March 2020 Podcast: Old and New..with Lionel Richie

FeaturedMarch 2020 Podcast: Old and New..with Lionel Richie

As the old school song states, “Where do I begin?” I must admit. It’s been hard for me to make podcasts lately. Life is just a never ending steam of disappointments with a shimmer of good happening for me. But moreso bad than good mentally. It’s been a real struggle to enjoy things for long periods of time. And now the corona virus isn’t helping my mental state either. But, since we’ve all been quarantined, I’m forcing myself to try to get back to things I enjoyed. I can’t say whether or not I will make another podcast after this one. I will just take life as it goes and if I feel up to it, I will do it. It’s not like people listened a lot anyway so it’s not like there is a need for another person playing music when there are so many other podcasts better than mine.

But there I go again. Sorry about that. Anyhooters, here is a new one for you. Listen. Don’t. It’s there for whoever wants to consume. Thanks to anyone who does. And if you pass it, then that’s fine too.

Listen or download here –>March 2020 Podcast

Intro Song: The Regrettes – A Living Human Girl

1. Pearl Jam – Alright
2. Demi Lovato – I Love Me
3. The Weeknd – Until I Bleed Out
5. Circa Waves – Be Your Drug
6. Lizzo – Water Me
7. Janet Jackson – Make Me
8. Dana Dane – This Be the Def Beat
9. Beyonce’ – Don’t Hurt Yourself
10. R.E.M. – Driver 8
11. The Killers – The Man
12. Karyn White – Secret Rendezvous
13. Eddie Money – Take Me Home Tonight
14. Childish Gambino – Under the Sun
15. Harry Styles – Watermelon Sugar
16. Kygo & Whitney Houston – Higher Love
17. Phantogram – Pedestal
18. Mark Ronson – Uptown Funk
19. Brandy – I Wanna Be Down Remix

 

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Top 50 Songs of 2019

I don’t often make a year end favorite song list. There are a gazillion songs that were released in 2019. And it’s just an overwhelming task to take on – moreso than albums. So these songs are just a small collection of ones I played on my ipod (yeah, I still have mine), and Spotify. It’s random, it’s funny, it’s head scratching, it’s booty shaking, it’s whatever got me through this ridiculous year of 2019. Enjoy.

And Happy New Year.. it’s a wrap. FINALLY.

50. Harry Styles – Watermelon Sugar
49. Beck – Star
48. Bishop Briggs – Champion
47. SebastiAn – Handcuffed to a Parking Meter (Feat. Sparks)
46. Michael Kiwanuka – You Ain’t the Problem
45. Lil’ Kim – Pray for Me (Feat. Rick Ross and Musiq Soulchild)
44. Dermot Kennedy – Moments Passed
43. Hayley Kiyoko – Demons
42. Lady Antebellum – Be Patient With My Love
41. Brandon Banks – 8 Figures
40. The Black Keys – Every Little Thing
39. Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – Giannis (Feat. Anderson .Paak)
38. Hayden James – Better Together
37. Jamie Cullum – Taller
36. Lucky Daye – Concentrate
35. Lizzo – Tempo (Feat. Missy Elliott)
34. Billie Eilish – Bad Buy
33. Lewis Capaldi – Someone You Loved
32. Post Malone – Circles
31. Shawn Mendes & Camila Cabello – Senorita
30. Iggy Azalea – Sally Walker
29. Ed Sheeran – Beautiful People (Feat. Khalid)
28. P!nk – Hurts 2B Human (Feat. Khalid)
27. Mabel – OK (Anxiety Anthem)
26. Rob Thomas – Timeless
25. Ben Platt – Honest Man
24. Miley Cyrus – Mother’s Daughter
23. NF – Time
22. Snoh Aalegra – Love Like That
21. Tori Kelly – Pretty Fades
20. Lizzo – Juice
19. Megan Thee Stallion – Hot Girl Summer
18. Niall Horan – Nice to Meed Ya
17. Backstreet Boys – New Love
16. The Weeknd – Heartless
15. Jonas Brothers – Sucker
14. Sleater – Kinney – RUINS
13. Labrinth & Zendaya – All For Us
12. Taylor Swift – You Need to Calm Down
11. Fitz and the Tantrums – 123456

