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Do we really need a song of the summer?

OMI Cheerleader

Ultra Music/YouTube

What’s the song of the winter?

After living through the hellish humidity of June and July, we finally got what we were waiting for: On Sept. 3, Spotify declared that the song of the summer is “Lean On” by Major Lazer.

“Cheerleader” by OMI—a song I find truly unbearable—came in second place, while “See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa (featuring Charlie Puth) fell into third.

If you have somehow miraculously avoided hearing this song and decide to click on it, don’t say I didn’t warn you. 

However, the Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face” was the most streamed song in the United States, so that could also be considered the song of the summer for us red-blooded Americans.

But according to the Billboard Hot 100, “Cheerleader” is the song of the summer. And according to Google Trends, Fetty Wap’s “Trap Queen” is the song of the summer.

If you look at Google Play statistics, it’s clear that the song of the summer is Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again.” But then again, according to YouTube’s statistics, Silento’s “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” snags the No. 1 spot. Billboard’s online poll, undoubtedly infiltrated by One Direction fans, says the Zayn-less “Drag Me Down” is the song of the summer.

So what does this all mean? Due to the rising popularity of so many different streaming platforms, perhaps it’s time we kill the song of the summer. What does it even mean to snag the title anyway? And why is summer the only season to get a song? (Look out for my forthcoming Change.org petition, Let the Liberal Media Know: All Seasons Deserve a Song!)

It comes down to this: The song of the summer is in the eye (or ear) of the beholder. We all have music that reminds us of a certain era in our lives. For me, the song of this summer is up-and-coming indie darling Eskimeaux’s “Folly,” but for you it could be Moses Sumney’s cover of “O Superman” or Beethoven’s timeless “Symphony 5.” 

Of course, tracking the popularity of new releases is important, but it’s OK to have more than one song of the summer. And dear god, let’s promise ourselves that next summer, a song as bad as “Cheerleader” won’t even have a chance. 

Screengrab via Ultra Music/YouTube 

Eve Peyser

Eve Peyser

Eve Peyser is a writer and comedian based in New York. She has published bylines in Esquire, the Washington Post, Gizmodo, and GQ, and she works as a staff politics and culture writer at Vice.