Summer is here, and the time is right for dancing in the streets. But what's the best summer song to soundtrack such activities? We here at Y! Music decided to hold a mega-poll to answer that (sun)burning summer question: a no-holds-barred tournament to determine the best summer anthem of all time.
After lots of heated (pun intended) debate, we've selected 32 of the most memorable summer songs ever, pitting them against each other in a winner-takes-all bracket. Scroll down to vote for this match-up!
“In The Summertime” – Mungo Jerry
Who can deny the absolute majesty of this all-time pop classic? Composed by singer Ray Dorset of UK combo Mungo Jerry, the song boasted a lazy rhythm, a scarily good-time feel, and a set of near-existential lyrics that even now are unapproachably marvelous: “If her daddy’s rich, take her out for a meal / If her daddy’s poor just do what you feel.” Truly this is all Sting, so much later, ever aspired to! An anthem for the newly-enlightened middle class, the track’s overflow of good will is remarkable any way you look at it. “ “When the weather’s fine,” sang Dorset, “We go fishing or go swimming in the sea / Life’s for living, yeah, that’s our philosophy.” Who in their right mind could argue?
"Summertime Blues” – Eddie Cochran
If you want to talk multi-generational classic, you can do no wrong by embracing this classic track by Eddie Cochran. Co-penned by rocker Cochran and his manager Jerry Capehart, the song hit the top 10 of the Hot 100 in 1958 and has resonated—generation after generation—since. Taking a potshot at dads, congressmen, bosses, and the intrinsic dilemma of being a carefree youth in a world governed by unfeeling elders, the track has retained its relevance for nearly half a century. Though it’s since been covered by both the Who and country star Alan Jackson, those in the know deeply believe that the all-time classic rendition of the song was the hit released by San Francisco’s Blue Cheer in 1968—which forever linked the song’s sense of teenage frustration to the glories of heavy metal, which Blue Cheer themselves may well have established with this song. A masterpiece? Yes, without question!
Which summer song deserves to move onto the next round? Vote in the poll below, vote on other pairings (Round 1 voting ends July 23 at 6 PM PT), tweet out your choices using the hashtag #YSummerSong, and hit the comments to tell us about all the great summer songs we forgot to include.