Switched on Pop

Switched on Pop

Switched on Pop

CATEGORY: Music
Best Arts & Culture podcast Webby 2020 winner about the making and meaning of popular music. Musicologist Nate Sloan & songwriter Charlie Harding pull back the curtain on how pop hits work magic on our ears & our culture. From Vulture and the Vox Media Podcast Network.
  1. January 11, 2022
    37 min
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    The Weeknd drives through purgatory (with a little help from Jim Carrey)
    Dawn FM is The Weeknd’s most narratively compelling album yet. More than just a collection of eighties-nostalgia single bait, Dawn FM is a concept album that picks up on a multi-year meta narrative. Abel Tesfay…
  2. December 21, 2021
    26 min
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    Why do new Christmas songs fail?
    Why are there no new Christmas songs? One one hand, there's more holiday songs than we’ll ever need. Every year pop stars drop countless holiday-themed album.But despite the annual glut of Christmas releases, f…
  3. December 14, 2021
    31 min
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    Tai Verdes TikTok-ed his way to a breakout hit
    Whether you’re a TikTok fanatic, or the app’s K-hole-inducing stream of content has forced you to delete it from your phone, its influence on music is undeniable. In 2020 the platform bragged that over 70 artis…
  4. December 07, 2021
    31 min
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    Robert Plant & Alison Krauss Raise The Roof
    Robert Plant is in his own words “cold” and “prickly” while speaking about his new album with Alison Krauss, Raise The Roof. First thing upon joining the Zoom call from London, Plant jovially launches into the…
  5. November 30, 2021
    40 min
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    The Beatles get back to their roots
    2021 marks the 50th anniversary of the release of the Beatles’ final album, Let it Be. To commemorate the occasion, the remaining members of the band have remixed the album and unleashed an eight-hour-plus docu…
  6. November 23, 2021
    41 min
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    Taylor, Adele & Silk Sonic’s broken hearts club (with Brittany Luse)
    This week we are having a blast feeling really sad. Guest Brittany Luse, cohost of the acclaimed podcast For Colored Nerds, joins Nate and Charlie to dig into this fall's slate of breathtaking breakup albums fr…
  7. November 16, 2021
    26 min
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    Snotty Nose Rez Kids on hip hop and Indigenous protest
    Merging hip hop and Indigenous culture, rap duo Snotty Nose Rez Kids are creating a sound that goes hard for a cause. On tracks like “War Club” with DJ Shub, Yung Trybez and Young D connect Indigenous protests…
  8. November 09, 2021
    35 min
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    The State of the Pop Union
    From time to time, it is our constitutional duty to provide an update to the people on the current state of pop. What are the sounds? Who’s making the hits? What are they singing about? We take the musical tem…
  9. November 02, 2021
    34 min
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    Why ABBA songs just hit different
    Swedish supergroup ABBA is releasing their first album in forty years, making this the perfect time for Nate and Charlie to investigate what makes their music so beloved and reviled in equal measure. For every…
  10. October 26, 2021
    35 min
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    The Healing Power of Pop with Esperanza Spalding
    It. Has. Been. A. Year. We’ve felt it; you’ve felt it. Sometimes, it’s comforting to consider how universal that overwhelming sense of blah is. Other days, woof, it can be tough to see the light. That’s the sub…
  11. October 22, 2021
    46 min
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    Janet Jackson's Legacy After 'Control' from It's Been A Minute with Sam Sanders
    Sam Sanders is one of our favorite friends of the podcast. His NPR show, It's Been A Minute, has released an outstanding three part series exploring crossover in pop music. We want to share with you the 2nd epi…
  12. October 19, 2021
    34 min
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    James Bond's Spycraft Sound
    The latest installment of the James Bond franchise, No Time To Die, closes the book on the Daniel Craig era of the international superspy. The film’s theme song, “No Time to Die,” by Billie Eilish, Finneas, and…
  13. October 12, 2021
    39 min
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    James Blake & The Return of Harmony
    For a decade James Blake has crafted an idiosyncratic sound. His early work as a minimalist electronic producer fused lush R&B chords with lyrical collage and unfiltered synthesizers. He describes his hit 2013…
  14. October 07, 2021
    31 min
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    Sparkle spoke out against R Kelly. It cost her her career.
    On this week’s episode we're sharing a story fromThe Cut where senior writer Angelina Chapin and co-host Jazmín Aguilera talk about and talk with Sparkle (born Stephanie Edwards), who first reported R. Kelly to…
  15. September 28, 2021
    35 min
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    ICYMI: The Mystery of Montero AKA Lil Nas X (feat. Take A Daytrip)
    Lil Nas X has a talent for creating productive controversy. First with “Old Town Road,” he challenged expectations about blackness in country music. Now with “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” he takes aim at an…
  16. September 21, 2021
    1 hr
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    Deja Vu: Why Olivia Rodrigo keeps giving up songwriting credits
    In the last few years music copyright claims have skyrocketed. More and more artists are giving songwriting credits away. Frequently, credits are given retroactively to avoid the cost of long jury trials like w…
  17. September 14, 2021
    33 min
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    CHVRCHES and the sound of 80s horror
    CHVRCHES is well-known for their comprehensive use of synthesizers and their updated take on “synthpop”, a subgenre of pop we most closely associated with the 1980s. While gearing up to make their second album…
  18. September 07, 2021
    27 min
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    From Taylor Swift to Bon Iver, Aaron Dessner Finds Meaning in Musical Community
    On August 27th Big Red Machine, the joint musical project of Justin Vernon and Aaron Dessner - artists known for their work as Bon Iver and in the rock band The National, respectively - returned with new music.…
  19. August 31, 2021
    29 min
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    Modern Classics: Carina del Valle Schorske on Cat Power's "Manhattan"
    Recently the hosts of Switched on Pop kept seeing the same byline next to their favorite pieces of music writing. A moving profile of Bad Bunny? There was the name. A searing critique of West Side Story? There…
  20. August 24, 2021
    27 min
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    The Joy of Music Festivals
    For the past two weeks, our series on summer music festivals has uncovered the interplay of festival fashion and music and examined festival subcultures. But we've so far overlooked an essential reason that peo…

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