What’s your song of the summer?

Three people dance in the sunshine
Every summer has a song that defines it. Brandt Williams talks with two music journalists about what makes the perfect summer song, and their picks for 2021’s song of the summer.
Levi Guzman | Unsplash

What does summer sound like to you? Every summer has a song that defines it — the song that seems inescapable, that’s always playing in the background of your summer social gatherings, that perfectly sums up your mood.

What is your summer song for 2021? What does it mean to you? What about that song makes a summertime connection with you? Does the song have to have the word “summer” in it? Or are there certain songs that just have the right vibe?

Guest host Brandt Williams talked with two music journalists about what makes the perfect summer song and their picks for 2021’s song of the summer. And we heard from listeners about their personal songs of the summer — which you can see below.

Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.

Guests:

  • Charlie Harding is a songwriter and host of the Vulture podcast Switched on Pop 

  • Jim McGuinn is the program director for The Current 

Charlie Harding’s songs of the summer 2021:

Lucy Dacus – “Hot & Heavy”

Bleachers – “Stop Making This Hurt”

Lorde – “Solar Power”

City Girls – “Twerkulator”

Olivia Rodrigo – “good 4 u”

BTS – “Butter”

Jim McGuinn’s songs of the summer 2021:

Wet Leg – “Chaise Lounge”

Lorde – “Solar Power”

Olivia Rodrigo – “brutal”

Lizzo – “Rumors”

Tai Verdes – “A-O-K”

Japanese Breakfast – “Be Sweet”

Prince – “Hot Summer”

Listener songs of the summer:

Joshua in St. Paul: The Isley Brothers – “Fight the Power,” Public Enemy – “Fight the Power” 

Larry in St. Paul: The Beach Boys – “Surfing in the USA,” “Little Surfer Girl,” “409”

Mary in Brooklyn Park: Lizzo – “Good as Hell,” “Juice”

Dawn in Minnetonka: Ella Fitzgerald – “Too Darn Hot”

Carol in Rochester: George Evans and Ren Shields – “In the Good Old Summertime”

Galen in Minneapolis: Bob Marley – “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright”

Peg in northern Michigan: Paul Simon – “Slip Slidin’ Away”


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