Recently in Hit Parade

Hit Parade: Meghan Trainor - "All About That Bass"

There are a million songs about how women should not be obsessed about their looks and to have self-esteem and they are all probably better than this one.
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Taylor Swift's time back atop the Billboard Hot 100 was a bit short-lived. I think. Maybe it was atop the charts for years. Time seems to lose all meaning when it comes to the pop charts, and Swift's omnipresence doesn't help that. Now, the number one song in this great nation of ours is some thing called "All About That Bass" by somebody named Meghan Trainor. I do not know who this is. I did go to high school with, like, seven people with different variations on the name "Megan." That doesn't seem relevant, but it's all I've got. Jesus

Hit Parade: Taylor Swift - "Shake It Off"

Taylor Swift is back at #1. God help us all.
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There is a circle to this life. The very first edition of Hit Parade was on Taylor Swift's "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" or whatever that song was called. Now, Ms. Swift is back atop the charts with a song called "Shake It Off." This will be the second Swift song I have ever heard. One time I saw her on FOX's New Girl. She did not sing. Hey, didn't Swift used to be a country singer of some sort? All I've ever heard from her is two pop songs. One, which I'll call "Back Together" was kind

Hit Parade: Magic! - "Rude"

I'd rather hear "Jammin'" for the millionth time than hear "Rude" for a second one.
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Iggy Azalea's "Fancy," featuring noted Roman numerals enthusiast Charlie XCX, earned its place in the song of the summer conversation by being the number one song for all of June and most of July. However, at least for one week, it has been knocked from its perch. Taking Azalea's place is a song called "Rude" by a band called Magic! I am not excited about them. They just have an exclamation point in their name. The excitement is built in. I've heard tell of these Canadian lads and their musics, mostly negative I must admit, but I have not heard

Hit Parade: Iggy Azalea featuring Charlie XCX - "Fancy"

The fun summer jam potential is slightly limited by Iggy declaring that she's still in the murder bidness...
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Talk of the "song of the summer" is beginning, and it wasn't likely that the smooth, soulful tones of John Legend were going to be ruling the day at barbeques and pool parties and box socials and whatever the kids are up to these days. Now, there is a new song atop the charts, "Fancy" by Iggy Azalea featuring Charlie XCX. Now, if you have read Hit Parade with any regularity, you know how things go with me and the pop music. Generally, I have little, if any, knowledge or experience with these artists. I'm too busy making knowing references

Hit Parade: John Legend - "All of Me"

a pretty sounding song about love that isn't too mawkish or clunky or inane. I can live with that...
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Man, people loved Pharrell Williams' "Happy." Truly, it was the song of spring. For a whopping 10 weeks, it was the number one song in America. I did not like it, but lots of people did, and I am not one to rain on parades, or wedding days for that matter. Now, a new song emerges atop the Billboard Hot 100. John Legend's "All of Me." I have some knowledge of Legend, because he appeared on Stephen Colbert's Christmas special many years ago. He sang a love jam about nutmeg. So, I figure he is some sort of soul/R&B ballad

Hit Parade: Pharrell Williams - "Happy"

Maybe Pharrell Williams should stick to producing...
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The last couple of songs to sit atop the Billboard Hot 100 have not been, admittedly, terribly good. By which I mean they've been bad. They've been irritants to my very soul. I could use something that I can enjoy. A song that can make me, if you will, happy. Well, fittingly, the new top song on the charts is "Happy" by Pharrell Williams. Before listening to this song, I was of two minds on it. On the one hand, Williams' bona fides are legitimate. He was recently the pregame performer at the NBA All-Star Game, and it was a

Hit Parade: Katy Perry featuring Juicy J - "Dark Horse"

Not one of Katy Perry's better efforts, chart success notwithstanding...
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I must purge "Timber" by Pitbull and Ke$ha out of my brain. This house must be clean. Also, I'm still behind on number one songs. I never did get to Eminem, but I was a teenager in suburban Detroit during his heyday. I've had plenty of Eminem in my life. So, today, I shall turn to the song currently topping the charts: "Dark Horse" by Katy Perry, featuring Juicy J. I've heard Ms. Perry before, having listened to "Roar" for this project. I remember it as being fairly banal, by the books grrrl power stuff. Will "Dark Horse" be different?
Here's the thing about time; it is not infinite. As such, sometimes things fall to the wayside. Like keeping up with the luminaries of modern popular music. When staying on top of the hits is not your top, or even a top 10, priority, you can find yourself left behind. This is to say that it has been a little while since I've written a Hit Parade, or listened to a Billboard Hot 100 number one song. I've missed "The Monster" by Eminem featuring Rihanna, "Timber" by Pitbull featuring Ke$ha, and "Dark Horse" by Katy Perry featuring Juicy J. Man,

