Ahhh, there’s nothing better than the summer. It’s the best season because you can go outside and do whatever you want. The sun is shining and you don’t have to worry about winter for the next few months. Also, the summer comes with incredible music for everyone to enjoy. But, what on Earth makes a summer jam? It’s lyrics that have the sunniest chrous, a hot beat, and a number of weeks on the top of the charts.
Since the summer is a wonderful season, it’s time to celebrate the songs that are ruling the season all over the world. From huge hits to weird personal choices, these are the songs you could put into every playlist and not miss a beat.
One Kiss- Calvin Harris Feat. Dua Lipa
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This Calvin Harris collaboration is a dreamy whirlpool of deep house music. Dua’s vocals cut right through Harris’s moody beats as she delivers the tracks ready lines “One kiss is all it takes/Falling in love with me/ Possibilities/ I look like all you need.”
It sounds familiar, but it’s full of fresh new energy too. Dua Lipa is an artist with growing potential, but for now, she can be extremely pleased that she co-wrote one of the most popular songs of the season.
Let’s Take A Vacation- Joshua Hedley
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Summer songs should be upbeat, and that’s exactly what Joshua Hedley did. The country artist delivers a warm-weather kind of song for the ones who are brokenhearted. It’s for the poor souls among us for whom memories of the season are linked to the one who “got away.”
Hedley is doing nothing but lamenting his own lost love while daydreaming about reuniting for one last make-or-break attempt. While he sings, there’s hope that they’ll “get some sand in the bed.”
Slow Burn- Kacey Musgraves
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Musgraves doesn’t disappoint her fans with “Slow Burn.” It’s the kind of jam that makes some folks wanna go hard in the heat, even if you know you shouldn’t. Nonetheless, this is an example of a great summer song, especially after how unnerving 2018 has been.
It’s a soundtrack that makes you chill out and it’s a mediation of pacing yourself. Not only that, but you hear about earning your wisdom, enjoying the world’s beauty, and getting jiggy with it. What until you see the next single. It’s a no-brainer and it sounds like it was chemically made in a mad scientist’s lab.
Let You Be Right- Meghan Trainor
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The production of Trainor’s song is groovy, modern, and well-rounded. It’s the kind of song that could be played at a friend’s house before going out for the night. Also, it’s the song that girls will definitely be playing whenever they have their desired wine nights.
Trainor is singing about conceding “being right” by telling her man that he loves her while urging him to trust her. Beyond the lyrics and theme, “Let You Be Right” has its moments of summertime fun.
Cocaine Cowboys- Margo Price
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Margo Price’s 2017 album All American Made has songs that sound better in the summer. It’s true with the single “Cocaine Cowboys,” and it even sounds similar to the Grateful Dead’s “They Love Each Other.”
Price is able to craft a funny story about a type of man she no doubt pegged herself with when she moved from Illinois to Nashville in her early twenties. Her song is about nothing but the faux cowboys that come in the 21st century.
I Like It- Cardi B
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This is a no-brainer. It sounds like it was chemically made in a mad scientist’s lab. From the second it was released on her debut album, Invasion of Privacy, it quickly replaced Cardi’s own number one hit “Bodak Yellow.”
Of course, the song can be played anywhere you go as the go-to song of the summer. Blare it out of the car and apartment windows, and all over the world. Cardi B is on her way to becoming a huge success. After his politically-angled single, the next artist ahead was quick to release a package that only has two songs.
Nice For What?- Drake
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No, Keke can’t be loved on “Nice For What” because it’s not even in the single. While we might have been overrun with the question of “Keke, do you love me?” it’s not necessarily Drake’s number one summer jam.
Since the song and Scorpion dropped, Kanye released more music while Pusha T revealed that Drake was hiding a child. We all seem to forget that every time the song plays. Everytime it ends, you have to hit the rewind button.
Back To You- Selena Gomez
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“Back to You” is as natural as it gets for summer songs. Gomez’s feisty ballad against your camp boyfriend who ditched you after 10 boring months of letter-exchanging is way too familiar for us all.
Of course, we all know who that boyfriend is, and his initials are JB. It’s somewhat of a melancholic jam for goths, cynics, and lonely walks home. Gomez’s lilting soprano whispers to us like an air conditioner that just turned on for the first time in the summer.
Summertime Magic- Childish Gambino
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The multi-talented Gambino released two new songs in a package called Summer Pack. “Summertime Magic” is a significant turn from his politically-angled track “This Is America.”
The song has a breezy melodic and lightly tropical atmosphere that makes it feel like you are on the beach having Coronas. In “Summertime Magic,” Gambino unironically speaks of the joys of the season. The other single “Feels Like Summer,” sounds like a modern update of a Marvin Gaye I Want You era. After the success of their collaboration “So Far Away,” this French and Dutch DJ had to collaborate once again. Find out who that duo is shortly!
