Throwing parties is an art form, and one of the most essential ingredients for an excellent gathering is the soundtrack. For some people constructing a playlist is a joy, an ease, something to pass the time. But for others, it seems like a monumentally difficult task. For the latter, we got you–just put on the Spotify playlist at the end and you will be met with accolades. And for those who are experts themselves, what did we leave off? What are your go-to’s? The great thing about party playlists is they can always be updated. Check out our picks below.
1. “Signs” — Snoop Dogg Feat. Charlie Wilson & Justin Timberlake
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JT on the hook, Snoop rapping, and plenty of funk. This is guaranteed to get the party moving, even if everyone is still sitting on lawn chairs eating the straight-from-the-freezer burgers you grilled for them. This is also a great song because it reminds you to put on FutureSex/LoveSounds later when everyone goes home.
2. “E.V.P.” — Blood Orange
Freetown Sound is one of the best albums of the year. You could insert any of the tracks off of it here, but this one is particularly groovy.
3.”Same Ol’ Mistakes” — Rihanna
Duh. How many times do I have to tell you that Rih does Tame Impala better than they can?
4.”Mykonos — Fleet Foxes
Breaking up the upbeat vibes of R&B and hip-hop with a little lilting folk music is a classic party playlist move. In the meantime, anybody know when new Robin Pecknold music is gonna drop?
5. “Keep On Moving” — Bob Marley
5. “Keep On Moving” — Bob Marley
At least one Marley song should be on every playlist until the end of time. This song never fails to cheer me up, it is ideal to listen to outside while birds are singing and the sun is warming your skin. QED.
6. “Surf Wax America” — Weezer
Look, I’ve had my qualms about Weezer. But this song is still a favorite of mine and brings up a ton of nostalgia. Plus all the surging language makes it great for a summer party.
7. “I’m In Control” — AlunaGeorge
AlunaGeorge and Popcaan on one song? Cancel all the other songs, let’s let these three handle summer from now on.
8. “Famous” — Kayne West
It’s sort of hard to deny at this point that “Famous” is the song of the summer… right? And even after everything that’s happened, I still love listening to it. Sigh. At least it’ll be a conversation starter.
9. “Warm Water (Snakeship Remix) — Banks
Banks has long been a favorite in my book, and this slinky remix just made an already-great track even better. This is the kind of song that will have that one guy at your party looking around and asking everyone “What, who is this??” You know the one, you know the guy. If you don’t, you are the guy. It’s okay, we still love you. That’s why we made this playlist.
10. “Psychic City” — YACHT
This would sound even better if we were on a yacht. I need to get some friend with boats.
11. “I Know There’s Gonna Be Good Times” — Jamie xx Feat. Young Thug, Popcaan
Mic drop summer song. I anticipate telling my kids about the summer this came out.
12. “Middle” — DJ Snake Feat. Bipolar Sunshine
Normally I love to clown DJ Snake, but when you’re in the right mood at a barbecue, this song goes. Plus I love Bipolar Sunshine.
13. “Annie — Neon Indian
Neon Indian remain one of my favorite electro-funk pop acts, and this song is them at their finest–and I like the nice MJ allusion by using “Annie.”
14. “Them Changes” — Thundercat Feat. Flying Lotus & Kamasi Washington
Respect that. Bow down.
15. “One Dance” — Drake
Finally Drake got his number one! We got a great summer song, Kyla and Wizkid get royalties… everybody wins! God bless that petty Canadian.
16. “Summer Girls” — LFO
If you don’t love this song I don’t trust you.
17. “My Boo” — Ghost Town
This is the kind of classic deep cut that earns you respect at a party. Young grasshoppers should take note of that.