FINAL TEN SONGS
10. Tegan and Sara – Don’t Believe the Things They Tell You (They Lie)
9. Normani – Motivation
8. Summer Walker – Come Thru (Feat. Usher)
7. Missy Elliott – Throw it Back
6. Halsey – Graveyard
5. Ariana Grande – thank you, next
4. Sam Smith and Normani – Dancing with a Stranger
3. Raphael Saadiq – Sinners Prayer
2. Lil’ Nas X – Old Town Road (Remix) (Feat. Billy Ray Cyrus)
1. Lizzo – Truth Hurts

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Featured

Top Albums of 2019

Alright. It’s been a while, I admit. Life continues gets in my way. Constantly. And frankly it sucks. But I thought I would give you all a list of my top 50 albums of 2019. I like everyone else in the country depend on lists to get through life. So I thought I’d go ahead and show you mine, so to speak. I know some of these selections are nothing new if anyone knows me. And there were some surprises I must say. Music in 2019 was stellar for the DIYs, the left of center folks, and alternative music, and most IMPORTANTLY, WOMEN. Yup, women ruled this year in music. We were everywhere. And some of us finally got the LONG overdue recognition that was well deserved. Pop music – eh. Not so much to me. So. Without further ado, here are my favorites…in really NO particular order – OTHER than the top 10:

50. While We Wait – Kehlani

49. Slowthai – Nothing Great About Britain

48. Guache – A People’s History of Guache

47. Fitz and the Tantrums – All The Feels

46. Logic – Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

45. Galcher Lustwerk – Information

44. Wale’ – Wow… That’s Crazy

43. Mark Ronson – Late Night Feelings

42. The National – I Am Easy to Find

41. Sudan Archives – Athena

40. Emily King – Scenery

39. The Raconteurs – Help Us Stranger

38. IDER – Emotional Education

37. The Coathangers – The Devil You Know

36. Young M.A. – Herstory in the Making

35. Escort – City Life

34. Tank and the Bangas – Green Balloon

33. Girlpool – What Chaos is Imaginary

32. Charly Bliss – Young Enough

31. Harry Styles – Fine Line

30. Chance the Rapper – The Big Day

29. Fever 333 – Strength in Numbe333rs

28. Emeli Sande – Real Life

27. Karen O & Danger Mouse – Lux Prima

26. Jamilia Woods – Legacy

25. Black Pumas – Black Pumas

24. Beyonce’ – Homecoming: The Live Concert

23. Empath – Active Listening

22. Gallant – Sweet Insomnia

21. Backstreet Boys – DNA

20. Broods – Don’t Feed the Pop Monsters

19. GoldLink – Diaspora

18. Michael Kiwanuka – Kiwanuka

17. The Highwomen – The Highwomen

16. Bat for Lashes – Lost Girls

15. Tyler, The Creator – IGOR

14. Jenny Lewis – On the Line

13. Chaka Khan – Hello Happiness

12. Sturgill Simpson – Sound and Fury

11. Wallows – Nothing Happens

And the TOP 10:

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10. Anderson .Paak – Ventura

9. Tegan and Sara – Hey I’m Just Like You

8. Ari Lennox – Shea Butter Baby

7. Megan Thee Stallion – Fever

6. Dave – Psychodrama

5. Ex Hex – I’m Real

4. Ariana Grande – thank you next

3. Sleater-Kinney – The Center Won’t Hold

2. Brittany Howard – Jaime

…and NUMBER 1:

1. Lizzo – Cuz I Love You – There is no way you could escape the badass force that is Lizzo this year. 2019 was HER year. From the club to the radio to commercials, Lizzo was pretty much in every year, on every playlist, or playing in every car. She’s a beacon of light in a world that was filled and is STILL filled with hate and evil. Her views on body positivity and self worth is something all of us of every size need to hear and live by on a daily basis. She’s all about love y’all. And she’s not going anywhere, and for that, she made 2019 great for music.

That’s it for now. Have a wonderful new year everyone and fingers crossed 2020 is a stellar year for music.

