The Ultimate 2016 New Year’s Eve Playlist

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Ring in the new year with a playlist guaranteed to keep the party going past the ball drop. Add top artists like Bruno Mars, Drake and of course, Queen Bey herself and Spotify won’t even be able to compete with you this New Year. 2016 was an awesome year for the music industry, which is why you need to add these Grammy-nominated songs to your playlist. Peace out 2K16 and hello 2017!

1. 24K Magic-Bruno Mars

Gold decorations can take a basic party to the top, so why not match your music to your décor? With catchy song lyrics and music throughout the album, Bruno Mars has what you need to pop champagne this year. “24K Magic is by far Bruno’s best work,” Edinboro University alum Bradley Hill said. “We have old school boy band sound with vibrant current melodies. If you’re about using your past to propel you forward into your future, Bruno Mars will help,” he said. Grab some bling and get down this NYE.

2. Closer- The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey

Ahhhh.  I can remember–most of–the nights at bars belting out these lyrics. Whether or not you’re in a relationship, “Closer” will pull you closer to someone at the party—perhaps your best friend for a karaoke sing-off or one of the guys in your high school friend group that blossomed into a cutie since college started. And even if you’ve heard it a thousand times too many, you can’t deny it gets you dancing. Bonus, if you’re at a karaoke bar, you’ll know all the words when it comes time to shine on the microphone. Show the whole bar what you’re working with before the ball drops.

3. Starboy- The Weeknd

What’s up with Canadian artists up and coming with awesome music this year? First Drake with Views and later in the year, The Weeknd’s Starboy. You fell in love with his druggy, 50 Shades of Grey vibes with House of Balloons, but The Weeknd took R&B to the next level with this song. “I love listening to The Weeknd no matter what I’m doing, so naturally he’s going to be a part of my NYE playlist,” Mercyhurst University sophomore Abby Miller said. Don’t act like you don’t listen to The Weeknd on the reg either. Open up your Spotify playlist and add “Starboy” now.

4. Cheap Thrills- Sia ft. Sean Paul

When Sia says “C’mon, c’mon turn the radio on,” you should really listen. With a Caribbean-inspired beat, this track will get your hips moving on the dancefloor. Picture yourself in your BFF’s bedroom putting your makeup on and turning this song up. You can’t deny the urge to dance. In fact, you might want to be careful if you’re doing your eyeliner when it comes on; don’t want to mess up a cat eye before you catch the Uber.

5.“Formation” – Beyonce

While I would love the put the ~entire~ Lemonade album on this list, we’d be stuck here all day. “We have Icon and Queen giving us the culture honoring ground breaking album which is Lemonade. Her shortest studio album yet gave us her most powerful message by far,” Hill said. The aesthetic behind Lemonade is full of knowledge and inspiration. With an edgy beat and prose-like lyrics, Bey has all the ladies covered. “If you want to get in touch with your roots or need help remembering who TF you are, let Beyoncé get you in formation for 2017,” Hill said.

6. “Sorry” – Beyonce

Ashes to ashes, dust to side chicks. Did your SO cheat on you this year? Maybe you went through a bad break-up in 2016 and you’re still grieving about it. Grab your girls and put on this Lemonade track and let all those emotions out. Beyoncé gave ladies all over the world the power to be themselves and get what they want in 2016. Take that energy and transform it this New Year’s as you say goodbye to that bad relationship. That boy will be a thing of the past. #IAintSorry

7. Work- Rihanna

Work, work, work, seems to be all that we did this year. Seniors who graduated in May 2016 are off clocking in on their first jobs and the rest of the college world suffers through homework and finals. Your NYE party has to include Ri-Ri because, not only is this the story of your life, her 2016 album took the music industry by storm. Trust me, even the boys at your party are going to sing along to this tune.

