The Best New Music and Albums to Download for 2015

bruno mars mark ronson uptown funk
Bruno Mars grooves to Mark Ronson’s “Uptown Funk” from their Uptown Special album. (Courtesy: Columbia)

Is this finally the year that Her Royal Highness Adele blesses us with a new album? Can DJ Mark Ronson‘s Uptown Special live up to the retro, feel-good hype of “Uptown Funk” with Bruno Mars? After dissing both Drake and his label, will Tyga have any fans left by the time The Gold Album comes out in January?

There’s plenty of cool new music to download in 2015, and we have January and February’s most anticipated (and irresistible) album releases — from cutie Meghan Trainor to indie rockers Fall Out Boy and Sleater-Kinney and R&B’s magnetic Ne-Yo. Plus, later in the year, expect new music from Fergie, Gwen Stefani, Fleetwood Mac, Kelly Clarkson, Modest Mouse, Miguel, Rhianna, Tame Impala and possibly, wait for it, Radiohead.

January – February 2015 Artists, Albums & Release Dates (Dates may change at the labels’ whims)

Mark Ronson, Uptown Special, 1/13 — Amy Winehouse‘s former producer and DJ teams up with Bruno Mars, Mystikal, Stevie Wonder, and more stars for new club-friendly jams.
Meghan Trainor, Title, 1/13 — At last, we’ll find out what else the sassy singer’s about besides bass.
Justin Townes Earle, Absent Fathers, 1/13
The Game, The Documentary 2, (Sunday) 1/18
Joey Bada$$, B4.DA.$$ — That’s “Before Da Money” for you squares (like us), 1/20
Belle & Sebastian, Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance, 1/20 — Emo girls and guys rejoice.
Fall Out Boy, American Beauty/American Psycho, 1/20, The stadium-rocking “Centuries” is a promising start.
Lupe Fiasco, Tetsuo & Youth, 1/20
Sleater-Kinney, No Cities to Love, 1/20 — Long-awaited new rock from the Washington grrl group.
Fifth Harmony, Reflection, 1/27 — TV’s “X-Factor” sensations release their debut album.
Ne-Yo, Non-fiction, 1/27
Tyga, The Gold Album: 18th Dynasty, 1/27
Bob Dylan, Shadows in the Night, 2/3
Blackberry Smoke, Holding All the Roses, 2/10 — New country with a twist.
Ricky Martin, A Quien Quiera Escuchar, 2/10 — Everyone’s guilty 90s pleasure has a Latin album on tap.
Drake, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, SURPRISE RELEASE on 2/12 — The Toronto rapper rattles his saber at the haters with this dark, edgy and unexpected mixtape of 17 songs.
Imagine Dragons, Smoke + Mirrors, 2/17
Kate Pierson, Guitars and Microphones, 2/17 — The B-52’s famous redhead goes solo with new-wavey jams written by Sia and Strokes guitarist Nick Valensi.
St. Vincent, St Vincent: Deluxe, 2/17 (Import) — Four new songs from kooky alt darling Annie Clark are included in this expanded version of the 2014 album.
Big Sean, Dark Sky Paradise, 2/24 — The rapper aims for legitimacy with dark rhymes plus a duet with girlfriend Ariana Grande.
Chris Brown & Tyga, Fan of a Fan: The Album, 2/24 — The hit duo’s first full-length collaboration features guest appearances from 50 Cent, Boosie Badazz, Fat Trel, Pusha T, ScHoolboy Q, and Ty Dolla Sign.
Kid Rock, First Kiss, 2/24 — Kid returns to country rock territory with songs like “Johnny Cash” and “Drinking Beer With Dad.”

Want more hip hop and rap? In the dates TBA posse, Lil Wayne‘s promised his 99th or so album in two years, Big Sean has big things poppin’, Drake will probably start brawling with errybody whenever his new album Views from the 6 drops, Wale‘s The Album About Nothing is coming late March, Meek Mill has Dreams Worth More Than Money and King Kanye is threatening another blast of Yeezus later in the year.

Click the FOLLOW tab at the bottom right to get more music updates like this in your Inbox, and discover new bands whenever you listen to your MyMusicCloud collection with our Recommended Artist suggestions.

The Best and Silliest New Holiday Songs of 2013

It’s been 19 years since Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” hit the malls, so if all you want for the holidays is some new music to go with your peppermint mocha latte, you’re in luck. MyMusicCloud is putting some fa-la-la-la-fun into your earbuds with these new 2013 holiday albums to download to your holiday playlist.

First, Mariah’s heir apparent, Ariana Grande, has been releasing a new holiday tune each Tuesday this season to promote her upcoming 4-song album Christmas Kisses, out this week. They are:  “Love is Everything,” a remake of the Wham! Boys’ “Last Christmas,” (hear it below) followed by the breathy “Snow in California” and a cover of “Santa Baby,” just out this past Tuesday.

Also in the mistletoe mood are Mary J. Blige (A Mary Christmas), British sensation Susan Boyle (Home for Christmas), a ccapella stars Pentatonix with a “Deluxe Edition” of their 2012 PTXmas album featuring two new recordings of “Little Drummer Boy” and “Go Tell It On The Mountain,” and the bearded dudes from “The Duck Dynasty” singing “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “Camouflage and Christmas” alongside country stars like Luke Bryan and Josh Turner (don’t laugh, “Duck the Halls” has reached Billboard’s No. 4 spot).

