Ah, the sweet sounds of summer! Oops, did you think I meant the waves crashing on the shore, the spray of sunscreen under the sun, or the ice clanging inside a cold glass of lemonade? Nope–although that all does sound pleasant.
It's all about the tunes in this article today, and I’m here for it. Whether you’re living in tropical splendor or a lush concrete jungle, I’ve got you covered with my top 15 favorite songs that will keep you cool all summer long.
1. Zac Brown Band: “Toes”
What could be better to kick off the playlist than with a classic tune about vacationing away in a tropical island paradise with alcoholic libations? Even as Brown’s song comes to a close and he has to head back to reality, a nice cheap beer and a lawn chair still have his name on them.
2. The Foundations: “Build Me Up Buttercup”
Endless love for the win here! This karaoke-worthy song by The Foundations definitely addresses a one-sided relationship, but the vibes are all there. Trust me, blast this hit in your car with the windows down on the way to the beach, lake, or pool. Bet you can’t stay quiet!
3. Glass Animals: “Heat Waves”
This song has to be one of my favorites today. Yes, I’m 19 years old and this is probably a song you’ve never heard unless you listen to “Today’s Top Pop Hits” on the radio, but it is worth it. “Heat Waves” is a nice, easy, vibey listen that’ll get you bopping your head nonetheless.
4. Dexys Midnight Runners: “Come On Eileen”
After “Today’s Top Hits,” I thought it best to throw it back to the 80s with Dexys Midnight Runners’ one-hit wonder. Honestly, this song is in this playlist because of that electric bridge. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good build up!
5. Katrina & the Waves: “Walking on Sunshine”
“Walking on Sunshine” by Katina & the Waves is probably one of the best feel-good songs ever made. Let’s be real – doesn’t the moment you discover your crush likes you back feel like you’re walking on sunshine? Similar emotion when you know it’s summertime! And don’t it feel good?!
6. Weezer: “Island in the Sun”
There is a lot of skepticism surrounding this song; some think it’s simply about going on vacation, others think it has a deeper, more somber meaning. Either way, it’s a bop. Grab your Yeti cup, a big straw hat, and a beach chair and just watch the sunset with this song in the background. You won’t regret it!
7. Bryan Adams: “Summer of ‘69”
This song is extra special to me as every time it plays, my mom has to explain that it was written for her. She was born July 4, 1969, as some might say the peak of Summer of ‘69. She’s lucky the song is actually pretty great. Pick up that air guitar and jam to this song at your family BBQs, just like my family does!
8. Bob Marley: “Jamming”
Bow down to the king Mr. Marley. Seriously, every song my good ‘ol friend Bob writes is a hit. “Jamming” is no exception. His reggae beats remain the quintessential summer jams, pun intended. Let this magical song play and watch your dopamine levels rise!
9. Calvin Harris: “Summer”
This next song falls under the category of EDM, or electronic dance music, typically performed by DJs. I had to sprinkle some EDM in this playlist simply because there is nothing better to get you on your feet and bouncing around to the beat! Calvin Harris is top of the list of most popular EDM DJs. After listening to “Summer” you’ll know why.
10. Capital Cities: “Safe and Sound”
Capital Cities is an American pop duo most famous for their one-hit wonder “Safe and Sound.” Let me tell you, one-hit is better than no-hit and this song is definitely a HIT! The song focuses around a sentiment we all have experienced: having that one person to do life with, through thick and thin. Blast this song with that special someone all summer long!
11. Miley Cyrus: “Malibu”
What I would give to be in Malibu right now. Besides providing vivid imagery of the beautiful beach in California, this song pays tribute to Cyrus’ first love, Liam Hemsworth. Now I'm crying. There's nothing more to say...just please go listen.
12. Tame Impala: “The Less I Know the Better”
Let’s throw in a little alternative/indie music, shall we? Tame Impala is a trailblazer of the genre and their biggest hit, “The Less I Know the Better,” best represents their kind of music. The opening beat makes you want to choreograph some synchronized head swaying in the car with your entire family. I'm not blaming you.
13. Harry Styles: “Golden”
There is so much I could say about Harry Styles. I’ve been his fan since his One Direction days and he certainly hasn’t disappointed since he went solo. Every single song on his newest album Fine Line is phenomenal. Most are even perfect for summer, but “Golden” just makes me feel so warm inside. And the sights in the video are to die for...I’m talking about Italy’s Amalfi Coast, duh.
14. Little Big Town: “Wine, Beer, Whiskey”
I paid my mom a tribute today, so I have to also honor my dad. Presenting his ALL-TIME favorite song. I only heard it about 25 times during our last family vacation, but I have to give it to him, it’s pretty catchy. Listen to the lyrics of this one; they're clever and very witty. Sipping on your favorite alcoholic beverage is the best way to enjoy this tune!
15. Silk City, Dua Lipa, Diplo, & Mark Ronson: “Electricity (with Dua Lipa)”
I’m closing this perfect summer playlist with a personal favorite: “Electricity (with Dua Lipa).” Let’s make this summer electric ladies and gents, shall we?
I hoped you all loved going on this musical journey with me! Sad that it’s over? Don’t be! Head on over to our Decocrated Spotify profile for a full playlist with these hits and plenty more!
Please tap that heart at the top of the playlist to let us know that we should continue curating music to match the season for you all.
Until next time!
About the Author:
Isabella Falero is a second-year advertising student at the University of Florida and interning with the Decocrated team this summer. Born in Miami Beach, Fla with family from Cuba, Bella often immerses herself in multiple industries and the communications/journalism world is simply one of her favorites. If she's not taking classes, writing, or studying, she’s playing volleyball, cooking, or binging a good show on Netflix!