Summer has always been about the music. It is a soundtrack to the hazy humid days to keep me moving. It is a time to allow myself to revel in catchy hooks and unapologetic pop music riffs. As the summer of 2017 settles into place here are the songs which are on my Summer 2017 playlist. First there are the songs I want to sing out loud in the car with the windows down and the wind blowing in.
Top of my list is Hiccups by WATERS. It has one of the catchier guitar hooks in a while. Along with that there is a line in the chorus, “I ain’t got no regrets” said with proto-punk sneer which gets better the louder it is turned up.
If there is a prom queen of summer anthems it might be Carly Rae Jepsen. She knows how to make pop music which relies on catchy lyrics matched to a driving dance beat. This summer “Cut to the Feeling” cuts to the chase and roars out of the blocks.
Then there are the wistful ballads which define every summer; Want you Back by HAIM is one which will make me think of 2017. The sisters Haim sing about wanting back the one who you left. My favorite line is, “I’ll take the fall and the fault in us” which encapsulates the realization of mistakes made.
I’ve been listening to Bad Liar by Selena Gomez which is her vocal over a bass line and clap track. I love great bass lines and the one here is awesome. Funny thing it was one I should have recognized as it is from Talking Heads’ Psycho Killer. Tina Weymouth was always an underrated bassist. That killer bass line isolated in Bad Liar allows Ms. Gomez the most sturdy of foundations to add her voice to.
I have been glued to the revival of Twin Peaks. The first six episodes ended with a current band playing on stage in The Bang Bang Bar. At the end of episode 4 I was introduced to Au Revoir Simone as they performed Lark. It is a dreamy (what else?) swirling soundscape which puts me in a Twin Peaks mood and that is very summer 2017.
In the same vein, Green Light by Lorde has an infectious indie energy which she seems to effortlessly channel. In my mind I am doing her herky jerky dance moves whenever I listen to this.
I also want that pop version of EDM on my summer playlist. This year Call on Me by Starley is filling that slot. Ryan Riback provides the beats in this remix which ignites this song.
The party song is I’m the One by DJ Khaled where he pulls together Justin Bieber, Lil Wayne, Chance the Rapper, and Quavo of Migos. All I know is when I listen to this I want to be where they are.
My final picks are the first songs from upcoming releases. I think Arcade Fire is one of the greatest rock bands working. Just in time for summer they released the title song for the new album “Everything Now”. The whole thing releases at the end of July until then Everything Now will keep me happy.
The other July release I am looking forward to is coming from producer Mura Masa. He has also released a summer-ready collaboration with charli XCX from the upcoming album; 1-Night. As a preview it is fabulous but I will admit it is the song he is doing with Christine and the Queens on the album I am most looking forward to hearing.
Until Labor Day it is these songs which will be flowing through my headphones and playing in the car on road trips.