Follow Billboard. All rights reserved. If albums had something of a soft landing on the pop landscape in , then songs more than picked up the headline-grabbing slack. The Man and Sam Hunt did so domestically. And even with all this, it was still a year where the very best singles might not have been the very biggest. Lady Gaga, "The Cure". Following her rootsy, personal Joanne LP, "The Cure" comes across like Gaga's concession to radio's now waning love affair with trop-pop.
Featuring eleven Number 1s, including Dua Lipa, Calvin Harris and Clean Bandit.
9. JAY-Z, “Story of O.J.”
Follow Billboard. All rights reserved. And of course, if there was a week in which sales and streams or just general excitement seemed to be lagging, the pop machine reverted to a tried-and-true formula established as a sure shot back in ' Just throw Justin Bieber on it. Here are our 50 favorite songs of so far -- the biggest hits, the songs that fell through the cracks, and everything in between. Note: Songs were considered eligible for this list if they were either released in or peaked on the Hot during that time — unless they already appeared on our list. Logic feat. Chris Stapleton, "Second One to Know". You knew Chris could rock, too, right? Lana Del Rey, "Love". To be young and in love….
I n a sea of songs, it can be hard to pick the ones that float to the top. They might be the ones that rise to the top of the charts, or the ones inspiring think pieces and late-night conversations. But no matter what, they reflect our cultural moment. More explicit social commentary has a place here, in the form of thoughtful hip-hop from the likes of JAY-Z and Frank Ocean. And there are a few surprises—like an unassuming Oldies-style hit from a low-key rock outfit , and a song that speaks to a feminist moment in the form of purest pop gold from a bold voice on the rise. Here Ballerini hits all the right notes: a personal story told in a way that makes it universally relatable; a sparkling, unhurried melody; a nostalgic mood. Buy it on iTunes. Not many year-old fathers are also at the top of their musical careers.
If you're not diligent, music can pass you by. That's true now more than ever. Artists have the tools to create and release new music at any moment with the push of a button. This means any newcomer—any passionate or lonely kid in a room with a song in his or her head—can have as much power as any established artist with a SoundCloud. In many ways the streaming age has become the great equalizer. Lil Peep, a largely unknown emo rapper, can amass internet fame and help direct the future of a new hybrid genre. Yet music this year was defined by outrage, by progress, by passion and escapism. Listen to our Spotify playlist here or at the bottom of the page.