By: Kathryn Summers
There’s nothing better than those first summer days, after the snow has melted and the rain is gone. But as the days get hotter and hotter, sometimes only jamming out to some classic rock can get you through the heat. Here are our Top 5 Songs to Cool Down To:
1. “Rain” – The Beatles
Appearing on their 1966 album Paperback Writer, “Rain” has been considered one of The Beatles’ best B-sides. The final verse in “Rain” is played backwards, making it the band’s first song to use this technique for a strange audio effect, though it certainly wasn’t the last. Written by John Lennon, the song is about people who moan about the weather and are never satisfied. Though it’s fine to hope for cooler weather, always remember Lennon’s lyrical mantra: “rain, I don’t mind, shine, the weather’s fine.”
2. “Cold as Ice” – Foreigner
Foreigner’s 1977 classic “Cold as Ice” isn’t really about the weather, but this song about a coldhearted ex-lover might still make you shiver. The band's former frontman Lou Gramm gives the rockin' breakup anthem his all, so it comes as no surprise that it was a hit, reaching #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. His ex may be cold as ice, but Gramm knows that there’s nothing better for cooling down like cold hard revenge.
3. “Down by the River” – Neil Young
Though the song wasn’t a Billboard hit, Neil Young’s “Down by the River” certainly helped his sophomore effort Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, his first album with Crazy Horse, claim a spot on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list. Young actually wrote the song in bed while trying to cope with a delirium-inducing fever, making it the perfect song to get you through those hot summer days.
4. “Green River” – Creedence Clearwater Revival
Written and sung by CCR’s raspy-voiced John Fogerty, “Green River” reached #2 on the Billboard chart in 1969. Last year, Fogerty told Rolling Stone that the song's title, from the album of the same name, came from his name for Putah Creek in California, a place he visited during his childhood. With lyrics about dragonflies, bullfrogs, and “barefoot girls dancin’ in the moonlight,” the rollicking “Green River” is the perfect summer hit for a lazy afternoon by the water.
5. "Fool in the Rain" – Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin's "Fool in the Rain," the band's last U.S. single, was a great way to end on a high note, with the song reaching #21 on the Billboard Hot 100. Robert Plant developed the idea for the song while watching the 1978 Olympics held in Argentina, which accounts for the song's samba-esque sound. "Fool in the Rain" is a bittersweet love song about a man running after a woman through the rain who ends up "just a fool waiting on the wrong block." The light, laidback sound of "Fool in the Rain" would be enough to make it a summer classic, but it's the lyrics that make it the perfect song to cool down to.