Music Monday: Fresh(-ish) Songs to Get You Through the Rest of Summer

That title makes it sound like summer is a chore!

What I mean by “get you through the rest of summer” is that, for most people, the last month of summer is, rather than physically grueling, emotionally challenging; for the majority of folks under the age of 24, it means that school is about to start up again, and for those right around 24 and over, it means that the frigid air of winter’s 6 AM is about to roll in (at least where I’m from, anyway), which means that morning commutes are soon to become total bone-chilling nightmares. So the last month of summer, even though still summer and thus still fun, is also a bit depressing and anger-inducing due to what it leaves in its wake, which makes it difficult to get through at times.

But, I have this really cool list of songs for you (as well as a Spotify playlist version) in order to help you decompress and thus get through it all. Enjoy, friends!


Disclaimer: I cannot promise that these songs have lyrics (or accompanying videos) that are kid friendly, so use discretion if listening around children. (Even though I did try to avoid explicit material as well as mark any that may have made it in nonetheless, it’s still always best to view everything first by yourself and then show your kids, just in case.)

Pop

Bea Miller – “Dracula”

“Dracula” is from Bea Miller’s new album that was released July 24 (this past Friday). It’s a very upbeat, fun song about loving the “tragically beautiful,” and when her voice is as beautiful and sultry as it is, how could this song not be your new favorite jam?

Jill Scott – “Run Run Run”

This is from another brand new album that dropped July 24, and it’s fantastic. Think “homage to Aretha Franklin,” but better.

Mika – “Talk About You”

So, you’ve probably heard this song, but that’s okay. Listen to it some more.

Lindsey Sterling – “Shatter Me” (feat. Lzzy Hale)

From the YouTube violin/electronica sensation, this song may be over a year old, but it’s not dying out any time soon. It’s probably because it’s so dark and awesome.

Selena Gomez – “Good For You”

Caution: Both the music video and the song’s lyrics are slightly suggestive, but it’s a killer jam, nonetheless, which can always be expected from Miss Gomez.

The Heydaze – “Don Juan”

Incredibly fun and funny. Sure, they’re a boy band (er, uh, man band?), but they make some pretty good music. So why not?

Indie/Alternative

Ta-ku – “Sunrise / Beautiful” (feat. Jordan Rakei)

Slow, soft, smooth, vibey, beautiful. Not gonna lie, it kind of makes me want to body roll at times. It also reminds me of something they’d play at work, so that’s, uh, nice, I guess.

(PS – The track is two songs, not just one, so don’t be surprised when the tune switches.)

Mas Ysa – “Look Up”

How you pronounce this dude’s name, I have no idea, but his album “Seraph” is killer, and you should listen to it. That’s right, not just this song, but the whole album. My personal favorite is “Margarita,” but I couldn’t find a non-sketchy video for it, so I settled for this song, my second favorite, instead.

BAILE – “Leaves” (feat. Felicia Douglass)

Another one that’s kind of slow but wholly beautiful, just this time with a female singer. This is also another one that comes from an album that’s equally as incredible as the song, so go check it out, too.

Wilco – “More…”

Um, the album that this comes from, Star Wars, is free on iTunes right now. Yes, the entire album. I did a quick listen through, and it’s definitely one worth getting, SO GO GET THAT FREE ALBUM!

As for this song, it gives off a very Arctic Monkeys vibe, which is probably why I like it so much.

Junior Prom – “Let’s Make a Lot of Money”

How can you see the title of this song and not give it a listen? It speaks the truth, and it’s freaking catchy. I’m actually surprised that it doesn’t have more views, listens, and general popularity.

Pearl and the Beard – “You”

I had never heard of this band before I hit up iTunes the other day, and I’m really regretting that. They’re very unique, and incredibly talented. I’m officially a fan, I think. This song especially struck me. The video I provided is a live, more acoustic version than the original, but it’s still awesome.

“Oldies” (of all genres and ages)

The Academy Is… – “His Girl Friday”

Ah, some good, old, early-2000s alternative pop. There’s nothing in the world like it!

Girls Aloud – “Sound of the Underground”

British bands just know how to do music. To this day, this song is still catchy, fun, and thoroughly enjoyable. Every single time I hear it, I simply can’t help but instantly be happy — as well as instantly get up and dance. Good thing no one ever plays it in public!

