As you probably know, 2016 was a complete and utterly disappointment. And that is putting it nicely. Between the natural disasters, national scandals, and joke of a presidential election, we were so ready to say goodbye to the year that we forgot that there are so many things to look forward to in 2017. But it is a new year, ladies and gentlemen, which means twelve months of new music from our favorite celebs. Music has the power to heal, and as we recover from 2016, you can bet that we are going to hold on to it tighter than ever now. Hallelujah. Whether you enjoy ballads, rap songs and or even dance music, there is something on this list for you. Here are 15 albums that you forgot were being released this year. Get ready for your next musical obsession because you will definitely have them on repeat.
15 Taylor Swift
Since Taylor Swift debuted in 2006, she has, without fail, released an album every two years. 2016 was the exception and instead of making us happy with new music, she seemed to be in tons of trouble with the press. Sigh. Her last album, 1989 was released in 2014 and broke all sorts of records. It is one of her best albums ever and we definitely loved her hit single "Shake It Off." Taylor Swift is the ultimate perfectionist, so she obviously wants her next album to be just as good. The talk around town is that her sixth album is going to be released sometime this year, although Taylor hasn't made an official announcement. Her fans are expecting her to drop her new album out of nowhere, just like Beyonce did. No word on whether Taylor will head back to her country roots or stay with the current pop trend she's been on. Either way, this is one album you'll definitely want to get your hands on.
14 Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran took a break from the spotlight back in December 2015 and now he's back and ready to bless our ears with his beautiful voice. The British singer just released not one but two singles last week. The first, "Castle On The Hill," induces major nostalgia, as it's a song about growing up and yearning for simpler times, which is exactly what you would expect an Ed Sheeran song to sound like. The second song, "Shape of You," is super sensual and hot and is like some of his other R&B themed songs. It's definitely catchy. His first albums have always been named after symbols. The first was +, the second X, and the third will follow that same pattern. It will be called ÷ or Divide. There's no word on an official release date yet, but an artist would never release two singles if an album wasn't on the way. Expect ÷ to drop soon. Maybe even sooner than you think. And get ready to fall in love with, too.
13 Avril Lavigne
Avril Lavigne hasn't released any new music since 2013. The beloved star took a few years away from the limelight to focus on her battle with Lyme disease. We're assuming that she's gotten her health under control because she recently announced the arrival of new music. "Hi Everyone!!," Avril posted on Instagram. "I wanted to first thank my fans for your patience & support during my time away throughout my battle with Lyme Disease over the past 2 years." She added, "I'm really happy to announce that I am now working on new music and I will be releasing a new album in 2017. I can't wait to open up and share my heart with you! I'm excited for you guys to hear the new songs. It's going to be an amazing 2017!" So far, we don't know what her new songs will sound like, but our inner teenage girls are super ready.
12 John Mayer
It's been over four years since John Mayer's last album. Why?! What has he been doing? Fortunately, the singer recently announced plans to release new music, which means that 2017 might not be so bad after all. The catch? Well, you shouldn't expect to hear one complete album all at once. Mayer has opted to release his new album, The Search For Everything, throughout the year, with the first installment dropping on the 20th of January. Every month, Mayer will release four new songs. That means that by this time next year, there will be 36 John Mayer songs. To his eager fans who have been yearning to hear his new material, this is both good and bad news. On one hand, they'll have something to look forward to every month. On the other, if the songs aren't great, it will feel like a never-ending nightmare. Then there are those people who like to listen to albums front to back. This will be complete torture for them.
11 Fifth Harmony
Fifth Harmony might be down a member, but they are determined to not let that slow down their world domination. Even though Camila Cabello has parted ways with the group, making them a four piece and delegitimizing their name, Fifth Harmony is ploying ahead with the release of their album, according to Billboard. As they should, might I add! Their sophomore album, 727, which spawned hit singles like, "Work From Home," and "That's My Girl," was released last May to much success. That said, this new album will not only have to match that album's success, it will have to exceed it. Everything from their vocals to the lyrics have to be exceptional. This is their time to prove that they are just as good, if not better, sans Camila. We are super excited to see what this new group is all about. But we have to say we are sad to see Camila go.
10 Little Big Town
If country is your thing, then you'll be super happy this summer. The country group Little Big Time recently announced the arrival of their new album, Wanderlust, on their official website. They produced their album with Pharrell Williams. ”What started out as one writing session a few months ago turned into multiple writing sessions, as well as back and forth trips from Nashville to Los Angeles. When the songs started coming together, we realized it was too special to not share with our fans. Pharrell loves country music and is a huge fan of harmony," said member Karen Fairchild. She continued, "This music is meant to be danced to, sung along with and turned up loud. It's uplifting and hopeful. We've been a band for a long time and have had the pleasure of collaborating with so many people, and it's been a complete joy to make music with Pharrell!” We don't really associate Pharrell with country music, but he's a musical genius, so whatever they come up with will no doubt be stellar!
Drake totally faked all of us out last year. According to the Toronto rapper, he was going to drop an album in December of 2016. As you know, December came and went and still no new album. That said, you can expect a new Drake album to come out sometimes this year and we're super ready for it. The new album is supposedly going to be called More Life and will possibly drop before month's end. Drake obviously has a loyal fan base, but many outsiders are excited to hear how his on-again, off-again relationship with Rihanna will affect his music. Will he bare his feelings about her on the album? Will he diss her in any songs? Or will he simply sweep their romance under the rug and never look back? Besides, he's in a new relationship with JLo, so it could be that he's moved on from Rihanna and won't even address her. We'll know soon enough, either way.
