JUKEBOX: Down By The Seaside

Can you believe summer is already more than half over? There’s only a few short weeks left until Labor Day weekend, heralding the start of the school year and the end of those precious office summer-hours. But don’t let that thought bring you down. That means you still have a few weeks left to get away and relax, even if it’s just for a weekend.

Escape from the dog days of the season by getting down to the beach and chillin’ in the surf. There’s so much you can do, from simply lounging in the sand with a good book, to swimming and surfing in the cool saltwater, to boating, barbecuing and more. This week’s JUKEBOX is celebrating the beaches and ocean fun, whether you’re hitting up the coastal boardwalk or drifting away to sea.

1) “Rock Lobster,” The B-52s (1978)

Why not pay homage to those classic beach party films a la Annette Funicello with some New Wave dance-tunes from The B-52s? Let’s face it, everyone loves this song. It’s the perfect combination of novelty, psychedelia, and pure garage rock. This song takes the spirit of a a classic beach hootanany and mixes in a wonderfully twisted space-age ocean fantasy. This is sure to add some (old bay) spice to your seaside clam bake this summer.

2) “Under the Boardwalk,” The Drifters (1964)

Here’s a nice, laid-back bit of whimsical romance to play to that special someone as you walk along the shore. It’s a song that celebrates those quiet moments alone; while everyone is on the boardwalk in the bustling crowds playing carnival games and scarfing down corndogs, you’re enjoying the solitude of the shade and the waves crashing on the sand as the evening approaches. Doesn’t that sound nice? The Drifters’ perfect harmonies and the catchy bassline are sure to put you at ease.

3) “My Bonnie,” Tony Sheridan & The Beat Brothers (1961)

There’s honestly not an awful lot going on with the simple, repetitive lyrics of this song, and it’s really only included for mentioning the ocean/sea, but it’s catchy as hell. It’s pop rock in it’s purest form. You can bop to it, you can dance, and it’s just good fun. But of course, the real not-so-secret of this song is the identity of Sheridan’s companions on the track, “the Beat Brothers,” thanks to the efforts of German producer Bert Kaempfert. Hmm, I wonder who they could be?

4) “Holiday,” The Kinks (1971)

You didn’t think you’d get away without hearing a Kinks song, did you? Of course not; this is me we’re talking about. While you roll your eyes at my obsession, I’ll tell you that this music-hall inspired bit of ragtime is about escaping the hustle and bustle of the city to have a “little holiday” on the beach, away from the pressures of modern life. It’s about the complex versus simple, and human vs. nature. Let your stress melt away  with this song as you stretch out on a towel and get a tan*.

*REBEAT, of course, encourages the liberal application of sunscreen. A lot of us are really pale. Like seriously ghostly. I glow in the dark. [Editor’s note: We officially endorse Banana Boat’s 110 SPF Sport/Kids spray sunscreen. It is the only thing to preserve our translucent porcelain-ness.]

Here are all 20 beach and ocean inspired songs:

What song is your sun and surf favorite? Let us know in the comments!

About Jen Cunningham 46 Articles
Jen Cunningham is an editor in the puzzle-publishing industry, an amateur artist, and Anglophile hailing from New York. She was raised on good ol' British rock and the smell of vinyl records. When she's not working, she enjoys going to concerts, playing tabletop games, and making unfortunate puns.