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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

808 Havana Heartbreak

2/22/2018
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In Camila Cabello's "Havana" we hear both her Cuban roots and the sounds of East Atlanta. Though the singer and her featured guest, Young Thug, collectively represent these two identities, the song says much more in its musical references. The Roland TR-808 kick drum evokes an entire repertoire of Atlanta Hip Hop. The supporting piano rhythms descend from Cuban mountain towns, through sorrowful songs that lament the loss of one's traditional home. Also in this episode, we discuss with Hannah...

Duration:00:57:23

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. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

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 whole and came out 25 years in the past. Today's artists are reviving the past through nostalgic reference to music of their childhood. 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: Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B - Finesse Charlie Puth ft. Boyz II Men - If...

Duration:00:34:00

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...

Duration:00:37:28

BONUS: Dua Lipa's Minor Mantra (w Emily Bootle)

12/27/2017
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Charlie talks laments, Baroque opera, and gender politics in Dua Lipa's sleeper hit "New Rules" with writer Emily Bootle. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:18:04

All I Want for Xmas is a Year in Review Episode

12/14/2017
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Charlie and Nate breakdown Mariah Carey's classic "All I Want for Christmas is You" and revisit their favorite tracks of 2017. Sleigh bells abound. Featuring •Mariah Carey - All I Want For Christmas •Laura Marling - Semper Femina •Lorde - Melodrama •Khalid - Location •Dua Lipa - New Rules •Logic - Everybody / 1-800-273-8255 •Childish Gambino - Redbone •Sampha - (No One Knows Me) Like the piano in my mothers house •Father John Misty - Pure Comedy •Jay-Z: 4:44 •Perfume Genius -...

Duration:00:40:53

Björk's Emotional Landscapes

11/30/2017
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Björk is uniquely both a pop star and avant-garde composer. Though her music often challenges our ears, underneath her records you'll find more in common with today's pop music than you'd expect. Pieced together, you'll hear that she paints emotional landscapes composed of all the complexities of human experience. We give you a way to enjoy listening to her music. Using this hybrid pop/modernist method, we deconstruct her latest album Utopia. Plus Nate & Charlie fall in love all over...

Duration:00:39:02

70. Kendrick Lamar's HUMBLE w. guest Amber Mark

10/19/2017
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With Charlie off the grid, Nate sits down with singer/producer Amber Mark to explore the different levels of Kendrick's hit HUMBLE.. Then, they turn to the diverse influences (including house music, Carnatic samples, and autodidactic piano chords) behind Mark's own track "Lose My Cool." Featuring: Kendrick Lamar - HUMBLE. Amber Mark - Lose My Cool Amber Mark - SPACE Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Duration:00:33:36

69. Demi Lovato is Not Sorry

10/5/2017
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Demi Lovato's latest, "Sorry Not Sorry" is at once an unapologetic anthem of defiance and a super catchy mashup of multiple genres. As we'll see, every small musical choice is here for a reason, together fostering Lovato's message of ascension—or even, transcendence. And as we pick apart "Sorry Not Sorry," we'll go to some surprising places ourselves including: Klezmer melodies, spiritual pretzels and musical dementors. Featuring: •Demi Lovato - Sorry Not Sorry •Cardi B - Bodak...

Duration:00:38:30

68. How to 'Feels' the Groove

9/21/2017
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How does a song with nonsense lyrics capture our attention, making us want to move? It is called the groove. Enter Calvin Harris' "Feels" (ft. Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams and Big Sean). Known for mainstreaming EDM, Harris throws out the software and picks up hardware instruments on this track. Upon first listen, this might seem like a sleeper hit, but as the loop repeats, you're going to want to move your feet. With intricate rhythmic interplay, the bass, drums, keys and guitar seem to...

Duration:00:32:59

67. Anthems of Resilience - Kesha and Imagine Dragons [LIVE]

9/7/2017
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This episode of Switched on Pop comes at you live from Block Island, RI, recoded in front of an audience of friends and family following a solar eclipse. Fittingly, the two songs discussed that day formed their own kind of syzygy. Kesha's "Praying" and Imagine Dragon's "Believer" are inverse anthems of resilience. Both tracks seek catharsis - one through prayer, the other through pain. Featuring

Duration:00:42:20

66. The Many Worlds of "Despacito"

8/10/2017
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What has catapulted Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee's "Despacito" to the top spot on the Billboard charts? Sorry, typo—to its status as the biggest song in the world? Your hosts explore the many worlds of "Despacito" in search of an answer. Featuring: Lusi Fonsi ft Daddy Yankee - Despacito Luis Fonsi ft Daddy Yankee y Justin Bieber - Despacito (Remix) Luis Fonsi y Juan Luis Guerra - Llegaste Tú Major Lazer ft Justin Bieber - Cold Water Los Del Rio - Macarena Daddy Yankee -...

