Highlighting Avicii’s Best Hip-Hop & R&B Collaborations
At just 28 years old, Tim Bergling helped cultivate the world of EDM as Avicii. As news of his death spread Friday (Apr. 20), figures in the dance community such as Eric Prydz, Hardwell and Deadmau5 paid their respects. Among the group were also Nile Rogers, Rita Ora, and Aloe Blacc, who was featured on one of the producer’s biggest tune, “Wake Me Up.”
Avicii’s catalog was lengthy in dance, but also warm and rich in R&B, reggae and hip-hop influences. As a lover of the hip-hop space, the favor was returned as the Swedish creator helped influenced the likes of Flo Rida’s breakout hit, “Good Feeling” and Leona Lewis’ “Collide” in 2012 respectively.
His collaborations and extensive remixes hold fond memories of love and joy. Take a look back at some of Avicii’s best collabs in hip-hop and R&B spaces below.
1. “Can’t Catch Me,” “Divine Sorrow” and the World Cup Anthem of 2014 feat. Wyclef Jean
His work with Mr. Jean allowed the legend to toy with the lines of riddims and melodic tunes. “Can’t Catch Me” is a breezy dancehall while “Divine Sorrow” was a sweet notion of love and devotion.
2. “Sunset Jesus”
Stories held hints of R&B, especially in the catchy and uplifting “Sunset Jesus.” With Gavin DeGraw on the vocals, fellow writers Mike Posner and Dhani Lennevald crafted a fine tune worthy of plenty of replays.
3. Flo Rida’s “Good Feeling”
“Good Feeling” was indeed the mood to reflect the single’s success. As the rapper was already on a run with his dance-rap jams (“Right Round” with Kesha, “Low” with T-Pain, “Sugar” with Wynter Gordon), his sample of Avicii’s “Levels” help boosted the single to the top of the charts.
4. “Lonely Together” feat. Rita Ora
Avicii enjoyed his growth in progressive house and it showed on the 2017 EP Avīci (01). His single, “Lonely Together” was a glittery pairing with Rita Ora, who was able to make toxic love sound enticing.
5. “What Would I Change It To” feat. AlunaGeorge
Aluna Francis of the eletro-R&B group AlunaGeorge took on an introspective mood on Avicii’s “What Would I Change It To.” The singer shared on Instagram Friday how the producer arrived from the hospital to put the song together. “I spent a day in the studio and he took a song that nobody else understood and brought it to life,” she captioned a photo of the two. “He was very sick, came straight from the hospital, sweating with discomfort but didn’t complain. It was a great experience and I’ll always be grateful to share that level of creativity and passion with someone who had such an understanding of what made people happy – he really cares about the lyrics but then knew how to make people come together and let go.”
6. Leona Lewis’ “Collide”
The song may have been rooted in controversy, but the musical outcome was an enjoyable track for fans. “Collide” was Lewis’ first time in dance territory, which proved to be a comfortable safe space for her powerful vocals.
7. “Superlove” Lenny Kravitz v. Avicii
This was the collaboration we didn’t know we needed. The song originally appeared on the musician’s Black and White America in 2011 and was remixed by Avicii in 2012.
8. His Love for Swedish rapper Lilleman
As Your EDM points out, Avicii’s influences weren’t just in the dance ethos. In 2015, a video featuring a young Tim Bergling revealed he was also a big fan of rap music – particularly Swedish MC Lilleman. It was a friendly reminder of Avicii’s appreciation for music.
9. Major Lazer’s “Get Free” (Avicii remix)
Major Lazer’s “Get Free” was remixed by the likes of J. Cole, but Avicii’s edit was just as smooth with the presence of more drums and his signature practices.
10. Rhythm Masters, MYNC, Wynter Gordon’s “I Feel Love” (Avicii’s Forgotten Remix)
A true reminder of Avicii’s production power, the Donna Summer cover hit every mood in the heart chamber. Gordon’s vocals are spread throughout the seven-minute remix, making us pleased to stay in the disco-dance time machine.
11. “Wake Me Up” & “Liar Liar” feat. Aloe Blacc
In Blacc’s words, “meeting him changed my life,” which is true given the impact of their collaborations, especially “Wake Me Up.” The soul singer shared his condolences on Twitter and called the producer an “amazingly talented person.” “Wake Me Up” was the lead single to Avicii’s debut album True. The single became the summer anthem of 2013 and went on to make history as the first Dance/Electronic song to have a year-long chart life on the Billboard Hot 100.