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With all the genres and sub-genres it can be difficult to identify mainstream pop, the genre that is perceived to impact popular culture, that targets teens.

If you’ve been out-of-touch with popular music, then follow these tips to pin down the current pop sound. Plus, you’ll appear to be hip with your peers, with your finger on the pulse.

For starters, you can go to the Billboard Pop Charts and sift through the top 20.  Spotify and Shazam will also show you what’s trending. These particular charts are reflective of popular culture but may not paint the best picture. Artists outside of the mainstream like Hozier and Gotye can slip through the cracks which would not mirror the current sound.

Here is a tried–and–true tip. Seek out the older women who wants to revive her former career at pop radio.

Old timers on big labels that want another shot at fame will hire 20 songwriters, 20 producers, a hip stylist, and videographer, with the hope of climbing their way back on the top 40 charts. All in all, they are hoping to penetrate the minds and the emotions of the teens. CONTINUE READING

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Secret Weapons

Secret Weapons who I wrote about last year found themselves on tour this month across the U.S with Weezer, Fall Out Boy, Panic! At the Disco, and wrapping up with a date on Lollapalooza.

The NYC duo which consists of Gerry Lange and Dan E have built momentum since they day they met in math class. Influenced by the likes of Tears for Fears, Cyndi Lauper, and Hall & Oates, the Brooklyn born indie act heated up the blogosphere and the Spotify charts with their debut radio-ready single Something New.

Now with a high profile tour on the way, these boys will have a chance at proving themselves to a larger audience with performance and song. The audience tonight is already convinced who bought tickets to their sold-out one-night-only headlining show at the Bowery Ballroom tonight. Check out my favorite track Perfect World.

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California surfer turned-musician is showing off his capabilities of creating the best of brit pop. Singer-songwriter Cody, influenced by the likes of The Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel, and who goes under the moniker of Gonzalla released his latest track We Still Run.

Having grown up in sunny Huntington Beach and spending time in the UK, came the formulation of his beachy-eloquent indie pop.  He notes “I was in the U.K. to pursue my music career and cut my teeth with the musicians I had been listening to — for example, Dan Croll, Rhodes, Bombay Bicycle Club, and Ben Leftwich.”

Next March is a long time out, but I think he will be next years SXSW buzz artist.

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Check out the new single Bitter Sea by Braeves. It’s charming-intelligent indie rock at its finest.

The trio made a big move from NYC to Los Angeles creating some noise. The band recorded the single with Raymond Richards producer of Gorilla Manor for Local Natives with Dave Trumfio (Wilco, Built to Spill) mixing.  Bitter Sea is popping up on a several playlists and early press includes a feature from Impose Magazine

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The popular charts have turned a blind eye to guitar-driven rock bands lately, but leave it to New Yorkers Major Crush rockers to shake things up.

Brothers Kenny & Tommy started the band while skateboarding and listening to hair metal.  Learning the entire Van Halen catalog on guitar at 16, Kenny has built a reputation as the new guitar hero of rock music.

Having built a solid underground following, their latest track You Ain’t A Saint draws comparisons from Def Leppard to Fall Out Boy and 1975, and they performed the popular three day festival Rocklahoma several times

The new full length Trophy Kids was produced by Stacy O’Dell and mixed by Kato Khandwala (The Pretty Reckless, Paramore), and will be released on July 29th.  For those about to rock, we salute you!

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