This top 20 list – a scarily effective editorial trope used by lazy journalists everywhere (ahem *clears throat*) – is a propos of nothing except the fact that, after weeks of bone-crushingly, spirit-sappingly terrible weather, the past few days have been gloriously, fabulously, holiday-in-the-Med, sandcastles-on-the-beach hot, across the whole of the UK.
Nothing cheers me up like a bout of hot weather.
I truly feel like a completely different person when the days are long, the evenings are warm, and the sun beams resolutely through the clouds with a perpetually happy glow.
None of the things I’d been struggling with before the sun decided to shine have really gone away – I still don’t sleep enough, I still struggle with my weight, I still worry about making the right career choices and about money, I still never have enough time to do stuff and I still don’t update this blog enough, but frankly ‒ as I sit here writing this on my lunch break, in the nearby park, undisturbed and with the sun on my warm legs, as people sit, sunbathe, read, eat, laugh; dogs play; birds sing; and sunlight dapples the grass under the trees’ cool shade ‒ I genuinely don’t care.
For now, bathed in light, life in London is good, the living is easy, and my ‘problems’ have been replaced with songs ‒ songs of summer – in my head and on my iPod.
This list isn’t in any particular order, nor is it ‘bang up to date’, ‘fresh’, or full of new and undiscovered artists. But the songs are my favourites, and what I’ve been singing to myself near-constantly since the hot weather came along and cheered up the whole of London.
Of course, this list could have been nearly endless – but these particular songs, in all their cheesy, well-played, much-loved, embarrassingly popular brilliance ‒ speak to me unmistakeably of the long, hot, carefree and glorious days of summer. Long may they last!
Obviously, in a list this short, there are bound to be massive omissions! I’d love to hear other people’s summer songs too – if anyone’s reading, please, feel free to add your own song suggestions below…
- Summertime, by Ella Fitzgerald
- Free Electric Band, by Albert Hammond Jr.
- Pack Up Your Troubles, by Eliza Doolittle
- Hey, Soul Sister, by Train
- Buffalo Soldier, by Bob Marley
- Smooth, by Santana
- Fever, by Peggy Lee
- Baker Street, by Gerry Rafferty
- The Boys of Summer, by Don Henley
- Bamboleo, by The Gypsy Kings
- Sweet Home Alabama, by Lynyrd Skynyrd
- One Hand In My Pocket (Acoustic) by Alanis Morrissette
- Night Fever by The Bee Gees
- Maria Maria, by Santana
- Summer of ’69, by Bryan Adams
- Kiss Me, by Sixpence None The Richer
- The Village Green Preservation Society, by Kate Rusby
- Save Tonight, by Eagle Eyed Cherry
- Hotel California, by The Eagles
- Represent Cuba, by Orishas feat Heather Headley