s death. He was 66.

“It’s shocking, crushing news,” Petty’s friend and Traveling Wilburys bandmate Bob Dylan tells Rolling Stone in a statement. “I thought the world of Tom. He was great performer, full of the light, a friend, and I’ll never forget him.”

Petty was an American musician, singer, songwriter, played many instruments and a producer. Best known as the lead singer of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Petty was also known as a member and co-founder of the late 1980s supergroup the Traveling Wilburys and his early band Mudcrutch.

Remembering Tom Petty (October 20, 1950 – October 2, 2017)





a young Tom Petty

then and now

with the Heartbreakers

with Bob Dylan







Petty recorded a good number of hits with the Heartbreakers and as a solo artist, many of which are mainstays on adult contemporary and classic rock radio. His music has been classified as rock and roll, heartland rock, and even stoner rock. Petty sold more than 80 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling musicians of all time. In 2002, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers had just completed a summer tour last Monday with 3 nights at the Hollywood Bowl. The trek marked the band’s 40th anniversary and found him playing rarely played deep cuts like their first album’s opener, “Rockin’ Around (With You),” and a selection of Wildflowers cuts. It was intended to be his “last trip… around.” He told Rolling Stone. It wasn’t his intention to quit playing. “I need something to do, or I tend to be a nuisance around the house,” he said.

Probably best know for the hit “American Girl” which you can listen to below:


Dan Victor is Editor of Popdust and Producer of Popdust Presents. He is also a music producer, bassist for Low Profile (live hip hop) & The Coldpress (indie rap) and front-man for Ductape Halo (indie punk). Follow on Youtube.

RELEASE RADAR | Miley Cyrus is back with Younger Now and we’re obsessed

Miley Cyrus tells an ex-situationship to try and actually “love someone” and I am here for it.

It’s an incredible week for new releases mainly because I forgot that Younger Now came out today and was reminded via Instagram and it’s everything I hoped it would be. In addition to Miley’s killer new album, artists within every genre dropped solid new songs today and I’m here to give you the best of the best including: Whissell, Billy Cullum, Harlee, Melanie Martinez, Dalton Rapattoni, Jordan Klassen, Fort Vine, and Eighty Ninety.


Miley Cyrus | “Love Someone”

I can already tell that this album will warrant a new favorite song every time I listen, but from the get-go, “Love Someone” really spoke to me. Miley Cyrus perfectly captures the essence of being at your wits end with you lover. That feeling like you’re talking to a wall and putting in so much effort to get nothing in return. That moment when all of your doubts in self disapparate and you realize that the real problem is that your lover fails to love. Plain and simple, Miley brings that conversation to the forefront with just the right complexity in the track to support the story. Another major highlight on Younger Now is “Rainbowland”, a collaboration between Miley and Dolly Parton featuring an adorable peak into one of the voicemails Dolly left Miley while they were working on the song.

Listen to “Love Someone” here:

Best for: Shaking off that lingering situationship.
Perfect if you like: well… Miley Cyrus

Follow Miley Cyrus on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Whissell | “All Shook Up”

Nashville songstress Whissell just dropped a cover of “All Shook Up,” by the King himself. Noted as one of Whissell’s biggest inspirations, it was just a matter of time before Whissell covered him. Though the cover follows quintessential swing of the original song, Whissell interpreted the song in a powerful way using driving guitar and fierce vocals to create a song that you could both strut down the street to and also dance around in your room to after the perfect first date. One of my other favorite songs by Whissell is her recent single “Living Now.”

Listen to “All Shook Up” here:

All Shook UpYoutube

Best for: Errand running on Sunday-funday.
Perfect if you like: Florence and The Machine

Follow Whissell on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Billy Cullum | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Harlee | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: |All Shook UpYoutube

Best for: Errand running on Sunday-funday.
Perfect if you like: Florence and The Machine

Follow Whissell on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Billy Cullum | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Harlee | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: |All Shook UpYoutube

Best for: Errand running on Sunday-funday.
Perfect if you like: Florence and The Machine

Follow Whissell on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Billy Cullum | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Harlee | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram |All Shook UpYoutube

Best for: Errand running on Sunday-funday.
Perfect if you like: Florence and The Machine

Follow Whissell on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Billy Cullum | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Harlee | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: |All Shook UpYoutube

Best for: Errand running on Sunday-funday.
Perfect if you like: Florence and The Machine

Follow Whissell on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Billy Cullum | “Hands Are Gonna Fall”

Billy Cullum returns with an infectious single that perfectly captures that magnetic feeling of being drawn to someone more and more throughout the night. The slinky electronic trap in combination with Billy’s silky voice and enticing lyrics draws you in more and more as the track progresses.

