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Switched On Pop

Panoply

Pop music surrounds us, but how often do we really listen to what we’re hearing? Switched on Pop is the podcast that pulls back the curtain on pop music. Each episode, join musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding as they reveal the secret formulas that make pop songs so infectious. By figuring out how pop hits work their magic, you’ll fall in love with songs you didn’t even know you liked.

Pop music surrounds us, but how often do we really listen to what we’re hearing? Switched on Pop is the podcast that pulls back the curtain on pop music. Each episode, join musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding as they reveal the secret formulas that make pop songs so infectious. By figuring out how pop hits work their magic, you’ll fall in love with songs you didn’t even know you liked.
More Information

Location:

United States

Networks:

Panoply

Description:

Pop music surrounds us, but how often do we really listen to what we’re hearing? Switched on Pop is the podcast that pulls back the curtain on pop music. Each episode, join musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding as they reveal the secret formulas that make pop songs so infectious. By figuring out how pop hits work their magic, you’ll fall in love with songs you didn’t even know you liked.

Language:

English


Episodes

The Side Effects of Pop Music with Emily Warren

9/18/2018
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Emily Warren is one of the great rising stars of contemporary songwriting. Her song "Side Effects" with The Chainsmokers is currently rising up the charts. You’ve also heard her writing on Dua Lipa’s "New Rules." She’s collaborated with many of the best performers in music earning her a Grammy and multi-platinum success with “Don’t Let Me Down.” She's also recently released her single "Paranoid." Emily is a real songwriters songwriter. Her process is as much therapy as art. Together we break...

Duration:00:46:54

Drake vs Drake

9/6/2018
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Drake, per usual, has been inescapable this summer. "In My Feelings" and "Nice For What" top the charts, but there's depth to these bangers. We argue for hearing one as a meditation on fragile masculinity, the other as a paean to NOLA Bounce. Continue the conversation with us on Instagram and Twitter: @SwitchedOnPop Songs discussed: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:47:05

Summer Heat of the 2000s: Beyoncé and Black Eyed Peas (Pt. II)

8/23/2018
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The final episode of our Switched on Summer throwback series finds us deconstructing more early aughts bangers. Under consideration: two of the biggest hits since Y2K, Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love" and the Black Eyed Peas' "I Got a Feeling." Tune in to dig how these tracks keeps the temperature rising through harmonic suspension, and to ask if will.i.am cribbed "Chopsticks." Switched On Summer Winner: Slow Dance Congrats to Slow Dance for winning our Switched On Summer contest with their song...

Duration:00:33:14

Summer Heat of the 2000s: Nelly + Katy Perry (Pt. 1)

8/9/2018
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What made summer jams of the aughties like Nelly's "Hot in Herre" and Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl" so hot? The answer: big, sweaty, doses of harmonic tension. Specifically, each track relies on the Baroque technique of the ground bass. Wait, we mean: the Baroque technique of PEDAL POINT! When the chords in these songs don't match up with their bass notes, the ratcheting tension adds heat—fueling both dance moves, and controversy. Featuring: Nelly - Hot in Herre Katy Perry - I Kissed a...

Duration:00:27:33

Why is 90s Pop so Bizarre?

7/27/2018
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The Switched on Pop Summer Throwback Series continues! This time, with a deep dive into the musical detritus of the 1990s. In true 90s fashion, our episode is inspired by a pair of classic VH1 shows; "Behind the Music" and "Where Are They Now?" Our subjects are two songs representing the lunatic fringe of 90s culture, "Cotton Eyed Joe" and "How Bizarre." In the course of our musicological investigation, we uncover dark truths about these seemingly anodyne hits that will make you question...

Duration:00:51:13

The Resistance is Dancing in the Streets

7/12/2018
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Our Switched on Summer Throwback Series continues with "Dancing in the Street," the 1964 Motown hit by Martha and the Vandellas that was co-written by none other than Marvin Gaye. Over 50 years and countless covers later, we explore how this song still manages to get people off their feet and onto the streets—not just to dance, but also to raise their voices in joy, catharsis, and protest. Also, start making your own summer hits with our Switched On Summer repack on Splice at...

Duration:00:32:48

Switched on Summer: Getting Around with the Beach Boys

6/28/2018
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Our Switched on Summer throwback mini-series begins in the heart of the 1960s, with the Beach Boys' perennial school's-out jam "I Get Around." We explore how every aspect of Brian Wilson's two-minute-long masterpiece is perfectly calculated to literally "get around"—harmonically, melodically, and lyrically—creating that unbeatable feeling of cruising all over town with the top down on a hot summer's night. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:31:13

Announcing Switched On Summer Throwback Series

6/21/2018
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This summer we’re going to be doing a Switched On Summer series, breaking down your favorite summer pop hits from the 60s to the present. We’re talking about Beach Boys to Beyonce. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:01:29

The Pure Pop of Charlie Puth + Carly Rae (ft Hanif Abdurraqib)

6/14/2018
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Part I: The Doctors Are In! We diagnose a listener's musical malady, namely: "why does Charlie Puth's new jam 'BOY' make us feel so weird?!" Part II: Guest Hanif Adburraqib, author of They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us, helps break down Carly Rae Jepsen's epic "Cut to the Feeling" to understand why CRJ is a different kind of pop star. Featuring: •Charlie Puth - BOY •Ismael Miranda - Recordando •Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - Nobody's Baby •The Beatles - She's a Woman •The Cars -...