Hit Parade: Lorde - "Royals"

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Pop music is a young people's game. After a couple week's of her (surprisingly solid) "Wrecking Ball" atop the charts, the 20-year-old Miley Cyrus has been replaced by the 16-year-old Lorde and her song "Royals." I picked up this information through osmosis, for the record. I have not heard any of Lorde's music. I think she is from New Zealand, where Peter Jackson, director of beloved movies such as Dead Alive and the King Kong remake, and I know she is but a child. She was on Fallon the other day, but I did not watch, for reasons I am

Hit Parade: Miley Cyrus - "Wrecking Ball"

Lost in her antics and the hysteria that followed is a pretty good song from Miley Cyrus...
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Well, here we are. After a couple weeks of Katy Perry's grrrrl power anthem (and shout out to boxing references) "Roar" being atop the charts, Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" is the number one single on the Billboard Hot 100. Now I've got to deal with this nonsense. What have I gotten myself in to? I've never heard a Miley Cyrus song, although I certainly have heard a bunch of inane stuff in recent months because she is very popular on the internets. I listen to the Girls in Hoodies podcast, and they love her. I've made my thoughts on Billy

Hit Parade: Katy Perry - "Roar"

Katy Perry's "Roar" isn't the worst #1 of 2013...
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While most people like to believe the world is a beautiful, redeemable place and that, all in all, things are going to be alright. In truth, the world is a brutal morass that we sink ever deeper into until we receive the sweet release of death. War. Famine. Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines." This is reality, chumps. For 12 weeks, 12 god damn weeks, that song was at the top of the charts. That's three months! This is not why we can't have nice things, it is why we don't have nice things. However, for the first time in far too

Hit Parade Classic: Jason Derulo - "Whatcha Say"

Mediocre and a product of the lesser musical proclivities of the time...
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Robin Thicke and friends continue to dominate the top of the charts, so I am dipping back into the history of the Billboard Hot 100 for another entry into Hit Parade Classic. Once again, I am heading backwards through time until I find a song I haven't heard of at all. This time out, I head to the week of November 14, 2009 for a song called "Whatcha Say" by a person called "Jason Derulo." It was only number one for a week, and then it, and Derulo, disappeared. Seriously, I have never heard of this guy. It is important
If I have learned one thing from Hit Parade, wherein I listen to the top songs on the Billboard Hot 100, it's that most of these songs are pretty bad. If I've learned two things, the second thing is that there isn't a ton of change atop the charts. In the entire year of 2013, which is more than halfway over, a total of six songs have been number one, and two of those songs were by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" has been the top song for a while, because people hate themselves and don't feel

Hit Parade: Robin Thick featuring T.I. and Pharrell - "Blurred Lines"

Just know the lyrics are horrendous and this song is terrible.
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I should, in theory, write about Robin Thicke. After all, his song "Blurred Lines" has wrested the number one song title from not one hit wonders Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. I didn't know much about him heading into listening to this song. I hadn't heard any of his work. I listen to MaxFun's International Waters podcast, for I am an erudite gentleman, and in doing so I heard tell of a music video of his that leads me to feel that he is, in the parlance of our times, a total douchebag. I also knew he is the son of
Well, this is surprising. I did not see Macklemore and Ryan Lewis having any staying power. I presumed "Thrift Shop" was a novelty single, and not just because I thought it was awful. I mean, it's a dude rapping about buying stuff at the thrift store, and, let's face it, the fact he was a white guy rapping made it feel even more like a novelty song. However, it would appear I was incorrect in this prediction, because here we are living in world where Macklemore is fronting another number one single in these United State of America. This newest

Hit Parade: Pink featuring Nate Ruess "Just Give Me A Reason"

You have to earn your gratuitous punctuation!
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Sorry, Bruno Mars. Your time atop the Billboard Hot 100 did not last very long. Already, we have a new chart topper. Pink now has the nation's top single, although it features some guy named Nate Ruess, and it is called "Just Give Me A Reason." I am familar with Pink, who apparently spells her name with an exclamation point instead of an "i." I will not indulge this affectation. I know Ke$ha, Ms. Pink, and you are no Ke$ha. While I have heard of Pink, I had never heard any of her songs in their entirety. I know at
A new song is finally atop the Billboard Hot 100, and for the first time in quite a while it isn't some internets propelled one-hit wonder. Maybe Macklemore (and Ryan Lewis, let us never forget Ryan Lewis) can come up with some other popular gimmick song, perhaps about all-you-can-eat buffets in Las Vegas, but I doubt it, and Baauer and the "Harlem Shake" will soon perish from this Earth. Now, an established artist with at least some gravitas has the nation's number one single, and it is the guy who had the top song before the one-two punch of "Thrift

Hit Parade: Baauer - "Harlem Shake"

