The Best of 2016: According to Neighbor Britney Norman

In celebration of making it through 2016, we have invited some of our favorite Neighbors to share the songs and albums that helped them get through this helluva year.

Next up, we have our dear friend Britney Norman, Senior Manager of Integrated Marketing Programs for Visit Philadelphia. She may be a BOSS in the daytime but this Philly-bred woman can be seen at all the dopest concerts and parties happening around town. Brit was also named one of Billy Penn’s Top Communications Professionals under the age of 40, a list that also included our Creative Director. 

Check out what has been giving our girl eargasms!

What’s Good in the Neighborhood?!

In true leap year fashion, 2016 was full of life-changing highs and lows; and it’s music, coupled with the visuals, helped me push through with a sense of pride for our culture. If the year could talk, it would shout: “Say it Loud: I’m Black and I’m Proud!” Below, in no particular order, are my top five albums and singles– raise your fist and give me a head nod if you agree!

Top 5 Albums:

dvsn - Sept 5th

Another OVO gem giving me life! I loved this album at first listen- it’s so smooth from beginning to end and I still revisit it as a fallback when I’m at work and want to blast something acceptable at my desk lol.

Stream: Apple, Spotify, Tidal

Beyonce - Lemonade

True Confession: I’ve never been a part of the BeyHive.  Now with that out the way, I’ll say that this album allowed me to love Beyonce again, I mean, I even bought a ticket for the tour! Not only was this a good piece of work, but it was timely AF! Panels, conferences and college classes can be taught around the visual album alone, and I’m sure in years to come, we’ll still be asking each other: “Where were you when you first saw the Formation video?”

Stream: Tidal

Frank Ocean - Blonde

To be a fan of Frank Ocean, you have to know a little something called patience. After waiting 4 years for new music, I was one of those fans tuned in on my laptop watching this man build a wooden staircase for almost an hour and praying that once he walked up The Stairway to Heaven, another album would drop. ‘Cause, that’s just something Frank would do. And he did! Blonde is so honest and beautifully written– It’s another favorite I keep in rotation.

Stream: Apple, Spotify, Tidal

Solange - A Seat at the Table

One Sunday evening, over soul food, wine and whisky, my girlfriends and I came together to have a listening party for ASATT, because when an album like this comes out- that’s what you need to do! We broke down lyrics, shared feelings, passed tissues, laughed and danced. Thank You, Solange, for helping bring us together to define the glory within.

Stream: Apple Music, Tidal, Spotify

Childish Gambino - Awaken, My Love!

I was not ready for this masterpiece! Childish did his thing with this one. So much Funk. SO much soul. If you weren’t a fan before, I’m sure you are now:)

Stream: Apple Music, Tidal, Spotify

Top 5 Singles:

Drake - “One Dance”

From Montreal to Belize, I could not escape this song through my 2016 travels. It’s so fun, sexy and catchy- you can’t help but wind your hips and do a little two step when this song comes on!

Bruno Mars - “24K Magic”

We can always count on Bruno to give us a NYE party anthem (past: Uptown Funk). All I can do is smile when this feel good song comes on and it definitely makes me want to celebrate such a good year. #Blessed!

Lion Babe - “Treat Me Like Fire”

Frankly, this song is my love life in a nutshell.  #SMDH

Kaytranada feat. Anderson .Paak - “Glowed Up”

This song was easily my summer anthem so when everyone at the Roots Picnic was waiting for Future to hit the stage to do his 2-minute set (no shade), I was on the other side vibing out to Kaytranada with his sexy self.

Snoh Aalegra - “Home”

Another song that warms my heart and frequently gets put on repeat. Her bluesy lyrics are reminiscent of Amy Winehouse and I’ve been needing someone to fill that void for a while now.

Music & NewsEvon Burton