December 13, 2015

2015, the year I fell in love with music

I’ve always loved music but something happened this year that kicked off a newfound appreciation for the craft.

In April, I went to Coachella (thanks, Nic Adler!) for the first time with some great friends.

This year I’ve listened to 39 days of music on Spotify (thanks, Spotify Year in Music) in addition to countless hours on Hype Machine and SoundCloud. I also saw over 70 artists perform live, from Porter Robinson (mind blown!) to DMX (a nostalgic childhood favorite).

Here are a few of my favorite artists in 2015:


I’ve seen him twice and soon a third time on tour with the mysterious/amazing Slow Magic. I love his nostalgic, video game-inspired influence.

Mura Masa

If you like Giraffage, you’ll also dig Mura Masa. ‘Miss You’ never gets old.

Alina Baraz

Alina has a special, sultry sound. Early in her career, I expect to see a lot more of her.


Ta-ku’s music is refreshingly chill. His collab with Alina in ‘Down For You’ is one of my favorites.

Oh Wonder

I’m bummed I missed Oh Wonder perform in LA this October. I might catch the duo in SF in January.

Chill Paris

Formerly named Kill Paris before the tragic events earlier this month, keytar-playing electronic DJ blew my mind at the Mezzanine earlier this year.


I recently fell in love with London-based jackLNDN. Try not to dance listening to his music. Please come to SF, Jack!

Tom Misch

Similarly, Tom Misch will get you off your seat… and maybe your feet.


Another Hype Machine discovery, HNNY produces persuasive head-bobbing music.

Kendrick Lamar

I’ve lost interest in hip hop now days but Kendrick brings a fresh and welcoming voice to the genre. I saw him perform at Outside Lands. Midway through the show he stopped and pointed to a crowdsurfing man in a wheelchair while singing “We gon’ be alright!” 😊


Miguel is the modern day Prince. I saw him at the outdoor Hollywood Forever Cemetery where he brought out surprise guests, Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, and Kendrick Lamar. Amazing.

Justin Bieber

This year, Bieber reinvented himself. His latest album and music videos are so so good. I especially like ‘I’ll Show You’ where he speaks to the criticism and judgement he’s faced since he was a teen.


Darius produces delightful and mellow dance music. The buildup in Espoir makes me smile.

Rameses B

My friend Jon introduced me to the ethereal Rameses B. Put on some nice headphones, dim the lights, and listen to ‘Moonlight’.


I don’t really know how to describe KAYTRANADA’s music. It’s often a diverse mixture of hip hop, electronic and piano melodies.


I was first introduced to Hermitude while driving down the Hawaii coastline. That drop at The Buzz’s 0:56 (!!!) is even better in person. A few of my teammates can testify.


I look forward to Soulection’s weekly radio show (now broadcasted on Apple’s Beats 1) every week. It delivers a unique mixture of hip hop, electronic music, and funk from a collection of DJ’s and artists. I had the pleasure of seeing Andre Power spin on his birthday in LA. It was one of my favorite live performances of the year. 🔥

Porter Robinson

Porter Robinson’s ‘Sad Machine’ is my favorite song of the year, bringing me back to all the good times we had at Coachella.

I could keep going. 😊

If you dig the music above, check out my Hype Machine favorites and Spotify Discover Weekly playlists (which are surprisingly spot on every week).

Also, please send me some of your favorite music from 2015. I’m @rrhoover on Twitter. 💃

More Writing by Ryan