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March 2018: The Return of the Beatcast

Welp. I’m back again. Here’s a new podcast for a new year. A mix of old, new, odd, and wonderful. It’s my favorite cosmic slop. No coffee necessary. Just hit play. So here I am sharing with you. I’m trying to get into the groove again, so it’s going to take some time. But these songs help me get through the day. I hope they do the same for you.

Enjoy.

Click here for listen/download —->  First of 2018

podcast2.18#2

 

 

Intro song: A Living Human Girl – The Regrettes

Sympin’ (Remix) – Boyz II Men

The Joke – Brandi Carlile

Glass House – Screaming Females

Brand New – Craig David

Right Now – Dream Wife

Perm – Bruno Mars

Black Sheep – Milck

Slither – Velvet Revolver

Real Friends – Camila Cabello

Rollin’ With Kid N’ Play – Kid N’ Play

Would? – Alice in Chains

Give Me a Reason – Ibibio Sound Machine

Violet Moon – Hypnotic Brass Ensemble

Killer – Seal and Pete Tong

Get Away – Kehlani

Do What You Gotta Do – Nina Simone

Nobody Can Save Me – Linkin Park

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My Favorite Albums of 2017.

It’s that time of year again. Seems like yesterday 2017 began and now it’s over. So that means I’m going to share my favorite 30 albums of the year. I’m not going to call them the “best” but these 30 albums were on rotation for a period of time this year on my ipod. I enjoyed them all. They helped me stay sane, awake, and got me through the day when I felt like the world was just setting up shop on my shoulders, never to leave. There was a lot of fluff this year though. I will not share that with you. Some music left me scratching my head and thinking, “Really? People LIKE this?” But that’s for another discussion. If you follow me on twitter, you might have seen random one liner tweets about bands or singers that caught my ear and held onto my attention. If you haven’t listened to anyone on this list, and you want to broaden your mind, check them out. Don’t close off your mind to new music. There are plenty of diamonds in the rough. I would also be remised if I didn’t give a huge shout out to all the ladies who made some great music this year. I truly got a kick out of going back and seeing how many albums on my hard drive and ipod I had that were made by ladies, young and old. To quote Annie Lennox, “Sisters are doing it for themselves.” Whether the songs were about love, or injustice, or family issues, the voices of women made a huge impact this year. And I hope for years to come. So, here is the list. Happy New Year One and All..

30. Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile –Lotta Sea Lice
29. Jamey Jasta – The Lost Chapters
28. Alex Lahey – I Love You Like a Brother
27. Annie Mac – Annie Mac Presents 2017
26. Blush – Blush
27. Beware of Darkness – Are You Real?
26. Gorillaz – Humanz
25. Tove Lo – Blue Lips
24. LCD Soundsystem – American Dream
23. Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears – Backlash
22. Pete Tong & The Heritage Orchestra – Ibiza Classics
21. David Banner – The God Box
20. Whitehorse – Panther in the Dollhouse
19. Daddy Issues – Deep Dream
18. Curtis Harding – Face Your Fear
17. Larkin Poe – Preach
16. St. Vincent – Masseduction
15. Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, and James McAlister – Planetarium
14. Demi Lovato – Tell Me You Love Me
13. Grace and Rachel – Gracie and Rachel
14. The National – Sleep Well Beast
13. Syd – Fin
12. Jay Z – 4:44
11. Frankie Rose – Cage Tropical

And the final ten….

10. Talib Kweli – Radio Silence

 

9. Miguel – War and Leisure

 

8. Fergie – Double Dutchess

 

7. Jlin – Black Origami

 

6. Partner – In Search of Lost and Time

 

5. Kelly Clarkson – Meaning of Life

 

4. Alvvays – Antisocialites

 

3. Beck – Colors

 

2. SZA – CTRL

 

1. Kendrick Lamar – DAMN

 

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Throwback Thursday Album (a few days late): Sheryl Crow’s “Sheryl Crow”

SHERYL CROW LP 1996

 

I haven’t always been a fan of Sheryl Crow.

