While reading an industry newsletter the other day about what this year's big summer hit was going to be, my mind wandered off and I began thinking of "summer songs." Songs that weren't necessarily released to radio in the summer time, but had 'summer' in the title. Songs like "Summer in the City", "Hot Fun in the Summertime", "Cruel Summer", "Summer of '69", "Boys of Summer" ... man, I could go on and on as summer seems to be a rich topic for songwriters. There are literally hundreds of songs with summer in their title. And I like a lot of them. But I only love a handful. Here are my five favorite songs with "summer" in the title, in no particular order:

  • Summer Nights

    Lil Rob (2005)

    I love the kick back vibe of this song and the imagery it evokes. I've never owned a rag top, but when I listen to this song i can picture myself cruisin' in one with my lady.

  • Summer Breeze

    The Isley Brothers (1973)

    I just love how The Isley's souled out remake of the Seals & Croft pop classic mixes their brand of R&B with what would become their signature rock guitar sound throughout the rest of the 70's.

  • Summertime

    DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince (1991)

    Their use of the 1975 Kool & the Gang B-side, “Summer Madness.” fits perfectly with the mellow vibe of the rap. And I love how the lyrics work in all things associated with summer; the BBQ's, the cruisin', the hangin' at the park. Or as the Fresh Prince puts it, "the way that people respond to summer madness."

  • Sausalito Summernight

    Diesel (1980)

    The catchy guitar line, the plentiful sing-a-long hooks ... what's not to like about this early 80's Steve Miller-ish sounding driving song?

  • All Summer Long

    Kid Rock (2008)

    The way Kid mixes the samples of "Sweet Home Alabama" with "Werewolves of London" is genius. And although the song chronicles the summer of 1989, lyrics like "And we were trying different things, and we were smoking funny things" and "Sippin' whiskey out the bottle, not thinking 'bout tomorrow" so reminds me of a summer a decade earlier: the summer between my junior and senior year.