Today is Labor Day, the unofficial end of summer. Children are back at school. The fall albums roster is chock full of potential hits. But one question remains...what was the quintessential song of summer 2010?
I think the honor goes handily to Katy Perry and Snoop Dogg's "California Gurls." Eminem and Rihanna's "Love the Way You Die" may, in the end, be a bigger hit, but domestic abuse tales aren't really the stuff of summer like a breezy, sunny California-themed pop hit. Other contenders include Taio Cruz's "Dynamite," Usher and Will.I.Am's "OMG," and B.o.B. and Hayley Williams' 'Airplanes. For Britain, also include Yolanda Be Cool's "We No Speak Americano."
This summer, Billboard kept a running tally of the songs of summer, on which Katy Perry was also declared the winner. On the year-to-date UK singles chart tally, Eminem and Rihanna have the year's 4th biggest hit, with Perry close behind at #5.
So what makes a quintessential song of summer? The most memorable ones are either upbeat, carefree ditties, like Rihanna's "Umbrella" (2007), or laid back, romantic ballads like Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together" (2005). Billboard also charts the songs of summer from 2009 back to 1985. Some highlights:
2009 - Black Eyed Peas "I Gotta Feeling"
2008 - Katy Perry "I Kissed a Girl"
2007 - Rihanna ft. Jay-Z "Umbrella"
2006 - Nelly Furtado ft. Timbaland "Promiscuous"
2005 - Mariah Carey "We Belong Together"
2004 - Usher "Confessions Part II"
2003 - Beyonce ft. Jay-Z "Crazy in Love"
2002 - Nelly "Hot in Herre"
1998 - Brandy and Monica "The Boy Is Mine"
1997 - Puff Daddy "I'll Be Missing You"
1996 - Los Del Rio "Macarena"
1992 - Sir Mix-a-Lot "Baby Got Back"
1990 - Mariah Carey "Vision of Love"
1987 - Heart "Alone"
1986 - Madonna "Papa Don't Preach"
1985 - Tears for Fears "Shout"
Songs of Summer Bonus
Finally, something silly: here are alternate ideas for what this summer's summer hit songs could have been about:
Love the Way You Lie - A fetish for watching people sleep.
California Gurls - Californian females so stupid they can't spell a simple word most kindergartners know.
Beautiful Monster - Edward Cullen (or Jacob, or any of those True Blood guys).
All Time Low - Linsday Lohan.
Ridin' Solo - Sexual intercourse with Han Solo.
OMG - Olly Murs Graduates!