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Best Summer Country Songs

“Summertime, and the livin’ is easy” — so goes the old American standard. Since then, those words have been emulated by enough country stars to fill up a theme park. From songs about popular modes of transportation and the right thing to wear (or not wear), to one’s frosty beverage of choice, The Boot dips our toes into this cool countdown of country music’s essential sounds of summer.

10. ‘Sweet Summer Lovin‘,’ Dolly Parton

Sun-soaked lyric: “By a stream in the country, running barefoot and feeling free”

Rather than spend time at the beach or a barbecue, Dolly and the object of her affection are getting busy among the dandelions. We’re not sure what candy wine is, but it sounds like just the thing to serve with a PG-rated summer fling.

9. ‘Summer Nights,’ Rascal Flatts

Sun-soaked lyric: “Let that Igloo cooler mark your piece of paradise/Summer nights, everybody’s feeling sexy”

Not to be confused with the hit from ‘Grease,’ the boys encourage the ladies to “pop that top.” We think they’re referring to a cold beverage, but with teeny French bikinis and feeling sexy, who knows? And who cares! Padre or Daytona, this is one “Unstoppable” party.

8. ‘Sunshine and Summertime,’ Faith Hill

Sun-soaked lyric: “You’ll see rock-hard bodies and bikini hotties/And everybody’s got it goin’ on”

Faith joins the “barefoot ladies and tricked out Mercedes” crowd. But if straw sombreros and T-top Camaros are more your speed, there’s a parking place for you, too. Who wouldn’t want to join in on this Mississippi girl’s good time in the summer sun?

7. ‘Summer’s Coming,’ Clint Black

Sun-soaked lyric: “Get to turnin’ up them good old boys/Crankin’ into the night, by the break of dawn”

Clint Black needed a break from work even before ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ came along. Stoked about heading somewhere to seek a little “peace and noise,” Clint even removes his hat. A good idea since a black cowboy hat at the beach is a real fashion faux pas.

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Sun-soaked lyric: “She’s rockin’ that bikini top/My hearts skippin’ like a rock across that water”

Prolonged exposure to the sun can cause sunburn and heat stroke — but mental illness? Jack and his date get a little toasty and start singing ‘Fishing in the Dark.’ It doesn’t take Dr. Freud to analyze what’s really going on in that Chevy truck bed.

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5. ‘Six-Pack Summer,’ Phil Vassar

Sun-soaked lyric: “The party’s on from dawn to dawn/24-7 ’til they pull the plug”

It’s a nonstop party with fast cars, loud music (Jimmy Buffett, naturally) and t-bone steaks on the grill. And although Phil doesn’t get too specific about what’s in that six-pack, it’s a safe bet he’s not referring to well-toned abs.

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Sun-soaked lyric: “You had a suntan line and red lipstick/I worked so hard for that first kiss”

Barbecue-stained T-shirt aside, a teenage boy’s chance encounter with a hottie in a miniskirt on Labor Day sounds like an unforgettable late season fantasy.

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Sun-soaked lyric: “The hot July moon saw everything/My first taste of love, oh, bittersweet”

Some summer memories aren’t exactly a day at the beach. Looking back on the loss of her innocence and reminiscing about a simpler time — when 30 was old — Deana vividly recalls, like they say in the movies, “that summer when everything changed.” Bittersweet, indeed.

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Sun-soaked lyric: “Bikini bottoms underneath/But the boys’ hearts still skip a beat/When them girls shimmy off them old cutoffs”

Kenny Chesney and summer go together like two bare feet and a dashboard, young love and an old Ford, etc. Some clothes come off and there’s a little alcohol involved, but this one’s pretty innocent — yet still manages to generate plenty of heat.

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1. ‘Chattahoochee,’ Alan Jackson

Sun-soaked lyric: ” Down by the river on a Friday night/Pyramid of cans in the pale moonlight”

A burger and a grape snow cone aren’t much consolation when it’s obvious what you’re really after. But Alan and friends still manage to make a party — and learn a few life lessons — out of stacking cans and swapping stories by that muddy Georgia river.

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Get more picks for the best pop, hip-hop, rock and metal summertime songs on our sister sites!

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