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Guest Post: Music for a Backyard Dinner Party in the Summer

Summer is my favorite time of year. You can go swimming when the heat becomes too much, you can grill some delicious food, and you can have evening dinner parties in your backyard. Now, a dinner party is not the same without some smooth tunes to listen to, and there are some music choices that are perfect for the summer. Here are a few of my favorite songs to listen to when we are entertaining guests outdoors.


1. Summertime – Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff


This is a classic that talks about barbecues and playing hoops in the summer, but the part that sticks with you the most about this song is the chorus that says: “Summer, summer, summertime. Time to sit back and unwind.”

2. I Can’t Go For That – Hall & Oates


The lyrics of this song don’t really have to do with summer, but they are smooth and catchy, which makes it perfect for a backyard dinner party. The saxophone solo is amazing, and no matter who is present at your party, you will notice someone dancing or singing along with this song.

3. Fun, Fun, Fun – The Beach Boys


A classic about a teen who took her Daddy’s T-Bird to the hamburger stand instead of the library. It’s all about having fun with a little risk, which is the basis of summer fun when you are a teen.


4. Summertime Blues – Eddie Cochran


This summer classic is about working through the summer, and how he is basically fed up with not being able to enjoy the days of summer. Though, instead of feeling bad for him, the beat simply makes you want to dance.

5. Hot in Herre – Nelly


Nothing is truer than this song when it comes to a hot, humid night in the middle of the summer. There have been plenty of nights when taking your clothes off would cool you off, but if you are having a dinner party, simply dance to the beat.

6. Party In The U.S.A. – Miley Cyrus


This music video is what summer is about: drive-in movies, dancing, and hamburgers. The beat of this song will have you putting your hands up and clapping to the beat in no time. Nothing says it’s a party more than “Party in the U.S.A.”


7. California Gurls – feat. Snoop Dogg, Katy Perry


This song has such a cheery, lighthearted set of lyrics that you can’t help but play it at a summer dinner party. The lyrics are catchy, and people of all ages will sing along to the song.

8. Modern Love – David Bowie


Though this song is not directly related to summer, it has to do with love. Nothing is more iconic than a summer love, which is why modern love is a great summer hit. It also has lyrics that are so catchy that you can’t help but sing along; making it perfect for a backyard dinner party.

9. Lovely Day – Bill Withers


This song is perfect for a warm summer’s day because as the lyrics state it’s “a lovely day.” The original song is smooth with a classic beat that you can’t help but sway to, but if you want a more upbeat style, try the Karizma remix.


10. Summer Of ’69 – Bryan Adams


The summer of ’69 was an amazing time, and as the song says “those were the best days of my life.” Going to the drive in and hoping that your summer love would last forever was part of the summer when you were a teen, which is what makes this song so perfect.

11. Cruel Summer – Bananarama


This is yet another song about the heat and the burning pavement of summer. The upbeat style is great and the lyrics are so catchy that you will be singing about a “cruel summer” before you realize it.

12. Soak Up the Sun – Sheryl Crow


Nothing says summer more than tanning on the beach and enjoying the summer sun. Surfing and being free to “soak up the sun” is something that we all wish we could do all summer long. The lyrics are catchy, which is part of what makes this song so memorable.


13. Summer Breeze – Seals and Crofts


This mellow harmony is perfect for summer relaxation. As the song states: “Summer breeze, makes me feel fine,” so as you are relaxing in your back yard, you can connect with the song as the breeze blows across your face.

What are some tunes that you would recommend for a back yard dinner party?

Jessica Kane is a writer for SoundStage Direct, the number one online source for the best vinyl records and turntables.

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