November 2011

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Artist SpotlightsEvents

Welcome 2 Canada: Prince Embarks on Extensive Canadian Tour


Pop icon Prince has such a penchant for grand musical concepts and ideas that his eccentricity is now a large part of why he’s a household name. That his 34-date “Welcome 2 America” tour was as epic as it was should come as no surprise: his shows often clocked in at an impressive three hours, and were supported by secret opening acts that included Esperanza Spalding, Janelle Monáe, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Cee-Lo Green, and Chaka Khan, among others.

On November 25th, the groundbreaking musician will take his ambitious tour north of the border on the “Welcome 2 Canada” tour, meaning that fans in every province between Quebec and British Columbia will have a chance to catch a show for the first time since 2002.

Such an occasion begs for celebration, so we’ve compiled a playlist of Ultimate Prince songs to help get you in the mood. Many of these could be played in your city, so don’t forget to grab tickets while you still can.

Welcome 2 Canada Tour Dates

  • November 25 - Toronto, ON - Air Canada Centre
  • November 26 - Toronto, ON - Air Canada Centre
  • November 30 - Halifax, NS - Metro Centre
  • December 02 - Montreal, PQ - Bell Centre
  • December 03 - Ottawa, ON - Scotiabank Place
  • December 05 - London, ON - John Labatt Centre
  • December 08 - Winnipeg, MB - MTS Centre
  • December 11 - Saskatoon, SK - Credit Union Centre
  • December 13 - Edmonton, AB - Rexall Place
  • December 16 - Vancouver, BC - Rogers Arena
  • December 17 - Victoria, BC - Save-On Foods Memorial Centre
Artist SpotlightsMusic

Hanging Out: Down With Webster


With the release of debut album Time To Win, Vol. 1, Toronto rap/rock troupe Down With Webster successfully made the leap from their middle-school talent show beginnings to becoming a full-fledged act. It’s with their new album, Time To Win, Vol. 2 that the six-man outfit make their biggest step yet — to a major label.

Time To Win, Vol. 2 demonstrates the band’s readiness to present their big, party-centric sound to a whole new set of ears. To celebrate, Down With Webster have created an exclusive playlist for Rdio, and also let us interview them about their influences.

“As a band we take a lot of pride in how much energy our shows have. For as long as we've been performing, we have a ritual before concerts where we all get together backstage a few minutes before the show, and listen to music that gets us amped up and ready to go. It's pretty silly, we call it ‘getting evil,’ and it mostly involves all of us dancing and making stink faces, but it gives us a chance to get everyone together, in the right head space, pumped up for a show. Here are some of our favorites...”

“Down With Webster's ‘Getting Evil’ Pre-Show Playlist”:

Five Questions with Down With Webster

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    Tyler Armes & Cam Hunter: In the hip hop world, Big L is probably the most underrated rapper of all time. He's incredible, so nasty. He was killed around the same time that Biggy and Tupac were, but never received the same kind of acclaim. Listen to the album The Big Picture. It's great front to back.
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    TA & CH: You'll never get us to agree... so it's better not to even try.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    TA & CH: We all grew up on Stevie Wonder, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Michael Jackson, Weather Report, Prince, Tom Petty, Steely Dan, the music that our parents were into. The first bands that we felt like we "discovered" ourselves and loved were things like Sublime, Nirvana, Soundgarden, Lauryn Hill, Wu-Tang Clan, A Tribe Called Quest and the Chili Peppers.
  4. We hope people are __ when they listen to our music.
    TA & CH: Amped up/Inspired/Happy. Any of those would be fine when they listen to our music.
  5. We were thinking about _when we wrote music for the new album.
    TA & CH: The music that we write is always a reflection of what's going on in our own lives at the time. We always work in a very collaborative way, so on any given song, you might have parts from a few different members perspectives, or ideas that came from different places. The thing that each of the songs on the record shares, is that they made us excited about where we are at right now as a band.