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Man, how about that internet? It is becoming increasingly clear as I indulge in this process how much the internet is responsible for what reaches the top of the Billboard Hot 100. More than that, it's about the YouTube it would seem. Psy's "Gangnam Style" never made it to number one, but I get the feeling people loving that video on YouTube is a bit part of its rise to number two. Macklemore feels like an internet phenomenon as well. Now, a song that isn't even all that new is the top song in the land, and I can guarantee

Hit Parade: Thrift Shop - by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (feat. Wanz)

So many bad jokes packed into one song but the joke's on us; this is the #1 song this week
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Heading into this project of listening to the number one song on the Billboard Hot 100, I wasn't prepared for how long most of these songs end up atop the list. Bruno Mars' "Locked Out of Heaven" was the number one song for all of January's charts, and two weeks of December as well. Sure, it was a genuinely good song, but how did it remain that popular for so long? Don't people get tired of it? Sure, I imagine new people stumble upon the song week in and week out, but not that many. Do radio stations just keep

Hit Parade: Bruno Mars - Locked Out of Heaven

Try though I might, I couldn't find anything to not like about this song...
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Rihanna's hold on the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 didn't last all that long, despite her best efforts to garner attention by flighting solo on a transatlantic mission or whatever it is she was up to. Now, a gentle man named Bruno Mars and his song "Locked Out of Heaven" reign supreme. I knew less about Bruno Mars than any other Hit Parade subject heading into this particular endeavor. That includes Carly Rae Jepsen, but that's only because I got to her so long after the fact because how could the song of the summer go unremarked upon?

Hit Parade: Rihanna - Diamonds

America, you're better than this!
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Oh America. You used to be so beautiful. Then, you made Maroon 5's "One More Night" the number one song on the Billboard Hot 100 for NINE weeks straight. What man would want you now? In the (admittedly short) time I have been writing these Hit Parade articles, "One More Night" is far and away the worst song I've had to listen to, an irredeemable piece of garbage of which I have nothing positive to say. Now, on this Thanksgiving week (in America, who cares about Canada) I am giving thanks for a new song atop the charts. That would

Hit Parade: Psy - Gangnam Style

This latest phenomenon is mildly annoying...
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Maroon 5's atrocious song "One More Night" remains atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the fourth week in a row. However, there is a song that has been sitting at number two for a few weeks that I thought I could discuss. It is a song that, as far as I can tell, has captured the zeitgeist. It's a song I thought would eventually hit number one, and maybe it will. I read something about it being the most liked song on YouTube, or some such nonsense. The song in question is "Gangnam Style" by some gentleman named Psy.

Hit Parade: Maroon 5 - "One More Night"

This song has nothing but terrible singing, stupid lyrics, and awful music. Other than that, I'm cool with it.
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A new name finds itself atop the Billboard Top 100. Well, that is to say there is a new number one song, but it is by the band Maroon 5, which has been around for a while, and has probably had number one songs before. Their song "One More Night" is now the top hit in these United States of America. I'm mildly familiar with the band. I've heard pieces of "Moves Like Jagger" when sporting events go to commercial. I know Adam Levine is on that show The Voice, alongside Christina Aguilera, some gentle man named Blake Shelton, and

Hit Parade (Farewell to Summer Edition): Carly Rae Jepsen - "Call Me Maybe"

The song of the summer...?
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This week, the dance between Taylor Swift and Flo Rida continued, as Swift once again took the top spot in the Billboard Hot 100 with "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together." So, I want to take the time to discuss the song of the summer. The song in question is "Call Me Maybe" by a plucky upstart named Carly Rae Jepsen. This is, evidently, at least a somewhat officially title, as I am fairly certain I saw somewhere that Billboard had deemed it the song of summer, given it's popularity over those months. This seems reasonable, as "Call Me

Hit Parade: Flo Rida - "Whistle"

Stop me if you've heard this one before...
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After two weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100, Taylor Swift has been deposed. The new song atop the chart is Flo Rida's "Whistle," which was the song that was number one the week before Swift. So Mr. F. Rida has taken back his usurped throne. It's all very exciting. Much as was the case with Ms. Swift, I have never heard a Flo Rida song before this. I have heard his name, and I have laughed, because it is ridiculous. I mean, in a sense it does work, because it implies he rides flows. Plus, Florida is both a state

Hit Parade: Taylor Swift - "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together"

It's #1, but is it any good?
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I long ago lost touch with the pop music zeitgeist. It wasn’t a matter of disdain but merely disinterest- a lot of the music, in the occasional bits and pieces I hear, does not really strike me as something I want to dig into. Like most adults, I found the music I liked, and mostly stuck to it, not really venturing out of my self-administered zone. The last time I paid attention to what was hip with the kids was when I was a kid myself, watching TRL and getting all riled up about them playing stuff like Britney