Hey! Did you know that there’s an entire aspect of KCRW music discovery that you might be missing out on? Fear not, because our 5 Songs to Hear This Week newsletter is now a weekly feature on our website. Watch this space for rundowns of the five songs that you need in your life immediately, curated by KCRW Music staff. Don’t want to wait for your latest taste of fresh tunes? Sign up for the Friday newsletter here, and always be the first to know.
Follow us on Spotify to keep up with our current obsessions, including 5 Songs to Hear This Week, Bent By Nature: Deirdre O'Donoghue and The Lost SNAP Archives (The Music), and our weekly sampler of KCRW’s Top 30 most played records.
Jaquel Spivey & The Broadway Company of A Strange Loop – “Intermission/Today”
Been outta the loop on the world of musical theater? Let us catch you up on “A Strange Loop.” It’s the story of a Black, queer man working as an usher for The Lion King on Broadway while grasping at self-actualization by writing a musical about a Black, queer playwright… who’s writing a musical about a Black, queer playwright. Get the loop part? “A Strange Loop” swept this year’s Tony Awards, so click quick for a sample of “big, Black, queer-ass American Broadway.” Happy Pride and Juneteenth, indeed!
Tonga Conga – “Diablo (Feat. Mabiland)”
Better reinforce that dance floor… Mabiland’s known for breaking ground. Not only does the 26-year-old Colombian rapper and producer consistently deliver beats and bars that simply slap, but she’s also front-and-center as one of the most highly visible LGBTQ artists in the male-dominated Latin American hip-hop scene. And this track’s proof of her staying power: Hit play for an undeniably cool Latin summer mover + sizzling, dance-driven video.
Dreamer Isioma – “Sunset Drive”
This track from Nigerian-American newcomer Dreamer Isioma is a case study in Gen Z sensibilities: punchy and powerful, dedicated to a free-to-be, pleasure-seeking atmosphere, all humming with an undercurrent of everyday activism. Featuring jammy, energetic percussion, wild brass, and free-wheelin’ guitar riffs, this standout song and its ridealong video are an exercise in feel-good, do-good as a complete package. Peep the album “Goodnight Dreamer” for more greatness.
Shygirl – “Come for Me”
The limelight’s headed for Shygirl. Blane Muise is the multi-hyphenate rising luminary shaping the London club scene through her hyperpop sets and collabs with the likes of FKA Twigs and slowthai. As a standalone artist, she’ll be playing the first-ever Los Angeles edition of Barcelona’s Primavera Sound festival this September, hot on the heels of her debut album drop. For now, click into this futuristic single, made in tandem with frequent collaborator Arca: a 360-degree, lovingly crafted digital sculpture of sound.
Honey Dijon – “Love Is A State Of Mind (Feat. Ramona Renae)”
Summer’s coming, honey — you better remember how to werk. And we don’t mean your 9-to-5. Honey Dijon is a legend, credited for keeping a certain queer-cored sound in dance music alive. If you spent the ‘90s sweating on urban dancefloors to house beats, or just wish you had, this one’s for you. And there’s more: This banger will apparently be featured on Honey’s long-teased full length album “Black Girl Magic,” set to release… eventually.