Q Music News

Q Music News

Q Music News

Today (June 21), is the official first day of summer/summer solstice. With Earth tilting to the max toward the sun, we’re going to experience the longest day and shortest night of the year.

Summer brings so many fun, exciting activities, from camping to swimming to road trips to barbecuing and everywhere in between. Of course, every summer activity needs the perfect soundtrack, which is where we come in.

We’ve created what we believe is the perfect classic rock summer songs list. Our list runs the gambit from covers to anthems to one-hit wonders. Check out the 15 iconic tracks we’ve ranked below!

  • 15. Mungo Jerry – 'In The Summertime'

    Simple but oh-so effective, Mungo Jerry’s “In The Summertime” may have been the band’s lone hit in the United States, but it practically radiates sunshine.

  • 14. Chicago – 'Saturday In The Park'

    Whether or not you’re listening to this track on the Fourth of July or not, two things are for certain: No summer playlist is complete without this Chicago hit and horn sections are awesome.

  • 13. The Beach Boys – 'Surfin’ Safari'

    Honestly, this classic rock summer songs list could be just 15 Beach Boys songs, and it would be amazing! However, it doesn’t get more summer than loading up your Woody with your boards inside and heading out singing this song.

  • 12. The Kinks – 'Sunny Afternoon'

    England isn’t exactly known for…well, sunny afternoons, but maybe that’s why The Kinks managed to take this dark tale about taxation and a breakup sound so damn light and fun.

  • 11. Martha & the Vandellas – '(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave'

    A Holland-Dozier-Holland classic, “(Love Is Like A) Heat Wave” was Martha & the Vandellas’ first hit single, peaking at number four on the Billboard Hot 100. Over 50 years since its release, it’s still one of Motown’s most swoon-worthy love songs.

  • 10. Lovin’ Spoonful – 'Summer In The City'

    Just by hearing this track’s slow opening notes, you can feel the back of your neck getting dirty and gritty. Fortunately, things get much better when the sun sets.

  • 9. Meat Loaf – 'You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night)'

    This Meat Loaf classic is delightfully over-the-top, from its spoken-word intro to that clapping hook as the song fades out, and I definitely don’t say that to all of the boys.

  • 8. Led Zeppelin – 'Dancing Days'

    The b-side to “Over the Hills and Far Away,” “Dancing Days” is quite literally Zeppelin’s most danceable groove in their entire catalog. As far as summer songs go, you know it’s alright. I said it’s alright, and it’s not just in my heart, my heart.

  • 7. Van Halen – 'Beautiful Girls'

    Drink in your hand? Check! Toes in the sand? Check! Van Halen’s “Beautiful Girls” cranked up, providing an incredible summer moment? You better hope you can check this one off your list this summer!

  • 6. Sly and the Family Stone – 'Hot Fun In The Summertime'

    Who hasn’t had a summer romance?! Hopefully, it was as dreamy as this Sly and the Family Stone classic.

  • 5. The Who – 'Summertime Blues'

    Originally recorded by Eddie Cochran, “Summertime Blues” has been covered by a number of artists, but The Who’s rendition packs a special punch.

  • 4. Van Halen – 'Dancing In The Street'

    Speaking of covers, Van Halen was never afraid to take a chance on covering a tune that was out of their wheelhouse, but their take on Martha & the Vandellas’ “Dancing In The Street” is ridiculously fun and superior of the infamous cover from Mick Jagger and David Bowie.

  • 3. Bryan Adams – 'Summer of ‘69'

    Sure, we know of the song’s actual meaning now, but we bet many were inspired to track down their first real six-string at their local five-and-dime because of this Bryan Adams mega-hit.

  • 2. Don Henley – 'Boys Of Summer'

    We’ve all had that one relationship that we just couldn’t let go, and there’s no better soundtrack for that type of love (or lust) than this Don Henley solo track

  • 1. Alice Cooper – 'School’s Out'

    Few hard rock songs are as timeless as Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out. It’s pure, unadulterated rebellion that kids will continue to blare on the last day of school for decades, maybe even centuries to come.

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