Bop Shop: Songs From J-Hope And J. Cole, Daisy Jones & The Six, And More

One trip back to the '70s, another to the future

The search for the ever-elusive "bop" is difficult. Playlists and streaming-service recommendations can only do so much. They often leave a lingering question: Are these songs really good, or are they just new?

Enter Bop Shop, a hand-picked selection of songs from the MTV News team. This weekly collection doesn't discriminate by genre and can include anything — it's a snapshot of what's on our minds and what sounds good. We'll keep it fresh with the latest music, but expect a few oldies (but goodies) every once in a while, too. Get ready: The Bop Shop is now open for business.

J-Hope with J. Cole: “On the Street”

There’s something so special about seeing your idol perform with his idol. After a spontaneous, ultimately fruitful backstage encounter at last year’s Lollapalooza, J-Hope meets J. Cole on “On the Street,” a lo-fi track led by a haunting, self-recorded whistle. Inspired by his origin as a street dancer, which can be seen in the New York-based, freestyle-heavy music video, “On the Street” acts as both a means of self and career reflection for the BTS dance leader, which hits harder knowing he is the next group member to enlist in the South Korean military. Cole, known for his thoughtful and introspective lyricism, meets Hope halfway in that feeling, taking just over a minute to reflect on his own mental state and journey. Though the track’s content is deep and brimming with self-analysis, its melody is warm and inviting, much like J-Hope himself, as we’ve seen in past projects like debut mixtape Hope World — the title inspired by J.Cole’s Cole World — and 2022 album, Jack in the Box. Though “On the Street” is the beginning of J-Hope’s next chapter, the track is ultimately an outreached hand to his fans around the world, who will be patiently (or impatiently) awaiting his return. “Every time I look, every time I love, every time I hope,” he sings. “As always, for us.” —Sarina Bhutani

Moonlight Benjamin: “Wayo”

A Haitian-born singer and self-described “punky voodoo queen,” Moonlight Benjamin brings the energy on “Wayo,” a venomous cut from her new album of the same name. The title stems from the Haitian creole for “cry of pain,” which calls back to the birth of the blues as a rallying call amid suffering. Throughout “Wayo,” the ragged guitar lines and pounding drums create a foundation on which Benjamin can wail and process all that pain — it’s a stunning experience that ends with the promise of calm after the storm. —Patrick Hosken

U.S. Girls: “Tux (Your Body Fills Me, Boo)”

Bless This Mess is the title of U.S. Girls’ latest album, and it’s also what I say whenever I look in the mirror. It’s stocked with 11 kooky singles slathered in alternative synth and interpretive lyrics straight out of the ‘80s, including my second favorite, “St. James Way.” Though “Tux (Your Body Fills Me, Boo)” is the standout track with its funky bassline and unique concept. Truly, who else but Meghan Remy has sung from the perspective of a tuxedo? There’s a stigma of rigidity behind lavish events, but Remy demonstrates that fanciness can be flexible. Bust out your bowtie or ball gown and show ‘em who’s boss! —Gwyn Cutler

Daisy Jones & The Six: “Look At Us Now (Honeycomb)”

“Look At Us Now (Honeycomb)” is the first music to come alive from The New York Times bestseller-turned-TV adaptation Daisy Jones & The Six, and as fans of the popular novel know, it’s the song that started it all. The Amazon Prime Video series premieres today (March 3), featuring the real treat of original music created specifically for it. This slow and tortured ballad effortlessly blends the voices of Riley Keough and Sam Claflin, who play Daisy Jones and Billy Dunne, respectively. The track may start off slow and sultry, but the band kicks it into full '70s rock-star mode as the song amps up the drums and guitars for a more high-stakes transition, emphasizing the passion and hurt behind the lyrics and story. Listen to this song along with the accompanying album, Aurora, featuring all the tracks from the series, out now. —Alissa Godwin

Yahya: “Lov3fly”

With a title like Made It Out of Purgatory, the New York-via-Sudan rapper Yahya’s latest project raises a question: Did he end up in Heaven or Hell? “Lov3fly,” a caustic and digitized song produced by Antonio Lamar, suggests neither, instead pointing to the struggle he’s endured and has thankfully crawled his way out of. The EP is about, the rapper says, how “to move forward, you must first be still.” Take two minutes of stillness to listen to this one. —Patrick Hosken

Jozzy: “Alone”

Jozzy just dropped her debut EP, so in the words of Billy Eichner, “Let’s go, lesbians!” This queer artist may be unfamiliar to some, but she’s a Grammy-winning songwriter mentored by Timbaland and Missy Elliott. She even wrote Billy Ray Cyrus’ verse on the “Old Town Road” remix — that’s how essential Jozzy has been to the industry so far. Finally she’s tackled a solo project full of sensual R&B jams bound to get you sweaty and sweet for your honey. “Alone” is the only lonely track, so it stands out with its sorrowful strings and strong vocals. —Gwyn Cutler

Wasia Project: “Petals on the Moon”

The sexy siblings from the Wasia Project, Olivia and William Gao Hardy, swing around in the streets of New York City in their first-ever music video for “Petals on the Moon.” This duo has reproduced the confining feeling created by our limited, mundane world where escapism with a trusted partner is a sure-fire solace. Wavering vocals and pounding on the keyboard paint the song with a distinct uneasiness that matches its anxious lyrics, but by the chorus, you’ll be confidently frolicking to the chaos. —Gwyn Cutler

Charles Jenkins: “The Soul of a Woman”

March is officially Women's History Month, when we honor women's contributions to society and culture. Every woman deserves to hear a good empowerment anthem, and hitmaker Charles Jenkins has made a song to do just that. Sitting with "The Soul of a Woman" feels like a melodic hug from a friend. With this song, you will feel uplifted, empowered, and inspired. The message, as he wrote on Instagram, is universal: "For every woman who has ever loved, given, nurtured, encouraged, cultivated, served, nursed, taught, helped, supported, sacrificed, empowered, innovated, created, produced, birthed, built, succeeded, listened, advised, pushed through, opened doors, fought for good, volunteered, got back up, or you have just been present in the world in any meaningful way. This one is for you." —Sunni Anderson

Tank and the Bangas: “DM Pretty”

Less a full song and more of a dewy, starry-eyed poem, “DM Pretty” still has all the crucial ingredients and then some. It’s a viral audio trending on Tiktok. No surprise here — band leader Tank Ball previously won two National Poetry Slam competitions and her eloquence flows all throughout her lyricism. It’s captivating to listen to her softly describing the affirmations she receives for her Black and beautiful body and comparing it to the insensitive treatment she faced after satisfying her social-media admirer. Don’t worry: She tops it off with a killer concluding line. “This boy be in my DM, say I’m pretty / I wonder if he knows that I been knew that shit.” Tank is a bad bitch brimming with talent – that’s why I’ll always promote her and the Bangas’ artistry. —Gwyn Cutler

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