Some of the biggest producers in dance music weigh in on choosing vocalists for their projects. Pitching songs to super star singers has some benefits, but choosing the lesser known artist proves to be beneficial as well.

Dance acts seeking crossover singles have a proven formula in tapping a pop star and hitting Hot 100 pay dirt. There’s a reason Major Lazer and DJ Snake reportedly first pitched “Lean On” to Rihanna and Nicki Minaj. But “Lean On” eventually reached No. 4 featuring the lesser-known — and surely less pricey — singer MØ. Fame is seemingly just one factor. “There’s not a singer we don’t hit up if there’s something interesting happening there,” says The Chainsmokers’ Alex Pall.

The Chainsmokers

The duo has called the 2015 track “Roses” its favorite song. Understandably so: It was the pair’s first top 10 hit, peaking at No. 6 on the Hot 100, partly on the strength of the virtually unknown 23-year-old vocalist Rozes — whose own 2016 single failed to chart.


Building on the momentum of “Don’t Let Me Down,” a No. 3 hit, the two called on rising star Halsey to reach the Hot 100 summit with “Closer.” The last dance single to achieve the feat: Baauer’s “Harlem Shake,” fueled by a hard-to-replicate viral video.

... Read the full article by Matt Medved at Billboard.com

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