But pop queen Kelly Clarkson is outshining everyone with her Wrapped in Red holiday album, featuring remixes of standards like “Silent Night” (with pals Reba McEntire and Trisha Yearwood) and “Please Come Home for Christmas,” plus a swing-y “My Favorite Things” and new songs “Underneath the Tree” and “Wrapped in Red.”

If you prefer your yuletide fun with a Hanukkah spin, watch Elizabeth Chan’s “Fa La La” below. The marketing exec quit her career just to write holiday songs, and her corny homemade music video features dreidels and blue-and-white suited Santa Clauses getting down. There’s also the LOL “Thanksgivvukkah Song,” which rhapsodizes about “turkey-shaped menorahs” and “Pilgrims and Maccabees.”

Enjoy these new holiday favorites below, and learn how to make your own playlist on MyMusicCloud  …

Ariana Grande’s “Last Christmas”

“The Thanksgivukkah Song”

Elizabeth Chan’s “Fa La La”

Making of the “Duck the Halls” Album with the Robertsons

From Whitney to Christina: The 10 Best and Worst Pop Diva Musical Movie Soundtracks

whitney houston movie

They dazzle our ears with their bewitching vocals, but when it comes to our eyes, sometimes our favorite pop songstresses soar, shudder, and just plain crash and burn on screen. As a tribute to the late, great Whitney Houston, whose last movie “Sparkle” came out in 2012, MyMusicCloud is taking a look at the Best and Worst Pop Diva Musical Movie Soundtracks, from “The Bodyguard” to “Burlesque.”

Billed as the last movie filmed before Houston’s tragic February death, “Sparkle” casts her as the strict mother and failed singer of a talented young chanteuse, played by real-life chart-climber Jordin Sparks. The two powerhouses sing a new duet (“Celebrate”) in “Sparkle,” which Houston said is actually a remake of one of her own favorite 1976 movies. That version? it was inspired by the life story of another of our top pop divas — Diana Ross.

Miss Ross lands on our top 5 Best Diva Musical Movie Soundtrack list with her emotional portrayal of troubled blues singer Lady Day, modeled after Billie Holliday. “Lady Sings the Blues” earned the singer a Best Actress Oscar nomination and captured pop music fans’ adoration with the singles “Good Morning, Heartache” and “God Bless the Child” in 1972.

The Houston/Ross connection goes even deeper with the 1992 smash hit “The Bodyguard,” in which Houston played spoiled superstar Rachel Marron. The soundtrack racked up five hit singles for Houston: “I Will Always Love You”, “I’m Every Woman”, “Queen of the Night”, and two Oscar nominated songs “I Have Nothing” and “Run to You.”  But the movie was originally cast 20 years earlier with Ross and action star Steve McQueen in the title roles. (McQueen dropped out, cancelling the project.)

Those are just a couple pop diva soundtracks that succeeded, but what about the flops? Mega-diva Mariah Carey wobbled as club ingénue Billie Frank in the goofy “Glitter” while even Oscar winner Cher couldn’t help Christina Aguilera bump and grind her way through “Burlesque.” And who could forget Olivia Newton John as a roller-skating Greek muse in the disco-driven “Xanadu”?

For more of your movie musical favorites, browse our cloud-based music delivery service’s catalogue. Click the “Soundtracks” section under the “Genres” tab in our music store to see our library of 11 million songs. And add your suggestions to our Best/Worst list below!

Best Movie Musical Soundtracks

5.  The Bodyguard: Whitney Houston

4.  Grease: Olivia Newton-John

3. Funny Girl: Barbra Streisand

2. Lady Sings the Blues: Diana Ross

1. Dreamgirls: Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson

Worst Movie Musical Soundtracks

5. Glitter: Mariah Carey

4. Yentl: Barbra Streisand

3. Burlesque: Christina Aguilera & Cher

2. From Justin to Kelly: Kelly Clarkson

1. Xanadu: Olivia Newton-John

Watch the trailer for Whitney Houston’s movie “Sparkle”

It’s a Barbell…It’s a Track Suit…It’s MyMusicCloud!

Last month, we got great feedback from you about our top 10 Valentine’s Day playlist. We wanted to follow up with another 21st century “mix tape”—this one geared toward getting fit!

As with all MyMusicCloud playlists, this one can start at home while you’re gearing up for your workout. Switch to your mobile phone, and your songs will continue playing in one seamless stream as you stretch, warm up, and get into the meat of your workout.

We wanted to start you off with a few suggestions. Here are our staff’s top 10 favorite workout songs:

10. “Party Rock Anthem” (LMFAO): Rap madness. Check. Mental dancers—gyrating. Check. Internal cheering section. Check! You really can’t listen to this song and not shake it…

9.  “I Gotta Feeling” (Black Eyed Peas): This is the 21st century party track.

8. “Get the Party Started” (Pink): Continuing on the party theme….Pink brings it on all registers.

7. “My Life Would Suck Without You (Kelly Clarkson): This is our workout tribute…to love.

6. “It’s My Life” (Bon Jovi): That sinister growl, those liberating lyrics! This really should be our national anthem!

5. “Assassin” (Muse): This song is what would happen if every guitarist were skilled enough to treat his instrument like a drum set.

4.  “Sex on Fire” (Kings of Leon): What’s a really rockin’ run or workout if it doesn’t feel a little like sex on fire?

3. “Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)” (Beyoncé): The ubiquitous 2008 pop tune makes a comeback—on your headphones!

2. “Becoming Insane” (Infected Mushroom): You’ll feel like you’re in a daytime nightclub…being DJ’d by a crew of Japanimation characters.

1. “Killing in the Name (Rage against the Machine): Remember the primal scream? It’s back! in a song.