The best songs about heat and being hot take their inspiration from the feelings we have when lazing around in the hot weather and looking for a break from the sun.
It’s a topic that artists and bands have covered for many decades, from iconic rock and roll bands of the 1960s to modern-day pop music megastars.
In this playlist, we’ve compiled the greatest music by singer-songwriters over the past few decades to listen to the next time you’re facing a heat wave.
Table of Contents
The 21 Best Songs About Heat & Being Hot
Great music about heat explores the theme in a variety of ways, from literal songs inspired by hot summer days to tracks that use heat as a metaphor for romance.
We’ve covered the full spectrum of artists and bands who have tackled the subject in their own unique ways from a variety of genres and styles.
Without further ado, here’s our playlist of the 21 best songs about heat and being hot:
21. “On Fire” – Van Halen
Widely regarded as one of the best 80s rock bands, Van Halen lit up the music industry in the late 1970s. They drew widespread acclaim for the song “On Fire.”
This cool song features lyrics that keep things nice and simple, allowing the guitars and drums to drive the track forward with impressive momentum.
“On Fire” was featured on Van Halen’s debut album, a huge commercial success, and often ranked among the greatest first albums of all time.
20. “Heatseeker” – AC/DC
Like Van Halen, AC/DC has become noted as one of the biggest and brightest bands in the history of rock music, as “Heatseeker” confirms.
“I’m gonna turn up the heat, I’m gonna fire up the coal,” the powerful lyrics sing, continuing with, “I gotta keep that motor turning, I gotta keep that engine clean.”
AC/DC released “Heatseeker” in 1988 and featured the song on their album Blow Up Your Video, a hard rock masterpiece that included “That’s the Way I Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll.”
19. “Here Comes The Sun” – The Beatles
A more laid-back rock tune, and perhaps the perfect song for hot summer days, is “Here Comes the Sun” by the British band The Beatles.
Blending folk-pop and rock, “Here Comes the Sun” boasts some impressive guitar playing along with the distinct vocal style of George Harrison.
The Beatles picked up seven Grammy Award wins throughout their time together, with many more nominations to their name.
18. “Hot In Herre” – Nelly
From classic rock to best-selling hip-hop for our next song about heat, “Hot in Herre” by the Grammy Award-winning rapper Nelly.
This song reflects the buzz of being out and about during hot weather in a fast sportscar, with many of the familiar preoccupations we’ve come to expect from rappers.
It’s a dance floor classic from 2002 that secured Nelly’s growing reputation as an artist to watch and was featured on his album Nellyville.
17. “When The Heat Hits The Streets” – Laura Branigan
Laura Branigan has released some of the best party songs of all time, and “When the Heat Hits the Streets” is a welcome addition to this category.
“When the heat hits the street, you can lose yourself in the neon light,” Branigan sings, “And your heartbeat echoes the sound of the night if you have no name and you have it all.”
Laura Branigan released this wonderful tune at the peak of her fame in 1985, and you can find this and other great songs on the album Hold Me.
16. “Heat Of The Moment” – Asia
Hard rock band Asia is another fine example of English rock music from the 1980s, with the song “Heat of the Moment,” another classic from the era.
This song explores the narrator’s encounter with a young woman and how one thing leads to another when love and lust are combined with extreme heat.
The supergroup Asia released “Heat of the Moment” on their debut album, a huge hit in America that ended up as the best-selling album of 1982.
15. “Summer In The City” – The Lovin’ Spoonful
American folk rock band the Lovin’ Spoonful released “Summer in the City” in 1966, with the song becoming something of an anthem that year.
It’s one of those good songs about the heat that fits the mood of a hot summer’s day perfectly. It was the group’s only track to hit the number-one spot on the charts.
The Lovin’ Spoonful often described their sound as “good-time music,” and this track is the perfect match for a cold drink on hot days.
14. “Heat Waves” – Glass Animals
British indie rock band, Glass Animals, dialed up the heat index for their song “Heat Waves,” released in 2020 on the album Dreamland.
“Road shimmer wigglin’ the vision, heat, heat waves, I’m swimmin’ in a mirror,” the infectious lyrics sing, “Road shimmer wigglin’ the vision, heat, heat waves, I’m swimmin’.”
“Heat Wave” remains the biggest hit single from Glass Animals to date, having gone viral on social media platforms such as TikTok and reaching number one in Australia.
13. “Kokomo” – The Beach Boys
The Beach Boys are no strangers to writing great music that captures the sensation of heat, as well as one of the best songs about California, “California Girls.”
“Kokomo” is a fantastic melodic entry from the Beach Boys, with swooning vocals and guitar that captures the feeling of a lazy day lying in the sun.
One of their later releases, “Kokomo,” hit the charts in 1988 and was included in one of the hottest movies of the year, Cocktail, which starred Tom Cruise.
12. “In The Summertime” – Mungo Jerry
Arguably one of the most fun and upbeat songs about heat of all time is “In the Summertime” by the skiffle pop band Mungo Jerry.
“In the summertime, when the weather is high, you can stretch right up and touch the sky,” the famous lyrics go, “When the weather’s fine, you got women, you got women on your mind.”
The hit track from Mungo Jerry’s self-titled album, the band would go on to enjoy several more chart hits over their career, notably in the United Kingdom.
11. “Burnin’ For You” – Blue Oyster Cult
Ten years after Mungo Jerry lit up the charts with “In the Summertime,” Blue Oyster Cult took aim at heat with the hot-blooded song “Burnin’ for You.”
