Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017

Can anyone stop Justin Bieber?

May 23, 2017
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 Illustration by Leah Mandel. Photographs from left Jamie McCarthy, Alberto E. Rodriguez, Mark Ralston, Donald Miralle/Getty

It's almost Memorial Day, which means the race for the song of the summer 2017 is fully underway. Drake's "One Dance" took last summer by storm, and set all kind of crazy international records in the process. It's unclear at this point which track will be omnipresent this year, but there are already solid contenders from the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Calvin Harris, Selena Gomez, and more. Let's examine all of the possible champions.

DJ Khaled f. Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper, and Lil Wayne, "I'm the One"

A super-sized posse cut produced by the internet's favorite son.

Evidence of heat: A hotshot debut at number one on the Billboard chart, and a hook that's equally suited for sunset kickbacks and day camp carpools.

Last year’s version: Chance The Rapper f. Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz, "No Problem"

Drake, "Passionfruit"


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A song you can fall in love to in front of a fire pit.

Evidence of heat: A surprising amount of pickup on the radio, plus the fact that summer wouldn't be summer without a Drake song to play to death.

Last year's version: Drake f. Kyla and Wizkid, “One Dance”

Calvin Harris f. Frank Ocean and Migos, "Slide"
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 Sony Music

A disco crowd pleaser with killer keys.

Evidence of heat: A little viral video, and an early release date, which bodes well for a slow-burn.

Last year's version: Justin Bieber, “Company”

J Hus, "Did You See"
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 J Hus   Dan Wilton for The FADER

The one you'll want to hear in every country you travel to.

Evidence of heat: The Jae5-produced beat is maybe the most danceable thing we've ever heard. Once all your friends learn the words, you'll understand the pleasure of screaming "They never seen such a skinny man in a big puffer jacket."

Last year's version: Rihanna f. Drake, “Work”

Selena Gomez, "Bad Liar"
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 Interscope

Your mysterious older sister's post-breakup soundtrack.

Evidence of heat: Hitmakers Justin Tranter and Julia Michaels perfectly molded Selena Gomez's deadpan delivery around a timeless Talking Heads sample. A late arrival to the party, but could gain steam if a shareable official video drops soon.

Last year's version: Mø, “Final Song”

G Perico, "All Blue"

The West Coast sound all your playlists need.

Evidence of heat: 200k YouTube plays and climbing. A dark horse candidate for sure, but one keep your eye on.

Last year's version: Young Greatness, “Moolah”

Bruno Mars, "That's What I Like"

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For your mom to dance to at the BBQ.

Evidence of heat: A fantastic video with over 400 million views. It's already gone to number one, but could launch a comeback. This remix is one of PARTYNEXTDOOR's best appearances in recent memory.

Last year's version: Justin Timberlake, “Can’t Stop The Feeling”

Luis Fonsi f. Daddy Yankee and Justin Bieber, "Despacito"

A cross-genre anthem for lovers everywhere.

Evidence of heat: It's the first Spanish-language song to hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 since the "Macarena." The sexiest song, period.

Last year's version: J. Balvin, "Bobo"

Lil Uzi Vert, "XO TOUR Llif3"
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 Lil Uzi Vert   Tyler Mitchell for The FADER

A song you can mosh to with sunglasses on.

Evidence of heat: It's been hovering in the Billboard top 10 for a minute now. With its emo mood and sing-a-long couplets, hitting number one feels inevitable.

Last year's version: D.R.A.M. f. Lil Yachty, "Broccoli"

Paramore, "Hard Times"

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Your emo sibling's favorite beach jam.

Evidence of heat: 24 million plays on Spotify. It's off After Laughter, the iconic band's much-praised new album.

Last year's version: Twenty One Pilots, "Stressed Out"

Wande Coal x DJ Tunez, "Iskaba"

The aural equivalent of summer skies.

Evidence of heat: It's the hottest song in Nigeria right now, and an authentic alternative to the faux afro-pop made in L.A. studios presently dominating pop radio.

Last year's version: Maleek Berry, "Kontrol"

Playboi Carti, "Magnolia"

The rush-the-dance-floor banger.

Evidence of heat: The above Virgil Abloh Instagram. Just watch the crowd go absolutely crazy when the song starts — that's a summer magic you can't put into words.

Last year's version: Desiigner, “Panda”

Julia Michaels, "Issues"

A moody pop song with staying power.

Evidence of heat: 278 million plays on Spotify and another 39 million on YouTube. Not bad.

Last year's version: Zara Larsson and MNEK, “Never Forget You”

Kendrick Lamar f. Rihanna, "Loyalty"
Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017 TDE

Summer without Rihanna is a waste of time.

Evidence of heat: With "HUMBLE." continuing to perform on the charts, it's pretty easy to picture this DAMN. duet having a big moment.

Last year's version: Calvin Harris f. Rihanna, "This Is What You Came For"

Ayo & Teo, "Rolex"

ROLEX ⌚️🔥🔥 #musically #dance #rolex #rolexchallenge #shmateochallenge @shmateo_ TAG A FRIEND!!🔥🔥🔥

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The viral smash that's more than a meme.

Evidence of heat: The lyrics? Filled with internet ephemera. The beat? Loopy as hell. The dance? Almost everyone can do it.

Last year's version: Kent Jones, "Don't Mind"

Here Are All The Contenders For Song Of The Summer 2017