Ah the summer. It means a lot of things to a lot of people. Shirts get tighter, skirts get shorter, skies get bluer and wallets get a lot lighter. And all of those grow ten fold when you have a hot jam to bop your head to.
Danny and Andy debated which would be the bigger hip-hop album this year (Andy went with Kid Cudi while Danny went with Lupe Fiasco. Me: call me an old soul, but I’m holding out for Jay Z’s new Blueprint 3 album).
But today we debate the best song of the summer of 2009. Record companies save their club bangers for this time of year knowing full well that the kids are out at the bars and clubs jukin’ to these cold beats. Have an opinion? Go to the comments section. We’ll read them and likely disregard them right after.
Josh: I’m going to catch some flack for this pick but I could care less. When I look back on the summer of our lord, 2009, I’m going to think of one song and one only. The song of the summer for me is “I Gotta Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas.
Look in any other instance, I’d sit here and tell you that Black Eyed Peas have hits and misses. They produce club hits. They don’t try to stray away from that. But for every “Let’s Get Retarded,” there’s a “Boom Boom Pow,” which we all got thoroughly tired of from the radio run that it’s still enjoying. Fergie is nice to look at too but aside from that B.E.P. doesn’t do much for me.
But “I Got A Feeling” had me hooked from the first time I heard it. I defy anyone to not hear this song and not nod their head. You can be at the bar, the club, in your car or at your cubicle and when this song you will go willy f-in nilly.
The auto-tune is a little played out but it has all the tools for a summer hit: a repetitive hook, a catchy beat and a lame call and response portion that, try as you might, you can’t help but yell out at least once. I feel odd making this my pick but I’ll stand by it.
Andy: L’Chaim to that answer brother. I gotta say, “I Gotta Feeling” got me pretty good this summer, especially when I went to Los Angeles last week and literally hit that song on repeat, to the point where my fellow compatriots wanted to kick me in the chest. But let me tell you a few things Josh, you ask what hot jam has me bopping my head? The kids aren’t bopping anymore, they’re banging each other and doing meth before they hit grade school. But I digress. I have “I Gotta Feeling” at the number two jam of the summer. Let’s run down my top five:
5. “Make Her Say” formerly known as “I Poke Her Face” by Kid Cudi, Kanye West and Common
You know what you need when you get a summer jam, you need one that blows cool like the summer wind. A-Trak and the rest of the gang mixed this dreadful Lady GaGa tune beautifully, and it reminds me of a simpler time, most notably when I would cruise around high school trying to scope the ladies. This song always remind me of another lazy summer song from my yore, “Summer Nights”by Lil Rob, in the way that it reminded me of cruising around, windows down on the lazy summer days.
4. “Supernova” by Mr. Hudson feat. Kanye West
Originally, I had this pegged early as the song of the summer, but I’m afraid after many, many listens it just didn’t hold up like I thought it would. I think perhaps it starts off a bit too slow, and the chorus outperforms the verses that it sort of creates and uneven song. But damn, the song was hot stuff. Plus, anytime you can hear a British accent come through in a song like, “Just give me a chonce (chance) to get it right, get it right,” you gotta give some dap.
3. “Run This Town” by Jay-Z feat. Rihanna and Kanye West
Yes, yes, I know this is the third Kanye-influenced song in a row, but the man has done some solid work this summer. His verses on “Kinda Like a Big Deal” by Clipse and “Alright” by Twista were incredibly impressive, and “Run This Town” is no exception. I truly love this jam, but it’s just a little too slow to be considered the song of the summer.
2. “I Gotta Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas
They say “L’Chaim” in the song. What more could you want?
1. “Knock You Down” by Keri Hilson feat. Ne-Yo and Kanye West
I told you, summer 2009 should be considered the summer feat. Kanye West. This song killed me, and thusly was declared champion and official song of the summer. It has the perfect speed, a chorus I can sing too and any pop song that has one killer rap verse is usually unstoppable. Remember “My Love” by Justin Timberlake feat. T.I.? “Umbrella” by Rihanna feat. Jay-Z? “American Boy” feat. Estelle and Kanye? Yeah. Song of the summer.