This 1981 classic rock song is another fine example of music that twists the subject of heat into a deep dive into the nature of romance and relationships.
It’s another classic from the iconic American rock band known for their tongue-in-cheek take on heavy metal music and flamboyant live shows.
10. “I’m On Fire” – Bruce Springsteen
A few years after Blue Oyster Cult was making waves with “Burnin’ for You,” Bruce Springsteen was also heating up the charts with his song “I’m On Fire.”
It’s a song that oozes a pervading sense of anxiety, with the lyrics, “At night I wake up with the sheets soaking wet and a freight train running through the middle of my head.”
Bruce Springsteen wrote dozens of popular tracks, including one of the best karaoke songs of all time, “Dancing in the Dark.”
9. “The Heat Is On” – Glenn Frey
Another popular song about heat that became a huge hit thanks to being featured in a blockbuster movie is “The Heat is On” by Glenn Frey.
This song was popularized after it was included on the soundtrack for the Eddie Murphy action comedy Beverly Hills Cop, which catapulted Murphy into stardom.
“The Heat is On” was also included on the album The Allnighter, his second solo release following his departure as guitarist and vocalist of the Eagles.
8. “Some Like It Hot” – Power Station
“Some Like it Hot” by Power Station is another great slice of 80s pop music that cranks up the proverbial temperature and delivers in spades.
“Some like it hot, and some sweat when the heat is on,” the catchy lyrics from this pop classic song, “Some feel the heat and decide that they can’t go on.”
Released on Power Station’s self-titled 1985 album, “Some Like it Hot” takes its name from the classic Billy Wilder comedy of the same name starring Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis.
7. “Heat Of The Night” – Bryan Adams
“Heat of the Night” by Bryan Adams is another iconic song that shares its name with a popular Hollywood movie that won many awards.
It was the most successful song from the album Into the Fire and is one of the most popular songs from Bryan Adams’ illustrious career.
While the Bryan Adams song about heaven, “Heaven,” was explicitly created for a movie, “Heat of the Night” took its inspiration from the film noir classic The Third Man.
6. “Summer Nights” – Olivia Newton-John And John Travolta
We’re sticking with the movie-related theme for our next song about heat, “Summer Nights” by Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta.
This upbeat and memorable tune is perhaps the most iconic song from the movie Grease, which captured the essence of high school life during the 1950s.
It’s a song about two lovers enjoying their summer vacation, falling in love during the height of a heat wave, and cooling off as the sun beats down.
5. “Summertime” – DJ Jazzy Jeff And The Fresh Prince
The award-winning song “Summertime” by DJ Jazzy Jeff And The Fresh Prince did for the early 1990s what “Summer Nights” did for the 1950s.
It evokes the powerful imagery of movies such as Do The Right Thing, where neighborhoods fill with locals eager to get some respite from the summer heat.
“Summertime” – DJ Jazzy Jeff And The Fresh Prince is notable for its inclusion of a sample from “Summer Madness” by Kool & the Gang, another great song about heat.
4. “Hot Fun In The Summertime” – Sly & The Family Stone
From iconic hip-hop to a masterful example of soul-laden funk from Sly and the Family Stone and the song “Hot Fun in the Summertime.”
Released in 1969, this funky and engaging track features a wonderful chorus that keeps the vibe uplifting and urges the listener to enjoy the time they have with friends.
The title track from Sly and the Family Stone’s 1969 album, “Hot Fun in the Summertime,” is a perfect song to listen to when the temperature rises.
3. “Hot N’ Cold” – Katy Perry
With plenty of chart-topping Billboard Hot 100 hits to her name, Katy Perry is no stranger to writing and performing songs geared toward summer parties.
“Hot N Cold” was released in 2008 on the album One of the Boys and explores elements of love and relationships throughout its lyrics.
Katy Perry was dubbed the “Queen of Camp” by Vogue magazine and has covered many topics throughout her impressive career while selling millions of albums worldwide.
2. “Sun Is Shining” – Bob Marley
A defining artist in the world of reggae, Bob Marley has helped shape the genre with classic songs such as “Sun is Shining.”
In this song, Bob Marley’s voice sings, “When the morning gathers the rainbow, want you to know I’m a rainbow too, so, to the rescue here I am.”
It’s a striking contrast to “No Woman No Cry,” one of the best songs of all time that is among the biggest hits from his lengthy discography.
1. “Love Is Like A Heat Wave” – Martha And The Vandellas
The title of the Martha and the Vandellas song “Love is Like a Heat Wave” encapsulates the approach many artists take to the subject of heat and passion.
It’s a classic song from 1963, showcasing the group’s impressive contribution to Motown and their danceable jazz-inspired style.
“Love is Like a Heat Wave” was a huge hit and has been covered several times since, including by Phil Collins in 2010.
So there you have it, the best songs about heat and being hot you can add to your playlist to listen to next time the temperature rises on a summer’s day.
These inspiring songs from some of the greatest performers of all time are perfect antidotes to hot and sweaty weather to accompany an ice-cold drink.
These iconic songs will continue to inspire and entertain people around the world, whatever their taste in music.
What’s the best song about heat, in your opinion? Leave a comment below.
21 Best Songs About Ice
Chill out and relax with these beautiful ice-themed songs.
21 Best Songs About Connection
Get connected to someone close with these exceptional songs.
21 Best Songs About Monday
Start the week on the right foot with these iconic songs.