Top 10 Old School Summer Songs

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Summer is here, and so is the top 10 old school summer songs list. Memorial Day weekend kicks off the beginning of summer with barbecues, beach parties and fireworks. If the iPod needs to be updated then now is the time. These top 10 playlist suggestions create a summer of memories and stir up old memories of summers past. Feel free to add more suggestions in the comment section at the bottom of this article.

Hot Fun in the Summertime by Sly and the Family Stone. A top 10 list of old school summer songs wouldn’t be complete without Sly and the Family Stone’s summer classic. The funk band released Hot Fun in the Summertime in 1969 at the peak of the band’s popularity. Sly and the Family Stone performed the popular song at the Woodstock for the first time. The song hit number two on Billboard’s Hot 100 list.

Rockaway Beach by The Ramones. The 1977 summer tune brings the city and the sea together in true punk pop style. It’s hard to imagine any of The Ramones going to the beach, but they know how to create a great summer tune that brings back great memories.

Surfin’ USA by the Beach Boys. This classic summer song was released on March 4, 1963. The lyrics were written by Brian Wilson to the music from Sweet Little Sixteen created by Chuck Berry, which caused much copyright controversy over the years. Surfin’ USA appeared on the groups 1963 album Surfin’ USA.

Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffett. Margaritaville was a single off of Jimmy Buffett’s 1977 album, Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes. The ultimate summer song also comes with the ultimate summer cocktail. Buffett stirs up images of poolside parties, island getaways, tropical beverages and paradise with Margaritaville. A craving for margarita’s and cheeseburgers by the end of this song is inevitable.

Summer in the City by The Lovin’ Spoonful is the only summer song to reach number one on the Hot 100 list from their entire catalog. It’s hard not to love this song with lyric such as; ‘All around, people looking half dead — walking on the sidewalk, hotter than a match head.’ It’s a perfect description of a hot summer day in the city. Hot summer nights were meant for summer flings as The Lovin’ Spoonful lyrics imply; ‘Cool cat, looking for a kitty — gonna look in every corner of the city — till I’m wheezing like a bus stop — running up the stairs, gonna meet you on the rooftop.’

School’s Out for Summer by Alice Cooper. The last day of school is not official until someone belts out the famous lyrics at the end of the day. The 1972 classic hit will forever be the end of the school season anthem until the end of time.

Wipe Out by the Surfaris. The unforgettable laugh at the beginning of Wipe Out is recognized by most of the American population, or at least those born before 1980. Nothing says surf rock like the Surgaris’ Wipe Out. Just hop on a surfboard in front of a green screen and let the Moondoggy or Gidget impersonations ensue. Wipe Out could be the most popular instrumental pop songs in existence. The song hit number two on the music charts in 1963.

Summer by War. One thing War is good for is the hit single Summer. If this classic song doesn’t provoke summer flashbacks, nothing will. The imagery of street musicians, stick ball, beach blankets, and sand castles, come to life in the lyrics. The American funk band released a greatest hits album in 1976 with one original single which was Summer.

Under the Boardwalk by the Drifters. Sand between the toes, burning sun, and the smell of the salt water in the air stir up the senses when this classic song by the Drifters comes on the radio. The doo-wop group who originally formed in 1953, and recorded Under the Boardwalk in 1964. The classic pop-soul song was covered by the likes of Bette Midler, John Mellencamp, The Beach Boys and more.

Heatwave by Martha and the Vandellas. (Love is like a) Heatwave is the ultimate summer fling song. The song was recorded in 1963 and remains a favorite among young and old alike. Martha and the Vandellas are a big inspiration among many young artists of today; band’s like The Dum Dum Girls, Destiny’s Child, Vivian Girls and more.

The top 10 old school summer songs is a good start to creating a full playlist for the season. There are many songs that could fit into this list but only 10 can be chosen. More song suggestions are welcome to be added to comments below. The top 10 old school summer song list can be found on Spotify through the link below.

Opinion By Christina Thompson

The Boston Globe

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