OUT's "The Gayest Summer Hits of the Last 30 Years"

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OUT:

With Memorial Day behind us and all the promise of Summer 2017 that lies ahead, it’s time to start thinking about what songs you’ll be crafting memories to. Miley Cyrus’ “Malibu” is the obvious go-to for beach weekends, and “Despacito” by Luis Fonsi has an inescapable summer beat that’s perfect for house parties.

Leading up to the inevitable crowning of the Song of Summer 2017, Billboard has released the songs that garnered the most airplay between Memorial Day and Labor Day dating all the way back to 1958. We took the liberty of picking out the queerest song that was ruling the airwaves each summer going back 30 years.

Bear in mind, openly gay and queer artists were few and far between even 10 years ago, so while songs by queer artists were immediate winners, others are queer-tangential in that they are songs by allies, beloved icons, or just songs that kept the gay clubs bumping during their respective summers.

Poll Results

OptionVotes
Robin S. – “Show Me Love” (No. 9, 1993) 9
Carly Rae Jepsen – “Call Me Maybe” (No. 1, 2012) 7
George Michael – “I Want Your Sex” (No. 6, 1987) 5
Donna Lewis – “I Love You Always Forever” (No. 8, 1996) 5
Lady Gaga – “Lovegame” (No. 7, 2009) 3
Rihanna ft. Jay-Z – “Umbrella” (No. 1, 2007) 2
Janet Jackson– “Doesn’t Really Matter” (No. 4, 2000) 2
Brandy & Monica – “The Boy Is Mine” (No. 1, 1998) 2
Shakira – “Hips Don’t Lie” (No. 2, 2006) 2
TLC – “Waterfalls” (No. 1, 1995) 2
Snap – “The Power” (No. 8, 1990) 2
Sam Smith – “Stay With Me” (No. 4, 2014) 2
Madonna – “This Used To Be My Playground” (No. 7, 1992) 1
Miley Cyrus – “We Can’t Stop” (No. 4, 2013) 1
Whitney Houston – “It’s Not Right But It’s Ok” (No. 9, 1999) 1
Nina Sky Ft. Jabba – “Move Ya Body (No. 7, 2004) 1
Major Lazer & DJ Snake ft. M0 – “Lean On” (No. 8, 2015) 0
Katy Perry – “I Kissed A Girl” (No. 1, 2008) 0
Katy Perry ft. Snoop Dogg – “California Gurls” (No. 1, 2010) 0
Lady Gaga – “The Edge of Glory” (No. 7, 2011) 0
Missy Elliott ft. Ciara & Fat Man Scoop – “Lose Control” (No. 7, 2005) 0
George Michael – “Monkey” (No. 3, 1988) 0
Paula Abdul – “Cold Hearted” (No. 3, 1989) 0
Lenny Kravitz – “It Ain’t Over ‘Til It’s Over” (No. 6, 1991) 0
Ace of Base – “Don’t Turn Around” (No. 3, 1994) 0
Robyn – “Do You Know (What It Takes)” (No. 9, 1997) 0
Destiny’s Child – “Bootylicious” (No. 7, 2001) 0
Vanessa Carlton – “A Thousand Miles" (No. 9, 2002) 0
Beyoncé Ft. Jay-Z – “Crazy In Love” (No. 1, 2003) 0
Sia Ft. Sean Paul – “Cheap Thrills” (No. 4, 2016) 0


some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Thursday, 8 June 2017 14:40 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Sam Smith – “Stay With Me” (No. 4, 2014)
Major Lazer & DJ Snake ft. M0 – “Lean On” (No. 8, 2015)
Sia Ft. Sean Paul – “Cheap Thrills” (No. 4, 2016)

*turns in gay card*

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Thursday, 8 June 2017 14:41 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I was most appalled by "I Kissed a Girl" myself, but yeah.

My finalists:

George Michael – “I Want Your Sex” (No. 6, 1987)
George Michael – “Monkey” (No. 3, 1988)
Destiny’s Child – “Bootylicious” (No. 7, 2001)
Carly Rae Jepsen – “Call Me Maybe” (No. 1, 2012)

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Thursday, 8 June 2017 14:43 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i could go for many of these but atm i'm feeling "the boy is mine" and donna lewis

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Thursday, 8 June 2017 14:47 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I guess the Communards didn't hit the US hard enough to make the list these were derived from, and I guess Erasure's hits weren't quite big enough, but I have to cry foul at the exclusion of 'Love Shack'. Come on, guys.

Sir Isaac Gluten (Old Lunch), Thursday, 8 June 2017 15:04 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Oh, wait. SUMMER hits. I might be off with the seasonality of my picks. My bad.

Sir Isaac Gluten (Old Lunch), Thursday, 8 June 2017 15:05 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I try to avoid the gayest everything.

"Love Shack" was released as a single in June '89.