I’m going to date myself here but when Tuesday Night Music Club dropped, I wasn’t particularly fond of “Leaving Las Vegas.” It was slow sounding, and back then I was still a rap and hip hop head listening to WuTang Clan, Biggie, with the few rock bands that snuck into my tape (yes I was around for tapes) collection – Red Hot Chili Peppers, R.E.M, The Black Crowes, etc. These were all artists that kept me awake, alert, and entertained. And I wasn’t thrilled with Sheryl’s voice overall. The, like most teens my age, “All I Wanna Do” dropped, and I instantly changed my tune towards her. It was fast, funny, and had a great melody. Pretty much pop rock gold, which turned into platinum for her. Followed by “Can’t Cry Anymore” and I was pretty much hooked.

Then her second album, “Sheryl Crow,” finally arrived. I remember vividly ordering the tape from our campus store (which stopped selling cassettes and instead sold cds for EVERY artist) and once it arrived, I was completely blown away with it. She produced it, which back then and now for that matter – for a woman to produce her own music – pretty much unheard of  unfortunately. While Bill Botrell was behind the debut album production, this one was Sheryl. Plus 1. It was filled with just absolute greatness. I can’t say back in 1996 offhand that every cassette I owned was great from beginning to end, but THIS album my dear friends was. Every song to me, was a potential single, and every song had a message, hiding behind the pop rock and the quirky sound effects. The melodies worked extremely well with her voice and the lyrics were simple yet effective. And let’s face it on a “A Change Would Do You Good,” there were hand claps. I’m a fan of the hand claps. More songs need hand claps. That was a no brainer hit.

“If It Makes You Happy” to this day makes me laugh – not in a mean way, but the chorus kills me. “If It makes you happy, it can’t be that bad. If It makes you happy then why the hell are you so sad?” Why does it kill me? Because this chorus reigns true to life to this day, 21 years later. Things that make people happy should make us happy, not sad. If it makes us sad, then we shouldn’t continue to do things that make us sad. It’s just that simple. Plus 2. I also love the fact that while she sings the chorus, it comes completely across as shouting to me – as if she was trying to drive the idea home. I hear ya Sheryl. I hear ya. Even my mom thought this was a hit and she doesn’t like anyone.

Another favorite of mine, “Sweet Rosalyn,” is about a woman who keeps her head above water, working just enough to get by but she needs something to keep her going, to continue the fight, to keep her moving forward as they say. My favorite line is “Well, maybe we all could use a little grace to know when to run and when to stay in one place.” It’s not a long song lyrically, but it still makes an impact with the instrumentation. Between the slide, the dobro, and twangy guitars, I was pretty much sold on this one. Sheryl throws down on this one y’all. Check out this video of it.

 

 

I will always support Sheryl because I remember her fighting with Walmart in regards to the song, “Love is a Good Thing.” For those who don’t know, there’s a lyric about kids who use guns they purchased at Walmart. At that time, it was very true. And Walmart didn’t take too kindly to her statement (despite the stories hitting the news revealing where the guns came from) and removed her album from the stores. She stood firm though, and she didn’t give in. That to me, was completely awesome. And fierce. You rule Sheryl. She wanted it to be known that we need to do something about gun control. She sings it so nonchalantly but in doing so, made a big statement. Plus 3.

The opener, “Maybe Angels” is the song that kicked off my love for this album…the piano in particular. It just sounds so weird with the guitar riff that it fits. So weird. But it fits. And the subject matter about not being able to feel angels, but they are around. “I swear they’re out there, I swear…” It’s a mid tempo toe tapper (Say that FIVE times fast. I dare you. It’s ok. I’ll wait.” She finds angels to be mysterious, but she knows..she has a feeling…that the unexplained..can only be answered by angels. The rockers who have passed away, they’re coming back too. Ok, Sheryl. I believe you.

I won’t go on and on, but this is truly a great album. From beginning to end, it entertains, and you hear something different with each listen. AND she broke the dreaded second album slump AND the “Best New Artist” curse that hits many after winning a Grammy. Thank you Sheryl for releasing a perfect pop gem. My ears thank you as well.

 

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Last Podcast of the Year, with a Mix to Boot. Bye 2016…

Happy New Year’s Eve my wonderful Earbudders,

As promised I made my last poddy a mix of just some of my favorite songs of the year. Better listen and download before it’s too late. Enjoy and I shall return next year.

