December 26, 2016

2016, another year of great music 🎶

Coachella 2016 😊

Last year I shared some of my favorite artists of 2015. This year I saw~50 artists perform live and streamed hundreds of hours of music on Spotify, SoundCloud, and Hype Machine.

In reflection, here are some of my favorites…

Childish Gambino

Earlier this year, Childish Gambino released a mysterious app to announced his Joshua Tree weekend festival, Pharos. We attended and despite the messy logistics and awful acoustics, we had an amazing time seeing him perform his new album for the first time (I’d share pics but they locked up our phones 😛). His new sound is bold, very different from his past releases.

Bonus: Here’s a Stranger Things x Childish Gambino mashup.

Porter Robinson and Madeon

Porter Robinson is one of my favorites from 2015. This year, him and young Madeon toured together. My friend Jordan Walker kindly hooked us up with tickets at the Bill Graham, followed by backstage access to the afterparty (proof). 💃🏼

Mura Masa

I finally got a chance to see UK-based Mura Masa live at The Independent in San Francisco; an amazing performance, courtesy of MacBook and the drum breaks. See here.

Jack Garratt

I stumbled upon Jack Garratt at Outside Lands and was immediately blown away. He’s an artist you have to see live, with animalistic expressions and contagious passion. When I saw tickets for his show at the Mezzanine a month later, I snagged a pair even though it was on a school night.


ZHU was our favorite performance at Coachella this year, a moody, well-constructed set in the massive Sahara tent.

Later in the year, the masked artist dropped a new album.


I don’t know much about this London-based electronic DJ but I’m really enjoying his sound.


deadmau5 released a new album later in the year titled W:/2016ALBUM/ for all us nerds.

I’m hoping to catch him at one of his shows while on tour in 2017.

Mr. Fijiwiji

My friend, Jonathan Howard, introduced me to this song earlier this year. I got to know more of the 21 year-old artist’s music since then and saw a show with him and Darius at Audio in San Francisco.


Another young artist, Kasbo is reminiscent of Mura Masa. We saw him perform in a small venue in LA (a pic from above).

Satin Jackets

This song will make you dance. Like ZHU, Satin Jackets is also masked, sporting geometric headgear and sunglasses. 😎

Electric Mantis

I had the pleasure of seeing this Portland-based DJ on (another) school night at 1015 Folsom with Jonathan T.


I saw the this Australian trio perform during magic hour at Outside Lands. Their performance looks effortless and so laid back.

Innerbloom is a particularly special song. Put on some nice headphones and close your eyes. Note the intentional imperfections and distortion in the sound.

Justin Bieber and DJ Snake

Justin Bieber. You may have heard of him.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve asked my Google Home to play this song.

You’ll find more of my favorites on SoundCloud and Hype Machine.

Share some of your as a response below 👇🏼 or tweet me at @rrhoover.

More Writing by Ryan