I hate to say it folks, but the Long Summer has finally come to an end. With that we need to award a Victory to a certain song, proclaiming that in Forever Time it will be known as the Champion of the Summer of 2011. That one Singular Summer Smash Hit, the huge Jam that got your feet moving, your lips smiling, maybe even that one track that wouldn't stop playing as you drove home from an ex-lover's mansion crying and sobbing knowing that you will never get that Mansion Money. Thus through tragedy, insanity and the General Fun Times, this one song was with you for it all. Let's start tabulating some shit:
I ended up tracking 29 total songs this Summer. I really wish I had anything better to do, but it's all for you people. Let's start with some tracks who came and went on the Winner's List, usually not lasting more than a week and not climbing higher than the 7th or 6th spot at most. Here are the Bonus Winners, alongside the Week they made it on the list:
#29: "Don't Wanna Go Home" by Jason Derulo - 06/13
#28: "Judas" by Lady GaGa - 05/23
#27: "Where Them Girls At" by David Guetta ft. Flo Rida & Nicki Minaj - 07/04
#26: "Best Thing I Never Had" by Beyoncé - 08/01
#25: "Tonight Tonight" by Hot Chelle Rae - 07/25
#24: "Cheers (Drink To That)" by Rihanna - 09/05
#23: "Pumped Up Kicks" by Foster the People - 08/29
#22: "Stereo Hearts" by Gym Class Heroes ft. Adam Levine - 08/15 & 08/29
#21: "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie" by The Red Hot Chili Peppers - 08/08
#20: "S&M" by Rihanna - 05/16
#19: "Written in the Stars" by Tinie Tempah ft. Eric Turner - 05/16 & 05/23
#18: "Yoü and I" by Lady GaGa - 09/05
Alrighty then. After these mild hits there were a bunch of songs that hung around the middle of the pack for a few more weeks longer but they were definitely still not the biggest hits of the Season. They were all decent songs though and we might be remembering and humming them for a while. In addition to the weeks here, we'll list their Peak Position:
#17: "Down on Me" by Jeremih ft. 50 Cent - 05/16 to 05/30
Peak: #5 on 05/23
#16: "On the Floor" by Jennifer Lopez ft. Pitbull - 05/15 & 05/30
Peak: #3 on 05/30
#15: "I Wanna Go" by Britney Spears - 07/18, 08/15 to 08/29
Peak: #4 on 08/29
#14: "The Show Goes On" by Lupe Fiasco - 05/23 to 06/13, 06/27
Peak: #4 on 05/23 & 06/13
#13: "Moves Like Jagger" by Maroon 5 ft. Christina Aguilera - 08/22 to 09/05
Peak: #2 on 09/05
#12: "How To Love" by Lil Wayne - 07/18 to 08/15
Peak: #4 on 07/18
#11: "Just Can't Get Enough" by The Black Eyed Peas - 05/23 to 06/27
Peak: #3 on 06/13
#10: "Till the World Ends" by Britney Spears - 05/16 to 06/06
Peak: #3 on 05/16 to 05/23, 06/06
#9: "The Lazy Song" by Bruno Mars - 05/16, 05/30 to 06/27, 07/11, 07/25
Peak: #5 on 05/16
So now here we are: The Official Top 8 Winners for the Summer. Let's go through these one by one:
#8: "Lighters" by Bad Meets Evil ft. Bruno Mars
Weeks on Winners List: 5 (08/08 to 09/05)
Peak: #1 on 09/05
After an impressive late-Summer Run "Lighters" cracks the Top 8. It wasn't as big of a hit as either Bruno Mars or Eminem had last year but it's really just getting warmed up. It should have a nice fall and really earned its spot here through the first part of its time on the Pop Charts instead of its whole life like some of the other tracks here.
#7: "Super Bass" by Nicki Minaj
Weeks on Winners List: 12 (06/13 to 08/08, 08/22 to 09/05)
Peak: #3 on 07/11, 07/25 to 08/08
Nicki spent forever on the Weekly List but she never exactly dominated it. Around the End of July / Start of August she was doing very well but there was always a Jam that was a little bit more ubiquitous and beat her. Still, this was a great Summer to get this girl's name out there as a legitimate Pop Star and Contender who can trade blows with Britney and Katy. It is actually still doing well but it isn't a dominating smash just yet. Nicki is set up pretty well as a fun Summer Artist that may come back next year.