Supercreditor (Dr Morbius), Thursday, 8 June 2017 15:29 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I like more of these than dislike them. Gay card renewed.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:06 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Choosing from these:

George Michael – “I Want Your Sex” (No. 6, 1987)
Robin S. – “Show Me Love” (No. 9, 1993)
TLC – “Waterfalls” (No. 1, 1995)
Brandy & Monica – “The Boy Is Mine” (No. 1, 1998)
Janet Jackson– “Doesn’t Really Matter” (No. 4, 2000)
Missy Elliott ft. Ciara & Fat Man Scoop – “Lose Control” (No. 7, 2005)
Katy Perry ft. Snoop Dogg – “California Gurls” (No. 1, 2010)
Lady Gaga – “The Edge of Glory” (No. 7, 2011)

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:07 (two weeks ago) Permalink

("Love Shack" peaked in November.)

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:10 (two weeks ago) Permalink

This list is appalling.

Mr. Snrub, Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:15 (two weeks ago) Permalink

are we voting best or gayest?

Sutcliffe Juugin' (Whiney G. Weingarten), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:16 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Miley Cyrus’ “Malibu” is the obvious go-to for beach weekends

oh

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:19 (two weeks ago) Permalink

This list is appalling.

I mean, it could be gayer, yeah.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:28 (two weeks ago) Permalink

xpost

Prematurely assigning something "Song of the Summer" status has been a thing for a few years now.

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:49 (two weeks ago) Permalink

It's what you obviously play when you obviously go to the beach.

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:53 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Vote for faves, obvs.

Also, looking over the list again, I can only conclude that 1991 and 2002 were the least gay summers of the last 30 years if those are the gayest things they could find.

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:53 (two weeks ago) Permalink

1991 should've been "Gypsy Woman." Peaked #8 in July.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:55 (two weeks ago) Permalink

This Used To Be My Playground or Lean On

gospodin simmel, Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:57 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Just checked. 2002 was a lost cause.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 16:59 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"Show Me Love" and "We Can't Stop."

Eazy, Thursday, 8 June 2017 17:47 (two weeks ago) Permalink

unfortunately i did actually hear (a remixed form of) "cheap thrills" in a (chicago) gay club that summer. it was the one current-mainstream song that was spun that night which i found to be a v odd choice.

this list could have been immeasurably improved by cross-referencing with billboard's dance club chart which is basically the unofficial gay chart. like, "it's not right but it's okay": a good selection. "a thousand miles": not a particularly good selection.

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:23 (two weeks ago) Permalink

A different thing hits #1 every week on those charts tho. These all hit #1 during the summer of 2002:

"They-Say Vision" Res
"Soak Up the Sun" Sheryl Crow
"Days Go By" Dirty Vegas
"Hella Good" No Doubt
"Point of View" DB Boulevard
"One Day in Your Life" Anastacia
"Lazy" X-Press 2
"Blame" Sono
"Love at First Sight" Kylie Minogue
"The Need to Be Naked" Amber
"The Sound of Goodbye" Perpetuous Dreamer
"That Sound" Rosabel
"Shifter" Timo Maas featuring MC Chickaboo
"Treat Me Right" Kim English
"A Different Kind of Love Song" Cher

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:35 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"Lenny Kravitz is the best of this lot" is a sentence I never thought I would type but here we are

Οὖτις, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:43 (two weeks ago) Permalink

that is true. i would say that the chart doesn't really say much if you just look at what peak songs are attaining (since so many do reach #1), but is still a decent barometer of what gay clubgoers were listening to. besides lots of the gay-beloved staples would be topping that chart well before they peaked on the hot 100 ("it's not right but it's okay" being a perfect example -- i think it topped the dance charts months before even entering the hot 100?).

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:44 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"it ain't over 'til it's over" is *the* most perplexing selection, i have no idea what it is doing there

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:47 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Yep, as I said, Crystal Waters makes way more sense for that year.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:52 (two weeks ago) Permalink

just looking at singles that charted both hot 100 (in the summertime) and dance in 2002, i would say angie stone's "wish i didn't miss you" and kylie's "love at first sight" would have been better choices than vanessa carlton. hell even paulina rubio "don't say goodbye" would have been gayer/better.

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:53 (two weeks ago) Permalink

ugh listening to "wish i didn't miss you" rn and now getting mad it's not on this bad list

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:55 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Gah, the 1991 #1 dance charters:

"Gypsy Woman (She's Homeless)" Crystal Waters
"Good Beat" Deee-Lite
"(I Wanna Give You) Devotion" Nomad
"Got a Love for You" Jomanda
"Let the Beat Hit 'Em" Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam
"3 a.m. Eternal" The KLF
"Deep in My Heart" Clubhouse
"This Beat Is Hot" B.G., the Prince of Rap
"Such a Good Feeling" Brothers in Rhythm
"Things That Make You Go Hmmm..." C+C Music Factory presents Freedom Williams and Zelma Davis
"The Whistle Song" Frankie Knuckles
"Makin' Happy" Crystal Waters

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 19:57 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"gypsy woman" is the most unforgivable omission especially since it was ousted by fucking lenny kravitz. this listicle doesn't even offer justifications for its choices so i can't find out if there's secretly some decent justification for his being there!

