Welcome back to Takeover Tuesday, where each week, Billboard taps chart-topping artists and tastemakers to compile their very own playlist exclusive to Billboard's Spotify account. We give the artists free rein to base the list on whatever subject they choose. The only rule? Make it as creative and unique to them as possible.
Though Warped Tour may be no more, State Champs are making sure emo music isn't dead this summer. The pop-punk group is teaming up with Mayday Parade, The Maine and The Wonder Years (along with Every Avenue, Four Year Strong, Set It Off and Forever the Sickest Kids in select cities) for Sad Summer Festival, which kicks off in Dallas on Friday.
As the State Champs guys — singer Derek DiScanio, drummer Evan Ambrosio, bassist Ryan Graham, and guitarists Tyler Szalkowski and Tony Diaz — get amped for their 17-date summer trek around North America, they decided to dedicate their Takeover Tuesday playlist to the tunes they spin before taking the stage. But State Champs' "Dressing Room Jams" aren't as emo as you might think.
The 20-song playlist features several of 2019's biggest breakouts like Lil Nas X and Lizzo, including everything from country to indie rock to K-pop. Kicking off with 5 Seconds of Summer's latest release "Easier" ("the vocal melody is fire," says Ambrosio), the playlist continues with Lizzo's fiery breakup anthem "Truth Hurts." "How can you not pop lock and drop it to this tune?" Ambrosio quips. The drummer's other picks include Bazzi's "Mine" and "See Through" from The Band Camino, whom he dubs "one of the most exciting bands putting out rock music this year."
DiScanio commended Tyler, the Creator's new LP Igor ("the whole record is absolute fire," he says), particularly highlighting the wavy track "Earfquake." He also added BTS' Halsey collab "Boy With Luv" to the mix, declaring that he got everyone in the group "hooked on K-pop."
Graham chose the remaining four songs on the playlist, shouting out singer-songwriter Allen Stone with the artist's funky 2018 release "Brown Eyed Lover." "He's got the smoothest voice and the catchiest tunes," Graham says. He then brings State Champs' signature sarcasm with his other picks, Lil Nas X's "Panini" ("We're hungry," he quips), Kacey Musgraves' "High Horse" and Jonas Brothers' Happiness Begins cut "Don't Throw It Away."
"We campaigned earlier this year to get on a tour with the Jonas Brothers and they repeatedly denied our existence," Graham jokes. "We're showing love anyway because this song is undeniable." As for "High Horse"? "Kacey Musgraves makes me want to wear a cowboy hat — and I can’t say that about many songs."
The remaining 10 songs include Khalid's John Mayer team-up "Outta My Head" and BLACKPINK's "Kill This Love," and of course some good ole pop-punk tunes from Neck Deep, Issues, The Dangerous Summer and more. Check out State Champs' full "Dressing Room Jams" playlist below, and get your tickets to see them at the Sad Summer Festival here.