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Although the true summer solstice begins on June 21st in the northern hemisphere, it appears that summer truly kicks off during the weekend of May 16th with the launch of Hangout Music Festival. Located in the beachfront city of Gulf Shores on the coast of Alabama, this music-filled, seaside festival embodies all things summer sunshine.
This year, Hangout Fest will feature headlining performers such as Cardi B, Travis Scott, The Lumineers, and Vampire Weekend, plus a handful of emerging artists, like King Princess, Ravyn Lenae, Shame, and Abhi the Nomad. Alongside these musical acts, Hangout Fest boasts an array of summer-themed activities, from breaking a sweat at roller disco or beach volleyball to finding one’s center at morning yoga to relaxing with a view from atop the festival Ferris wheel or below in the sand of the hammock beach.
With summer — and Hangout Fest — fast-approaching, Consequence of Sound asked some of Hangout Fest’s most anticipated performers what their go-to summertime songs are. Check out these artists and their favorite tracks to summon that warm weather and sunny clear skies in time for May 16th.
Abhi the Nomad
Summer Song: “IV. Sweatpants” by Childish Gambino
As his moniker suggests, Abhi the Nomad has spent his life on the move. Born in India, the indie rapper lived all around the world before he turned 18 and even once he settled into a Los Angeles suburb, immigration laws required him to move once again. Now settled in Austin, Texas, Abhi’s music has remained grounded. On his latest album, Marbled, bluesy, pop-infused beats back up introspective songwriting about alienation, the woes of the partying lifestyle, and learning to love oneself. Among his own tracks, Abhi’s favorite summer song is “Sex n’ Drugs”, “because that’s what summer’s all about,” he says.
Essential Abhi the Nomad Tracks: “Sex n’ Drugs”, “Somebody to Love”, and “Floors”
Buy: Tickets to see Abhi the Nomad at Hangout Fest here.
Summer Song: “Night Moves” by Bob Seger
“No matter how much time passes, this song will forever encapsulate the heat of summer,” says singer-songwriter Elley Duhé, who spent many of her past summers on the same Gulf Coast as Hangout Fest where she grew up. Duhé clearly has versatility in her taste and what she can perform. After growing up on classic rock, jazz, and blues, the musician’s own music now infuses hip-hop beats with pop vocals, while her viral collaborations with producers like Zedd and Gryffin have acquainted her with the electronic music scene.
Essential Elley Duhé Tracks: “Immortal”, “Tie Me Down”, and “Happy Now”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Elley Duhé shows here.
Summer Song: “West Coast” by Coconut Records
“The sound and vibe of this song always reminds me of southern California in the summertime,” says singer Aimee Interrupter, who is joined by brothers Jesse, Justin, and Kevin Bivona to form The Interrupters. “It pulls at the heartstrings in a happy/sad way, and I love it so much!” Since 2011, the Los Angeles-based band has pulled at fans’ heartstrings in similar ways, touring around the world on their own and supporting bands like Green Day, Bad Religion, and Rancid. Using upbeat sounds of ska and street punk, Aimee Interrupter pushes messages of empowerment and strength.
Essential Interrupters Tracks: “Take Back the Power”, “Gave You Everything”, and “She Got Arrested”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Interrupters shows here.
Summer Song: “Something Good” by Utah Saints
“This is a total throwback summer jam that everyone should experience again and again,” says folk rock singer Jade Bird about “Something Good” by Utah Saints. The UK-born artist’s own nostalgia has been present in her music since she released her debut EP, Something American, at 19. On her recently released first full-length, Bird has grown to create modern, polished takes on a range of throwbacks, like on the twinkling, Fleetwood Mac-like “Side Effects” and the Alanis Morissette-inspired “I Get No Joy”.
Essential Jade Bird Tracks: “Uh Huh”, “Lottery”, and “Side Effects”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Jade Bird shows here.
Judah & the Lion
Summer Song: “Africa” by Weezer
“Let’s be honest: Is there anything better than the legendary ‘Africa’ by Toto sung by one of your musical heroes?” Judah Akers of Judah & the Lion asks. “Nothing like putting the Jeep top down, going to the dog park with your dog, and singing this one at the top of your lungs.” Similarly, Judah & the Lion fuse genres and influences to create true anthems for their fans to shout along to. On their latest record, appropriately titled Folk Hop ‘n’ Roll, the Nashville-based band incorporate hip-hop beats, folk banjo and mandolin, and rock chords for a sound that is uniquely theirs.
Essential Judah & the Lion Tracks: “Why Did You Run?”, “pictures (feat. Kacey Musgraves)”, and “Suit and Jacket”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Judah & the Lion shows here.
Summer Song: “One Love” by Bob Marley
“Nothing says the start of summer to me quite like Bob Marley’s ‘One Love’. It’s the perfect song to jam and sing to and it just puts me in a great mood,” singer-songwriter Lauren Daigle told Consequence of Sound. “I can’t wait to play this one at Hangout Fest!” It’s the organic energy and pure positivity of tracks like “One Love” that clearly inspire Lauren Daigle’s music, especially her most recent album, Look Up Child. The two-time Grammy-nominated artist used her new album to prioritize raw instrumentation, including gleaming string orchestras and gospel choirs to create bluesy, soulful pop ballads that reference her Louisiana roots.
Essential Lauren Daigle Tracks: “You Say”, “Trust in You”, and “Almost Human”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Lauren Daigle shows here.
Summer Song: “Feeling This” by Blink-182
“We had a pretty full summer of festivals last year and this always seemed to be the track I chose to play when I managed to get the aux in our dressing room,” lead singer Heather Baron-Gracie says. The power-chord-heavy punk sound and sometimes dark lyricism of Blink-182, combined with ’80s-inspired, glimmering synth pop can describe many of the sounds and influences that come from Pale Waves’ debut full-length album, My Mind Makes Noises. The juxtaposition of solemn subjects sung over catchy hooks is already making the British band a festival favorite two years in a row.
Essential Pale Waves Tracks: “There’s a Honey”, “Noises”, and “Eighteen”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming Pale Waves shows here.
Summer Song: “Slow Burn” by Kacey Musgraves
The sweetest summer song of 2018 has remained in the hearts of DC-based electronic pop trio SHAED. “This is such a beautiful song that instantly reminds us of summer,” shares lead singer Chelsea Lee of Kacey Musgraves’ “Slow Burn”. In a similar vein, SHAED is making their own music that few will leave 2019 without hearing again and again. With two EPs under their belts, crystal clear vocalist Chelsea Lee and brother producers Max and Spencer Ernst have already earned devoted fans, but it was the feature of their Melt EP track “Trampoline” in an Apple commercial that skyrocketed the group’s streaming numbers.
Essential SHAED Tracks: “Trampoline”, “Too Much”, and “Name on It”
Buy: Tickets to upcoming SHAED appearances here.