Sizzling Summer Solos Piano Songbook

Unlock your ultimate summer bliss with the Sizzling Summer Solos songbook! Dive into a harmonious ocean of sunny melodies like "Summer Breeze," "Island in the Sun," "Vacation," and "Soak up the Sun" and radiate positivity all season long!

Sizzling Summer Solos Piano Songbook

About Sizzling Summer Solos

Summer is an absolute blast! It’s all about those endless days of sunshine, flip-flops, and ice cream cones that melt faster than you can lick ‘em. No more hitting the snooze button–the sun’s up and so are you, ready for spontaneous road trips, cannonball contests at the pool, and backyard barbecues that smell like heaven.

Whether it’s the sand between your toes or the taste of watermelon that sends you into a frenzy, summer’s got that magical power to make everyday feel like a vacation. So grab those shades and get ready to soak up the good vibes, ‘cause summer, my friend, is where the fun’s at! 🌞🌴🍉

Sizzling Summer Solos

The following songs are included in Sizzling Summer Solos songbook. These are all available as separate singles, but you get the most value by purchasing the whole collection. All of these arrangements are appropriate for intermediates and up.

  1. Summer Breeze (Seals & Crofts)
  2. Doin’ Time (Sublime)
  3. Summertime Sadness (Lana del Rey)
  4. Summer of ‘69 (Bryan Adams)
  5. Cruel Summer (Bananarama/Ace of Base)
  6. In the Summertime (Mungo Jerry)
  7. Island in the Sun (Weezer)
  8. Vacation (The Go-Go’s)
  9. California Sun (The Rivieras)
  10. Soak up the Sun (Sheryl Crow)
  11. Hot Stuff (Donna Summer)
  12. Shiny Happy People (R.E.M.)

Watch a performance of the entire volume:

Let’s dive deeper with some more details about a few of my personal favorites from the Sizzling Summer Solos songbook!

“Doin’ Time” (Sublime)

For you late Gen-Xers and early millenials, this one hits hard in the feels for our teenage years. Added bonus: the main sample brought attention to Gershwin’s “Porgy & Bess.”

“Doin’ Time” is a track by the American band Sublime, featured on their third self-titled album. The song’s lyrics depict a relationship marred by infidelity and mistreatment, drawing a comparison between the lover’s suffering and imprisonment. Released in 1997 as a single, it incorporates a sample from Herbie Mann’s live bossa nova version of George Gershwin’s “Summertime” from Porgy and Bess. The original version contained the lyrics “doin’ time and the livin’s easy,” which was adjusted to “summertime” due to copyright constraints stemming from Gershwin’s work. This alteration was necessitated by Sublime’s use of the sampled material and the unfortunate passing of lead singer Bradley Nowell prior to the song’s release.

“Doin’ Time” achieved moderate chart success, reaching number 87 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 28 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart. Notably, the song’s composition incorporated samples from various sources, including the Beastie Boys, Ini Kamoze, Malcolm McLaren, and David Axelrod. Subsequently, the song’s original version was re-released in 2006, while various remixes were included on deluxe editions of the band’s self-titled album. Additionally, a version of “Doin’ Time” was covered by Lana Del Rey and released in 2019 as a single from her album “Norman Fucking Rockwell!” Her rendition garnered widespread acclaim for its incorporation of her signature vocal style and its homage to Sublime’s unique genre and sound, receiving praise from critics, Sublime’s former bandmates, and family members alike.

“Soak Up the Sun” (Sheryl Crow)

No playlist of summer-infused music would be complete without this classic:

“Soak Up the Sun” is a vibrant song by Sheryl Crow, co-written with Jeff Trott. The inspiration for the song came during a plane flight when they discussed changing weather while flying from Portland to New York City. Written during Crow’s recovery from surgery, the song aims to uplift spirits and encourage a positive outlook. Crow, facing financial limitations in the lyrics, shifts the focus from materialism to appreciating the present and spreading happiness. Released as the lead single from her album “C’mon, C’mon” in 2002, the song aimed to bring positivity to a post-9/11 society.

The song’s composition is bubblegum pop, characterized by acoustic and electric guitars, keyboards, and drums. Liz Phair provides background vocals. The lyrics emphasize the importance of finding joy despite challenges and not dwelling on negativity. The chorus “Soak up the sun” acts as a metaphor for embracing a cheerful attitude. The song was well-received, reaching number 17 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topping other Billboard charts. It became Crow’s sixth top-40 hit in the US, and remixes reached number one on the Dance Club Songs chart. The song also achieved success in international charts, peaking within the top 20 in various countries.

The accompanying music video, directed by Wayne Isham and filmed in Hawaii, features Crow enjoying the beach, surfing, and interacting with beachgoers. The video captures the song’s theme of embracing life’s pleasures and spreading positivity. Through its catchy melody, uplifting lyrics, and energetic music video, “Soak Up the Sun” embodies Sheryl Crow’s signature style and message of finding happiness in life’s simple moments.

“Island in the Sun” (Weezer)

Hip, hip. I don’t need to say anything else:

“Island in the Sun” is the second single from Weezer’s self-titled album released in 2001. Initially not planned for inclusion on the album, producer Ric Ocasek (yes, the guy from The Cars) fought to include it. The song gained significant popularity, becoming one of Weezer’s most successful hits internationally, reaching No. 31 in the UK and No. 17 in France. Its lively melody and upbeat character contrast with the album’s first single, “Hash Pipe.” The track is widely licensed and holds the distinction of being the most-licensed song in Weezer’s catalog. In 2009, Pitchfork ranked it the 495th greatest song of the 2000s.

The song’s lighter tone and relaxed Southern California vibe have earned it praise from critics. “Island in the Sun” has remained a staple in Weezer’s live shows, with its solo reworked for performances, and lead singer Rivers Cuomo occasionally performing it solo with an acoustic guitar during encores.

“Vacation” (The Go-Go’s)

1982 was an awesome year for music and especially the New Wave genre. The video was created on a relatively large budget for the time and was shot in a single day. The band members openly acknowledge their festive spirit during the shoot, mentioning the consumption of champagne and alcohol during the production. Despite its less-than-sober moments, the video encapsulates the carefree vibe of the song and the era, making “Vacation” a memorable hit for the Go-Go’s.

“Vacation” is a single released by the all-female rock band the Go-Go’s in 1982. It marked the lead single from their album also titled “Vacation.” The song gained significant popularity, reaching No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the band’s second and final top-10 hit in the US. The single was released in the innovative format of a cassette single or “cassingle,” a term trademarked by I.R.S. Records. The B-side of the single was the surf rock song “Beatnik Beach.”

The song’s lively and optimistic nature led Billboard to describe it as a “perfect summer record,” capturing the essence of lazy beach days. It’s often labeled as “propulsive power pop” by Cash Box. Interestingly, a previous version of “Vacation” was recorded by Kathy Valentine when she was part of the band The Textones.

🌊 Want more summertime vibes? Set sail with the smooth sounds of Yacht Rock:

👋 Did I miss one of your favorites? I’m always open to requests so drop me a comment!

Jennifer Eklund
Written by Jennifer Eklund
Jennifer Eklund holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in music from California State University, Long Beach. She is an avid arranger, composer, and author of the Piano Pronto® method books series as well as a wide variety of supplemental songbooks. She is also a Signature Artist with with a large catalog of popular music titles for musicians of all levels.


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