Billboard Explains: Songs of the Summer

·2 min read

Every summer, a new batch of songs turn up the heat. What makes a great summer song, how is the song of the season determined and which track will take the title this year?

Hit summer songs are typically upbeat, feel-good songs that you can play poolside or at a barbecue. For example, 2021’s “Butter” by BTS and 2015’s “Cheerleader” by Omi were inescapable during those respective summesr. “What a fun song in 2015,” Billboard‘s Executive Director of Music, Jason Lipshutz, says of Omi’s hit. “Came out of nowhere, huge remix, huge hit.”

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Billboard’s 20-position Song of the Summer chart tracks the most popular titles based on cumulative performance on the weekly streaming, airplay and sales-based Hot 100 chart from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Taking a look at this year, what could be the song of the summer. Contenders include Jack Harlow’s “First Class,” Bad Bunny’s “Me Porto Bonito,” Lizzo’s “About Damn Time,” Beyoncé’s “Break My Soul” and Harry Styles’ “As It Was,” which claimed the top spot on the Hot 100 for 10 weeks this year.

The official song of the summer will be revealed on Tuesday (Sept. 6). Watch our Billboard Explains breakdown on the Songs of the Summer above.

After the video, catch up on more Billboard Explains videos and learn about how Beyoncé arrived at Renaissance, the evolution of girl groupsBBMAsNFTsSXSW, the magic of boy bandsAmerican Music Awards, the Billboard Latin Music Awards, the Hot 100 charthow R&B/hip-hop became the biggest genre in the U.S.how festivals book their lineupsBillie Eilish’s formula for success, the history of rap battlesnonbinary awareness in musicthe Billboard Music Awardsthe Free Britney movementrise of K-pop in the U.S.why Taylor Swift is re-recording her first six albumsthe boom of hit all-female collaborationshow Grammy nominees and winners are chosenwhy songwriters are selling their publishing catalogshow the Super Bowl halftime show is booked and why Olivia Rodrigo’s “Drivers License” was able to shoot to No. 1 on the Hot 100.

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