When you’re an adult, summer’s are weird. You remember a time when they signaled freedom, consequence-free decision making and melting in 1000 degree sun. Sometimes we end up clinging to those notions, and nothing signals that like the redintergration triggered when you hear a song from past summers. For those few minutes, you’re instantly transported back to a time and place where life was simple. It’s why as Dakarai says “I’ll forever remember Final Fantasy 7 being paired with Lost Boyz – Beast from the East or why for me, Daft Punk – Get Lucky is the greatest summer song ever made. I will not argue this. All other contenders fall short. You are wrong. You don’t know music fam.”
In fact that song is the entire reason that we ended up writing this article and broke down our favorite summer songs.
So here we go.
Andrew: Remember when the guy did the fried egg, your brain is fucked because of drugs commercial? It was this guy’s brain he was trying to save. Spoiler alert: He didn’t.
Dakarai: No one knows what the fuck most of these kids are saying and if you’re over 30 you should just be enjoying the beat and mumbling along with them. Stop trying to think this shit needs to be coherent , however yeah I agree with you I to blame everything bad in the world on Lil Yachty.
Timmy: I’m one of the few in my age bracket that doesn’t like Lil Yachty, but I’m a fan of D.R.A.M. You probably don’t know who that is – that’s where Drake got the inspiration for Hotline Bling.
Renaldo: At the risk of sounding musty and old atop my soapbox of hip hop purity – My biggest problem with this generation and their genre is that it seems they set out to prove that you can be a star in hip hop with little or no talent at all. It’s weird that they’re so proud of being bad at this.
Dakarai: The first time I heard this I said to myself, self this needs to be on The Birth of a Nation sound track or at the very least open up a BLM documentary. I mean so what if the rest of this song isn’t decipherable, who cares? It starts off like a god damn negro spiritual and it’s from Andrew’s favorite rapper to boot even though he’s a fuckboy…goddamnit Timmy.
Andrew: Not my favorite rapper and I hope he gets arrested. How is it they kill and arrest young African Americans all day every day but this nigga is still walking around singing dumb shit and trying to send us back to slavery?
Timmy: Look at my actual name. This has been the ringtone on my phone and the way I’ve answered the phone since it dropped.
Renaldo: This song is exactly like Donald Trump running for president. It was such a laughable idea that when we first heard it we couldn’t tell if it was serious or satire. Then it wouldn’t leave. Then it filled the 24 hour news cycle, circulated through social platforms and garnered so much attention that it became an actual thing. This is 2016.
Renaldo: It’s disrespectful for Kodak to even be mentioned with this group of mumbling buffons. His XXL Freshmen cypher verse wasn’t his best work but Kodak actually has talent. He’s had talent since he was 13. Sure he says stupid things and won’t stop getting arrested but he dresses in men’s clothes 100% of the time and we can understand what he says. That mean’s a lot in today’s hip hop. Go listen to “Vibin In This Bih” and tell me Kodak doesn’t channel the Hot Boyz version of Lil’ Wayne.
Dakarai: Nal played basketball in the hood once, swears he has street cred because one guy said to him “Yah 10 Years” and has only been responding in group chats with Kodak Black’s lyrics. But he’s the responsible one.
Timmy: I almost passed out because I rapped this whole song without breathing in the club. “Sorry boo, yeah I lie to you but don’t you lie to me”
Dakarai: Uzi is my favorite of the bunch, he’s also the one on the most drugs. He’s gonna be relevant past 2017 though bet on it.
Renaldo: He says “nowadays” in just about every song. I’m not kidding, go have a listen. Uzi definitely embraced this androgynous rock star/rapper movement, completed by wearing a chain that says “Thugga.” Weird man…just weird. He also is super proud of the fact that he can’t freestyle or actually rap, but makes good music. He’s right.
Timmy: I’ve seen private school girls rap this song in the clubs. Uzi may be here to stay, folks.
Dakarai: Yes, I’m aware this came out before the summer but my argument is that the rules for soca and reggae are different. It takes awhile for them to become regionally popular so they may circle in a niche before their sound travels everywhere. I just think this hit peak popularity in the summer. This song and the reaction to it was organic at every party I went to and never mind the murdery lyrics.
Timmy: It’s crazy how popular this song is. It sounds good yes, but not until I was waiting for the gun to cock in the song, did I realize how violent this song was. This is actually the theme song for every government school on the island.
Renaldo: I’ll say on the front end that I have an admitted dancehall bias, I’m awful at placing things in perspective sometimes and I’m prone to hyperbole…but this is the greatest party song of all time. If you keep your gunfinger in its holster when this song comes on you don’t have a soul and you don’t deserve happiness.
Renaldo: It was game two of the NBA Finals. The Warriors dominated again, the series seemed over but we barely focused on the game at all. It was the night Vybz dropped an album…from jail. It was also the exact moment we knew Jamaica would be unbeatable in Rio. #FreeWorlBoss
Dakarai: This song is business.
Timmy: I’ve seen girls do nasty things to this song. Vybz is actually still the king of dancehall, and he’s doing it from a jail cell.
Dakarai: Ine know, dis one of these Nal wibes.
