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Christmas Gift Guide

"Summertime" - DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince

"Slide" - Calvin Harris, feat. Frank Ocean and Migos

"Hotel California" - The Eagles

"One Week" - Bare Naked Ladies

"Hey Ya!" - Outcast

"In the Summertime" - Mungo Jerry

"The Warmth of the Sun" - Beach Boys

"Fight the Power" - Public Enemy

"Feel it All Around" - Washed Out

"The Sound of Sunshine" - Michael Franti & Spearhead

Sitting on the Dock of the Bay - Otis Redding

"Ramble On" - Led Zeppelin

"Boys of Summer" - Don Henley

Editor's note: Every week we ask people around the office questions about pop culture to see what makes them tick. This week we wanted to know which songs from any era reminded people of summer the most.

I have to go with "Summertime" by DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince. It embodies that carefree attitude that comes around when the temperature goes up and the days get longer. I hear the beat drop, and I immediately think of barbecues, ice cream trucks, pool parties and all-day games of hide-and-seek. Spotify link.

  • Ashlee Clark Thompson - senior associate editor

Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

I really like "Slide" by Calvin Harris. Returning from his Taylor Swift-induced hiatus, Harris has risen from the embarrassing ashes of shitty tabloids with a wonderful new album that includes my personal favorite track. It features Migos (who apparently collaborate with anyone these days) and Frank Ocean. Ocean's most recent album "Blonde," although perfect, lacks any uptempo hits that make you wanna roll down all of your car windows and blast the volume as loud as possible. "Slide" is a single that perfectly fills that void. Harris's song-making process is also impressive to witness. Spotify link.

  • Xiomara Blanco - associate editor
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

As a CNET Roadshow reviews editor I spend a lot of time on the road. I do a lot of desert driving and in the summer it's way easier to do at night. In my convertible Mazdaspeed Miata I am literally on a dark desert highway with the cool wind in my hair. By August, that wind is pretty warm, night time or no, but whenever I hit a two-lane through the Mojave desert, I scroll through to "Hotel California" by The Eagles and hope I'm not descending into hell like the protagonist of the song. Spotify link.

Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

In July 1998, I was driving on the freeway listening to the radio and heard "One Week" by the Bare Naked Ladies, a (at the time) bizarre part pop-alternative, part rap song. I was a pretty big BNL fan already, and it really sounded like them, but I wasn't sure. At end of the song, a voice came on identifying it as the band's latest release, and it's been a happy summer song for me ever since. Fun fact: the "rap" lyrics were improvised on the first take, and were never changed since. Spotify link.

  • Jeremy Toeman - vp, product
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

"Hey Ya!" by Outkast sounds the most like summer to me. It's bouncy and catchy and easy to sing along with ("ICE COLD!") and it's just plain fun. It's the sort of song that should be pouring out of radios and at parties all summer long (even though it was actually released in the fall of 2003). And it spawned a pretty clever tagline: "Shake it like a Polaroid picture." Spotify link.

  • Jim Hoffman - copy editor
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Nothing says Summer like "In the Summertime" by Mungo Jerry. Written by lead singer Ray Dorset in less than 10 minutes while taking time off from his work at Timex, it embodies the sounds, sights and things to do when the sun is bearing down and there's not a care in the world. From the "Skiffle/Jug Band/Jamaican" music influence to the sound of the motorcycle (actually a Triumph sports car) panning the soundscape at the end of the song, you can't help but bop to the beat and enjoy the happiness the song imparts. It's not hard to understand why it was a #1 hit song and continues to be a song that screams summer. Spotify link.

  • Jon Chaikin - sr. manager, direct marketing & merchandising
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

My favorite summer song is "The Warmth of the Sun" by the Beach Boys. You can't argue: Their brand was strong. While they have countless songs that evoke the season, I like "The Warmth of the Sun" best because it gets at my general warm weather philosophy: even tough times aren't so bad when you've got some sunshine. Spotify link.

  • Erin Carson - staff reporter
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

In June of 1989, in an overly air conditioned movie theater in Harvard Square, I witnessed arguably one of the greatest title sequences of all time. "Fight the Power by Public Enemy" provides the backbeat to the mesmerizing, aggressive dancing of one Rosie Perez. The two are inextricably linked in my mind, a nd every time I hear the opening beat I see Rosie rocking it. For the rest of the summer, the song seemed to follow me everywhere I went. The confrontation of the song fit perfectly with my world view at the time, and still gets my ire up. The digs at Elvis and John Wayne were the most quoted song lyric that year. This song cannot be ignored. Spotify link.

  • Chris Robertson - director of product management
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Right before I moved to America, I made myself a playlist called "Perfect chill Cali tunes" for those long, Californian summer days the movies told me about. "Feel It All Around" by Washed Out is first on the list. It's based on an amazing Italo-disco track by Gary Low and pitched down so the original is almost unrecognizable. Add some woozy lyrics and it's perfect for cruising around on long summer days.

No one told me San Francisco is actually at its coldest in summer, so I listen to this a lot in October. Spotify link.

  • Lexy Savvides - senior editor
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

You can't help but tap your feet while "The Sound of Sunshine" by Michael Franti and Spearhead is on. I remember the first time I heard it I was watching A TERRIBLE summer flick "Soul Surfer." The only good thing to come out of that movie was that I managed to get Shazam open fast enough to add "The Sound of Sunshine" to my summer playlist in 2011 and every year since. It reminds me of drinking Moscow Mules and having appetizers on warm summer nights in Cape Cod. Spotify link.

  • Liza Babcock - product manager
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

It's pretty dated, but I have to go with "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay" by Otis Redding. Those wave sounds at the beginning make me think about the Mediterranean and home. Because up until I moved to the US, summer to me basically meant swimming on the beach and sun. 

It's too bad we don't actually have a summer in San Francisco. Spotify link.

Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Despite the fact that the first lyrics of "Ramble On" by Led Zeppelin are, 'Leaves are falling, all around...", this song became my anthem the summer after my sophomore year of college. My roommates and I would play it over and over again while we sat on our front porch drinking beers and barbecuing. It's got the perfect balance of heavy and mellow for chilling out in the sun. Not to mention all the "Lord of the Rings" references, which I started reading that summer. Spotify link.

  • Andy Altman - associate editor
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

I looked over this gallery in horror after Jason sent it in. Where in the world is Don Henley's "Boys of Summer," the song we've all belted out driving amid a warm breeze (me, donning Rayban Wayfarers when it first came out in 1984.)

I'm just gonna presume all my colleagues, like me, assumed someone else would for sure choose this classic as their top summer-feeling song. They just didn't want to appear cliche. 

But as a wise editor just told me: "It's a crime it's not in there." Crime resolved. 

Now go find a Deadhead sticker on a Cadillac. I can see your brown skin shining in the sun. Spotify link.

  • Michelle Meyers - associate editor
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET
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