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Skyelyfe’s 20 Best Songs of the 2010s, Ranked

December 11, 2019

(via Unsplash)

When it comes to selecting a personal “best” song, there’s so much more that goes into it than how far it charted on the Billboard Top 40. In fact, that doesn’t play a role to me at all.

What matters is how I felt about the song during its prime, if I feel the same way about the song now, if it had a legitimate “moment” in my life and if it brought some kind of unique sound or formula to the table. With each of these factors in mind, I’ve spent literally all of 2019 jotting down all my most monumental songs of the decade in a notebook as I thought of them.

With 10 years to account for, obviously a slew of songs came to mind. And while I’d have to say music basically died after 2014, the earlier years of the decade brought some of the most iconic songs of all time. Keep reading for skyelyfe’s 20 best songs of the 2010s, ranked. *Note: I left out all remixes even though some were absolutely amazing.

20. ‘Wide Awake’ – Katy Perry (2012)

While probably the last single you think of when you look back on Katy Perry’s iconic Teenage Dream: The Complete Confection album, “Wide Awake” was not only a powerful ballad from the characteristically gimmicky singer, but also one that came out during a trying time in my personal life when I felt like the world was crashing down on me and I was trying to recover from a rough patch. I found the song to be therapeutic in many ways, and I highly respect that this is a detour from much of the singer’s other work.

19. ‘Ice Tray’ – Quality Control, Quavo, Lil Yachty (2017)

This is simply the quintessential song you want to hear on a night out. I can’t tell you how many times I danced to this after-hours. The dark, pulsating track even managed to make Joe Budden relevant again for a hot sec. Had the song come out earlier in the decade, it would have made an even bigger impact, but it definitely holds a special place as one of the best of the latter years.

(via YouTube)

18. ‘I Met You’ – Anna Lunoe + Flume (2012)

2012 was such a year for electronic music. The genre expanded in so many ways, and I was absolutely obsessed with this track. I remember playing this and No. 17 interchangeably nonstop all throughout my work days that year. I very much miss this musical moment.

17. ‘All My Life’ – Gigamesh f./ Jana Nyberg (2012)

Much like the aforementioned track, this was on my Spotify rotation nonstop in 2012—so much so that the app listed it as my most listened to song of that year (not shocking!). Still when I hear it to this day, I don’t like it any less.

(via YouTube)

16. ‘The North’ – Summer Heart (2011)

Summer Heart seemingly came out of nowhere, and this song is hands down one of the most beautifully melodic tracks I’ve ever heard. Not to be fooled by the artist’s name, this song had every bit of a solemn fall vibe, accompanying the season swimmingly that year.

15. ‘Dreaming’ – The Knocks (2014)

The Knocks stole my heart in 2014, and I’ve seen them live countless times since. Their infectious energy lights up a stage, and I truly can’t think of a livelier duo. “Dreaming” is every bit the upbeat track that got me on my feet in 2014 (even when the year got me down).

(via YouTube)

14. ‘Nocturne’ – Wild Nothing (2012)

Seriously bless Wild Nothing. They were my most listened to act of 2012 on Spotify, and have truly never let me down since. They encapsulate everything I could possibly want in a band, with their light, dreamy alt. rock melodies. I can seriously listen to “Nocturne” (and its album of the same name) forever. Just thinking about it makes me happy.

13. ‘Silhouettes’ – Avicii (2012)

Avicii’s tragic death last year was by far one of the most impactful and saddening. Not only a legendary trendsetter in electronic music, the Swedish DJ didn’t seem to have a bad bone in his body (at least from what we know). On top of it all, he created some forever memorable tracks, including what I consider his most underrated, “Silhouettes.” This song takes me back to his then-signature sound when he first hit the scene with “Levels” in 2011. RIP, Avicii.

(via YouTube)

12. ‘Operate’ – ASTR (2013)

Short-lived electronic R&B duo ASTR was an act I found from my old-school favorite indie music blog BitCandy, and I instantly fell in love with them. They disbanded after 2015, but in their time together, Zoe Silverman and Adam Pallin released two insanely outstanding EPs that will forever hold a place in my heart. “Operate” was the first single they released, and therefore the most legendary. I got my entire group of friends hooked, and therefore they definitely made a large dent in my musical memories of the decade.

