Thursday, September 26, 2019

        The most popular 

        summer song of 

        the last 44 years

lil nas x billy ray cyrus old town road
Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus were the talk of summer 2019 with their hit "Old Town Road."
 Columbia Records
  • Everyone always wonders what song will break out to be the undisputed song of the summer.
  • Insider used Billboard's charts to choose the highest-ranking summer song of each year from 1975.

Every year, there's a battle to see which song can claim the title of "the song of the summer."
It can become a point of contention as people argue over whether or not Carly Rae Jepsen is beating Justin Bieber or why Rita Ora isn't getting her due recognition, but it's a fun accolade to give an artist.
The jury is still out on which song will be this year's biggest hit, but we used Billboard's charts to choose the highest-ranking summer song for each year.
Whether or not you agree with the top song, here are the No. 1 summer songs from 1975 to 2019.
Anjelica Oswald contributed to a previous version of this article.

1975: "One of These Nights" — The Eagles

Timothy B. Schmit, Glen Frey, and Don Henley of the Eagles perform during "History Of The Eagles Live In Concert" in 2013.
 Rick Diamond/Getty Images

1976: "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" — Elton John and Kiki Dee

Kiki Dee and Elton John in the song's music video.

1977: "I Just Want to Be Your Everything" — Andy Gibb

Andy Gibb performing at United Nations General Assembly on January 9, 1979.
 Ron Frehm/AP Photo

1978: "Shadow Dancing" — Andy Gibb

Andy Gibb in 1977.

1979: "Bad Girls" — Donna Summer

Donna Summer in 2010.
 Ethan Miller/Getty Images

1980: "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me" — Billy Joel

Billy Joel in the "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me" music video.

1981: "Jessie's Girl" — Rick Springfield

Rick Springfield in the "Jessie's Girl" music video.

1982: "Eye of the Tiger" — Survivor

This is a screenshot from the "Eye of the Tiger" music video.

1983: "Every Breath You Take" — The Police

The entire video is in black and white.

1984: "When Doves Cry" — Prince

Prince starts the video in a bathtub.

1985: "Shout" — Tears For Fears

English pop/rock band Tears for Fears formed in 1981.

1986: "Papa Don't Preach" — Madonna

Madonna rocked short hair.
 YouTube/Warner Bros. Records

1987: "Alone" — Heart

Look at that epic hair.

1988: "Roll With It" — Steve Winwood

He can rock out.
 Pizzello/AP Photo

1989: "Right Here Waiting" — Richard Marx

1990: "Vision of Love" — Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey in the video for "Vision of Love."

1991: "(Everything I Do) I Do It For You" — Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams performing the song live at Wembley in 1996.

1992: "Baby Got Back" — Sir Mix-A-Lot

Sir Mix-a-Lot in 2015.
 Mike Windle/Getty Images for Dick Clark Production

1993: "(I Can't Help) Falling In Love with You" — UB40

Ali Campbell from UB40 performs in 2002.
 Keystone, Fabrice Coffrini/AP Photo

1994: "I Swear" — All-4-One

Can't help singing along.
 YouTube/All-4-One (Official channel)

1995: "Waterfalls" — TLC

Don't go chasing waterfalls.

1996: "Macarena (Bayside Boys Mix)" — Los Del Rio

Los Del Rio members Rafael Ruiz, left, and Antonio Romero Monge wave their music awards at the 1997 World Music Awards.
 Lionel Cironneau/AP Photo

1997: "I'll Be Missing You" — Puff Daddy and Faith Evans feat. 112

Puff Daddy and Faith Evans performed together in 2016.
 Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Live Nation

1998: "The Boy is Mine" — Brandy and Monica

Brandy and Monica in 1999.
 Dan Callister / Stringer/Getty

1999: "Genie in a Bottle" — Christina Aguilera

She showed off her dance moves in the video for "Genie in a Bottle."

2000: "Bent" — Matchbox Twenty

Rob Thomas in the "Bent" video.
 YouTube/Matchbox Twenty

2001: "U Remind Me" — Usher

Usher broke it down in the video for "U Remind Me."

2002: "Hot In Herre" — Nelly

Nelly's song got everyone dancing.

2003: "Crazy in Love" — Beyoncé feat. Jay-Z

Beyoncé has always ruled the world.

2004: "Confessions Part II" — Usher

Usher let loose in the "Confessions Part II" video.

2005: "We Belong Together" — Mariah Carey

Mariah knows how to make a summer song.

2006: "Promiscuous" — Nelly Furtado feat. Timbaland

This is a jam.

2007: "Umbrella" — Rihanna feat. Jay-Z

She made umbrellas cool.

2008: "I Kissed a Girl" — Katy Perry

This song shot Katy to the top.

2009: "I Gotta Feeling" — The Black Eyed Peas

We dare you not to sing along.

2010: "California Gurls" — Katy Perry feat. Snoop Dogg

This was a vibrant video.

2011: "Party Rock Anthem" — LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett and GoonRock

Every day I'm shufflin'.

2012: "Call Me Maybe" — Carly Rae Jepsen

This is a catchy song.

2013: "Blurred Lines" — Robin Thicke feat. T.I. and Pharrell

The song and video were controversial.

2014: "Fancy" — Iggy Azalea feat. Charli XCX

The video was inspired by "Clueless."

2015: "Cheerleader" — OMI

Omi had a hit.

2016: "One Dance" — Drake feat. WizKid and Kyla

Drake has some interesting dance movies.

2017: "Despacito (Remix)" — Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, featuring Justin Bieber

Luis Fonsi in the official video.

2018: "In My Feelings" — Drake

Drake inspired us all to get up and dance in our feelings summer 2018.
 Young Money Entertainment/Cash Money Records/YouTube

45. "Old Town Road" — Lil Nas X featuring Billy Ray Cyrus

Billy Ray Cyrus and Lil Nas X sing in the music video for "Old Town Road."
 Columbia Records
The undisputed song of summer 2019 was Lil Nas X's "Old Town Road," which sat atop the Hot 100 Billboard chart for 17 weeks. The song beat the record set by Mariah Carey's 1996 song "One Sweet Day." It stayed on top of the Billboard charts for a total of 19 weeks.
The song's celebrity-filled music video features cameos from Chris Rock, Vince Staples, Haha Davis, and more.

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