SONG OF THE DAY: Priyanka Chopra – “I Can’t Make You Love Me”

Originally recorded by Bonnie Raitt, “I Can’t Make You Love Me” is a classic song that has been revisited quite a few times. Often sung on vocal competition shows, both Kimberley Locke’s game-changing soulful take on American Idol and Angela Hacker’s brilliant bluesy country interpretation on Nashville Star immediately come to mind. As for a dance version, it’s been tried- but for some reason they never get released. A Mark Picchiotti remix of Kimberley Locke’s take (similar in style to Fedde Le Grand vs Ida Corr’s “Let Me Think About It”) was commissioned, but unfortunately never released. Ester Dean’s soulful EDM take can be heard online and was set for promotion with club mixes, but for some reason was scrapped at the last minute.

Here comes Miss World/Bollywood princess Priyanka Chopra to rectify the situation. She is no stranger to clubland with her collaborations – a pre-#Selfie banger with The Chainsmokers “Erase,” the featuring “In My City,” and Top 15 Billboart club chart hit “Exotic” with Pitbull. Starting slow with a plaintive cry of the title, the track starts slow and builds into a full-on stadium house electronic anthem. Priyanka sounds great, and the production is perfect, not a surprise as Manuel Reuter did it, who you probably know as DJ Manian of Cascada (whose new single “Blink” is beginning to buzz as well”). The video is what you would expect from a superstar pop video (including the obligatory Beats headphones placement for Interscope), which makes you wonder – just why isn’t Priyanka as big in the US and Europe as she is India, where this song nearly topped the iTunes chart immediately upon release. Could this be the song that breaks her internationally? A round of sick remixes would definitely help – so here’s hoping they will surface quite soon, as I can already hear in my head what the R3hab mix would sound like.

Image Courtesy of Interscope.

SONG OF THE DAY: Michael Woods ft Ester Dean – “We’ve Only Just Begun”

Wow, this one is a headscratcher. In my mind, when I saw Ester Dean on this record, my frame of reference was that she sang the urban booty record “Drop It Low,” and “Super Bass” with Nicki Minaj. Come to find out she cowrote big hits for Rihanna (“S&M” / “Rude Boy”) and Katy Perry (“Firework,” “Peacock”) and starred in ‘Pitch Perfect’ as the lesbian with swag. On first listen, “We’ve Only Just Begun” would be a strong instrumental track with catchy electro riffs and subtle energy builds that capture you in the beat. Ester’s aggressively seductive lyrics (which lead her partner to take her home and instruct them on how to properly perform cunnilingus) are surprisingly subtle unless you pay really close attention (reminding me of the perverted “Too Close,” originally done by Next). Her vocal delivery morphs with the intensity of the track – increasing and decreasing in power and control. The original mix is incredibly strong on its own and the remixes by Gorgon City, Westfunk & Steve Smart, and R3hab & Zroq expand its reach with flavors of two step-garage/bass, house, and harder electro. Major props to Ministry of Sound for creating the first video in recent memory where all the female dancers are completely covered. With this song Ester has “only just begun” her journey into the EDM club world. Watch out for her forthcoming cover of Bonnie Raitt’s classic “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” easily the best version of the song since Nashville Star’s Angela Hacker redefined it for the 21st century.

Image Courtesy of Ministry of Sound.