11. ‘L.A. Lights’ – Grum (2010)

There’s no song like this one (or like the album Heartbeats) on this list. In a shocking move, Grum (aka Graeme Shepherd) went from a retro synth sound to joining the Anjunabeats label going full-force trance. Prior to his musical transition, he released “L.A. Lights,” a beautiful melody that felt ever so fitting to my many late nights under the… L.A. lights.

10. ‘I Get the Bag’ – Gucci Mane f./ Migos (2017)

Out of what was one of the most atrocious years in hip-hop (hip-pop?) came “I Get the Bag,” the Metro Boomin-produced track that made me give Migos a fair chance (I wasn’t big on “Bad and Boujee”). As a longtime fan of Gucci, he absolutely delivers here, on what was one of the best rap songs of the latter part of the decade.

9. ‘Your Love Is My Drug’ – Ke$ha (2010)

And this is where we cue the tears! 2010 was such a magical year for music, and Ke$ha (with then-dollar sign) was a huge proponent of that. Her album Animal came out on the very first day of the decade, setting the precedent for what was probably the best year of my life. This song, album, era brings back so many memories. I know the singer’s in a much healthier, better place now, following her horrifying experience with Dr. Luke, but there’s no denying her songs from the early 2010s will never compare to anything present.

(via YouTube)

8. ‘In the Morning’ – ZHU + Kaskade (2016)

This was my No. 1 song of 2016, and there’s no doubt in my mind why. I only knew like one song by ZHU at this point, but the collab with Kaskade was perfectly executed into melodic bliss, setting the tone for not just my Coachella vibe that year, but for the year as a whole.

7. ‘Slow Love’ – MØ (2014)

I found MØ on the brink of her No Mythologies to Follow album release, and it was a game changer. The unique style of songs is solid from head to toe, and Slow Love sounds like nothing else I’ve heard from her (or any other artist for that matter). According to Spotify, it was my most listened to song of 2014, and according to my blog, the song and the album were both my No. 1 picks of that year.

6. ‘Skin’ – Rihanna (2010)

Name a sexier song of this decade—I’ll wait. Rihanna took her provocative nature to new heights with this dark, alluring melody and bold lyrics to match. While definitely one of her most underrated songs of all-time, it’s hands down one of the best (especially if you were around to improvise an accompanying music video with my group of friends).

5. ‘Loyal’ – Chris Brown f./ Lil Wayne + Tyga (2013)

This classic came out at the very end of 2013, but definitely made its mark the following year. Between the video and Nic Nac beats’ music production, this trio of artists nailed it on what became the party anthem of 2014, in an otherwise lackluster year of hip-hop.

(via YouTube)

4. ‘What’s My Name?’ – Rihanna f./ Drake (2010)

Whenever these 2010 songs come up, I get super nostalgic. I literally remember exactly where I was and how I felt at the peak of these tracks. Rihanna’s Loud album was a surefire favorite of that year, and this was without question the best song that came from it. Major fall/winter vibes I will absolutely never forget.

3. ‘Super Bass’ – Nicki Minaj (2011)

Ah, simpler times. “Super Bass” epitomizes the old-school, inspiring, happy-go-lucky vibe Nicki Minaj’s music brought the world when she first stepped on the scene. Her Pink Friday album felt so pure, and to this day, no “love song” in the hip-hop genre has topped “Super Bass.” Every bit upbeat and sweet, even in my crazy year known as 2011, this song helped keep me sane.

(via YouTube)

2. ‘Ayo’ – Chris Brown f./ Tyga (2015)

This song needs no introduction. If you’ve ever been in an Uber with me, at a house party or in my living room, then you’re no stranger to this Nic Nac beats-produced track. As my most-played song of the whole decade, it absolutely deserves this No. 2 ranking.

1. ‘Teenage Dream’ – Katy Perry (2010)

And now, for the ultimate tearjerker… talk about the good ol’ days! “Teenage Dream” epitomizes carefree bliss and everything light that pop represented early in the decade. It’s easy to forget Katy Perry released one of the best pop albums of all-time, and I think I speak for everyone reading this that no pop song (or Katy Perry song, for that matter) will ever compare to this one.