Tinashe was supposed to drop her second album, Joyride, last spring but it ended up getting pushed back. When fall 2016 came, Tinashe released an album called Nightride, which came as a shock to her fans. This album wasn't just the same record with a title change, it was a completely different thing. She made sure to let her fans know that Joyride. Tinashe recently spoke to Rolling Stone and had this to say: "The majority of the album was already there, so it wasn't like that much changed. I see [Nightride and Joyride] as two things that are equally the same. I think you can be a combination of things, and that's what makes people human and complex. They are equally me. I don't like to be limited to one particular thing so I want to represent that duality and that sense of boundlessness in my art." We still have a couple of months before Tinashe's vision will come together, but you can listen to the first half on various streaming platforms.
Lorde hasn't released an album in over two years. That's not really a long stretch of time for more established artists but since she's still pretty new on the music scene, it feels like an eternity. Fortunately, a new album from Lorde is definitely coming. This year, if all things go to plan. In November, Lorde tweeted a photo of herself holding a pair of cheap looking headphones captioned,"Listen to the record on these every day. wanna hear it exactly how you will." Aside from the fact that Lorde thinks her fans can't afford quality headphones, I'd say that Tweet also confirms that her sophomore record is dangerously close. Whether or not we'll get Royals 2.0 is to be determined, but we'll definitely give this one a chance. Various sources have confirmed that Lorde will debut some of her new material this year at Coachella. Our fingers are crossed for you, Lorde!
6 Zara Larsson
You may have heard of Zara Larsson, but probably not. She has yet to reach A-list status in the U.S but she's a huge deal in her home country of Sweden. Over the last couple of years, Zara has slowly but surely been cracking into the U.S. market, proving that if you haven't heard of her, you definitely need to have her on your radar in 2017, which is when she'll be releasing her second album. It's on the way and you need to be ready! Speaking with Heat Radio, Zara had this so say: “It’s ready. It’s done. We have the artwork, but we don’t have the name — but it’s there just waiting to be released.” So far, to keep her fan's satisfied, Zara has released three singles, all of which have done moderately well. And if you're worrying about Zara releasing her best material, while she waits for the album's release, don't. There's more where that came from. She said so herself.
5 Katy Perry
Katy Perry hasn't released a studio album since 2013's Prism. There's only so many times we can play "Roar" and "Dark Horse" before we go crazy because we really, really love her and just can't wait for some catchy new pop songs. In August 2016, Katy Perry released her song "Rise" which wound up being the soundtrack of the Olympics. The hype around that track made fans think that Katy was gearing up to drop a surprise album. She didn't, much to our dismay. But she tweeted this past year. "Ok back to the studio for me. 2017 is gonna be tight af," Perry shared via Twitter. New music is coming. How soon? We don't know for sure. But we do know that pop music hasn't been the same without her. Whatever she comes up with, we're totally going to be into and we're going to welcome her new tunes with open arms.
4 Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson won American Idol way back in 2002 which is pretty much forever ago. In the 15 years since Kelly has more than proved that she has the talent to sustain a long career in the industry. Now, however, Kelly is looking to start fresh. The Idol alum recently switched over from Sony Records, who she has been with since she got her start in the career, to Atlantic Records so that she can experiment with a new sound. Kelly recently revealed that she felt Sony forced her to sing pop music and she has a thing for R&B/soul music. Which, we can't blame her at all. As much as we love her pop music, Kelly's voice was made for soulful ballads. Her new album is due out this year and will presumably explore those parts of Kelly' voice. We can't wait to see what she comes up with!
Jay-Z might be the first rapper to record an album totally dissing his wife. Okay, that's not exactly true. But there is speculation that Jay-Z's next record will be a response to Beyonce's hit album Lemonade which aired the couple's dirty laundry. If we're to believe Beyonce, then Jay-Z cheated on her several times. The songs even had Beyonce's dedicated fan base coming after him. If that's not loyalty, we don't know what is. Jay-Z has apparently decided to put his side out to the world with a record of his own, due out this year. A source told US Weekly that Jay-Z, "the subject of widespread cheating speculation thanks to his wife Beyoncé’s latest album — is now working on a new setlist of his own to address the infidelity rumors swirling around their relationship." Of course, this could all just be totally made up. But regardless of the truth, there will be new tunes from Jay-Z and we're into it.
2 Kanye West
Kanye West made headlines for just about everything but his music at the end of 2016. From his hospitalization to his Trump endorsement to rumors of an impending divorce from Kim Kardashian, we were unable to look at the news or go on social media without reading something new about him. It definitely seems like Kanye West is ready to move on and put the focus back on his music in 2017. Kanye West dropped a new single titled "Feel Me" with his friend and possibly future in-law Tyga. Rumors about a new album have been literally circulating for months and will be called Turbo Grafx 16, reportedly. There's no official date for his new album to drop, but knowing Kanye it could drop at literally any moment. Brace yourselves. You just know that it's going to be interesting and something to talk about, like anything else that the singer does.
1 Harry Styles
A Harry Styles album hasn't been officially confirmed, but it seems like if he's going to release one, this would be the year. Since One Direction went on a break in 2015, Harry has been positioning himself for a solo career. Early last year, Styles reportedly signed an $80 million dollar record deal with Columbia. In October 2016, Harry was interviewed by Paul McCartney for a magazine cover story and he picked Harry's brain about his solo career. Harry revealed that he had been writing and recording. He would be the last of his band mates to put out solo material, but everyone would be absolutely ready for it. His album is expected to come out this summer when the movie that he's starring in, Dunkirk, comes out. It would be the perfect time to capitalize on the buzz. Let's be real, One Direction is done (SOB) and it's Harry's time.