June kicks off summer — never mind the solstice.
Always used to be there was a “hit of the summer” on the radio each year. Sometimes, it was just one song everybody loved. More often, though, there was more than one so you could choose your favorite theme song for that particular summer’s fun.
Here’s a triple play of summer hits from the 6os, with a bonus update for your June 3rd.
1966 — the Kinks: “Sunny Afternoon”
In 1966, this Kinks release became the biggest hit of the summer in the UK.
from “Top of the Pops”
1967 — the Doors: “Light My Fire”
The single from the Doors debut album, released that January, hit big that summer.
from “The Jonathan Winters Show”
1967 — Bobbie Gentry: “Ode to Billie Joe”
June 3 was the day Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge — now unofficially dubbed “Billie Joe McAllister Day.” We’re still puzzling over what might’ve been thrown off that bridge.
live on the BBC 1968
Special bonus update 2015 — Papa Mali (instrumental)
Y’all have a sultry summer!