Velvet Underground, "Who Loves the Sun": Here's an uncharacteristically breezy choon from archetypal decadent, black-clad Noo Yawkahs. The lyrics express a broken-hearted lover's indifference toward ol' Sol, but with "bah-bah-bah-bahs" straight out of the Mamas & the Papas; a bright, peppy melody; and cleanly strummed acoustic guitars, "Who Loves the Sun" takes a walk on the West Coast's mild side with winsome results.
War, "Summer": To leave this off the list would be a crime against nature. That languid flute motif and those mellow vocal tones perfectly encapsulate luxurious twilight laziness after a hectic day of summer activities.
Ween, "Push th' Little Daisies": Many of my favorite summer songs induce a sun-drunk wooziness that spills into stoned immaculateness and/or lysergic bliss. Because summer should at least partially be about escaping responsibility and reality, right? Ween's odd ditty fits the bill. The phased guitar and slack, swaying rhythm obliquely whisper "tropical," while the Cartmanesque vocals flick the track into helium-inhalation absurdity. You can practically smell the funny fungus emanating from the grooves.