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FYI

Felix Cartal and Kiiara: Happy Hour

A catchy dance-pop cut with dark lyrics but an upbeat vibe.

Felix Cartal and Kiiara: Happy Hour

By Kerry Doole

Felix Cartal and Kiiara - Happy Hour (Physical Presents / Fontana North): Juno-winning Vancouver-based dance-pop producer/DJ Taelor Deitcher, aka Felix Cartal, has recruited American vocalist Kiiara for his new single, and the combination is a winning one.


Breezy vocals are placed atop synths and beats and the results are pleasingly catchy. Lyrics like “We're lost, not found, We're all crashin' down, When every hour is happy hour” may seem dark, but the mood here is upbeat. At 2.40, the track certainly doesn’t overstay its welcome.

In a label press release, Cartal says this about the song: “The idea and lyrics for this song were created during a writing session in Norway. I think my time in Scandinavia was really beneficial to my songwriting process because they have this effortless approach to pop writing. We had a breakthrough when we started thinking of juxtaposing Happy Hour with darker lyrics. It kind of all fell together once we figured out how to attack it, and I dub it my "uplifting loser anthem." It felt sort of pop, but sort of unconventional, and to have Kiiara feature on it was unreal because I felt that her pop music has that same unpredictable quality.”

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Describing the collaboration, Kiiara explains that "Felix and I have been meaning to work together on an original song of our own for years. I’ve always been a fan of his work. I remember him sending me a remix of my song Feels a few years back, and I was blown away. I’m really excited about our song Happy Hour. It's a melodramatic emo anthem (lol that's both of our specialties)”.

Cartal’s singles Get What You Give and Love Me are certified platinum in Canada with Love Me (featuring  LIGHTS) also winning the Dance Recording of the Year at the 2020 Junos. He has collaborated with such major artists such as Kaskade, R3HAB, and Gallant, and created official remixes for the likes of Selena Gomez, Zedd, Galantis, Dillon Francis, MØ, Ellie Goulding, Diplo and Anne-Marie & Doja Cat.

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Kiiara’s breakout single Gold reached no. 5 on Billboard’s US Top 40 charts and has over 675 million streams. In total, she’s amassed over 2 billion streams across platforms. Happy Hour is the first release since her 2020 debut album, Lil Kiiwi.

Links - Felix Cartal

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Publicity: Erin Carroll, Cadence

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Jay-Z and Alicia Keys perform onstage during the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall on Sept. 13, 2009 in New York City.
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Jay-Z and Alicia Keys perform onstage during the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall on Sept. 13, 2009 in New York City.

Awards

Alicia Keys and Jay-Z to Perform ‘Empire State of Mind’ on 2024 Tony Awards

The song always packs a special jolt of excitement when performed in New York City.

It was too perfect an opportunity to pass up: Alicia Keys and Jay-Z will perform “Empire State of Mind” during the 77th Annual Tony Awards on Sunday, June 16. The show is set to air live on both coasts from the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City (8:00-11:00 p.m. ET/5:00-8:00 p.m. live PT) on CBS, and to stream on Paramount+ in the U.S.

“Empire State of Mind” is featured in Hell’s Kitchen, the musical based on Keys’ early life and music which is nominated for 13 Tony Awards. That put it in a tie with the play Stereophonic as this year’s most-nominated production.

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