Jingle Jams Playlist

Monday, February 28, 2011

Ben E. King - Stand By Me

Ben E. King jump-started his career with the release of "Spanish Harlem" in 1961, but his  biggest success came with his hit "Stand By Me." This song has been dubbed a song of the century and claims its place in the Rock'n'roll Hall of Fame. With a number of covers done by artists such as Aretha Franklin and Luther Vandross, there is no question that one of the many versions should make it onto your playlist. I prefer to go with the originals, but I cannot complain too much when Vandross or Franklin do a sweet cover of a great song.

Listen Now: Ben E. King - Stand By Me
Ben. E King - Stand By Me Download
Ben E. King Stand By Me Lyrics

Friday, February 25, 2011

Prince - Purple Rain

Sorry folks, but I just cannot help myself, I am inclined to put up "Purple Rain." After last nights, epic 3 hour performance, it is only right to include this. After playing for nearly 2.5 hours, Prince left the stage, only to return with a sweet performance of Purple Rain followed by a medley of a number of different songs including "When Doves Cry" and "Kiss." Then, he finally closed the show with "Rasperry Beret"

Listen Now: Prince - Purple Rain
Prince - Purple Rain Download
Prince - Purple Rain Lyrics

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Zapp & Roger - Computer Love

If you think T-Pain pioneered the use of auto tunes, think again. Zapp & Roger swept the nation with their computerized voices before T-Pain spoke his first word. Unlike T-Pain, Zapp & Roger put you on with choruses together that involve a little more than "buying you a drank."

In their 1980s hit, "Computer Love", Zapp & Roger talk about a love that is truer than ever in this day in age. Shit, with Facebook and Skype, I can have:

"A special girl (ooh, yea)
To share in my computer world
I no longer need a strategy
Thanks to modern technology"

Today, computer love only leads to cybersex and cybersex is the latest craze. So, next time your staring
at your computer screen, into the eyes of your lover, remember to give em a
taste of Zapp & Roger. They did have sexy mamas on their computer screens
long before the emergence of the internet, much less Skype.

Listen Now: Zapp & Roger - Computer Love
Zapp & Roger - Computer Love Download
Zapp & Roger - Computer Love Lyrics

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Prince - I Wanna Be Your Lover

Prince is coming to Oakland! That's right, him along with Sheila E and the former Sly & The Family Stone bassist will all be performing together. If that is not enough, then throw in Carlos Santana. I will say that tomorrow is going to be a funk-filled night. So, in response, I feel like it is only right to put some of the legends music up on the site. After all, Prince is sex.

While "Kiss", "Little Red Corvette" and "Purple Rain" would have all sufficed, I cannot help myself to throw on "I Wanna Be Your Lover." Let's just say that it does not get much more direct than "I wanna be the only man you cum for." Prince always had a way with words and I am stoked to see the legend perform.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On

Let's Get It On. Need I say more?

Marvin Gaye - Let's Get It On Download request for removal by server host.

O'Jays - Stairway to Heaven

Another request from a good friend. Chris Hansen called out for me to put some O'Jays up, so here we go. While Coors might have ruined "Love Train" for you, with their excessive commercials, it would take quite a bit more than that to turn you off of "Stairway to Heaven." It is one of those songs that lets your imagination run wild, it lets you decide what the song might be about. We all know what its about when it comes to Jingle Jams. And if you are not "climbing the stairway to heaven [and] walking the road to ecstasy" then you ain't going nowhere.

If you can get down with "Stairway to Heaven" then you will most certainly also love "Use Ta Be My Girl" which is a jam nonetheless.

Listen Now: O'Jays - Stairway To Heaven
O'Jays - Stairway To Heaven Download
O'Jays - Stairway To Heaven Lyrics

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Lee Fields & The Expressions - Ladies

Lovely ladies. 
Beautiful ladies. 
You're so fine, so fine."

A soul song titled "Ladies" can only be a great track. Lee Fields turns it on with heavy horns and a up-tempo drum beat and let's face it, ladies is possibly the best theme for a song. For all those beautiful ladies out there, you best believe:

"You're sugar. You're spice and everything nice.
A man is incomplete without a lady in his life."

This chorus makes me want to do two things: jingle and groove. If you cannot get down with that, then you might as well get on the Justin Bieber bandwagon. Now that we know what real music is, lets do what my man Lee says and all you ladies sing it with me.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Dion & The Belmonts - Dream Lover

My friend showed me Dion a couple of weeks ago and as a big Sinatra, Vallie and Martin fan, I could get down with him. "Runaround Sue" is definitely an eye-catcher, but does not quite cut it as a jingle jam. Although "Dream Lover" was originally written and recorded by Bobby Darin, Dion has a marvelous cover. In that era, it was common for artists to cover other songs, in fact the majority of Frank Sintara's music is a collection of covers.

The upbeat soulful tempo paired with a rock style, makes it a song for any occasion. Whether it is for easy listening, grooving on the dance floor or jingling, "Dream Lover" should be your song of choice.

Listen Now: Dion & The Belmonts - Dream Lover
Dion & The Belmonts - Dream Lover Download
Dion & The Belmonts - Dream Lover Lyrics

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Talib Kweli - Love Language

I know we are stepping away from the theme again, but much like Common, Talib Kweli makes a strong point to be on here. He, along with a number of other rappers, including Jay-Z, is the face of the 1990s Brooklyn hip-hop scene. Back then, hip-hop actually had a meaning.