Download

Stream

songmixlist

Intro Music – Praying For Time – George Michael

Starboy (feat. Daft Punk) – The Weeknd

VRY BLK (Feat. NoName) – Jamila Woods

Til The Evening – HONNE

Moving On – Roosevelt

Dollar Days – David Bowie

Alexander Hamilton – Broadway Cast of Hamilton

Dance with Me – LEAGUES

In The Lobby- Iggy Pop 

How To Fly – Skye And Ross

Lost On You – LP

Underwater – Goldroom

Light Up (Yachtclub. Remix) – MUTEMATH

Working Poor – Fantastic Negrito

Raise the Flag – BROOKZILL!

Don’t You Wait – Solange

Breathe Life – Jack Garratt

A-YO – Lady Gaga

Mad Love – JoJo

Lighting Turns Sawdust Gold – Sleigh Bells

Love Is a Soft Machine – Rocky

That Girl – Tegan & Sara

Close Enough – Ghost Beach

Have a safe and happy New Year. Thanks for listening…

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My Favorite Albums of 2016

endoftheyearalbums

 

My fellow earbudders,

Well. Another year of music has come and gone, which means, another list of favorites to publish for you to read, consume, and just maybe decide what to put on your own end of the year playlist for gist and shiggles. These 40 albums were my favorites. I try not to say the “best “ones because I know that for every album that is on the list, I probably missed my fair share of musical goodies but these are the ones that got numerous plays on my ipod. This year revealed reunions, long awaited returns, artistic passion, departed souls, and your run of the mill pop fluff – of which there was a little too much of I admit. I was bored by many of the pop songs I heard on the radio – same beats, same squeaky voiced people singing the same things over and over again. You could take the head off one singer, replace it with another and you wouldn’t really be able to tell the difference. But the true artists – the ones that display quality over quality, fought their way through the cracks of pop goo. So for that I’m grateful for this year of music and helping me get out of darkness. For now anyway.. Enjoy the list. And Happy New Year.

1. Anderson Paak – Malibu
2. Solange Knowles – A Seat at the Table
3. Bruno Mars – 24K Magic
4. S U R V I V E – RR7349
5. The Weeknd – Starboy
6. A Tribe Called Quest – We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service
7. Beyonce – Lemonade
8. Brookzill! – Throwback to the Future
9. Tegan and Sara – Love You to Death
10. The Kills – Fire and Ice
11. JoJo – Mad Love
12. Emeli Sande – Long Live the Angels
13. J. Cole – 4 Your Eyez Only
14. Robbie Williams – Heavy Entertainment Show
15. Kane Brown – Kane Brown
16. Iggy Pop – Post Pop Depression
17. Childish Gambino – Awaken! My Love!
18. Raleigh Ritchie – You’re a Man Now Boy
19. David Bowie – Blackstar
20. Elizabeth Cook – Exodus of Venus
21. Car Seat Headrest – Teens of Denial
22. Teenage Fanclub – Here
23. Santigold – 99 Cents
24. Jack Garratt – Phase
25. Africaine 808 – Basar
26. Thao & The Get Down Stay Down – A Man Alive
27. Hamilton Soundtrack
28. Shura – Nothing’s Real
29. Margaret Glaspy – Emotions and Math
30. Michael Kiwanuka – Love and Hate
31. Leagues – Alone Again
32. Roosevelt – Roosevelt
33. Rocky – Soft Machines
34. Deftones – Gore
35. Hidden Figures – The Soundtrack
36. Lazarus (Original Cast Recording)
37. Ria Mae – Ria Mae
38. Jamila Woods – HEAVN
39. Skye and Ross – Skye and Ross
40. Ghost Beach – Blonde

Honorable Mentions:
LP – Death Valley EP
Big Gigantic – Brighter Future
Justice – Women
Dawn Richard – Redemption

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Thank you, George.

