School is out, the days are getting longer, we are sweeping off the deck and cranking up the grill in preparation for all those summer cookouts and pool parties. Any summer gathering is incomplete without some great tunes to go with those burgers. Here are my ten favorites.
Under the Boardwalk – The Drifters
This song has such a simple melody. You can almost feel the sand under your feet and hear the ocean waves as you imagine sitting on the beach with your sweetie.
Saturday in the Park – Chicago
This brass powered mellow oldie went gold after its 1972 release. With its conversational lyrics, it has become a hymn of the season. Can you dig it?” “Yes, we can.”
Suddenly Last Summer – The Motels
A haunting song, this one reminds me of the 80’s when MTV was first developing a presence. Martha Davis’ sultry voice brings back the memories of that transitional time in music and in my life.
Summer Nights – John Travolta and Olivia Newton John
It’s hard not to sing along with this one from the blockbuster movie Grease. What would summer be without a fling?
School’s Out for Summer – Alice Cooper
Back in 1972 this song hit the airwaves and has since become the anthem for that uproarious last day of school.
Surfin Safari – The Beach Boys
You can’t have a summer gathering without this classic. The quintessential surfer song, its familiar sound just oozes summer. The rousing drumming makes it almost impossible to sit still.
Wipeout – The Surfaris
No summer party would be that same without this one. With possibly the most recognizable guitar riff of all time, this surfer song with its iconic drum solo has possessed generations to annoy their parents by imitating it at the dinner table. It’s been 50 years since Wipeout debuted and it’s still one of the most fun songs ever.
Hot Fun in the Summertime – Sly and the Family Stone
Released in August 1969, this easy going song has soul. The funky horns, coupled with Sly’s soulful voice makes this piece a staple for summertime fun.
Summer Breeze – Seals & Crofts
This is what summer is all about, a little mellow harmony. This song encapsulates a lazy summer afternoon better than anything I can think of.
Wipeout – Fat Boys and The Beach Boys
I am not a fan of rap, but this one is an exception. I really didn’t need to see the Fat Boys in swimsuits, but The Beach Boys still have it and even today no one can touch their harmony. Through every Wha, Wha, Wha, and Bop, Bop, Bop, Bow Bow. This one is my favorite.