Hit Parade: The Def Jams Edition

Listen to Episode 10 of Slate’s Hit Parade: Slate Plus members: Get your ad-free podcast feed. Watching this year’s Grammy Awards, it’s clear hip-hop is the dominant genre in popular music. But back in the 1980s, it was an influential but still underground style looking for a place on the charts—and some mainstream respect. That is, [...] Read more

Drake’s Latest No. 1 Was a Foregone Conclusion. Is There Anything Left for Him to Prove?

The Beach Boys’ “God Only Knows” is now considered one of the greatest recordings in rock history, but when it was released in 1966, it never climbed higher than No. 39 on Billboard’s Hot 100. As I explained in the latest episode of my Slate podcast Hit Parade, this was partially because Brian Wilson’s exquisite [...] Read more