He loves you, he loves you not… It’s so hard to tell with blackbear. He certainly doesn’t mess with capital letters, but who could ever deny that his music is sexy, sultry, dark and so freaking good? He’s the prince of alt-R&B bubbling under the surface and crawling under your skin. He’s definitely about to blow and we at Billboard Dance think it’s time you got to know his music better.
blackbear’s music is like a mix of Justin Bieber and The Weeknd. It’s dark and dangerous, but it’s equally vulnerable. He’s actually collaborated with the Biebs, as well as G-Eazy, Machine Gun Kelly, James Blake, Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo, Pharrell Williams and the list goes on. Here at Billboard Dance, though, we’re most interested in the collaborations that come after the fact. There are a lot of remixes that turn blackbear’s dreamy heartbreak into bonafide dance floor delights.
Here are six of our favorites:
blackbear – “idfc” (Tarro Remix)
You know that spot where you’re basically mad about someone, but showing signs of affection is weakness, so you put on a front like they were just another shorty you put the naughty on? blackbear is pretty much king of that wave and his heartbreaking single “idfc” cuts right to the heart of that feeling, but it doesn’t have much of a beat. So, Tarro came through with the emotional trap remix to take this R&B jam into a definite DJ set piece. Play this at the end of the night when it’s time to face your feels and bring that sweetie home.
blackbear x 4e – “sidelines” (Ellusive Remix)
Is there something creepy about a man who says, “If I can’t love you, I don’t want nobody else to?” Yes, a little bit, but blackbear makes it sound like it’s a sexy thing. Ellusive comes through with the future bass hook to take this slightly stalker love anthem to a whole new level. It’s energetic enough for you to bust a quick boss move. Get off those sidelines and get in the game, already.
blackbear – “Playing Dead” (Sevnth Remix)
The original beat on “Playing Dead” is already pretty fantastic, but it’s not anywhere near as groovy as Sevnth’s space-age disco flow. The producer takes a multi-colored spotlight and shines it on the heart of the song. blackbear’s drippy vocals get worked through a gritty filter and your girl goes down lower than a basement.
blackbear Feat. G-Eazy – “90210” (Matt DiMona Remix)
If you can’t make the woman a housewife, you can at least make the heartbreak anthem a house tune. This blackbear remix is big drums and waterfalls of feels. His dreamily moans about the party girl he can’t get to settle down, but who would consider settling when the beat is this bumpin’? Everything about this remix sounds larger than life, like the lifestyles these Beverly Hills women stay chasing.
blackbear – “do re mi” (Y2K remix)
Why do you always go for the crazy ones? Because the crazy ones are often super hot, but nothing is as hot as the beat on this blackbear remix. Y2K builds the beat as the singer recounts all the ways this wild woman has done him dirty. By the time he sings how he’s so done, you’re energy hits its breaking point. Then we all fall down into a sad lull of guitar, because even when you know it’s the right move, leaving is never easy.
blackbear – “Laid Out” (Tajan Remix)
What was that? You don’t think blackbear’s music is dreamy enough? Well, it sounds pretty dreamy to us, but Tajan certainly upped the ante on this remix of “Laid Out.” This is late-night, mid-copulation music for you and yours. Don’t break these bells out unless you’re ready to look your partner in the eye and get really deep. There may be no coming back from vibes this deep. Proceed with caution.