In "Love Language" he makes it very simple to follow: "The language of love cannot be translated." He laces the track with a smooth drum beat and a soothing chorus in French, the so-called love language:

"L'amour n'a pas de, frontiere (Love has no boundaries)
Restes car je t'aime comme tu es (Stay because I love you as you are)
J'ai traverse l'ocean du verbe (I crossed an ocean of words)
Et je t'ai trouve (And I found you)"

Monday, February 14, 2011

Betty Wright - Tonight is the Night

I have been listening to a lot of female Soul and R&B artists lately: Etta James, Tina Turner, Billie Holliday, Aretha Franklin and of course Betty Wright. Wright has a powerful voice and matches it with equally powerful lyrics. With a number of her songs being all about sex, she was able to paint a picture of something that most women would have been scared to voice publicly.

"This is the story of a young girl making love for the very first time . . . So everybody, think back to your very first time" That is about all you need to know about "Tonight is the Night" to know that it belongs here.

Listen Now: Betty Wright - Tonight is the Night
Betty Wright - Tonight is the Night Download
Betty Wright - Tonight is the Night Lyrics

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sam Cooke - Wonderful World

One of the godfathers of soul music, Sam Cooke, turned 80 years old just two weeks ago. Founding the sound that guys like Brenton Wood and Smokey Robinson so perfectly encapsulated down the road, Cooke is a legend of Motown. Something that I would have loved to see is a collaboration between Sam Cooke, Smokey Robinson and Brenton Wood. That smooth Motown sound does not get much better than this trio of greats.

Finding a Sam Cooke song to post was not a problem at all, it was choosing one out of his many. Tracks like "Cupid", "Smoke Rings" and "You Send Me" will definitely set the mood, but nothing quite does it like the young lovers story in "Wonderful World."

"I may not know much about algebra
But I do know that one and one is two
and if this one could be with you
what a wonderful world this would be"

Listen Now: Sam Cooke - Wonderful World
Sam Cooke - Wonderful World Download
Sam Cooke - Wonderful World Lyrics

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Etta James - At Last

Though "At Last" might be best suited for your wedding night, you might want to pack a copy of Etta James most prized album: Love Songs for more than just your honeymoon. If the title of the album does not tell it all, then surely the words to the song will:

"And here we are in heaven
For you are mine
At last"

"At Last" did not win a Grammy for nothing. Etta James, one of the greatest female artists to do it, has already inked herself in the history books with her jazzy and soulful style. And I am sure that if you enjoyed "At Last" that you will also enjoy "Sunday Kind of Love."

Listen Now: Etta James - At Last
Etta James - At Last Download
Etta James - At Last Lyrics

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Common - The Light

I know we are straying from the theme a little bit by bringing Common into the picture, but we have got to give J. Dilla some respect - R.I.P. 

While you might be more familiar with tracks like "Go" or even "Make My Day", From the album Like Water for Chocolate comes "The Light." Written in the style of a love-letter, Common confesses his love for his lady over a smooth piano and drum sample so masterfully created by your man Jay D.

It is rare that you hear a good love song in Hip-Hop, but The Light sends as good of a message as any song and deserves a spot on that playlist right alongside the other greats on this site. Common is a lyricist to say the least and you would be stupid not to develop an addiction to his music . . . especially with lines like this:

"I never call you my bitch or even my boo
There's so much in a name and so much more in you"

Listen Now: Common - The Light
Common - The Light Download
Common - The Light Lyrics

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

K.C. & The Sunshine Band - Boogie Shoes

If you don't like disco, then fuck you! K.C. & The Sunshine Band has got to be the funkiest group of whiteboys I know, and as a whiteboy myself, I can dig that. While "Boogie Shoes" is about as far from disco as The Sunshine Band goes, it is a classic in my book. While this song makes you wanna groove, I think that K.C. and the gang had a different idea when they recorded it:

"I wanna do it until the sun comes up
I wanna do it 'til I can't get enough"

Here, I can only assume that K.C. is not talking about dancing. So strap on your boogie shoes and get ready to get down. Listen Now: K.C. & The Sunshine Band.

K.C. & The Sunshine Band Download
K.C. & The Sunshine Band Lyrics

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Isley Brothers - Footsteps in the Dark

If their outfits are any indication of how suave their sound is, then you know the Isley Brothers could bring down the house. They come on the scene with an all-time classic, "Shout", which was covered repeatedly and featured in a number of films, including Animal House. Sticking with the same tune, they recorded "Twist & Shout" which was made world-famous by the Beatles not too long after its release. Even after this, the original 3 Isley's decided to team up with their younger brothers to make the collective album 3 + 3, featuring "For the Love of You" and "Between the Sheets" which will certainly make it onto Jingle Jams at some point. Of course, I encourage you to check out those links and have a listen.

Today we are going to get a little taste of "Footsteps in the Dark." This track was released as a single and was eventually placed on the double-platinum album, Go for Your Guns. If Ernie Isley's killer guitar riffs in this track do not get you movin' and groovin', then I do not know what will. Listen Now: Isley Brothers - Footsteps in the Dark.

Isley Brothers - Footsteps in the Dark Download
Isley Brothers - Footsteps in the Dark Lyrics