(via YouTube)

Listen to the entire playlist below (and come back next week for my top 20 honorable mentions of the decade):

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Beauty Music

L.A.’s DJ Lola Langusta Heads from Summer to Fall with a Sexy ‘Euphoric Transition’ Playlist Exclusive to Skyelyfe

September 9, 2015

lola-langusta-djbooth-skyelyfeIt’s hard to believe I’m actually able to write this, but fall is mere weeks away (Sept. 23 can not come sooner)! Rest assured, there will be plenty of autumn-related posts, recipes and playlists galore on this site in the weeks and few months to come, but as we are still in the transition between seasons (does it not feel like the peak of summer right now in L.A.?!), my beautiful pal Sarah Roa (DJ Lola Langusta) put together a sexy playlist (scroll to the bottom) exclusive to skyelyfe readers that tells the story of kicking off summer, falling in love and heading into fall. If you’re a fan of nu-disco or future house, this playlist is for you!

“For this playlist, I decided to not just share some favorites, but also tell a story about a summer romance – which we have all experienced,” Roa tells skyelyfe. “I wanted it to be somewhat of a euphoric transition as we fade into fall. It’s a sexy and poetic roller coaster, leaving you in somewhat of a reminiscent dream state of emotions.”

Lola-langusta-skyelyfe-2The DJ is coming off of quite the successful sunny season, having spun in the same company as Tensnake and many other notable names at Brooklyn’s Full Moon Festival at the beginning of August. She then brushed elbows with New York’s elite while spinning at the Esquire in the Hamptons event. Next up for the fashionable music aficionado? She’ll be spinning at a Daily Front Row event during New York Fashion Week!

“This summer has been filled with so many new opportunities and basically building on collaborations and projects coming this fall/winter, which are on the hush but will be revealed soon,” Roa says. “The absolute highlight was playing the Full Moon Festival in New York, alongside some of my favorite DJs/producers, including Wolf + Lamb, Pillow Talk, Tensnake and the beautiful, inspiring, badass, Yelle. It was really inspirational to be surrounded by such empowering musicians and it fueled my excitement of producing my own music as I begin production working with multi-platinum producer Jay Levine. I’m very excited for what’s to come and can’t wait to play more festivals next year.”

Get to know the sexy starlet on-the-rise with the below q + a, and then head to the bottom of this post to listen to her 35+ minute mixtape. Trust me, you will not be disappointed!
Lola-langusta-skyelyfe
skyelyfe: Where were you born and where do you primarily live now? 
Sarah Roa: I was born in Tampa, FL and I now split my time between NY (Lower East Side) and LA (West Hollywood). My schedule takes me all over and I mostly do events for large fashion brands, film and the music industry.
SL: Whose music are you loving right now?
SR: Lately I have really been drawn to Movement, Odesza, Nina Kraviz, SBTRKT and Zhu. It’s been inspiring me in the process of making my own music.
SL: Where are your favorite places to eat/sip/shop in L.A.?
SR: Eat/Sip – The little Next Door, Jones Bar, Figaro  Shop – Flea markets
SL: Where are your favorite places in L.A. to see live music? 
SR: The Greek for bands and Avalon for DJs
SL: Summer or fall?
lola-langusta-summer-love-skyelyfe
SR: I’m equally in love with both. I wish I could spend year ’round in the tropics, but I do love the feeling of fall and driving my 69 MG down the PCH with the top down. It’s my absolute favorite. I love the fashion that fall brings and cool desert nights around a fire.
SL: Who are some artists you are friendly with in the music scene?
SR: DJ Henri, The Glitch Mob, Anna Lunoe

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Music

Bag Raiders, Stephen Bradley, Paul Wall & More: New Music Monday!

July 27, 2015

bag_raiders_waterfalls_skyelyfeThis may very well be my favorite New Music Monday! Maybe it’s something about being in the thick of summer, but there’s so much good stuff in the mix lately.

Bag Raiders will have you ready for a dance party with “Waterfalls,” No Doubt‘s Stephen Bradley‘s electro-soul jam “Feel the Music” will have you craving a pina colada poolside in the sun, and Paul Wall brings his signature Houston hip-hop sound with “Swangin in the Rain.”

I’ve recently gotten into Canadian producer Tep No, who I listed on an NMM playlist last month. He has another lovely little jam, “Under Rage.” I also recently found Jahkoy, who has me listening to “Still in Love” on repeat. And can we discuss Skylar Spence? He totally stole my hopeful DJ alias (Skye Spence) right from underneath me. But (semi) jokes aside, he has a really fun ’80s dance sound, so check out “Affairs.” And Nervo and Kylie Minogue‘s “The Other Boys” is every bit of dance-pop bliss that you’d expect.

