The Student News Site of High School for Mathematics, Science and Engineering

The Echo

The Student News Site of High School for Mathematics, Science and Engineering

The Echo

The Student News Site of High School for Mathematics, Science and Engineering

The Echo

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HSMSE’s Summer Soundtrack: Songs for Every Occasion

Original Art by Alua Zhanuzakova

School’s out and it’s time to put your 

QR code for the 2023 Summer Playlist!


favorite summer music on repeat. Most people have a song that comes to mind. There’s the song that reminds you of family vacation, and the song that you listen to on your walk home. There’s that one summer song you’ve heard too many times to enjoy anymore. For this issue of The Echo, I used song recommendations from students and teachers to create a summer playlist for our school. Here are HSMSE’s favorite summer songs, from “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield to “Closer” by Chainsmokers. I may have gone a little overboard in my attempt to include all of them.

To find a song about summer, you just need to look for certain words: summer, sun, beach. For example, there’s “Summer” by Calvin Harris and “We Went to the Beach” by Little Big Town. There! We have a complete summer playlist, right? Not really.

What about “Riptide” by Vance Joy? What about “Wake Me Up” by Avicii? “Lean on Me” by Bill Withers? Those are classic summer songs! It would be unfair to create a summer playlist without every single song I have ever heard played at summer camp, so I added all of them and more to the playlist. But we all have our own summer memories outside of camp, so I added some songs that were more personal. Last year, I spent a lot of time in my dojo, and someone I looked up to introduced me to “100% Endurance” by Yard Act. It’s a song about how you can still be optimistic and enjoy your life in a pointless world. On the surface, it doesn’t have anything to do with summer, but I will forever associate “100% Endurance” with 90 degree temperatures and the leaky air conditioning of my dojo. Similarly, Ms. Hesseltine considers “Mas Papaya” by Sidestepper a summer song because of summer memories with her kids: “During the summer we do this thing called ‘Camp Mom’ where we get up… get ready for the beach and play this song…. my kids would be dancing to it, and we’d be singing… Camp Mom, this would be the anthem of it.” 


At this point, the HSMSE summer playlist was pretty long, but I still had more songs to add. There are some songs that just have summer energy. Guthrie Kalotay Nemec recommended “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield, which went to the very top of the playlist because it’s so positive and I wanted to make sure that it couldn’t get lost among all the other songs. Orlena Fella asked me to add “San Luis Obispo” by Scissor Sisters because it “evokes that sort of timeless summer feeling where the days stretch out endlessly and you lie in the sun feeling immortally young. Your life is before you, but all that matters is the present.” Another perfect upbeat song chosen for this playlist was “I Gotta Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas (suggested by Kenny Reyes, our school’s Community Associate).


Of course, the summer isn’t always as wonderful as these songs suggest. Just in case you are going through a summer heartbreak or feel that the time is going by too fast, I added “Yellow” by Coldplay and “Iris” by Goo Goo Dolls to capture these downbeat moments. They’re very bittersweet, like the end of your last summer before college.


Summer songs aren’t just songs with an upbeat mood and lyrics: they’re songs that capture your summer experiences and your feelings about summer, no matter what they are. Because everyone has different music tastes, the HSMSE summer playlist is now three hours long and I still haven’t managed to put every single summer song on it—there’s just not enough time and space for everything I want to include! But I think that’s a good metaphor for the summer: no matter how much you cram into it, you’ll never be able to do it all.

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