Welcome, everyone: It’s Song of the Summer season.
Last year, “Bodak Yellow” and “Despacito” were basically inescapable. This year, we've found seven of the tracks that will be playing in every passing car, on every rooftop, and every sweaty club you enter from here on forward. The only question becomes which will come out on top? We don’t want to jinx it, but we think one regular, degular, schmegular girl has a pretty good chance of reigning supreme… again.
Scroll through to hear our favorite songs for this summer.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTlNMmZKwpA expand=1]
“I Like It” by Cardi B featuring Bad Bunny and J Balvin
I’ve already heard this song blasted across SoHo and most of Brooklyn. The swagger of Cardi B mixed with the ingenious bass addition to Pete Rodriguez’s “I Like It Like That” makes the staying power a no-brainer. And, as “Despacito” showed us, you don’t necessarily have to understand all of the words in a song to enjoy to it.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkeiKbqa02g expand=1]
“One Kiss” by Calvin Harris featuring Dua Lipa
A few things go into a summer song: It should be danceable, have an easy-to-remember chorus, and be the kind of catchy that’s bordering on annoying. That’s this song, and also possibly every Calvin Harris song? Dua Lipa’s deep voice is the perfect addition to this hazy, retro-esque beat. The track sounds like a humid beach day followed up by partying until 3am.
Another Dua Lipa consolation contender: “IDGAF.”
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YynKelHGhNc expand=1]
“What I Need” by Hayley Kiyoko featuring Kehlani
20gayteen is upon us, and NYLON cover star Hayley Kiyoko is (should be??) its spokesperson. It’s appropriate, then, that a strong contender for song of the summer is one made by two queer artists and comes with one of the purest videos of the year. Just try listening to it and sitting still. It’s not possible.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=41PTANtZFW0 expand=1]
“Bloom” by Troye Sivan
Another good 20gayteen spokesperson is Troye Sivan. Honestly, we had a hard time picking between “My, My, My” and “Bloom” for this list. And although videos shouldn’t factor into our decision-making, it does in this case; we will never be able to hear the song and
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=41PTANtZFW0 expand=1]. A true summer vibe.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9BwWKXjVaI expand=1]
“Nice For What” by Drake
It’s not officially summer until Drake drops a new song. In this case, it’s an empowering anthem that sums up how every woman should approach relationships with men for the summer and beyond: nice... for what? The beat and Lauryn Hill sample also help.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_fjfo256p6s expand=1]
“High Horse” by Kacey Musgraves
We are as surprised as you are by the idea of including a country artist (who’s not Taylor Swift) on a Song of the Summer list, too. But Kacey Musgraves isn’t your typical country artist, and “High Horse” doesn’t fit neatly into the box of the genre. Rather, it comes with a disco flair and lots of buzz.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YNZlXfW6Ho expand=1]
“Boo’d Up” by Ella Mai
Those songs that get stuck in your head, but you have no idea who sings them and what, exactly, the lyrics are, are the perfect song of summer contenders. You can’t turn on the radio without hearing newcomer Ella Mai’s “Boo’d Up,” and if you haven’t come across it yet, just wait a couple more weeks.