Andrew: Soca dumb but SUITS apparently…so…
Timmy: Unruly. Whoy Yoy. Party shot. This is the biggest (FREE) dancehall artist in the world right now, and it’s not even close.
Renaldo: How dare you? How dare all of you? To not understand the importance and greatness of this song is to not understand Poppy’s place in Dancehall culture. Since 2011, Popcaan has been the equivalent to a rookie guard who came out scoring 20 points a game and hasn’t slowed down since. Basically Allen Iverson. He was the heir apparent to the throne once Kartel was locked away (whether people liked it or not) and he lived up to those expectations. Even reggae’s favourite cultural appropriator took notice and signed Popcaan to his OVO label. That’s probably why this song sounded even more incredible everywhere we went in Toronto this summer. He’s untouchable right now.
Dakarai: This is by far the caption champion of the summer. It’s also the mixtape anthem, and shit we’ve even used it like 4 times in our own videos and podcast intros. At the same time if you know the rest of the lyrics to this song something’s wrong with you.
Timmy: I’m actually waiting for the perfect picture to use this as a caption. This is also the only Uzi Vert song in my phone, because Future.
Renaldo: This song remains relevant based on social media alone. Only something so ambiguous could be this popular across age, cultural and generational divides. I could see Barack Obama saying this, I could see my kids saying this, I can see Donald Trump saying this…and somehow it all fits.
Timmy: It brings me so much joy that Q is a thing. I’ve been listening to him since 2008 and i thought he would also live in Kendrick Lamar’s shadow. Now he has singles with Yeezy (even though Yeezy’s verse was annoying at the beginning)
Dakarai: Everything great about Kanye West is in this song. OJ!
Andrew: This was lowkey an amazing album and I’m mad that we’re talking about this song and not “Groovy Tony”. I mean…it has Jadakiss for Christ’s sake.
Renaldo: The most important song to the “This one is for my haters” genre. Still not clear whether anyone know’s the lyrics beyond “That Part”
Andrew: This is a good year to be a gay rapper/singer. I was busy minding my business listening to Frank Ocean and whispering “pause” every other song then Kari introduced me to this…um…lady. Real talk though from what I’ve heard shit is fire.
Dakarai: I listen to way to much Young MA. I think she’s the future and I end up talking with a Brooklyn accent for a solid 5 minutes after listening to any of her songs. What’s worse is if I listen to her at work and I’m reading emails from Carrol I end up thinking shit like Carrol didn’t have the right tone in that email, she didn’t even say ‘Kind Regards’, I think Carrol beefing fam.
Renaldo: Based on her lyrics alone, Young M.A has no idea she’s a girl. I’m not just saying this because she dresses and carries herself like a stereotypical guy, but it’s all of her references to head. I mean they call it neck because…nevermind. She’s awesome though. New Yorkers better get behind her to fill that Shmurda music void for the next seven years.
Dakarai: I mean Chance had to be on this list right. Lowkey album of the year, or whatever but y’all don’t care he doesn’t have colored baby dreads.
Andrew: Chance is diet Childish Gambino. I’m ready to fight anyone that disagrees.
Timmy: I’m actually more shocked about Chance being more of a thing than Q. The man who said he would never get a label deal (still doesn’t have one) and started rapping after he was suspended from school and smokes cigarettes, has the most popular song on Bahamian radio right now.
Renaldo: I just thought he was someone rapper’s liked to reference.
Dakarai: All fans of Aubs had to come to terms with this being the better version of Controlla. This had to be said the 6 is conflicted right now.
Renaldo: Of all of the permanent effects OVOfest 2016, one is that this song became subliminally etched into your mind and into your playlist for the rest of your life. I’m not kidding, there are times when I’ve listened to this song 20 times per workout. It makes you forget Tory Lanez is a rapper. Maybe he shouldn’t be.
Dakarai: It resparked ‘Aubri’ and wins the title of defacto “woooooooy” song of the summer. I’ll leave that for Nal to explain.
Andrew: The album was disappointing and I’m pretty sure he’s the first light-skin nigga to beg himself into some cooch. But hey….thats one hell of a cooch. Drake wins!
Renaldo: Webster’s dictionary defines a “wooooyyy” song as one that envokes a strong reaction from all females in the room. There will be no standing still once this track is played. Slow wines will occur.
Dakarai: I didn’t like this the first time I heard it. Then Nal went on his honeymoon and his review for one dance was “Lemme tell yah summn”. He argued for One Dance better than any politician I’ve ever heard. Then I heard it when I was out once and was like oh shit we got something here. Then I heard it in Miami and told everyone I knew it’s gonna somehow sound better in Toronto. Then I heard it in Toronto and it was the song of the summer. I mean it’s not Get Lucky but it’s damn close.
Renaldo: As much as I love this song I can’t get over the frustration of not being able to find it online. I mean who the hell is this guy in this link. Where’s T. Lanez when you need him?
Timmy: Find yourself a girl who likes to dance. I promise you that you will like this song as much I do.
Summer maybe over but not before these songs were burned into your head and every time you hear any of them you’ll think of summer 16, the good, the bad, the lit, the sauce.