1. Don’t Just Follow The Radio
If you want to create an original playlist of hot summer jams, don’t just listen to the radio. Everyone knows the radio only plays the same couple songs over and over. You have to put in a little bit more work — finding awesome music is like going on a treasure hunt! By all means, throw those radio jams you just can’t live without on your list. But don’t be afraid to look elsewhere to find out what’s hot. Sometimes, the hottest songs don’t even make it to the radio anyway.
2. Go To Stores You Like
The thing about branding is that it’s about the look, sure, but brands can also be sounds, too. Chances are if you go to your favorite store, whatever it is, they’re going to be playing some awesome songs that that you haven’t even heard of. How many times have you gone into some store and you are like, “Wait WHAT is this song playing right now?” Exactly! So if you go to all the stores you like, I bet you’ll discover at least five songs that are not on the radio and that you probably like a whole lot. I would follow Rough Trade Records to the end of time so they are my automatic Go-To for what’s hot in music.
3. Think About Creating A Story
As with any mixtape or song list, you’re creating a mood. What are you making the playlist for? Beach relaxation? Then compile your songs around that theme. Going on a long drive? Well, you’re going to want upbeat songs in that case! At every stage, you’re creating the perfect mood for your perfect summer day. Remember that and your playlist will be golden.
4. Read Music Blogs In Your Genre Of Preference
The music blog has replaced the radio in a lot of ways. Music blogs know what’s happening on the scene, so they will have the latest and greatest songs for your listening pleasure. Blogs often have “Songs of the Week” or reviews of hot albums, not that you have to take their word for it. But still — there’s almost no better place to instantly discover new music that music blogs.
5. Don’t Be Afraid To Mix Oldies With Goodies
One of the songs that always gets me HOT is Benny Goodman’s “Sing, Sing, Sing.” I was at an electro club once and the DJ just dropped this Swing classic practically out of nowhere and the room totally went bananas. So when you’re making your penultimate playlist, don’t be afraid to get a little nostalgic. What was your favorite song when you were 15? 20? 25? Throw those bad puppies in there for diversity! Music is always about more than the sounds — it’s about memories, too. A great summer playlist is all about making memories stick.
6. See Who’s Playing The Festival Circuit
Probably the best way to see what’s poppin’ in music is to figure out who’s playing the summer festival circuit. Festivals run every summer from California to Amsterdam, and the people playing the festivals are the folks we’re going to be talking about non-stop next year. So, get ahead in your cool points while you can! Every artist on the planet is trying to come up with the “Song of Summer,” so really there’s no better place to find out about hot edgy acts for your sexy summer playlist.