Music Monday: Summertime Hits

by Scott Lydon


Pretty sweet new banner, right? Hey, happy Music Monday! Today we're gonna be exploring summer, perhaps the strangest and most magical strangest season of all. Maybe that's because we spend almost two decades depending on it and then our very first real job it all gets taken away. Who among us WOULDN'T go back to childish summer days? Maybe that's why musicians seem to enjoy exploring what summer means… or maybe it's because a good summer anthem can sell for three months straight. Scott's gonna be naming five of his favorite summertime songs below, and then it'll be your turn right after! Here's a little taste…

The Lovin' Spoonful - Summer In The City


Can anyone imagine a world where this song was new? Even if you were alive before it appeared, tell the truth: that mix of organ and whip-snapping vocals just fit, didn't it? Like the world was always waiting for it to appear? If you've ever walked anywhere on a hot day, or stayed out late on a hot night, you'll understand the way this song feels. When music sweats, this is what it sounds like.

After the jump you'll find the rest of the songs, last week's Spotify play list, and a chance to leave your own summertime hits in the comments. See you there?

As always, before we cannonball into the deep end, remember our weekly Spotify playlist will be featuring a great selection from last week's Music Monday comments. The theme of the mix this time is Decent Anti-Drug Songs and it's great way to test out those cool new Spotify mobile apps! But before you enjoy the flashbacks, let's check out this week's Music Monday below.

The Drifters - Under The Boardwalk


Nothing to do, no responsibilities, nowhere to be until late, it's a perfect time to sneak off together. The Drifters' ode to summer romance captures the joy of summer love so very well. Warm, happy vocals make this classic a rarity: a summer song that can't really be overplayed.

Grease Soundtrack - Summer Nights


Suck it up, Glee. Everything you are, you owe to a movie so cool it changed Olivia Newton-John from this to this. This classic ode to the glory of high school summers has stayed popular over the years and even today remains still fresh enough to be enjoyed by a a new generation of high schoolers. What other musical can say THAT?

DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince - Summertime

I'm pretty sure this song could qualify as a list if it really wanted to, but it's likely too busy cruisin' down those summer streets. One of the first real grown-up hits from the Philadelphia duo, this song is less zany and more smooth, and pretty much moved them from their old '80s persona to the new '90s style. And it's still radio-friendly enough to get your head bobbing on that road trip to the beach.

Don Henley - Boys of Summer


Much like Frank Sinatra's Summer Wind, this is a song about the end of summer, when all those feelings of regret begin to appear. You could have done this, you could have done that, if only there had been more time, if only fall was further away. We include it as the closer not to make you feel bad but rather to remind you that summer, like life, is fleeting. And you should make the most of the next nine or so weeks, because you'll miss them when they're gone.

Now it's your turn. Help us talk about summer by adding your favorite summer hit to the comments below. Then, after you're all warmed up, hit the room for our regular Music Monday experience. As always, images come from the corresponding Wikipedia page and are here under fair use.