Listen to “Hands Are Gonna Fall” here:

Best for: The soundtrack to your first date with Mr. Tinder this weekend.
Perfect if you like: Zayn

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Harlee | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: | “Holding On”

Harlee, a new signing to Steve Madden’s music label 5Towns, is a fiery powerhouse in her single “Holding On.” The song is self-confrontational and so relatable to anyone who has ever stayed in a relationship too long. It puts into perspective that resistance to ending something that maybe isn’t the best for the sake of protecting yourself from the pain of something once good ending.

Listen to “Holding On” here:

Best for: Solo self-care and wine night
Perfect if you like: Hailee Steinfeld

Follow Billy Cullum on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Dalton Rapattoni | “Signs”

Former American Idol contestant Dalton Rapattoni recently dropped his newest album and it’s an alternative lover’s paradise. The song “Signs” is a a mature step from his last project.

Listen to “Signs” here:

Best for: Blasting on your commute.
Perfect if you like: All Time Low

Follow Dalton Rapattoni on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Melanie Martinez | “Mad Hatter”

Melanie Martinez took music and visuals to a whole new level with her album just recently releasing the final of thirteen visuals for the album all self written and directed. This video is chilling and insane that Melanie thought of all of these powerful images herself. Though the song stands alone unique and catchy at the same time, the music video definitely enhances the experience and gives us a peak into Melanie’s vivid imagination.

Watch “Mad Hatter” here:

Best for: getting through hump day
Perfect if you like: Lady Gaga

Follow Melanie Martinez on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Jordan Klassen | “Sylvia Plath Girl”

The vibes are especially great on Jordan Klassen’s newest album Big Intruder. The jam is very subtle but driving and the lyrics are incredibly specific reminding you of a “Sylvia Plath Girl” you know and love.

Listen to “Sylvia Plath Girl” here:

Best for: a quiet morning with coffee
Perfect if you like: Kurt Vile

Follow Jordan Klassen on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter


Fort Vine | “Key To Love”

Fort Vine’s recent single “Key To Love” was featured recently in an add on Apple’s Instagram page, but that’s no coincidence. Apple has a history of having great taste in music and this is no exception. The vocal line soars over the percussive instrumentation and the chant like background vocals make this a truly unique song that taps into that visceral part of the human spirit. If this doesn’t make you want to dance I don’t know what will.

Listen to “Key to Love” here:

Best for: taking a walk in nature.
Perfect if you like: Grizzly Bear

Follow Fort Vine on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter.


Eighty Ninety | “Your Favorite Song”

The first thing I noticed about this song is how incredible the vocals are. The song is nostalgic of a past relationship in the best way. The lyrics perfectly captures the beautiful memories of a love fizzled out. The live instrumentation and the subtle electronic elements create a lovely juxtaposition.

Listen to “Your Favorite Song” here:

Best for: A fresh start Sunday morning
Perfect if you like: Coldplay

Follow Eighty Ninety on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter.


Anie Delgado is a contributor to Popdust and is an actress and musician based in NYC. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @anie_delgado and on Facebook and check out her music on Spotify.

7 Surprising Facts you didn’t know about Hugh Hefner

Hugh Hefner is well known for establishing
Playboy magazine, which led the entire Playboy empire. Hefner died Wednesday in his home in Los Angeles at 91. Playboy Enterprises has confirmed that he died of natural causes. Many know Hefner from the famous Playboy Mansion or from his many exploits as a playboy himself. He was often surrounded by women and regarded as a sleaze. However, there are a few things about him that might surprise you.

