Leigh MichaelMonday,8 July 2013

The Snap:

In case you haven’t gotten the message from the skyrocketing temperatures or the s’mores displays at the grocery stores, summer is here. And with it comes years of songs that seem to define the season. It’s impossible to put them all down on paper, so for now I’ve chosen one per  decade. Any songs that you think deserve a coveted place on the list?

The Download:

Without further ado…

2010s — Black Keys, “Lonely Boy

Maybe it’s the garage band vibe, maybe it’s the music video, but man this song feels like a slice of summer to me. Ironically, “Lonely Boy” was released in October – but it feels like it deserves a uniform of jorts, Ray Bans, and/or a well-stocked grill to be fully appreciated.

2000s — Fleet Foxes, “Blue Ridge Mountains

Fleet Foxes feels like the best kind of peer pressure… Every time I hear this song, I want to hop in my car and start driving, no destination in mind. It’s definitely got less of the “poolside/beachside/BBQ” vibe and more of the “introspective/solitary” thing going on, but every summer needs a dash of that in there, right?

(By the way, if you love the song, check out this cool Takeaway Show)

1990s — The Verve, “Bittersweet Symphony

This is one of the only songs that I listened to repeatedly in high school and still get excited about today. It’s got the “universal appeal” factor that makes every moment just a little more epic.

1980s — Billy Idol, “Mony Mony

I’ll admit it – I’m not a Billy Idol fan (put me in a room and make me listen to/watch “White Wedding” and I’ll crack in no time). But his rendition of Tommy James & the Shondells’ 1968 hit is, plain and simple, awesome. It’s got that iconic 80s vibe… With a classic touch. And it completely works.

1970s — The Allman Brothers, “Ramblin’ Man

The Allman Brothers have this way. Every time one of their songs come on — especially the live versions — I feel like I’ve been transported to a scene from Almost Famous. Not a bad place to (mentally) be when the heat hits and every inch of your body wants to scream “I am a golden god!” from a rooftop. “Ramblin’ Man” was written and recorded in 1973, but here’s a little fun fact: It is actually inspired by Hank Williams’ 1951 song.

1960s — The Drifters, “This Magic Moment

There are a lot of reasons that this song owns summer – but I think the iconic Sandlot scene trumps all. Whether you’re pretending to drown in order to win over the lifeguard or turning up the volume on your way to work, “This Magic Moment” makes any moment, well… Magical (yes, I couldn’t resist the cliche).

… And a tie for: Solomon Burke, “Cry to Me

So do I really even need an explanation for this one?


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Hat Tips:

NPR, Rolling Stone, EW, Image Credit: Flickr

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