Sure, “Get Lucky,” “Blurred Lines,” “I Love It” and “Stompa,” etc., are the unofficial official songs of summer 2013. But if you are someplace where English is not the first language, you’ll hear a whole bunch of other songs of summer, charting on Billboard and/or on regional charts, and played right alongside the Daft Punk, Robin Thicke et al. hits. Some are irresistibly fresh; some will make you feel like you never left home. Listen and let us know which of these 10 songs of summer you wish were blaring out of passing cars in your town.

Belgium

Song: “Papaoutai,” Stromae.
Who's that?
Half-Belgian, half-Rwandan singer Stromae was born Paul Van Haver. His stage name, Stromae, is a syllabic inversion of the word “maestro.” ("Haver Van" didn't cut it.) He started as a rapper, but has a sweet singing voice. Previous hit: “Alors on danse” (remixed by Yeezus, no less).
Why watch: Blue knee socks, moving story, great hook.


India

Song: “Badtameez Dil,” Benny Dayal and Shefali Alvares.
Who's that?
Both are playback singers, i.e. the singers behind the faces in Bollywood movies. In this case, the movie is Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani.
Why watch: “Bollywood Hollywood, very very jolly good.”


Finland

Song: “Levikset Repee,” Sini Sabotage.
Who's that? Breakthrough single by Finnish female rapper Sini Sabotage, who will be a judge next season on Finnish Idol.
Why watch: Finnish rap. Note: Not necessarily SFW. At least, if you speak Finnish, or object to chainsaws.


Greece

Song: “Mporie Na Vgo,” Antonis Remos.
Who's that? A pop star since 1995, Ramos has performed with a who's who of Greek music, including George Dalaras.
Why watch: Brings new meaning to austerity measures. Plus, the dancing rivals "Gangnam Style."


Sweden

Song: “Wake Me Up,” Avicii.
Who's that? Swedish DJ Avicii, previous hits include "Seek Bromance," and the Grammy-nominated "Levels," which sound a lot the same. The latter was performed on Britain’s Got Talent, on laser harp.
Why watch: An English translation of an English language song is always pleasing. And wait for it: fireworks.


Mexico

Song: “El Ruido de Tus Zapatos,” La Arrolladora Banda el Limon.
Who's that? The "overwhelming lemon band" hail from Limon, in the Mexican state of Sinaloa, and have been hit-makers since the '60s.
Why watch: Tuba. Plus, proof that slow songs can still be songs of summer.


Brazil

Song: “Te Esperando,” Luan Santana.
Who's that? He's been charting since 2010, and making loads of money doing it. Sings a very popular style called sertanejo universitario.
Why watch: Who doesn’t want to fly?


Colombia

Song: “Un Beso” (“A Kiss”), Lui-G 21+.
Who's that? A rising star of reggaeton.
Why watch: Strange antics with cleaning products. The vintage smooch.


South Korea

Song: “This Love,” Shinhwa.
Who's that? Massively successful — and aging — boy band. In fact, they are the longest-running Korean boy band in existence.
Why watch: Vogueing.


South Africa

Song: “Khona,” Mafikizolo.
Who's that? South African kwaito group that formed in the 1990s.
Why watch: Truly awesome singing and dancing.

posted by Li Robbins on Jul 12, 2013