For many, summer is underway, or on the way in the next couple months. But as May is just around the corner and people are itching to get into the warmest part of the year, I want to talk about the phenomenon that occurs this time every year. The mass release of music. Whether you have two months to go to camp, four months in retail or you take two weeks off from work to go cottaging, it's hard to deny summer is buzzing in the air and the music industry knows that. This time every year, music is released in a slow and steady stream, with every song clambering to be the "song of the summer".
And yeah, I get that music is released all year, but summer music holds a special place in everyone's lives. These are songs played at beach parties and patio bars. It's the song that by mid-July is so rooted in your brain, you catch yourself humming it more times than is pleasant. Summer music is quintessentially happy. It's about getting away, living life, and being in love. This music becomes laced into pop culture history, and thrives on the laid-back nature of summer. People want to be in a good mood during the summer and the industry knows that.
But in order for us to fall in love with this music all summer, it needs to be familiar before June hits and we're all well into developing our tan (or sunburn in my case). So this music is coming out now and over the next month.
And I understand if you think I'm being dramatic about how much of a staple these summer songs are in Western culture. But facts can't be exaggerated. In order to prove myself, I did a little bit of research and delved back in time to find old songs of the summer, just to prove how influential they are.
In summer of 1965, the charts were topped with The Rolling Stones' I Can't Get No Satisfaction, and The Beatles' Help!. I've decided to link these songs below just in case you live under a rock.
Not enough proof? 1972 featured both Brandy by Looking Glass and Lean on Me by Bill Withers.
And I could go on forever, songs of summer include Bad, Bad Leroy Brown (Jim Croce - 1972), Jessie's Girl (Rick Springfield - 1981), Papa Don't Preach (Madonna - 1986) and Macarena (Los Del Rio - 1996). YES. The MACARENA is a summer song!
And new music you ask? Old music isn't your jam? Crazy in Love by Beyonce (2003), I Kissed a Girl by Katy Perry (2008), Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen (2012) and One Dance by Drake (2016) were all the top songs of their respective summers.
So I guess my point is, the music you listen to this summer is important. The music you love and sing along to, gets hung up on a wall among the greatest of the greats. Summer music is a cultural staple whether or not you want to realize it.
My picks for this year's summer song? Well, it's probably not even out yet but I've got my fingers crossed the Jonas Brothers will pull something out of their back pocket and bring back the era of bands. One can always dream.
Also, I'd love to know what your favourite summer song is! Not on this list? Not on any list? Let me know what gets you pumped for sunny days ahead.
From me, with love, to you,
(P.S. Because I'm no rookie, I've got sources. It's no APA formatting, but it does the trick.)