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Top 25 Favourite Musicians of 2011

By  Justin Carreiro     2:45 PM    Labels:,,, 
Last year, my friend Darlin helped to inspire a series of discussions about our favourite music groups and artists while folding clothes at the store. Hey, when you're working retail hours during the holiday season and you get a couple of minutes to relax - let's face it, you'll do nothing but talk with the other Sales Associates! It's been a full year since that lonely day at the GAP but looking back at last year's post, it's got me wondering again.

In life, there are two things that can (somewhat) judge how much you've "grown" or "changed" from the previous year: fashion styles and music. (Think about it - you know I'm right!) For this post, I'm going to dust-off my iPod playlists and rank those special artists that have influenced my music (and singing) habits for 2011.

NOTE: Just like last year, some of the artists will get reasoning behind my rank choices, it will be listed from most-to-least favourite and if the same artists collaborated on a song then I may only reference it once.

1. Britney Spears
Songs: Hold It Against Me, Till The World Ends, I Wanna Go, Criminal
LYR (Last Year's Rank): #17

This has been a big year for Britney and I'm very impressed. Even though she had a low ranking last year, she still tops my list as one of my favourite artists ever. Her latest album, "Femme Fatale" dominated the charts with hit-after-hit (my favourite track is Till The World Ends), inspired countless parodies online, and helped to provide her with a fresh start. For this and many other reasons, Britney tops this list as #1.

2. David Guetta
Songs: Where Them Girls At?, Without You, Who's That Chick and a variety of other collaborations
LYR: #7

Honestly, my iPod this year was the year of Dance music. Not much has changed but it's had a lot of heavy rotation and a huge part of that is because of David Guetta. The beats are catchy, the lyrics are repetitive and the music videos are visually appealing. Who knew this one DJ could influence my song choices so much?

3. Dev/The Cataracs
Songs: In The Dark, Top Of The World, Sunrise, Club Love, Lightspeed, Breathe
LYR: #10 (Dev only)
What can I say, I absolutely love both groups! I know that I should only list one artist per spot but seriously, when you think of one you can't help but remember the other. If there was a winner, Dev definitely dominated this year with star exposure and chart hits, but The Cataracs played an important part as producers with a variety of songs that earn them both the #3 spot.

4. Ke$ha
Songs: Blow, Sleazy, Kiss N Tell, Run Devil Run, Backstabber, Animal
LYR: #11
Note: "Run Devil Run" is not an official Ke$ha track, but she did provide the base track before it was sold to Girl's Generation. If there was one artist that surprised me the most, it's Ke$ha. While I absolutely love her catchy dance hits and brash attitude now, in all honesty, I didn't start off a Ke$ha fan. She grew on me and I don't think I could see my iPod without a single song now.

5. Katy Perry
Songs: ET, The One That Got Away, Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F), Peacock
LYR: #2

She may have fallen three spots this year but that doesn't mean that she isn't amazing! This may surprise you all to know but before this year, I've never been to a stadium concert before (I don't count We Day as that had a different purpose of empowering youth for change). There were two concerts/performances I attended this year: Robyn and Katy Perry. For my first stadium concert, seeing Katy Perry live will always be something I remember!

6. Adele
Songs: Rumour Has It, Someone Like You, Rolling In The Deep, Set Fire To The Rain

That voice. The emotion. The single strange ability to make me want to cry on transit. All of it equals to an amazing performer! While many will place her at the top of the list, Adele is a powerhouse that influenced my song choices, but I couldn't bear to listen to her songs so often. Nothing can be said about the emotion that can both inspire you and cause you to sulk in public.

Songs: Party Rock Anthem, This Is My Life, Sexy And I Know It, Sorry For Party Rocking

They had one of the biggest (and catchiest) songs of the year. Everybody was playing "Party Rock Anthem" and some even dared to try the dance moves in the clubs. Embarrassing to say the least! The group has been around for a while; I remember that they had appeared in one of the seasons for the Real World. I'm not sure if the group will have a lasting success but they seem like an interesting pop act with some catchy tunes.

8. The Sounds
Songs: Something To Die For, Yeah Yeah Yeah, Better Off Dead

In most instances, I can pinpoint where I've heard of each group. Surprisingly, I was introduced to The Sounds from a track that was included in Scream 4. I loved the song and I've grown to like the band as well. Even though Metric's rankings fell this year, this is the close substitute. I wonder which group will dominate in 2012?

9. Lady Gaga
Songs: Judas, Born This Way, Marry The Night
LYR: #1

I'll start off this posting with a point: it was the year of Gaga. So much so that Gaga was EVERYWHERE! Sometimes it's nice to have an artist go away for a bit, take a breather and come back ready to take on the world. There was never any time to digest the next song or Lady Gaga appearance before the next release. In terms of the music, I wasn't a fan of songs like "Edge of Glory" and "You and I" - they didn't strike a chord with me. It wasn't that they were terrible tracks but they just weren't songs that I personally liked overall. It definitely played a part as to why Lady Gaga lost the #1 spot this year.

10. Chromeo
Songs: Fancy Footwork, Bonafied Lovin, Don't Turn On The Lights, Night By Night, When The Night Falls

I'm a little late to jump on the Chromeo bandwagon. Their dance hits are interesting, melodic and hot with "Fancy Footwork" being one of my favourite tracks this year. I have no idea what to expect for 2012 but we'll see if they still make it on the Top 10.

11. Jessie J
Songs: Price Tag, Who's Laughing Now, Domino

12. Cobra Starship
Songs: You Make Me Feel, 1nite

13. Anjulie
Songs: Brand New Bitch, Boom, Rain

14. Kelly Rowland
Songs: Down For Whatever
LYR: #12 

15. Space Cowboy
Songs: Devastated, Falling Down, Party Like Animal, I Came 2 Party

16. Dragonette
Songs: I Get Around, Fixin To Thrill, Fire In Your New Shoes

17. Robyn
Songs: Call Your Girlfriend, Fembot, Dancing On My Own, Cobrastyle

18. Cee Lo Green
Songs: Forget You, Bright Lights Bigger City

19. Colette Carr
Songs: No I.D., (We Do It) Primo, Bitch Like Me, Back It Up

20. Cher Lloyd
Songs: With Ur Love, Playa Boi, Swagger Jagger

21. Deadmau5
Songs: Ghosts n Stuff, Aural Psynapse, Sofi Needs A Ladder

22. Rihanna
Songs: Breaking Dishes, S&M, You Da One
LYR: #13 

23. Selena Gomez
Songs: Hit The Lights, Love You like A Love Song, Who Says

24. Kylie Minogue
Songs: Put Your Hands Up

25. Lana Del Ray
Songs: Video Games

Agree or Disagree with the list? Share your thoughts and comments below about which artists or songs influenced you for 2011!

About Justin Carreiro

Justin is a longtime TV buff and gamer. He loves chatting about shows, playing video and board games, and his not-so-secret love for reality tv. He is also a fan of horror movies, music and a bookworm at heart. He spends his time in Toronto working in PR and Social Media.

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