Summer Indie Playlist

Zoe Novotny

Just imagine, the warm air against your hand as you drive through the Garden of the Gods with your best friend. Short shorts, loud outdoor concerts, excessive amounts of iced chai lattes, and long, beautiful hikes through the Canyon are what inspired this playlist. Replace a long sandy beach with massive red rocks cutting along the land for hundreds of feet and you’ve arrived at my favorite vacation spot. Whether you spend your summer break exploring the extensive trail system throughout Manitou, or simply laid back in your beach chair soaking up the warm, bright Colorado sunshine, this playlist radiates good summer vibes. Each song expresses a deep passion for freedom, exploration, and pure joy, and will always remind you of those blissful summertime memories from your past that make you realize how truly great life is.

Wavves and Best Coast are the ultimate summer bands. Their music sounds like it came straight out of the 50’s, with the playful electric guitar sound that derived from the Beach Boys and the attitude of an 80’s punk band. To me, Best Coast always reminds me of Patsy Cline–if she ever had a bad break up and decided to join a rock band. The lead singer, Bethany Cosentino, said in an interview that ALL of her lyrics are based on real life experience… That’s one hell of a love life.

As the list goes on, you’ll find yourself jamming out to one of the catchiest tunes ever. The simple lyrics and soft bell melody of “Go Outside” by Cults produces one of the more-pop influenced songs on this playlist. Then you hear what sounds like it could be the Beatles. Your hands start making weird motions, and suddenly you’re transported back to the summer of ’69. This songs always makes me think of the drum circles in Manitou, and the enchanting movements of the belly dancers.

To spice things up a bit I added “Piranhas Club” by Man Man. It still has that fuzzy guitar sound fed through a broken guitar amp but with lyrics equivalent to a kids band playing on PBS. Somehow, it works, and reminds you of all the adventures to await you this summer.

The next song is equally as weird, but has always been my number one summer song for many years now. “She Don’t Use Jelly” was one the biggest summertime hits in the 90’s. The lyrics make absolutely no sense, almost like all of the the silly wonderful shenanigans that my friends and I get into every summer.

Hunx and His Punz is one the most interesting bands I’ve discovered in the last six months. Their first album, called Too Young to be in Love, is the epitome of every girl’s life in the 50’s, which includes the song on this playlist, “Lover’s Lane.” Their second album, however, sounds as if it came out of the basement of a punk rock teenager’s from a generation past. Not exactly what you’d expect, but seems to be just as genuine as any band from the decade of bubblegum hair, piercings, and combat boots.

My favorite boy band name ever: Girls. Their song “Honey Bunny” is basically about the life of an average boy in the summer, having flings with girl and feeling sorry for themselves. This song will remind you of all the little romances you’ve had at summer camp, or maybe even with the person down your street.

By the end of this playlist, you might start to convince yourself you were born in a different generation. I don’t exactly have a time machine, but maybe the hour you wasted listening to every one of these songs makes you excited about the fact that summer is just around the corner.. But I’m sure the 6 inches of snow was enough to get you jumping out of your flips flips, literally.