Aerosmith – “Jaded”

It’s a classic from one of my most favorite bands of all time, and it just, for some reason, reminds me of warm, waning summer days (probably because of Disney World). So I simply had to put it on here.

Maroon 5 – “Lucky Strike”

More than a few years old now, this song never really made it too big. But it’s fun, fast, and all around upbeat, which is perfect for this time of year.

The Killers – “Somebody Told Me”

The Killers are musical geniuses, and this song is musical gold. Re-enjoy it.

Warren G – “Regulate” (feat. Nate Dogg)

As the most famous rap song of all time and one of the greatest things to come out of the 90s, it simply has to be put on here. I don’t know if I’d let your kids listen to it, though, no matter how much awesome nostalgia it sparks up.

Okay, so maybe the oldies list wasn’t very “oldie” after all. Oh well.

Foreign (AKA non-English)

Juanes – “La Camisa Negra” (MTV Unplugged version)

I’ve studied Spanish since the third grade (and am still studying it even in college), and I can say that, hands down, this is one of the best Spanish songs I have ever come across. It’s modern yet still has a Spanish flair to it, which makes it perfect for the summer months. I must admit, though, that I only like this version of it; the original sounds a little too…I don’t know. I just don’t like it. But this, I love, and I think you will, too.

Shakira – “Te Aviso, Te Anuncio”

Another Spanish song, but this time an extremely modern tango by Shakira. It has a sort of 60s/70s beach-sounding guitar (whatever that instrument is really called) mixed in with the traditional Spanish instruments and modern pop beats, which makes it ridiculously catchy. It’s another one that’s hard to not love, even if you can’t understand the language.

Just a warning, though: The MV is kind of suggestive, as well as a bit odd.

Regina Spektor – “Don’t Leave Me (Ne Me Quitte Pas)”

Okay, so this one only kind of counts as foreign; Regina Spektor is only technically Russian (since she wasn’t raised there), and this song’s chorus is the only thing that is in French. But we’re gonna call it foreign, anyway.

Despite that, though, it’s light, cute, and catchy, which is very different from everything else on here, and even though a tad bit weird, it’s still a great song.

BTS (Bangtan Sonyeondan/방탄소년단) – “War of Hormone” (holeumon jeonjaeng/호르몬 전쟁)

(Excuse the lack of underlining above, but with so many Korean letters, it just wasn’t working out.)

Korean is yet another language I speak (nowhere near as fluently as English or Spanish, but I do speak it!), so of course I listen to some Korean music, too.

Which brings me to my sigh (no pun intended) as I write this next bit: Yes, this is a Kpop song, but it’s not what you’re expecting. Instead, it’s seven boys in their late teens/early twenties rapping about how women cause them to fight a “war of hormone” on a daily basis. Yes, it’s marvelous. So turn on the English CC for this one; what they say is hilarious. (Excuse one line of poor English in the song, though.)

(And excuse me for not picking a track off of their most recent album. Maybe I’ll include it as a bonus.)

Jane Jang – “Eat” (babeul meokeoyo/ 밥을 먹어요)

Another Korean song, but one that is the complete opposite of the last one. Also unlike the last one, with this one, I really have no clue what she’s talking about, whether it’s actually eating or something else. The MV does have English closed captions, though, so turn them on and see if you can figure it out.


And, other than the playlist I have for you (which you can view here so long as you have Spotify), that’s it! Hopefully you enjoyed these picks! Thanks for taking a look, and see you soon!

(PS – The playlist is missing thwo of the songs I have listed due to them not being available on Spotify. Sorry 😦

PPS – Shouts to my media professor last semester for teaching me some html coding. Without that, Shep, these videos wouldn’t have ended up embedded. So thanks, dude — and darn you, WordPress, for not automatically encoding like usual!

And PPPS – Sorry for no rap/hip hop in English. Honestly, though, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. There’s simply too much cursing and general vulgarity for my fragile heart to handle in that realm of the music world, and so I had to skip it. Maybe next time?

Haha…ha… Yeah…)

Bonus: In case you liked the Korean music, here’s BTS’ most recent album, as promised.

And here it is on Spotify. Enjoy!

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