Find the right songs to round out summer

Published 12:01 pm Sunday, July 19, 2015

Now that the Fourth of July is a few weeks in the past, we’re well past the unofficial midway point of summer, and I’ve been fighting the mid-summer blues as I can see another Minnesota fall and winter on the horizon.

With that, I’ve been looking for upbeat tracks to keep me in the summer mood. Since it’s been a while since I wrote a music-based column, here are a few tracks to keep you in the summer mood:

 “I’ve Been Waiting for Her”

by Mac DeMarco

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This is a great relaxed and upbeat tune with wavy guitars. The track is a single off of DeMarco’s upcoming EP “Another One,” which is due out Aug. 8. He reportedly released some tracks at a barbecue listening part, but I think it’s perfect for a sunny drive.

 “Let It Grow”

by Maximum Balloon featuring Tunde Adebimpe and Karen O

Fresh off last year’s fantastic album “Seeds,” TV on the Radio guitarist/producer Dave Sitek is prepping a his second solo album to be released later this ear under the moniker Maximum Balloon. The first single, “Let It Grow,” features Karen O of The Yeah Yeah Yeahs and TV on the Radio bandmate Tunde Adebimpe on vocals. Adebimpe and Karen O’s vocals blend seamlessly, and the track strikes me as a more chill TV on the Radio tune.

 “So Soldier”

by #1 Dads featuring Ainslie Willis

#1 Dads’ 2014 album “About Face” borders is half a summer album and half an autumn album — summer for the upbeat tracks and fall for the slower tracks.

Tracks like “So Soldier” rides on airy guitars with a bit of a throwback to a 90s vibe. “Rush” is another great, summery tune.


by My Morning Jacket

“Tropics” serves as the climax of My Morning Jacket’s good, but uneven 2015 album “The Waterfall.” It’s a song that slowly builds and has been a mainstay on my summer jogging playlist.

 “Bus Passes and Happy Meals”

by Lizzo

I discovered Minneapolis-based hip-hop artist Lizzo when she opened a My Morning Jacket concert last month, and she surprised me with smooth live rapping and hints of a big voice. The album version, off 2014’s “Lizzobangers,” doesn’t quite match how big her voice live, but it’s still a good summer hip-hop track. Note: This track is listed as explicit for language on Spotify.