The New York Times

1. He set the Guinness World Record for scrapbooking

Early @playboy 🐰#favoriteyears #scrapbooksaturday #playboyclub

A post shared by Hugh Hefner (@hughhefner) on

In 2011, Hefner earned a Guinness World Record for his obsessive scrapbooking. He had the largest collection in the world with nearly 3,000 scrapbooks. They contain pictures from his time at Playboy and photos surrounding visitors to the Mansion. They even go back to when he was just six months old. Hefner went so far as to employ his own personal archivist to help compile these books. While not included in the award, he also has several thousand hours of personal tapes of himself filed away.

2. He saved the Hollywood sign not once, but twice


Getty Images

In the 1970s, the city decided that the sign was in disrepair and needed a complete rebuilding, which would cost about $250,000. Hefner stepped up and organized a gala fundraiser at the Playboy Mansion, where the old sign letters were auctioned off to raise money. And in 2010, he stepped up again when a Chicago-based investment group said the property would be sold unless it could raise $12.5 million. Hefner donated $900,000 of his own money to effectively halt the sale.

3. He was a philanthropist and civil rights advocate

Cheers 🍸 #scrapbooksaturday

A post shared by Hugh Hefner (@hughhefner) on

Throughout his life, Hefner was a vocal activist for LGBT rights and supported same-sex marriage. He also advocated for civil rights. He even bought out two franchised Playboy Clubs because of their discriminatory practices. The two clubs were based in New Orleans and Miami and routinely refused to hire black women and discouraged black membership. Hefner bought the clubs at a significant financial loss and said that he wouldn’t stand for that kind of behavior in Playboy Clubs.

4. He founded Playboy after failing to receive a raise at Esquire

Playboy’s 25 anniversary #scrapbooksaturday

A post shared by Hugh Hefner (@hughhefner) on

Hefner’s first real job was as a copywriter for Esquire magazine. He quit in 1952 after his request for a $5 raise was denied. Before that, he had served in the U.S. Army in the 1940s and then attended the University of Illinois and earned degrees in psychology and creative writing and art. After quitting his job at Esquire, he raised $8,000 from 50 investors (including his mother) to found Playboy just a year later in 1953.

5. An endangered rabbit is named after him


Wiki Commons

The Playboy bunny is a huge part of the brand that allowed the empire to expand into clubs, casinos and more around the world. But Hefner also has a real life animal breed named after him. Sylvilagus palustris hefneri, also known as the Lower Keys rabbit, bears his name to recognize his financial support. The rabbit was named in 1980 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Hefner’s infamous Playboy Mansion also had a zoo license, which allowed it to house many exotic animals.

6. He is a distant relative of both George W. Bush and John Kerry


Getty Images

Hefner is ninth cousins to both former President George W. Bush and Senator John Kerry. He is twice removed from Bush, but only once removed from Kerry. Hefner also claimed he was an 11th generation descendant of William Bradford, who came over on the Mayflower. That would make him a direct descendant of a Puritan.

7. He planned to be buried next to Marilyn Monroe

In 1992, Hefner purchased the crypt next door to Monroe at the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery for $75,000. His plan was to be interred next to her for eternity, which will now become a reality. Before she was famous, Monroe was on the cover Playboy’s first issue. She was also featured in the centerfold. Hefner found the already five-year-old photo of Monroe while looking through the files of a Chicago calendar company. He bought the photo for $500.


Why should Mad Men be required viewing for employers?

Employers could learn something from AMC’s Mad Men.

By: Kate Harveston

When AMC’s Mad Men premiered in 2007, there was an undeniable attraction to the artistic direction and methodology of the show. Somehow, AMC — a network new to original programming — produced one of the defining dramas of the Golden Age of Television. Made of equal parts sophisticated cinematography and grimy realism, the shows historical setting was steeped in the nostalgia of 60s Americana.

Despite the historical backdrop, with every passing season of Mad Men the themes and character drama grew more familiar to its current day audience — especially the consistent themes of sexism in the workplace and the growing concern for women’s rights. Creator and show runner Matthew Weiner used the advertising industry as a way to display the trials and tribulations professional women struggled with during the mid to late 1900s, and still even struggle with today. While the show has a historical setting, there are benefits in viewing Mad Men as a current day case study for workplace ethics and gender discrimination. From an analytical view, employers can benefit from watching this show and facing the realities of what discrimination and sexism look like. This is accomplished especially well through the experiences of one of the main leads of the show, Peggy Olson,who is played by Elisabeth Moss.