Find Rdio on the Kobo Vox

Screen shot 2011-11-18 at 11.00.14 AM

Would you like some music with your reading material? To compliment their new social eReader, Kobo picked Rdio to come pre-loaded on the new Android-powered Kobo Vox.

Much like Kobo Vox’s social reading features, Rdio helps you discover music through other people — find the perfect reading soundtrack like this Instrumental Music for Reading playlist or the IQ84 book soundtrack.

The next chance you get to sit down and read, add music to the mix.


Exclusive: Luke Bryan Live from the Capitol Street Party


Next up in our series of exclusive live performances from the Capitol Street Party is a contribution from Georgia native Luke Bryan, whose third album, Tailgates & Tanlines, was released just this past August.

The baritone-voiced country singer played the 2010 edition of the festival, and we’re pleased to have three tracks from his upbeat set exclusively on Rdio — listen to Luke Bryan’s Live From Capitol Street Party EP now.

Country fans, stay tuned to the Rdio blog for more live exclusives from the Nashville Capitol Street Party.


A Hirsute and Hilarious Exclusive: Hear the Beards of Comedy

CD1 Beards Cover

Comedians Andy Sandford, Joe Zimmerman, TJ Young and Dave Stone are more than just a bunch of funny men — they’re the Beards of Comedy, a quartet of sharp young comedians whose attention to detail highlights the hilarious quirks of everyday existence. Their online short films, such as “The Fan,” “Basketball,” and the hilarious “Breakfast Banditos” (the latter of which was a front-page feature on slyly use cinematic conventions to set the tone for their subtle skewering of genre-classics like Westerns and Art films.

On November 22, the bearded foursome drop a second comedy album in the form of Cardio Mix. The album features more of the troupe’s insightful pop culture jabs. If you want to hear the album a week before its release, you’ve come to the right place; Rdio is now streaming Cardio Mix in its entirety as part of our Comedy Central Exclusives series.

Listen to Cardio Mix now, and stay tuned — there are just two more exclusives left in this hilarious series.

MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday, November 15, 2011


This week’s new releases have a distinctly Canadian flavor. Alongside the much-heralded return of the great white northern's own rap wunderkind Drake, there is also new music from pop-star Kreesha Turner, whose second album showcases her sprawling musical inspiration, and pop-rock twins Tegan and Sara, whose excellent live show gets its due.

Outside of Canada's prolific musicianship, hear the comprehensive best from classic crooner Frank Sinatra and a fresh album from Ricky Martin along with TV-themed releases like Glee’s second Christmas album and the debut disc from Community’s Donald Glover, aka Childish Gambino. Rounding out this week's New Releases are new tunes by Gym Class Heroes, Sigur Rós, and the recently-disbanded R.E.M..

Playlist Notes

  • R.E.M. - Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage 1982-2011
    Following the band’s surprise break-up last month, iconic indie rock pioneers R.E.M. are issuing one final compendium of their acclaimed catalog's best songs. The compilation includes three new songs, which could be their last ever.

  • Drake - Take Care
    Hyper-popular Toronto singer/rapper Aubrey “Drake” Graham returns to the game today with his sophomore studio album. Drake mentions that he took his time with this album, to make sure it was his best yet. Take Care and decide for yourself by giving it a listen.

  • Childish Gambino - Camp
    Fans of NBC’s hit college comedy Community might not know that actor Donald Glover (Troy Barnes) is also a talented musician. After a number of successful mixtapes, the double-threat is finally dropping his debut studio album, Camp, this week.

  • Glee Cast - Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album Volume 2
    Gleeks everywhere will be excited to hear that their favourite group of musical misfits are releasing a continuation of last year’s Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album. The second volume includes more Glee-ful takes on Christmas classics, including “Santa Baby,” “Let It Snow,” and “Blue Christmas.”