Danny: Andy, Andy, Andy. I know you’re busy hiring interns and what not (with what money, I’m not entirely sure), but maybe you should have him teach you how to count before you say anything else. Reading your No. 2 through No. 5 choices for “song of the summer” wasted a solid four minutes of my life that I’ll never get back. The whole point was to get your favorite song. Ya know, kinda like Josh did. A whole template for ya and everything. Hey, we understand you like music and you like a lot of unpopular and/or underground stuff but let’s get it together. It’s one thing to mention other songs, but c’mon. You’re better than that. I digress.
My difficulty in picking out a “song of the summer” is that I’m not always listening to new music. I’ve been listening to a lot of Pandora lately, and finding a lot of great music – but most of it isn’t new, just new to me. And I’m not always focusing on the music when I’m out at the bars. I don’t really mess with clubs (being white, Irish and having two left feet will do that to you), but if it’s got a good beat, I can get behind it. My favorite songs aren’t necessarily club and bar songs, however, because I think some of the best stuff comes when artists get real – and they don’t play that type of music in those social arenas.
All that being said, I like Andy’s pick of “Knock You Down.” Very well might have been my own pick if I wasn’t in the third slot. But there are plenty more to choose from. I love the song “Fatima” by K’Naan – a song about a young love broken up by civil unrest in Somalia. And we’re not all about hip-hop here (at least I’m not…), so “People Are Crazy” by Billy Currington is a keeper. It’s a perfect country song for just laying around, having some beer and chumming with pals. Always a good time. My favorite song of the summer, finally, is “All The Above” by Maino featuring T-Pain. It’s not the most intellectually stimulating song, it doesn’t have the best beat, the best lyrics or any of that. But it’s one of those songs to which you can easily learn the words, quickly puts you in a good mood to belt it out and it works whether you’re partying, working out or just chillin. And those qualities make it the song of the summer.
Andy: Danny, Kyle is getting school credit at Oakton Community College for his work, so don’t even act like I am not running a fiscally responsible Web site over here. Second, just because I added to the excitement of discovering my top summer song by adding a little, mini-countdown, doesn’t mean you have to get jealous and throw a temper tantrum. This isn’t college, and you aren’t Matt George. (FACE!) But at least we can agree that “Knock You Down” knocked us down, amirite?
Danny: Hey! Hey! Don’t drag the California Beach Boy into this. That’s when feelings get hurt – kinda like our bathroom door. At least we agree on the music. Which only means we have Josh to blame for not presenting a unified front here at Midwest Swing. Dude thinks he’s so unique with his Black Eyed Peas and his Gotta Have A Feelings.
Josh: Hey jerkfaces!!! I can hear you, ya know. First off, Kyle is welcome back anytime he wants. I’m not one to deprive a young urban scholar his right to clown via keyboard. Wouldn’t be kosher. Danny HAD to bring country in the mix. Lame. But to each his own. I first heard “Make Her Say” in the spring and didn’t discover the video (masterful work in my opinion) till like two weeks ago.
“All the Above” is a nice throw in there and does have a beat that gets the young bucks out the chairs to get their groove on. In the spirit of songs that are good to drink a beer and hang out to, I have to also throw in “Shining Down” by Lupe featuring Matthew Santos. Is it because I saw Lupe live two weeks ago and was drinking a cold Bud heavy while listening to this song? Probably. And I’m not ashamed to admit it.
In conclusion, we all can agree that B.E.P. got it right with “I Got a Feeling” and that this summer in music, the Louis Vitton Don made like Wayne and found his way on to most of the hot hip hop jams of the summer. And subsequently killed his verse. Yah for ‘Ye!!!
Danny: Ha, you thought you had the last word. I saw Lupe perform “Shining Down” two weeks before that at Summerfest while drinking a Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat (Fruity Pebbles in a bottle, baby!). Agreed on the hotness of the song, and for how sweet we are for seeing Lupe live this summer, but I win because my beer wasn’t gross. Pwned.