what happened, mark ronson?

If you've been outside your room these past few months, chances are you've had the (dis)pleasure of hearing 'Uptown Funk', be it on the radio or at last night's pub quiz. And if you've been around me these past few months, then chances are you've also heard me complain about how much I hate this song, and reminisce Mark Ronson's past albums.

In this light, I've decided to take y'all down memory lane for a tribute to Mark and his greatest moments. Hopefully, he has more in store for us - because projects like Uptown Special and producing Paul McCartney are simply not going to cut it for fans like myself.

2003: Here Comes the Fuzz
Mark releases his début album, Here Comes the Fuzz. I only purchased this album in 2010, as I did not know Mark as an artist back in '03 (I was only eight years old - give me a break!). It's full of solid rap tunes. The real standout, though, is 'Ooh Wee' - the song everyone has probably heard but can't put a name on. Well, that was Mark, ladies and gentlemen.

2006: Lily Allen's Alright, Still // Amy Winehouse's Back to Black
Yes, Mark is the genius behind Lily Allen's first and best album, Alright, Still. Ever notice how great the orchestration is? Thanks, Mark. In fact, the pair have become great friends since then - as can be seen in this hilarious interview of Mark on Lily Allen and Friends. This is the album that first introduced me to Mark's talent as a producer.

And yes, he's also the genius behind Back to Black. Again, a wonderful orchestration of horns, strings and Amy's voice. You can tell the two have musical chemistry.

2007: Version
Mark releases his best album to date. Every single song is a pure genius reworking of modern classics - from Kaiser Chief's 'Oh My God' to Radiohead's 'Just'. Mark really finds his voice with Version, proving strings and horns can be super cool and contemporary, especially mixed in with some rap and vocal prodigies like Amy Winehouse. Remember the more recent version of 'Valerie'? Of course, you do. Well, that was Mark, too. But let's listen to 'Stop Me', just because:

+ produces Adele's first and (in my humble opinion) only good album, 19. 'Cold Shoulder' is brilliant.
+ Mark performs at the Brit Awards with Amy and Daniel Merriweather (see clip below).

+ produces The Like's Release Me, a super fun, girly album reminiscent of the 60's. All songs were recorded live in the studio, which gives them a really organic sound.
+ Record Collection, Mark's third album, is released under the artist name 'Mark Ronson and the Business INTL'. Indeed, Record Collection is a close collaboration with a core group of artists such as Alex Greenwald (Phantom Planet), Rose Elinor Dougall (The Pipettes) and MNDR. I spend hours listening and singing along to Alex and Rose's duet 'The Night Last Night', which I also set as my alarm (I have since then switched to 'No Surprises' by Radiohead - waking up to 'The Night Last Night' was beginning to ruin the song for me). And, of course, there's that unforgettable piece featuring Boy George and Andrew Wyatt from Miike Snow: 'Somebody to Love Me' (sung by Boy George and Alex Greenwald below).
+ in October, I am lucky enough to see Mark Ronson and TBI perform at Music Hall of Williamsburg. It's a fantastic performance that has us all dancing by the first song.

2011-2014: ...
+ 2011: attempts to take Duran Duran out of their grave by producing their new record. Semi-succeeds - but it's still a mediocre product. Maybe they should have left it at 'Rio'?
+ 2012: produces Bruno Mars' Unorthodox Jukebox. I should have seen this as foreshadowing - where have my English class reflexes gone?!
+ 2013: produces the new Paul McCartney album. yawn.
+ 2014: Mark gets a TED Talk where he showcases his DJ skills and discusses his craft. A short-lived ray of hope for a new beginning...
+ 2014: the unfortunate 'Uptown Funk' is released to the masses. I die a little inside.

2015 and beyond: Redemption? Rebirth?
+ I've just learned Mark will be producing Lana Del Rey's new album. Perhaps he's back on track?

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