8. Father Stretch My Hands (pt. 1)- Kayne West

Despite being meme-central for a few water bottle challenge videos on Twitter, Yeezy ripped the music industry apart with Life of Pablo. “This is the perfect song to lift to at the gym, but all I’m going to be thinking about lifting on NYE is my glass,” Mercyhurst University senior Kyle Ashburn said. With a beat that can be paired with chilling on a barstool or in a circle of buddies belting the lyrics, Kanye has you covered.

9. Let Me Love You- DJ Snake ft. Justin Bieber

2016 left a lot of people sinking, but thank goodness for J. Biebs pulling us up out of the water with this catchy track. The vibe here is jamming with friends and dancing in a circle with our hands in the air. Don’t have Bieber fever? Who cares! You need this song on your list.

10. Gold- Kiiara

Take a break from rap and move into the pop scene with this cool track. Kiiara grabs our attention with a beat that makes you want to vibe whether you’re chilling on the couch or busting a move by the bar. “The chorus is unique and catchy. She’s a newer artist with a popular song,” Mercyhurst University alum Ladorise Bedard-Webb said. Sick of the same old voices? I know I am. Let Kiiara freshen your playlist.

11. No Problem- Chance the Rapper ft. 2Chainz and Lil Wayne

The greatest rapper to come up in 2016 for refusing to sign a label, Chance the Rapper will have you bouncing off all the walls at the party this year. “His lyrics are so fresh and real,” Ohio State University senior Heidi Murr said. “He’s one of my favorite artists to listen to when I’m choreographing in the studio. I feel most creative with his music in the background,” she said. Chance will make sure you tell the right people that they don’t want any problems with you, even if it’s just on your Snapchat story.

12. Ten Rounds with Jose Cuervo- Tracy Byrd

When the party starts to slow down put this tune on and grab a tray of shots to wake everyone up again.  “It’s a good country song to break up the pop and rap music but is still catchy enough that everyone would be able to enjoy and drink to it,” Waynesburg University senior Amanda Schneider said. Because who doesn’t love tequila?

13. One Dance- Drake ft. Kyla and Wizkid

Dance 2016 away with Drake. “One Dance” left everyone begging for more and “Views” didn’t disappoint. Even though Drake and Ri-Ri broke up, we still fell in love with the relationship this song sparked. Gain the confidence to ask your crush for one dance with this song in the background. You won’t be sorry.

14. Juju On That Beat- Zay Hilfigerrr and Zayion McCall

#JuJuChallenge anyone? Despite being a dance challenge that occurred mostly in the summer and fall of 2016, this song took the dance challenges to a whole new level. Get your whole squad together and bring the JuJu Challenge to 2017 too because the more the merrier when it comes to this dance.

15. Bad and Boujee- Migos ft. Lil Uzi Vert

Rain drop, Drop top. 2016 is over but the music don’t stop, stop. Clearly neither do the memes for this song, which is why you need it on your NYE playlist. The only way up from here is to keep the memes going and what better way than jamming the night away yelling these lyrics. Because let’s be honest, the 2016 memes were so overrated, to the point that they made a board game about them. Instead of bringing the mannequin challenge to 2k17, bring Migos with you instead.

16. 1999- Prince

This music icon tragically passed away in 2016, but his music lives on. Before 2012, 1999 was ~supposedly~ the year the world was going to end. Clearly, scientists were wrong, which means more reason to celebrate life! Bust out this oldie, but goodie, for your NYE party.

17. This Is The New Year- A Great Big World

If this music video isn’t enough to get you pumped for the New Year celebration, then I don’t know what is. This upbeat rock tune has everyone jamming along including One Tree Hill and Glee. You’re already thinking about how attractive Lucas Scott is in his basketball uniform, so why not make a night out of it with your friends? Jam out to this catchy tune and then fall asleep watching episodes of OTH on Netflix. Don’t forget to hydrate!

Noël Blackhall is a senior at Mercyhurst University studying Broadcast Journalism in Erie, PA. When it's not covered in five feet of snow, you can find her playing with dogs at local shelters or out on the court dancing for the Mercyhurst Dance Team.

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