Five Seconds Of Summer- If Walls Could Talk
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These teen-pop punks quickly turned into journeymen. The Aussie boys went all out with their 2014 summer jam “She Looks So Perfect” when they sang about American Apparel underwear.
These days, Five Seconds Of Summer are forced to grow up because One Direction and American Apparel fail to exist now. “If Walls Could Talk” is easily the best song from their Youngblood album, but it’s crazy to think how much things have changed for the band.
Girls Like You- Maroon 5 feat. Cardi B
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Once again, it’s no surprise that Adam Levine declares he “needs a girl like you.” The song does feature Cardi B, but it’s really the music video that sells the single overall. In the music video, Levine performs the tune while the camera circles around him.
There are a ton of female stars standing by his side, including Gal Gadot, Jennifer Lopez, and Camila Cabello. So yeah, this is certainly a summer song. Also, for all of you out there who needs a girl like you, be nice.
Like I Do- David Guetta Feat. Martin Garrix
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After the success of their collaboration “So Far Away,” David Guetta and Martin Garrix were at it again. This time, the French and Dutch superstars blended progressive house with pop influences and beautiful vocals for “Like I Do.”
Seriously, if you need a song to get you through the heat wave, this song will get you going. But, it’s not surprising that David has been a legend of house music after all of these years. The next artist ahead used to be a member of One Direction.
Make Me Feel- Janelle Monae
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Monae unpacks a funk tune that recalls the likes of the late Prince and Sheila E. Her influences from the eighties are clear with each massive synth line and the feeling of raw energy that’s given throughout the song.
Much like her past work, “Make Me Feel” has a flashy mix of modern bounce that meets the old soul. The song is a clear statement of strength, freedom, and continued evolution of an artist who’s appeared in Hidden Figures and the Best Picture-winning Moonlight.
Ella Mai- Boo’d Up
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Mai is competing with musicians such as Cardi B and Drake for the titan of the summer single. Her breakthrough single is cool and love-drunk full of spectacular singing. One of the best arguments for the musician’s single was made on Twitter.
User @mryouknwtherest posted a helpful video titled “5 steps on how to listen to Boo’d Up.” The clip begins with careful preparation followed by making sure the windows are closed. But the key step is the third and final one “Screw them steps, sing that song!”
Carolina- Harry Styles
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Technically, “Carolina” came out in 2017, and it did not climb up the charts. However, this glam-rock song screams summer romance as loud as any fan girl of One Direction.
The time has come for this single to shine as it’s supposedly about a girl named Townes, but there’s so much to love about this song. From the unique retro guitar riffs to the catchy “la-la-la’s” Styles sings about a love interest whom we all want to be or meet. Still on the way, an artist from Sweden is ready to crack the top ten charts any second now and it’s the best single from her sophomore album.
Heat Wave- Snail Mail
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This sad, emotional is about getting bored and making some emotional bets. For Snail Mail, Lindsey Jordan spends her vacation falling for some green-eyed dream who’s barely there, only because she has nothing better to do and she’s bored.
Honestly, knowing what’s real would mean knowing it was never meant to be. Also, who the heck wants to the think about the future in the middle of June? No one.
Happy Unhappy- The Beths
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Summer songs should feel being drunk on an escape velocity for its own dumb sake. This New Zealand band, The Beths, fire off the perfect guitar and vocal hooks like they’ve been holding on to them since high school.
The pissy little indie-pop breakup jam has that vibe in piles. The pure joy fans can sense in this group, from making the tune to playing it, is incredibly awesome. A lot of bands get by being boring like this, but it will never get old!
Say My Name- Tove Styrke
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Tove Stryke is ready to appear in the Top Ten hits list any second now. “Say My Name” is the best song from the Swede’s album, Sway. It’s a little classic of blissed-out-romance.
This is the kind of song that demands to be played on repeat after a crappy day. “Say My Name” plays the tune like a crush song, or maybe a full lust song. All she wants is for the object of her affection to not just to say her name, but to wear it out like a heart on a sleeve.
Summer’s End- John Prine
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Any summer song that features the word “end” in the title sounds like a total drag. Summer is a time for having fun. Nonetheless, John Prine’s “Summer’s End” is like a bittersweet story that captures the summer ritual: sitting around and realizing the fact that our most precious moments are passing in front of our very own eyes.
The song isn’t particularly about getting older, but it’s about the acceptance of how time accelerates with age.
Lives- Scars On Broadway
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It’s not every day a metal band makes a summer song. But for Scars on Broadway, “Lives” has the disco beat that would fit only in a song from a band like System of a Down.
And, the tune is full of lyrics that make you want to party, even if it’s a Monday evening. It’s a celebration with a purpose and it’s one of the metal songs that’s a dancing gig, along with Thin Lizzy’s “Roisin Dubh” and Spinal Taps’ “Stonehenge.”