Picture this. You’re sitting at the park with your family. Inhale. The mouth-watering smell of barbecue fills your nostrils. Stomach growls. You look over and see your favorite uncle taking his precious time grilling at the pit. Laughter and chatter fill the air as your cousin slams down the last domino. In the background, kids are running around on the playground. The sun is beaming on your skin and right before you get too hot, a slight breeze washes over cooling you down. On the other side, the older aunties are yelling because somebody reneged during spades. The family DJ breaks out his speaker. The beat rolls in. All of a sudden you hear, “Oooh that’s my song!”. Everyone gets up and starts dancing. One of your aunties is in the front drink in hand, teaching everyone the latest step. Grandma’s pulling one of the kids to the front to do their lil’ dance. It’s just good vibes all around. Summer is officially here and it’s cookout season. The ’90s was packed full of summer jams to keep you dancing into the night. These are a few of my personal favorites to get the party started.
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince – Summertime
First things first, you cannot have a summer jams list without the holy grail of summer anthems. The 1991 song describes all that summer is and then some. Sampling Kool & the Gang’s Summer Madness, this song went on to earn the duo a Grammy for Best Rap Performance By a Duo or Group. Summertime has been sampled in over 26 songs and continues to reign supreme as the best summer anthems of all time.
69 Boyz – Tootsee Roll
Taking it back to ’94, the fast tempo of this song automatically makes you want to hit the floor. While this song is a cult classic, it took a few months to roll into the Top 20. Reaching its peak at number 8 on the Hot 100, Tootsee Roll has gone to sell over a million copies. Not bad for a debut single. Now I’ll be honest, I still don’t know the difference between the Butterfly dance and Tootsee Roll.
Ghost Town DJ’s – My Boo
Switching gears to the R&B circuit, this 1996 song was sure to get everybody moving. Mix in a dope bass with smooth vocals by Virgo Williams, and it’s on like hot buttered popcorn. So how did this classic song come about? While working on the So So Def Bass All-Stars Compilation album, So So Def A&R Director Lil’ Jon helped produce this song along with Rodney Terry. He thought it would be a great fit for the album and indeed it was! Over 20 years later, My Boo resurfaced as part of the 2016 Running Man Challenge. Who knew this one-hit wonder would leave such a mark? We did!
What are some of your favorite summertime anthems? Let us know and we’ll add them to our summertime playlist!