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  • Writer's picturejanicegriffiths

5 Songs I Love w/HILTON

Following the release of his gritty new single "Bones," we asked rising alt singer HILTON to let us know 5 songs he loves and give us a bit of insight into why he loves them. Check them out below!

Born To Run by Bruce Springsteen

This song is the ultimate dream-chasing fuel. I read Bruce’s autobiography a few years back (go read me) and his story was far from an overnight success. When ‘Born to Run’ was recorded he was still an unknown artist branded as a ‘wanna be Bob Dylan’ and potentially about to be dropped from his label due to his first album essentially flopping. This song has a certain level of desperation to it...a lust to live, and an emense amount of unfiltered emotion. He’s the ultimate American grinder, and you can feel that energy in this song.

Side note about Bruce: When I was eight years old, my dad won two tickets to his show....front row, dead center. About halfway through the set Bruce noticed me watching, wide eyed as could be, absorbing everything. He was so excited and probably a bit shocked to see a young kid in the front row that he started singing directly to me. Between songs he shook my hand, said “hey brother man”, and gave me his guitar pick. After the show someone from his crew handed me an autographed songbook and said “Bruce wanted you to have this.” Though I had already been playing guitar and writing songs for sometime, that night sparked a fire in me like no other. The music started pouring out like crazy...I knew 100% what I was going to do with my life from that point forward; I was going to be the guy on that stage. Really want to meet Bruce one day and say thank you.

Sometimes It Snows in April by Prince

My friend showed me this one a while back. Up until that point I only knew Prince as an energetic, sex-fueled funk machine who plays the guitar like an absolute animal. While all of this was true of Prince, this stripped ballad hit me in a totally new way. I’m not sure of the exact inspiration of the song, and I’m not sure I want to. All I know is that Prince feels on the very edge of tears during the entire performance. I’m not sure if Tracy was a real person, was actually a friend of his, etc., but what I do know is that record is a powerful piece of sonic beauty.

Wings by Mac Miller

Mac is another hero I was lucky enough to meet. Had a 10 minute conversation with him outside an LA bar in May of 2018, just a few months before he passed. He was the coolest. Looking back I’m sure I was being a total annoyance, talking a million miles per hour (I was nervous as hell), but he never made me feel like I was bothering him at all. He looked me in the eye the whole time, and shook my hand before we parted ways. Treated me as an equal, a fellow human being, not just some fan...that meant a ton.

‘Wings’ sounds like a very simple song at first listen. After a second, third, and tenth time through however, you’ll still be picking up on treasures within the song and track. From subtle metaphors in his lyrics, to the layers of various instruments that sneak in and out seamlessly, this song still feels incredibly fresh to me after upwards of a hundred listens.

Wet Sand by Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers are my favorite band. I could’ve put twenty different songs by them on this list confidently. There’s something ‘beyond this world’ about the Chili Peppers...the way each member’s insanely unique style blends into a cohesive sound that truly never existed before they came along, is nothing short of magical. ‘Wet Sand’ is as dynamic as they come. From the simplistic yet memorable clean-toned electric guitar intro, to the surprisingly kick-ass harpsichord entering as a boost layer in the final chorus, to Anthony Kiedis’ yell at the end leading into an absolute face-melting solo by John Frusciante, this song is a total trip.

Mr Jones by Counting Crows

I remember discovering this song after it was featured on a ‘greatest songs of the 90s’ countdown on Vh1, or something like that. I used to live for those things haha. They played a clip of the music video, and I instantly thought Adam Duritz was the coolest dude. It inspired me endlessly watching him do his thing, and genuinely not care. A lot of people act like they don’t care, but Duritz truly doesn’t give a fuck. He’s real, raw, and honest. That combination is always amazing. Incredible lyrics too, with just right amount of “what does he mean by that?” infused.

Check out HILTON's new song BONES now.


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