Following a record-setting heatwave in the South and many other parts of the country, it’s evident that summer is in full swing. That means a number things for all of us: vacations near water, painful sunburns, and of course, summer songs on country radio.
Every year artists try their hand at recording and releasing a summer classic, but only a special few are fortunate enough to make it happen. There are ample offerings at present, so we checked in with a few CountryBreakout Reporters to see what listeners love. Many name-checked Keith Urban’s “Long Hot Summer” (No. 19) and Jason Aldean’s “Dirt Road Anthem” (No. 7) right off the bat.
“Favorite song for the younger generation is ‘Dirt Road Anthem,’” says Susie Martin of WATZ/Alpena, MI. “After that, it’s Keith Urban’s ‘Long Hot Summer’ and Kenny Chesney/Grace Potter duet ‘You and Tequila.’”
“The new Keith Urban is firing up our phones big time,” echoes Boomer Kingston of KGKL/San Angelo, TX
“Listener favorites would have to be a toss up between Taylor Swift’s ‘Mean’ and Jason Aldean’s ‘Dirt Road Anthem,’” adds CW Simon of KMKS/Bay City, TX.
“Wolf listeners can’t get enough of ‘Long Hot Summer,’” chimes in Colby Ericson of KVWF/Wichita. “We’ve set several records for heat in the past month and of course we would latch on to this one!”
Jake Owen’s latest, which hit No. 10 this week, also received some praise for its summer theme.
“Current top requests for us is Jake Owen’s ‘Barefoot Blue Jean Night’ because it is an uptempo cooker,” says Ted Cramer of WIFE/Connersville, IN.
“Best summer song of the season is Jake Owen’s ‘Barefoot Blue Jean Night,’” agrees JR Runyon of KCNY/Conway, AR. “I just wish it was longer, but then don’t we all wish summer was too?”
Other popular tunes included Scotty McCreery, Zac Brown Band and the latest from Sawyer Brown.
“Our listeners’ favorite new summer song is without a doubt the new Sawyer Brown song ‘Smokin’ Hot Wife,’” says Heath Shelby of KWCK/Searcy, AR
“Our top requested summer song—a song that’s popular in summer even if it doesn’t sound typically summer—is ‘I Love You This Big’ by Scotty McCreery,” says Dave Spencer of WBKR/Owensboro, KY.
“Central Maine is lovin’ ‘Knee Deep’ by Zac Brown Band and Jimmy Buffett,” says Andy Capwell of WEBB/Augusta, ME. “Alan Jackson’s ‘Long Way To Go’ and Phil Vassar’s ‘Let’s Get Together’ are also getting a solid response.”
Time will reveal how enduring these songs will be. When asked about their favorite classic summer songs, a few titles invariably come up. Interestingly, the song that came up most often among CountryBreakout reporters was Kid Rock’s 2008 crossover hit “All Summer Long.”
“Can’t wait to get out the northern summer songs like Kid Rock’s ‘All Summer Long,’ which is specifically about northern Michigan,” says Susie Martin.
“Kid Rock’s ‘All Summer Long’ is still one of our most requested summer songs, and my favorite is still Kenny Chesney’s ‘Summertime,’” says Doug Rogers of WJMG/Shawano, WI.
“Alan Jackson’s ‘Summertime Blues’ is still one of my all time favorites,” suggests Boomer Kingston of KGKL.
“Older tunes getting requests include Kid Rock’s ‘All Summer Long’ and Phil Vassar’s ‘Six Pack Summer,’” says Ted Cramer of WIFE.
“As far as classics, the two we still get calls for are Kid Rock’s ‘All Summer Long’ and the ‘Summer Fun Mix’ of Alan Jackson’s ‘Good Time,’” says Heath Shelby of KWCK.
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Frozen Playlists: KTJJ, KTTI, Sirius XM, WAAG, WDXX, WHWK, WJVL, WPPL, WTRS
Craig Morgan/This Ole Boy/Black River
Kristin Chenoweth/I Want Somebody/Sony/CO5
Taylor Swift/Sparks Fly/Big Machine
Darren Warren/Cowboy Up and Party Down/NuCorp/Nine North
Montgomery Gentry/Where I Come From/Average Joe’s
Blake Shelton/God Gave Me You/Warner Bros./WMN
Martina McBride/I’m Gonna Love You Through It/Republic Nashville
Sonia Leigh/My Name Is Money/Southern Ground/BPG
Eric Paslay/Never Really Wanted/EMI Records Nashville
Keith Bryant/Can’t Tell Somebody Who To Love/Jordash
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New On The Chart—Debuting This Week
Artist/song/label — chart pos.
Taylor Swift/Sparks Fly/Big Machine — 48
Blake Shelton/God Gave Me You/Warner Bros./WMN — 52
Eric Lee Beddingfield/Great Depression/Rebel Dawg Music — 72
Craig Morgan/This Ole Boy/Black River Entertainment — 79
Susan Cattaneo/Girls Night Out/Jersey Girl Music — 80
Greatest Spin Increase
Artist/song/label — spin+
Blake Shelton/God Gave Me You/Warner Bros./WMN — 543
Taylor Swift/Sparks Fly/Big Machine — 413
Keith Urban/Long Hot Summer/Capitol — 408
Toby Keith/Made In America/Show Dog-Universal — 328
Brad Paisley feat. Carrie Underwood/Remind Me/Arista — 281
Artist/song/label — New Adds
Blake Shelton/God Gave Me You/Warner Bros./WMN — 41
Taylor Swift/Sparks Fly/Big Machine — 30
Martina McBride/I’m Gonna Love You Through It/Republic Nashville — 17
Rascal Flatts f. Natasha Bedingfield/Easy/Big Machine — 14
Montgomery Gentry/Where I Come From/Average Joe’s — 12
Eric Lee Beddingfield/Great Depression/Rebel Dawg Music — 8
On Deck—Soon To Be Charting
Artist/song/label — spins
Katie Armiger/I Do But Do I/Cold River — 234
Montgomery Gentry/Where I Come From/Average Joe — 223
Cash Creek/Unlikely Angel/Ohana Music Group — 197
Big & Rich/Fake ID/Warner — 194
Martina McBride/I’m Gonna Love You Through It/Republic Nashville — 180