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Noteworthy: Anatomy of a Playlist 1-21-2019

Ivan from Noteworthy here again (Mondays, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.). I’m back to give you another peek into the process of putting together one of my shows.

Destiny’s Child – Get On The Bus Aaliyah – One In A Million Ginuwine – I’ll Do Anything/I’m Sorry

Missy Elliott had just been confirmed as one of the latest inductees into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, so I wanted to honor her by highlighting her work for other artists. I’m sure I’ll delve more into her own catalog once the actual induction takes place, so make sure to listen around that time. “Get On The Bus” by Destiny’s Child is an often forgotten part of their discography since it was right before The Writing’s On The Wall, where nothing they dropped would ever be minor again, yet it’s remained one of my favorite songs throughout all this time. We know her best as a rapper, but Missy played a huge role in shaping the sound of late-90s R&B and this segment was my case.

Boyz II Men – A Song For Mama Stevie Wonder – These Three Words Erykah Badu – A Child With The Blues

It’s never a bad time to go on a 90s R&B kick. Things just happened to fall that way with the next segment where I discussed some of the worst snubs for Best Original Song at the Academy Awards. Throughout the history of this category, it’s been a rare occurrence to see films that don’t meet the loose criteria of “Oscar fare” make an appearance here, even as their songs dominated radio and the charts. Which means that if your movie had a modern R&B or hip hop soundtrack, the Academy would usually look the other way. They’ve become less rigid, but their past crimes are still on my mind. It’s baffling that Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds has not received one Academy Award nomination. Not even for “End of the Road.” Nothing from the Waiting To Exhale soundtrack. Not even “A Song For Mama,” a song that you can’t separate from the film, if only the Academy had enough members who bothered to watch Soul Food.

The Coup feat. Lakeith Stanfield – OYAHYTT Van Hunt – Ride, Ride, Ride Rex Orange County – Best Friend

I then moved on to who I would have liked to see nominated for Best Original Song this year. I was pleased with some of the names that made the shortlist this year (Sampha! Jonsi! Thom Yorke!), but ultimately I felt that The Coup’s “OYAHYTT” from Sorry To Bother You would have brought an incredible jolt of energy to the broadcast. I threw in some Van Hunt to help me make the transition to some other genres since I had been mostly dealing with R&B on the show so far.

Sambassadeur – I Can Try Sam Phillips-What Do I Do Hatchie-Bad Guy

Over the past month, I had been obsessing over Sam Phillips’ “What Do I Do” since I heard it in a restaurant. I immediately recognized the voice and that exposure reminded that Phillips had a decent pop career for a while before she went further into folk. This segment had plenty of jangle, so I knew that the last song in the previous one had to have some sunny vibes to it (thank you, Rex Orange County). It made the strings of Sambassadeur’s “I Can Try” seem less out of place and led me to squeezing in one of the songs I absolutely needed to play.

Kenna-I’m Gone Joi-It’s Your Life Benin City-Double Or Nothing Nicholas Britell-Agape Madison McFerrin-Can You See? (Live at C’mon Everybody

I couldn’t stay too long in the world of jangly guitars since the other track I wanted to play was part of a movie score. I had just seen If Beale Street Could Talk recently and the score immediately stood out to me. There were lots of traces of Coltrane, which fit right in with the visuals and the mood of the movie and it made for an engaging time at the theater. I kind of figured Nicholas Britell’s score would get an Oscar nomination and now it’s the one I’m rooting for. It was a mistake that Jonny Greenwood’s Phantom Thread score didn’t win last year and I’ll imagine I’ll be just as upset if Britell doesn’t take it.

Catch Ivan every Monday night from 6:00 to 8:00 at radio.uic.edu and on the Radio FX app.

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