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The Five Best Summer Songs

List Of The Day

Thousands of songs have the word "summer" in their title. Believe me, I checked. Because just as Fred Flintstone once discovered that people liked "Songs About Mother," people also like songs about the seasons. It's something we can all relate to. Who doesn't experience the seasons, other than maybe that goofy deaf, dumb and blind kid the Who sing about? That kid's just flat out creepy.

With so many songs to choose from, it's difficult - no, impossible - to determine what the five best songs about summer could possibly be. And, I implore you, to check out the next installment where I choose the WORST summer songs.

But here are five wonderful songs that make summertime seem like the right time, that make you feel like lazing around and doing nothing (as if you needed a song to encourage you!), that will lower your blood pressure just when you're about to tell your neighbor to put that damned weed-wacker away because it's harshing your mellow. Now, go find a neighbor's pool and play rough!

 

"Summer In The City" - The Lovin' Spoonful

Life isn't like this song. These pie-in-the-sky optimists believe that once night comes on things start happening and guys and girls get together and find happiness and life rolls along merrily. Sure, people look "half-dead" during the day since it's so hot, but I got advice for you: natural fibers!

 

"In The Summertime" - Mungo Jerry

Again, the optimism is so pervasive that by song's end they even like the wintertime! Make up your mind! I suppose heat waves, snowstorms, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, it's all fun for these dipheads. And as long as they keep getting paid because oldies radio will never stop playing such a perfect "summer" song, well, I guess I'd be stupidly happy, too. However, I've been advised that MY song, "Summertime is a Really, Really, Really Good Time," completely sucks and that I shouldn't give up my day job. Which since I don't have one is making all of this really confusing.

 

"Summertime" - Janis Joplin

These insanely old guys, George and Ira Gershwin, wrote this song with other old people named Dorothy and DuBose Heyward (and people say we name our kids funny these days, sheesh) and it's now one of the most covered songs of all-time. So picking a definitive version is nearly impossible. But we'll go with Janis Joplin, since we're more likely to find a photo of her than, say, Dirk Damonte, Wolfgang Daiss, or Kelly Anne Rudisill, all of whom are listed along with SCARLETT JOHANSSON (another great photo op!) as coverers of this deathless classic. Daddy's rich, momma's good lookin', certain things never change.

 

"Summer Breeze" - Seals & Crofts

Covered by Jason Mraz, the Ray Conniff Singers, Type O Negative, and Shinehead among many others, this 1973 hit for Seals & Crofts celebrates the smell of jasmine flowers, a hard day's work, a good woman and SUMMERTIME. This is truly a seasonal hit, because boy does it sound lousy in January.

 

"Hot Fun In The Summertime" - Sly & the Family Stone

Even though 1967 was the "Summer Of Love," that doesn't mean that it was the only summer to feature "love" as an option. It was the only one to "market" love as an attribute. Other summers have had their sizable share of love. And 1969 was surely was one of them. You had that dirty, smelly Woodstock festival where rather than kill each other over the horrendous Porta-John situation, creepy hippies traded bad acid and unpasteurized milk in a show of desperate solidarity. All to the soundtrack of the almighty Sly & the Family Stone, who not only knew how to mix the sexes and races in one awesome band, but also knew enough to write crap about having fun in the sun, from their air-conditioned recording studio. The b-side was a song just called "Fun" that didn't quite catch on. For lack of seasonal cheer, no doubt.

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