I don't know where you are, but here in New York, it was 75 degrees out. It's March. March is supposed to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb. It isn't supposed to come in like a lion that suddenly doffs its mane, shrinks three times and becomes basically a housecat.
But so it has, and it's not even mid-March and the fan's already wrong. It's essentially spring and almost summer here, the first truly new season of a new year. Our playlist's like that, mostly new songs and summery ones. We'll keep this short so you can go outside (seriously, do) once you've got them all queued.
USHER - CLIMAX
Because it's the best song Usher's done in years, the best song Diplo's done in years and, amid all the tension-by-template tracks on the radio, a standout.
NINA SKY - DAY DREAMING
Because it's also the best song Nina Sky's done in years (of course, it's not a one-to-one comparison, as you'd have to subtract Usher's last album cycle from it) and would also be a similar standout.
CASSIE - KING OF HEARTS
Because it's the perfect background music for a certain interview; because it's a bit of levity in the playlist so far.
NORAH JONES - HAPPY PILLS
Because Norah Jones produced by Danger Mouse could have been an unmitigated disaster but turns out to be quite OK.
NICKI MINAJ FT. LIL WAYNE - ROMAN RELOADED
Because there is no reason for "Starships" to ever have left the hard drive when this exists.
For Estelle, Fun and summery tracks, click NEXT.
ESTELLE FT. JANELLE MONAE - DO MY THING
Because Estelle's got an album out, it's quite good, and this is a teamup dreams are made of. There's a real risk this album might get overlooked; let's make sure that doesn't happen.
FUN - WE ARE YOUNG
Because it's No. 1! (Thank Glee. Thank Jeff Bhasker. And even if you're not quite sure what to make of the full album, at least it's going for something more interesting than half the No. 1 hits last year.)
EMILIANA TORRINI - SUNNY ROAD
Because it's impossible to dislike this love song, and because we're finally in a season where there are sunny roads, as opposed to slushy or just dingy ones. (Summer songs start here.)
GREASE - SUMMER NIGHTS
Because it's possibly the classic summer song (and, we should add, provides the backbone for a certain boy-band track.)
PALMDALE - HERE COMES THE SUMMER
Because some people prefer their summer songs to start with lyrics like "punched me in the heart, don't know where to start with the ways I'd like to hear you," as long as there's also a shimmery riff.