Duration:00:32:56

65. Selena Gomez: Bad Liar, Psycho Songwriter

7/13/2017
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Selena Gomez's "Bad Liar" stands out on the charts by doing things a little differently: it's a subtle, at times even awkward, summer surprise. Breaking down this pop morsel reveals it has teeth, though—and not just because it borrows a bass line from the Talking Heads' macabre "Psycho Killer." This is a fun one. Come along for the ride. Featuring: • Selena Gomez - Bad Liar • Julia Michaels - Issues • Selena Gomez - Same Old Love • Talking Heads - Psycho Killer

Duration:00:44:33

64. Breaking Down Alanis Morissette (and our own Preconceptions) with guest Andrea Warner

6/29/2017
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Author, critic and podcaster Andrea Warner joins for a throwback episode exploring politics in Lilith Fair, harmonic anger in Alanis Morissette's iconic "You Oughta Know," and the blind spots in your host's assessment of women in rock. Featuring: •Alanis Morissette - You Oughta Know Artists mentioned by Andrea Warner: SZA Ibeyi The Overcoats Lizzo

Duration:00:32:54

63. Morgan Page Reveals the Rule of 3 in Julia Michaels and Maroon 5

6/16/2017
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Your brain can only hear three things at the same time. What you may not know is that musicians use this cognitive limitation to guide your listening all the time. Charlie and Nate are joined by Grammy Nominee music producer Morgan Page to reveal the secrets of this ubiquitous technique. Listening to Julia Michaels' hit "Issues," we unveil how the rule of three is used to draw our attention and keep us free from sonic distraction. And we look at how Maroon 5's "Cold" uses the same...

Duration:00:46:05

62. DJ Khaled - I'm The One... six... four... five

6/1/2017
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DJ Khaled, Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper, Quavo from Migos and Lil Wayne have allied for a new smash hit: "I'm The One." Despite the star power present, the resulting track is less than the sum of its parts—repetitive, derivative, uninventive. And yet, the lackluster "I'm The One" sits comfortably at the top of the charts, which raises the question: why?? Our answer: because Khaled and company understand the bewitching power of tonal harmony, and they've utilized the most surefire chord...

Duration:00:38:51

61. Musical Architecture in Charlie Puth + HAIM

5/19/2017
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Two new songs have captured the attention of your hosts—Charlie Puth's "Attention" and HAIM's "Want You Back." On the surface, these two songs appear to have little in common. A closer look, though, reveals the subtle musical architecture undergirding each track, a perfect balance of symmetry and asymmetry that keeps reeling us in for more. Featuring: • Charlie Puth ft. Meghan Trainor - Marvin Gaye • Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth - See You Again • Charlie Puth ft. Selene Gomez - We...

Duration:00:42:19

58. What's to Love About Ed Sheeran? (guest Ross Golan)

4/7/2017
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Songwriter Ross Golan comes over to start up a conversation, encouraging us to follow his lead and give Ed Sheeran's chart-annihilating record "Shape of You" a chance. Ross, a studio vet with multiple #1 hits (including numbers discussed on this very podcast, such as Ariana Grande's "Dangerous Woman" and Selena Gomez's "Same Old Love") is the ideal guest to convince a skeptical Charlie and Nate that Sheeran might have a song handmade for somebodies like them. Plus, Ross takes us behind the...

Duration:00:44:01

53. The Puzzle of Ariana Grande's "Into You" (with K. Flay)

1/26/2017
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"Into You" was one of the biggest hits of 2016, the stellar production of reclusive legend Max Martin combining with the acrobatic vocals of Ariana Grande to create an undeniable, ubiquitous earworm. With "Into You" still burning up the charts, we dive deep to uncover the insane puzzles, Trompe-l'oiel tricks and Baroque games that lie under the surface of this morsel of pop perfection. PLUS, brilliant rocker and rapper K. Flay joins to discuss the mysteries of Ariana Grande and takes us...

Duration:00:48:09

52. Seduced by the Sound: The Weeknd + Daft Punk

1/12/2017
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"I Feel it Coming" might be the slowest burning jam to hit the charts in ages, in which the Weeknd enlists the robotic hum of Daft Punk to help craft a perfectly calibrated climate of desire. Brilliant, sexy songs don't just appear out of thin air, though, so we reveal how this song's perpetual excitement is hard-won through references to past stars of sultriness like Michael and Marvin while employing its own bag of tricks to turn up the heat. Featuring: •The Weeknd + Daft Punk - I Feel...

Duration:00:25:08

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