Jesse Valencia

16 Songs to Kick Off 2016

Jesse Valencia burns you a mixtape for your early 2016. Enjoy.


Jesse Valencia’s January 2016 Playlist On Spotify

Being caught up in various projects over the past couple of years, I’ve neglected my old habit of seeking new music. It’s time to change that. So, I put my feelers out and found some great songs to kick off 2016 with. Consider my new music search a 2016 “resolution in progress,” like quitting smoking or exercising more. Or eating fewer cheeseburgers. This is all shit I’ve found that I like, so if it bears any resemblance to someone else’s list then that someone better pay up because that fucker stole it from me. Also, I take back what I said about cheeseburgers.


  1. “Chasing Shadows” – Santigold

Santigold’s voice is like melted butter being poured into my ears. That sounds gross, but it’s true. The way she builds melodies and guides them around the core beat and melody in this track is impressive. When a song is enough to guide you to your own imagination, to your own daydream of how the artist looks singing it, then you know you’ve got something. Now put layers of meaning behind that. Now make it hip. That’s Santigold kicking off your 2016.

Santigold – Chasing Shadows


  1. “King of the World” – Weezer

This might be the best single Weezer has put out this decade. The guitars remind me of “Undone” or “Only In Dreams” from the Blue Album, and the bridge is more reminiscent of Pinkerton, to which most old-school Weezer fans will say “fucking finally!” They’ve been trying to recapture that energy for years and failing hard, despite somehow maintaining relevance. Their most recent output has indicated some sort of return to form, but it has fallen short until now. Perhaps the White Album, due out in the spring, will at last deliver the nerd rock gold longtime Weezer fans have heard only in dreams. (See what I did there?)

Weezer – King of the World


  1. “I Hate the Weekend” – TacoCat

Somewhere between The Ramones and The Go-Gos roars Tacocat, and Tacocat is the shit. I can’t recall hearing American pop punk this cool in years. A four-piece from Seattle. After digging a little deeper I’ve found this band has a knack for crafting anthemic melodies on a consistent basis. The per