Seriously, all 17 songs on the playlist – which also includes Anna Lunoe, Cosmo’s Midnight, Mighty Mouse and Luna – are worth hearing. Enjoy!

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Beauty Music Food Angelenos

Three Completely Different Events – One Incredible Evening! From Santa Monica to East Hollywood, L.A. Had One Very Thirsty Thursday!

November 12, 2014

Hmm, maybe I’m still in recovery mode, which is why it has taken me almost a week to write about last Thursday. But nevertheless, I guess it was worth the wait, because for one of the first nights in a while, I made it to everything I wanted to go to – and all across town – and each was worth attending.

That said, I think I definitely need to acknowledge all three events on Oct. 6:

10 Years, 10 Cheers! – Obica Mozzarella Bar Pizza e Cucina Celebrated a Decade In Existence with Wine and Food Galore!

An Italian restaurant anniversary celebration probably isn’t the best place to start a night out. So much food, so much wine – how is a person expected to make it through the rest of the evening? Well, I managed … barely. Either way, I did have a blast at Obica Mozzarella Bar Pizza e Cucina. Located in Century City’s Westfield shopping area, you really don’t get that mall vibe at the intimate eatery. On this particular night, my guests and I had the luxury of noshing on everything from risotto gamberi e asparagi (shrimp, asparagus and Prosecco risotto) to freshly made burrata. I typically steer clear from dairy products, but at an Italian restaurant, you kind of have to indulge, right? In-between bites and seemingly endless wine sips, I enjoyed sitting on the restaurant’s patio, taking in the sexy electric guitar sounds of Patrick Abbatte. In honor of the spot’s monumental occasion, they launched a whole new menu, which I can’t wait to check out more closely on my next visit!

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ASOS’ Colour Control Event Was the Stylish Spot of the Night! 

Anna Lunoe and ASOS brought music together with fashion at the next stop of the outing. No, the trek from Century City all the way to Mack Sennett Studios past East Hollywood wasn’t short, but it was absolutely worth it, when upon entry, I immediately spotted two of my favorite musical performers, Zoe and Adam from ASTR. As delightful in person as their music, it was quite the joyous run-in. And speaking of musical performers, I was beyond stoked to find that Anna Lunoe, of all people, was one of the DJs at this event. I did not know this beforehand, so it was a pleasant surprise. She is one of my favs! The gathering was in celebration of the launch of ASOS’ Colour Control, an interactive music video, featuring a visual presentation of five shades full of AW14 endless looks. Guests had a blast in the photo booth, mixing and matching colors and styles on the screen while sipping on vodka cocktails.

ASOS Colour Control produced by dFm - photographed by Steven Meiers, November 6 2014 at Mack Sennett Studios

Photo credit: Steven Meiers / Toasty Cakes

ASOS Colour Control produced by dFm - photographed by Steven Meiers, November 6 2014 at Mack Sennett Studios

Photo credit: Steven Meiers / Toasty Cakes

ASOS Colour Control produced by dFm - photographed by Steven Meiers, November 6 2014 at Mack Sennett Studios

Photo credit: Steven Meiers / Toasty Cakes

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Mercedes Benz Evolution Tour Took Over Barker Hangar Airport

Whew, from Mack Sennett Studios all the way back to the westside – but this time much farther than Century City. The Mercedes Benz Evolution Tour took over Santa Monica’s Barker Hangar airport, and it definitely made use of the space. The place was totally packed with not only general eventgoers, but also a handful of musical performers and celebrities: Julianne Hough, Michael B. Jordan, Ricki Lake, Alabama Shakes, Young the Giant and DJ Ruckus. The indoor area was filled with music performances and the latest Mercedes models on full display. But I must say, the highlight for me, personally, was the slew of food options. We only caught the tail end of the event, which meant no more booze, but plenty to eat – which at this point in the evening, this was a huge plus. Inside you had buckets (literally) stacked and stacked with Popchips and Kind bars of all different flavors. Then outside you had a slew of food trucks and even a Keurig coffee stand. Amen!

Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour

Photo credit: Getty

Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour

Photo credit: Getty

Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour

Photo credit: Getty