Dear George Michael,

I am writing this to you to say thank you so much for everything you’ve done in music and outside of it. I like many became a fan of yours while you were in Wham! I loved your voice – so soulful, and your eyes – so sad, and your stare. The words to your music were more than just pop fluff that had been released at the time. You were no ordinary talent, that’s for sure. I admired how passionate you were in your performances and with one stare into the camera, you made me feel like I was the only one in the room, even at 9 (I realize you were much older, but still…my heart was filled whenever I saw you.).

I admired your power to change your image from boy bander, to sex symbol. You were just drop dead gorgeous from head to toe. No one could escape your beauty. I remember vividly classmates in school on Halloween coming dressed up with a fake cross earring and grey makeup on their cheeks and fake leather jackets – an homage to your “Faith” period. It took a lot of courage to break away from a goodie two shoe image in Wham! and go for self. But you did it, and the world took notice. As the years went on, you challenged your record label because you didn’t want to be constrained to a long term record deal. And in return, you changed your music. It became more thought provoking, and edgy. I still say “Listen Without Prejudice, Vol. I” and “Older” were some of your best work. You focused more on the topics of love, hardships, regrets, and the hope for things to get better in time – a far cry from the sex symbol image of previous years. You were a philanthropist, an activist, and a good natured individual who realized you could do good in this world with your celebrity.

Despite your trials and tribulations behind the camera, you always had a sense of humor and a “lesson learned” type of attitude. I was rooting for you to overcome your demons and share more music. When you had a serious bout with pneumonia, we fans were praying and pulling for you. And when you emerged from the hospital, a little weak, but still alright, I had hope that you would return to the world stronger and ready to release new music – which you did, a few singles here and there. And I was grateful.

Fast forward to now. I am heartbroken. This has been a very rough year of losses in music – Prince, Natalie Cole, Leon Russell, Bowie, the list goes on and on.. and now to add you to that list is just so overwhelmingly sad. The idea that no more music will come from you is just hard. No more creative songwriting – something so desperately needed in the music realm today. No more smiles and twinkle in your eyes in interviews. My only regret is that I never saw you in concert. You were definitely on my list to see. And it’s always going to be hole in my musical heart in knowing I didn’t have the opportunity. I hope you are at peace George. I hope you realized the impact you had on me, and others. Your music was filled with fun, loss, introspective wisdom, and creativity. And for that, I will forever be thankful.

You were the best. And I’m glad I had the chance to be a fan.

georgemichaelposter

 

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Gambino’s Game Plan…

It’s hard to pinpoint Donald Glover, aka Childish Gambino. He’s a writer, an actor, an entertainer, a rapper, and now … it seems a funk master. I’ve been a fan of his music for a few years now. His lyrics are honest, heartfelt, and in some regards, just plain weird but entertaining – ranging from his self proclaimed nerdiness, growing up in middle class life, racism, and relationships. There’s a lot going on in that mind of his. And now he’s back with a new album called, “Awaken, My Love!” This album hands down, threw me. Goodbye to the rhymes for this project, he concentrated on making an old school funk, rock, and r&b album that would make George Clinton and Bootsy Collins proud. I was quite surprised really. But that’s what an artist does – always throws you. You should never expect the same thing. And Donald delivers. From the opening track, “Me and Your Mama,” a standout rock and funk song where he illustrates his singing chops, lines right up with there with the best of them, to “Boogieman,” and “Zombies,” it’s just a roller coaster of fun.. It’s exciting, and I appreciate him taking a complete left turn with his music. As someone who listens to rock music, and is Black, I definitely applaud anyone else who is Black and is in the music field to stretch and break boundaries of what Black artists are used to doing in music.

I’m not going to go on and on like most critics do about albums. Most of you won’t read it anyway. Just trust me when I say this album is worth the time and the listen. It’s 40 plus minutes of pure funky entertainment. And I most add that Donald’s voice as a singer isn’t bad at all. Usually I joke, “all rappers want to act, and all actors want to sing” but in his case, he’s pretty good. The time away from doing music has served him well and he came back with a vengeance. This album is a musical head trip. With every listen I hear something new and that’s how music should be, at least in my opinion – never boring, always intriguing. “Anything less would be uncivilized.” So come. Feel alive with the Gambino and travel inside his mind for a while. It’s worth it.

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