#6: "E.T." by Katy Perry ft. Kanye West
Weeks on Winners List: 8 (05/16 to 06/20, 07/04 to 07/11)
Peak: #1 on 05/23 to 05/30
This song really was a holdover from the Spring that still was very popular a ways into Summer. If the timing had been a bit better Katy may have had another Summer Crown but instead her singles tended to split the Summer rather than own it like "California Gurls" did last year. Still, this thing didn't die easy. After battling Adele for a while, then falling out of the race it surged back in mid-July for a few weeks. It is still a cool song although it's made my irritatingly overplayed list, which is regretful.
#5: "The Edge of Glory" by Lady GaGa
Weeks on Winners List: 11 (06/06. 06/20 to 08/22)
Peak: #3 on 08/15
This was a lot like "Super Bass," it was never massively popular but certainly one of the most consistent tracks on the countdown whose lifetime was right in the Heart of Summer. A Crown yet eludes GaGa, who has really almost become the Susan Lucci of Summer Jams at this point after both "Disco Stick" and "Alejandro" have come close but unable to seal to the deal in recent years. I think "Yoü and I" is set up to be really big, which "The Edge of Glory" may have helped, but a Summer Title isn't hers right now. That said, its a fun song although in the long run I'm thinking that considering her discography it won't be as remembered as well as either her more controversial tracks or her much more popular tracks will be. When Ancient GaGa plays the Grammys in twenty years she'll be doing "Poker Face" or "Bad Romance," not "The Edge of Glory."
#4: "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" by Katy Perry
Weeks on Winners List: 10 (07/04 to 09/05)
Peak: #1 on 08/01, 08/15 to 08/29
Almost as soon as "E.T." faded Katy clearly tried even harder for another Summer Jam Crown with her Ode to Fridays. After a very inconsistent July though, she dominated August, fighting with "Party Rock Anthem" for the #1 spot all month just as she had done with Adele earlier in the Season. This song was a lot more radio and Pop friendly than "E.T." I've never seen someone trying for more blatant mass appeal. It worked, she spent her time at #1 again, although she seems to be falling very fast now. In fact it's possible that next week she falls out of the Billboard Hot 100 Top 5 for the first time in over a year. It's really just because the song is terrible.
#3: "Give Me Everything" by Pitbull ft. Nayer, AfroJack & Ne-Yo
Weeks on Winners List: 11 (06/20 to 08/22, 09/05)
Peak: #1 on 06/27 to 07/04
Pitbull debuted at #2 and didn't fall worse than that position for its first Six Weeks. It still had a tough time dying, very consistent in Prime Summer Months, including winning the Independence Day Weekend. Still, this track was terrible as well, although it's certainly a good Summer Jam. It's very light, fluffy and danceable, even if it puts a bad taste in your mouth to Jam to someone as douchey as Pitbull. Man he's terrible. As a consistent High Ranking track though, it earns its spot here.
#2: "Rolling in the Deep" by Adele
Weeks on Winners List: 11 (05/16 to 07/18, 08/01)
Peak: #1 on 05/16, 06/06 to 06/20
I'm not sure I will ever be able to listen to this song again, despite how great it is. It was just overplayed far too much this Summer, it was ridiculous. That was after it was overplayed all Spring. Adele has landed though, as a very humble, talented Pop Starlet and her new track may be even better. She has a charm and integrity that is really lacking in just about everyone else here. It's very difficult to hate Adele. Still it nabbed Four Weeks at #1, which was matched only by two other songs all Summer.
#1: "Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO ft. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock
Weeks on Winners List: 14 (06/06 to 09/05)
Peak: #1 on 07/11 to 07/25, 08/08
This track had a nasty Summer. Fourteen Consecutive weeks on the Winners List, half of which were #2 or better. 189 Million Youtube views. And of course, a brand new Kia Soul Commercial. It's also very Summer Jam Worthy, moreso than "Rolling in the Deep" was. In mid-June this was just a very smooth, funky track that may have had a shot to break out. Since then it hasn't looked back and has started to cave only recently although it's never fallen that dramatically. It may have also made that new Shuffle Dance that those Hamsters do for some reason. It's so wholly infused into the Zeitgeist, the bend towards the Techno Rhythm, the growing DJ presence, the Hipster Sensibility, it's truly a Song for the Moment. I personally don't think LMFAO will ever have another hit or be a band worth listening to, but they can enjoy this one. I don't really think that we'll fondly look back on the Anthem to Party Rocking, either. Despite its success it's not actually a very innovative song at all, which has to do with the fact that it's so entrenched in the Pop Culture right now I think it's easy to lose it.
So that's it, people. Go back to your lives, the Kings of Summer, LMFAO have been chosen. For anyone interested in a week-by-week breakdown you need only to click this Link for the Google Document I used all Summer. Looking back on some of my predictions, there was some correctness there, but ultimately LMFAO blindsided all of us. Good for them. So what's in store for us next year? Who knows.