Five for Friday │ 05.13.16

These boys are as adorable as their music, delivering boy band realness mixed with elements of Coldplay and Oasis.


The 2016 Eurovision Song Contest was stacked with amazing music this year, but somehow, someway, I managed to pick my five favorite songs. The struggle was real with this one, children—but I give you my five top songs of the competition. The finals are Saturday, May 14: Be sure to stalk your streaming service of choice to see the results; you won’t be disappointed.

Sergey Lazarev: “You Are the Only One” | From Russia, this love song starts off slow, but gathers speed on the chorus. The vocals are sexy, the music so-so Euro—and the song even has a sense of danger. It’s nice to see a Russian show his sensitive side. (I just hope Putin doesn’t find out!)

Gabriela Gunčíková: “I Stand” | This entry from the Czech Republic is a slow burner of sorts, and Gunčíková’s vocals are sublime. The lyrics and the music are haunting, soaring, and captivating, all at the same time. This song would be perfect for any superhero movie.

Dani Im: “Sound of Silence” | This pop diva—all the way from Australia—gives Kylie Minogue a run for her money. Super strong vocals and an engaging pop rhythm make this one drag queen–worthy. Check out the video; I think this singer might just surprise you.

Barei: “Say Yay!” | Spin’s entry this year is what it would sound like if P!nk went disco. Another track worthy of drag queens, this one should get you up off your ass. I love the throaty vocals and clean piano, both of them highlights of the track. Barei is serving dance diva realness; I am obsessed with her voice.

Joe and Jake: “You’re Not Alone” | England’s finest—who have been getting considerable buzz about being frontrunners this year—serve up a pop gem even the Queen could love. These boys are as adorable as their music, delivering boy band realness mixed with elements of Coldplay and Oasis. I might just saunter down to my local pub to have a pint and see if this is on the jukebox. | Jim Ryan

If you want to hear these songs—and others by these bands, as well as from previous columns—check out my Five for Friday playlist on Spotify. It will become your new radio station! Enjoy!

And check this out, kids! I will be hosting my own monthy radio show on on the first Monday of every month from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Central. You can hear all the songs I find, as well as interesting talk about current issues. Be sure to tune in every month! 

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