Duration:00:47:30

Afrofuturism in Kali Uchis & Clipping (with Daveed Diggs, William Hutson and Jonathan Snipes)

5/31/2018
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Parliament Funkadelic has had waves of influence on popular music. Their Afrofuturist message and infectious grooves built the backbone of 70s funk, was revived in the 90s with Dr. Dre's G-Funk, and is once again in vogue with in the music of Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino and Kali Uchis. Bootsy Collins, bass player of Parliament Funkadelic, collaborated with Kali Uchis and Tyler the Creator on the track "After The Storm," which draws on the P-Funk sound. Similarly, Clipping pay homage to...

Duration:00:49:56

Finding Equanimity In 'No Tears Left To Cry'

5/17/2018
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Ariana Grande has returned with a track that is jarring yet simultaneously catchy. She uses sophisticated musical techniques to tell a story of healing, resiliency, and hope after the attack at her concert in Manchester. Listeners will learn techniques like tempo rubato, modal interchange and amen breaks, which weave together this equanimous narrative. Songs featured: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:37:59

Can AI 'Algorhythms' Write Pop Songs? (With Taryn Southern)

5/3/2018
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There is a lot of scare about the impending future of artificial intelligence making humans irrelevant. Musician Taryn Southern examines this narrative through her song “Life Support,” written with the aid of AI composition tools. We dispel current myths about AI music and discuss its future opportunities. In the second half of the show we run a musical 'Turing test' to see if you can identify music made by a bot from that composed by the hand of a human. Learn more about your ad choices....

Duration:00:55:41

Listening Differently to Lorde | with MARIAN HILL

4/19/2018
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Samantha Gongol and Jeremy Lloyd are songwriting duo Marian Hill and they are here to share their annoyingly sharp insights on music. They come bearing the wistful pop of Lorde's "Ribs," and we deconstruct its primordial roots in classical composers like Scelsi, Beethoven and Haydn. Then, we turn to Marian Hill's new single "Differently" to uncover the subtle musical shifts that outline a complex dialogue lurking among the track's sparse, funky textures. Songs Discussed: Lorde -...

Duration:00:43:14

Kacey Musgraves Gives Us Butterflies

4/5/2018
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On her single 'Butterflies,' Kacey Musgraves demonstrates a tour de force of songwriting. This song is a wild success because it incessantly reinforces one core emotional concept: that queasy anxious feeling in your stomach. No we're not talking about your leftover lunch, we're talking about love. But this is not just a simple little love song. It is a masterclass of creativity. Musgraves uses every element of music to reinforce her core idea. The lyrics fold back onto themselves with dual...

Duration:00:29:27

Gucci Gang and the Neural Substrate of Subjective Time Dilation

3/22/2018
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In which Nate tries to convince Charlie that Lil Pump's SoundCloud Rap hit "Gucci Gang" warps the perceptual present. Featuring: Lil Pump - Gucci Gang Gustav Mahler - Der Abschied / Das Lied von der Erde Franz Schubert - String Quintet / Adagio Conlon Nancarrow - Study for Prepared Piano 21 Check out Jonathan Berger's article on musical time in Nautilus. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:28:21

How to 'Make Me Feel' with Lizzo

3/8/2018
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"Make Me Feel," is the first hit from Janelle Monáe's upcoming album Dirty Computer. It is a sensual song about the fluidity of desire. In the pre-chorus, the singer proudly expresses that she is a "sexual bender." Fans have embraced the song for breaking free of normative sexual expectations. But these non-binary statements aren't limited to the lyrics. The message is reinforced with musical concepts drawn from the blues, Prince and Michael Jackson. To help break down this track, Nate and...

Duration:00:51:17

808s & Havana Heartbreak

2/22/2018
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In Camila Cabello's "Havana" we hear both her Cuban roots and the modern sounds of Atlanta. Though the singer and featured guest Young Thug reference these two geographic identities, the song says so much more through its core musical elements. A Roland TR-808 kick drum evokes an entire repertoire of Atlanta Hip Hop, while the track's supporting piano montuno descends from a Cuban style lamenting the loss of one's traditional home. Also in this episode, we discuss Camila's unlikely path to...

Duration:00:57:00

My My My! Troye Sivan + Queer Pop (w Gina Delvac, Darryl Bullock)

2/8/2018
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Gina Delvac of the Call Your Girlfriend podcast and Darryl W Bullock, author of David Bowie Made Me Gay, join Nate and Charlie to dig into the poetry of Troye Sivan's "My My My!", the history of LGBT pop music, and the songs we love to hate. And also be sure to check out: Darryl Bullock's playlist of LGBT pop, from his book David Bowie Made Me Gay and the brilliant Call Your Girlfriend podcast, produced by Gina. Featuring: •Troye Sivan - My My My! •Taylor Swift - Style •West Side...

Duration:01:00:00

90s Nostalgia in Bruno Mars and Charlie Puth

1/25/2018
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The 90s are back. It is as if pop music entered a black hole and came out 25 years in the past. Today's artists are reviving the new jack swing and vocal R&B, creating a wave of 90s nostalgia. Uncover how they trick us into somehow loving those days when we got beat up in the middle school parking lot. Spotify 90s Nostalgia playlist: https://open.spotify.com/user/switchedonpop/playlist/3beUwxOxzbTZ8M3aymZlg5 Featuring: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:33:08

Justin Timberlake's Identity Crisis

1/11/2018
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What's up with Justin Timberlake? Two years ago he gifted us the ebullient family-friendly jam "Can't Stop the Feeling," now he's on the cusp of a deeply serious new record called "Man of the Woods," whose first single, strangely, is a bit of electro-funk snarl expertly produced by long-time collaborators Timbaland and Danja. What's going on here—who is JT trying to be? We listen deep to his latest, "Filthy," to try and understand its creator's conflicting musical worlds. Featuring: Justin...

Duration:00:37:28