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:01 (two weeks ago) Permalink

anyway fuck it, i'm voting for donna lewis

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:05 (two weeks ago) Permalink

donna lewis is probably no gayer a choice than vanessa carlton tbh but i would maintain that it awakened some baby gays like me at the time

dyl, Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:07 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"I wanna take a ride on your disco stick"

skip, Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:09 (two weeks ago) Permalink

trying to think of gay associations I have with these songs, all I can come up with is:

--first heard "Call Me Maybe" at a Miss New Mexico Pride event
--hearing "Lovegame" all the time made me hate gay clubs when I first started going to them
--my husband loves "Doesn't Really Matter", rare musical common ground for us
--older patrons at queer library I work at were praising the gruesome "Stay With Me" and thanked me when I provided the name of the singer -- forgive me!

guess it's Janet for me.

geoffreyess, Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:37 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"Stay With Me" is as bad as it gets on this list. I wish Lenny Kravitz put out a summer hit in 2014.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Thursday, 8 June 2017 20:42 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Robin S. is the clear choice here.

methanietanner, Thursday, 8 June 2017 21:36 (two weeks ago) Permalink

One of these:

George Michael – “I Want Your Sex” (No. 6, 1987)
Robin S. – “Show Me Love” (No. 9, 1993)
TLC – “Waterfalls” (No. 1, 1995)
Brandy & Monica – “The Boy Is Mine” (No. 1, 1998)
Janet Jackson– “Doesn’t Really Matter” (No. 4, 2000)
Missy Elliott ft. Ciara & Fat Man Scoop – “Lose Control”

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 8 June 2017 21:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Ooops -- I meant "Monkey."

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 8 June 2017 21:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I don't think I have any directly gay associations with any of these songs, aside from being dismayed by the lax standards of who gets to claim gay icon status re: Katy and Miley.

some sad trombone Twilight Zone shit (cryptosicko), Thursday, 8 June 2017 22:01 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"i love you always forever" by donna lewis is the greatest song ever made in the history of recorded music, therefore i voted for "i love you always forever" by donna lewis

also wtf out magazine re: the last 3 songs

joshywinty (josh), Friday, 9 June 2017 01:03 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I'm a big fan of that Donna Lewis song

brimstead, Friday, 9 June 2017 14:54 (two weeks ago) Permalink

the single release of I Love You Always Forever came with a "Philly remix" which basically makes the song into an even more lush disco strut

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVDVd9ViDQE

boxedjoy, Friday, 9 June 2017 19:16 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i love that thank you

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Friday, 9 June 2017 19:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I tolerate now. In 1996 I would have started a nuclear war with North Korea to avoid hearing it on the radio.

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 9 June 2017 19:49 (two weeks ago) Permalink

alfred between this revelation and the whitney thread I'm beginning to wonder if you even enjoy pleasure

boxedjoy, Saturday, 10 June 2017 00:08 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Pleasure can deceive.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Saturday, 10 June 2017 00:09 (two weeks ago) Permalink

alfred between this revelation and the whitney thread I'm beginning to wonder if you even enjoy pleasure

― boxedjoy, Friday, June 9, 2017 8:08 PM

DON'T YOU WANNA DANCE?

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 10 June 2017 00:58 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Hahaha I suppose I'm gay because I love almost every one of these songs.

dance cum rituals (Moka), Saturday, 10 June 2017 03:25 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Even then I wish this list was more focused in LGBT artists. Gay clubs love Top 40 radio so if all it takes to make it into this list is to be a summer hit then Billboard can make almost this exact same list if you take their yearly "summer anthems".

dance cum rituals (Moka), Saturday, 10 June 2017 03:39 (two weeks ago) Permalink

But then we might end with more songs like "stay with me" which doesn't qualify as summer song unless you live in one of those countries where you get 3 months of sun and you feel suicidal most of the time.

dance cum rituals (Moka), Saturday, 10 June 2017 03:46 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Saturday, 17 June 2017 00:01 (one week ago) Permalink

I think "Show Me Love" is maybe the objective answer but Donna and Vanessa both speak to my deepest inner most soul.

Tim F, Saturday, 17 June 2017 13:56 (one week ago) Permalink

Tim...

do you love the monkey or do you love them?

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 17 June 2017 14:01 (one week ago) Permalink

An extremely offensive list. They should be ashamed of themselves.

Mr. Snrub, Saturday, 17 June 2017 14:04 (one week ago) Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Sunday, 18 June 2017 00:01 (one week ago) Permalink

Justice.

insidious assymetrical weapons (Eric H.), Sunday, 18 June 2017 00:53 (one week ago) Permalink

I missed this poll

enjoying that Donna Lewis song is sort of like enjoying the Delilah radio show

sexualing healing (crüt), Sunday, 18 June 2017 02:47 (one week ago) Permalink


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