It would be too easy and almost like cheating
to put songs in this category that have the word
"summer" in the title, or that are so
specifically about summer. Rather, the following
list is a batch of songs that remind me of summer
– usually because the song was released and played
on the radio or in my personal music player during
the hottest months of the year. Or simply because
the breezy instrumentation and/or melody just has
that summery feel to it. Anyway, have a listen
and see if these songs give you that same feeling.
Just remember to apply sunscreen liberally to the
hottie next to you.
"Only Time Will Tell," Asia (Asia)
Steve Howe never made the guitar sing like this when he was with Yes. But in "supergroup" Asia, he did so quite nicely, to complement the lush harmonies of John Wetton, Geoff Downes and company.
"Love Walks In," Van Halen (5150)
Whether or not you think Van Halen was better with David Lee Roth or Sammy Hagar, it’s just hard to imagine Roth pulling off a pretty, slow-tempo track like this. And to Hagar’s credit, he somehow kept his cool rock star status intact afterward.
"Fooled Around and Fell in Love," Elvin
Bishop (Struttin’ My Stuff)
This song came out in the summer of 1975, and still takes me back to playing wiffle ball in my driveway—you know, that feeling of having no cares in the world. Yep, this song is like comfort food.
"Saturday in the Park," Chicago (Chicago
This song paints a picture of summer – a Saturday in the park on the Fourth of July. But it’s more than that. It’s a piano-driven pop gem that just feels like summer.
"Tonight I’m Falling," TNT (Intuition)
If you like metal that leans toward the pop flavor of Poison, Warrant and Whitesnake, and you haven’t heard this album yet, trust me when I say you’ve been missing out for the last 20 or so years. These guys could sing and play with incredible precision.
"Too Shy," Kajagoogoo (White Feathers)
This classic song from the summer of 1983 was a big MTV hit. Will the effeminate-looking singer land the hot chick? Probably not, especially with an equally effeminate band name.
"Wanna Be," Nine Days (The Madding Crowd)
Chances are you’ve only heard Nine Days’ one-hit-wonder hit, "Story of a Girl." But there were lots of less-annoying songs on the record, including this slow, pulsing, and heartfelt stunner.
"All You Zombies," The Hooters (Nervous
Eric Bazilian is still writing plenty of great songs for other artists, but his band the Hooters had some real gems on their mid-'80s Columbia Records debut, including this haunting and insanely awesome track.
"Live Here Without You," Sponge (New
For the most part, you really can’t understand what the hell lead singer Vinnie Dombrowski is singing. But half the fun is making up your own goofy shit to the music anyway.
"Giving It All Up for Love," Huey Lewis & The
News (Picture This)
Another true story from my own music career: I once opened for Huey Lewis, and the dude said he was looking forward to hearing me play. After my set, the fucker stumbles out of his tour bus wiping sleep from his eyes. I guess pop stars earn the right not to really give a shit.
"Suzanne," Journey (Raised on Radio)
Journey was getting old and road weary by the time this album came out, but still, Raised on Radio had hit songs like this one that rivaled anything on Escape or Frontiers.
"Hot Rod Hearts," Robbie Dupree (Robbie
The production on this song sounds dated, but that’s the beauty of it. It just reminds you of a certain year of a certain era of your own life. Really, that is sometimes the beauty of music itself.
"In Repair," Our Lady Peace (Spiritual
Poke fun all you want about the fact that this band is from Canada, eh. They still rock and know how to pen edgy, hook-filled songs.
"The Warrior," Scandal (The Warrior)
Ah, the summer of 1984. Patty Smyth and her hotness fronted this rock band that broke up way too soon.