  • deadmau5/Melleefresh - Melleefresh vs. deadmau5: At Play
    Electro-house artists deadmau5 and Melleefresh team up this week to present At Play, a set of tunes on which the duo collaborated. Melleefresh’s sultry alto plays perfectly over deadmau5’s classic bangers, making for a collaboration that has electronic music fans eagerly awaiting its release.


Exclusive: Stream Serenades' Debut EP

Serenades (kopia)

It’s only been a year since we last heard from Swedish indie-poppers Shout Out Louds, but that’s plenty of time for the band’s songwriter Adam Olenius to craft an entire album with fellow countryman and singer-songwriter Markus Krunegård. The duo, known as Serenades, will release a studio full-length soon, but they’re whetting appetites with a new lush EP, titled Come Home, first.

On Come Home, the pair fuse indie pop with a grander musical vision, as strings and drums lend Serenades’ songs the same big sound that you might find in other similar bands like Arcade Fire, Fleet Foxes, and Band of Horses.

The EP is due November 21, but you can hear it a week early, exclusively on Rdio. Listen to the Come Home EP now.


Exclusive: Hear a Sneak Peak of Nick Carter's Remix Album

Nick Carter

Nick Carter is back — this time he has a remix album, and we have the exclusive preview for you with the track, "Not The Other Guy (Saulius V Remix)". Look for I'm Taking Off: Relaunched & Remixed in New Releases next week.

Artist SpotlightsMusic

Get To Know: LIGHTS

Lights Photo

Canadian synth-pop chanteuse LIGHTS has done a lot of growing over the past few years. The Timmins, Ontario-born Valerie Poxleitner catapulted into the spotlight after releasing her self-titled debut EP in 2008, a milestone she quickly followed by releasing her debut full-length, The Listening.

Last month she released her sophomore album, Siberia, to widespread critical acclaim, demonstrating that she was ready to open up to new, developed sounds and textures. Siberia is far grittier than the pitch-perfect pop of LIGHTS’ earlier releases, thanks in no small part to a collaboration with fellow Canucks from electronic sound experimentalist Holy F***.

Fans curious about the origin of LIGHTS’ newfound inspiration should check out her playlist, “Songs I listen to as I drink a little juice and tend to my plants,” as well as a short interview with her, below.

Five Questions with Lights

  1. Who do you think is an important musician that most people have never heard of before?
    LIGHTS: Canadian rapper, Shad. He's so talented and a genuinely good soul, not to mention brilliant. He deserves so much attention. I featured him on my new record, it was an honour to have him!
  2. If you had access to any record in the world, what would you listen to right now?
    L: Right at this moment I would put on Feels by Animal Collective. Man, that record is so creative and easy to listen to.
  3. Which album or artist do you most associate with your childhood?
    L: Joshua Tree by U2 is definitely up there. There are pictures of me sitting by/standing beside/sleeping on the vinyl when I was a wee kid. My dad jammed it all the time.
  4. We hope people are ______________ when they listen to our music.
    L: Inspired and at peace.
  5. We were thinking about ______________ when we wrote music for the new album.
    L: Beats, bass, and honesty.

Exclusive: Preview Kreesha Turner’s Tropic Electric


Canadian-born pop star Kreesha Turner had a tried, tested and true pop sound on her first album — her 2008 single “Don’t Call Me Baby” reached #8 in Canada’s Hot 100 and #1 on the Billboard Dance Charts — but for her second album, she felt she needed to expand her horizons. That album, titled Tropic Electric, promises to reveal more of Turner’s eclectic musical background, adding the influence of dancehall, reggae, and world beat to her mix of R&B, electronic flourishes, and pop.

Tropic Electric is out November 15, but we’ve got an exclusive preview of the album right now, in the form of the “Tropic Electric Mega-Mix”. The seven-minute mix includes samples of six songs from her forthcoming album, including “Rock, Paper, Scissors”, “Love Again,” “I Could Stay,” “Away From You,” “My Kryptonite,” and “Feel My Darling.”

Listen to the “Tropic Electric Mega-Mix” now.