R: Taylor Hill/FilmMagic
I'd be a dumbass if I didn't give credit to Chilly Gonzales' Pop Music Masterclass video series for doing theoretical analyses of pop songs first before I made it more or less my thing on this site (dude, if you're reading this, I totally borrowed that bit about the syncopation in "Hold On, We're Going Home" for a piece). He's also a Canadian musical constant of sorts, playing with everyone from Feist to Drake, and going beyond that to get a showcase on Daft Punk's last album. Gonzales has just surprise-dropped a new covers album called Other People's Pieces that combines both of those pasts into a an extremely pretty whole.
Gonzales pals Drake and Daft Punk have their music covered in a set of elaborate solo piano-and-voice medleys that weave in melodies and motifs from across both artists' discographies. "Da Funk"'s main synth line has never sounded so magnificent, while we can thank Gonzales for understanding how strong the under-appreciated chorus melody from Drake's "The Real Her" is (both Drake pieces are peak Canadian content). Elsewhere, we have Gonzales covering Beach House, a medley of Weezer's greatest hits, a poignant mash-up of Lana Del Rey's "Blue Jeans" and "Video Games," and most impressively, a "Rap Medley" that has the piano part from "Still D.R.E." morphing into the piano part from Kanye's "Heard 'Em Say." He also plays the "C.R.E.A.M." riff in one hand while doing the "California Love" bassline in the other at one point. It's rather nuts but you can also play it for your grandparents, so win-win! Listen to Other People's Pieces below.
Phil is on Twitter.