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Press Play: The Easy Breezy Playlist

Whether you’re cruisin’ on a long drive or just chillin’ at the pool, put this playlist on shuffle and enjoy these essential summer tunes:

1.) “The Only Place” — Best Coast

The California indie rock dream duo Best Coast is all about loving their home state on this single from its sophomore album. The sound is an upbeat mix of low-fi garage rock and folk. Lead singer Bethany Cosentino’s voice gives off a carefree air that fits the “less work, more play” motto many of us adopt over these heat-filled three months.

Even though “The Only Place” boasts of Cali love, if you give the song a listen, its joy for summer will simply rub off and leave you with an electric sense of happiness. The lyrics essentially convey a spirit of hometown pride that can be applied to anyone who loves one's city or state. Best Coast’s simplicity in theme and execution makes its music the perfect choice for a summer jam.

2.) “No Interruption” — Hoodie Allen

If you like Asher Roth, Wiz Khalifa or Mac Miller, then this squeaky-clean Brooklyn rapper won’t fail to impress. Pop-rap genius Hoodie Allen put out this sultry single off his “All American” album with a mix of clever rapping and a surprisingly impressive singing voice. “No Interruption” gives just a taste of this artist’s musical intelligence with suggestive, adorable comments that never cross the line into vulgarity. The chorus is incredibly catchy and is guaranteed to stick in your head for a while. This white-boy rap fad may not be for everyone, but while it’s still hot, this song is definitely worth a listen.

3.) “Little Talks” — Of Monsters and Men

Although this song is slowly becoming one of the most overplayed crossover hits on popular radio, it’s too excellent to pass up. There’s nothing cold about this Icelandic band’s music. “Little Talks” will warm your soul as you sing along to the dual vocals. Of Monsters and Men is an interesting group because its music has indie rock influences but remains entirely folk with horns, tambourines and the like. This song has a very joyful melody, but if you take a closer look at the lyrics, there is a lot more meaning to these “little talks” — the subject of the song is dealing with the voices inside her head. This band is incredibly talented, and this single is unique and lovable. To say the least, this song is a summer hit with its softness and sunny sound.

4.) “Loveless” — Said the Whale

Canada has given us yet another musical gem with Said the Whale and its positively charming song “Loveless.” This indie pop vibe could be related to the likes of popular acts such as Fun. and Noah and the Whale with its group vocals and heavy drums. It’s an absolutely danceable melody that will brighten any funk of a day with a short but sweet tagline: “How could I love you less now that I know you more?” Although pop-infused, this song doesn’t give one a love overdose and is enjoyable for a wide variety of audiences.

5.) “I Found You” — Alabama Shakes

Alabama Shakes is one of the most talented new groups of 2012. This song, off their debut album “Boys & Girls,” takes you on a backward time travel through the blues era of the '60s with the incredibly powerful, raw voice of lead singer Brittany Howard. This band has a mind-blowing amount of soul that builds up and explodes during “I Found You.” The instrumentals on this track are very well done and go through a variety of transitions throughout the song. It’s been quite a while since such an authentic love song has been written. This song is meant to be played on an outdoor patio with cool drinks on a summer night.

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