variety.com

Examining Peggy’s character and experience serves as a wonderful encapsulation of the women’s rights struggle in the professional world in the 60s, the 70s and even the current day.In the first episode of the first season, we meet the character Peggy Olson on her first day at the Sterling Cooper ad agency. She is portrayed as the virginal waif of the office and new secretary for main character Don Draper. We begin to repeatedly witness chauvinistic and sexist interactions between the male staffers and the female employees through Peggy’s freshman lens.Throughout the first season, we see her discover her “place” in the office, which is pre-ordained due to her gender and accepted by her fellow secretaries; but her unique drive and creativity sets her apart and brings her to the attention of her boss. The importance of this relationship as it progresses into the following seasons of the show becomes significant, not just for further character development and story drama, but for women’s rise in corporate America. At season four of the show, Peggy’s character has gone from the freshman secretary of the office to grown copywriter. As the first female writer at the firm since World War II, Peggy struggles to prove herself as a contributing member of the creative team. Even the men in the office who are technically beneath her rank are a constant threat to her input, authority and self-esteem.

Episode seven of season four serves as a wonderful portrait of corporate America of that time. Peggy desires recognition for her ideas and intellect, not from her boyfriend or family, but from the man who best represents her path toward professional success — Don Draper. Her loving and attentive boyfriend attempts to surprise her with a birthday dinner at a restaurant with her family, but when Don, played by Jon Hamm, calls her in to work late on a pitch idea, she cancels on the dinner and ends up breaking up with her boyfriend. During the work session, Peggy and Don immediately begin raging at each other, spilling out four seasons of resentment and bottled up emotions, but she does not leave.The episode seems to visually dramatize the effect work and success has had and continues to have on professional men and women. Both Don and Peggy become very emotional while working together through the night, but when daylight arrives and the world returns to normalcy, Don’s shown refreshed and neat, prepared to face the business of the day, while Peggy still has the vestiges of their dramatic work session on her face.Conceptually, the visual of Peggy and Don at the end of this episode serves as a perfect representation of what it costs a man to succeed in the business world in relation to a woman. While men are expected to succeed and seemingly rise effortlessly, women are forced to struggle and prove themselves consistently.The demands of their professional ambition include personal and emotional sacrifices for the same reward.

Bustle

By season seven — the final season of the show — women’s rights have vastly improved from how they were in season one, and Peggy’s position in the new agency serves to illustrate this. While not spoiling too much of the final season for new viewers, Peggy essentially becomes Don’s professional superior. She has grown into the new head of the creative department and has achieved the position and success that she always desired. Meanwhile, Don Draper has been reduced to the role of cheerleader and subordinate— what was historically a woman’s role.

But in episode six, we see that despite this demotion in his official status, Don still benefits from the advantages of his gender. He’s still the choice the agency makes when it’s time to land a major client, despite Peggy’s proven ability, casting her right back into the familiar and frustrating role of a background player.The episode allows a glimpse into the frustrating cycle of advancement and demotion women have experienced in corporate America — no matter how high you rise, no matter how able you prove your self to be, as a business woman you have to face the possibility of being society’s second choice. The episode does allow for a glimmer of hope to shine through. Rather than tearing Peggy down further and advancing his own agenda, Don embraces Peggy’s growth and takes a mentorship role to help her rediscover her confidence as a professional.The ending of the episode shows that while society can reduce women despite their accomplishments,the individual acknowledgment women receive as equals will continue to push necessary change forward.

NY Daily News

For this reason and many others, employers should be eager to watch Mad Men and absorb its message,especially in the divided world we are facing today. The more that we can push change forward, the better. Nowadays, there are stricter guidelines for employers to follow in regards to workplace discrimination, which is great. However, recent cases of discrimination coming to the surface, such as the controversies taking place within the company Uber, show us that we still have a ways to go.There were plenty other female characters in Mad Men, such as Joan Harris, who served as brilliant representations of women’s issues in society and business.

The show has also been criticized as not being intersectional enough. This meaning that the show did not include a strong enough depiction of racial issues, which surely is a problem since we know that women of color still systematically make even less than white women (who already make less than what a man makes). However, there are some takeaways that anyone can learn from this show, and it’s a great watch for anyone who would like to have a better understanding of the various ways the discrimination presents itself in the workplace, even when it’s subtle.