The days are getting shorter and it’s time to celebrate summer’s last hurrah. In the USA, that means a long weekend, the start of football season, backyard barbecues, pool parties, and trips out of town to blow off steam. Here’s ten great karaoke songs chosen especially to highlight your Labor Day weekend.
“Down Under” Men At Work
An irrepressible romp that you couldn’t escape, this deceptively happy-sounding tune covered radio and MTV like a sunburn back in 1983. Thirty years is a long time to be at work, so this Labor Day, we think it’s time these bossy Aussies had a chance to kick back, crack a Foster’s, and celebrate three decades since their number-one hit in the US.
“All Summer Long” Kid Rock
The Detroit Cowboy’s sun-drenched homage to Lynyrd Skynyrd and Warren Zevon was the song of the summer five years ago, and handed The Kid a huge crossover hit that reached number one in eight countries.
“Takin’ Care Of Business” Bachman-Turner Overdrive
There are millions of people going to work every day who absolutely love their jobs. And if you had a job like the one Randy Bachman writes about in this song, you’d probably love yours too. “It’s as easy as fishin’,” and that ain’t a bad thing. Bachman said in 2011 the tune was the “most licensed song in Sony Music’s publishing catalog,” and that ain’t a bad thing either.
“Summertime Blues” Eddie Cochran
Not everyone’s sad to see summer go. If you’re ready to raise a fuss and a holler, sing along with this classic from rebel rockabilly icon Eddie Cochran, a tune that’s been covered by Blue Cheer, The Who, and Alan Jackson, among many others.
“That’s My Job” Conway Twitty
Every parent knows there’s one job from which you never get a holiday. While you’re enjoying the sounds of the kids playing in the sprinklers outside, remember this terrific tune. It was recorded by the great Harold Lloyd Jenkins (you probably knew him better as Conway Twitty), who once held the record for the most number one singles of any act at 40 incredible tunes, until George Strait edged him out in 2004.
“Get Lucky” Daft Punk
Speaking of summer songs, we’d be remiss if we didn’t include this summer’s song, a straight-up dance tune from the French house music duo Daft Punk, with more than a little influence from disco-era Chic’s former guitarist and songwriter Nile Rodgers, and guest vocals from Pharrell Williams. Now you know they ain’t talking about winning the lottery, so raise your cup to the stars.
“Ramblin’ Man” The Allman Brothers
Diceky Betts sure knew his way around a fretboard, and this country-rock classic which he wrote and sang for the Allman Brothers’ Brothers and Sisters album gave the band their only Top Ten hit, cresting at number two (and kept from number one by Cher, whom Gregg Allman would later marry). You could spend your holiday weekend in a lot worse places than the New Orleans of this tune. They’re always having a good time down on the bayou.
“Take This Job And Shove It” Johnny Paycheck
The subtle title and sunny lyrics… oh, who are we kidding, here. Not everyone loves their job, and wringing out the angst can often make you feel better, at least for a little while. Besides, it’s better than going postal, as David Allen Coe, who wrote this tune, nearly did when, in his estimation, Johnny Paycheck wasn’t careful enough in pointing out who the actual songwriter was. It’s enough to make you want to quit.
“Get A Job” The Silhouettes
It’s what you’ll be working on if you’ve followed the example Mr. Paycheck gave above. This song was so huge in the 50’s that it sold a million copies on the Liberty label, put the group on American Bandstand several times, was featured in the classic films American Graffiti and Stand By Me, and even inspired a band name: revival group Sha Na Na took their moniker from the catchy hook at the beginning.
“Summer of ’69” Bryan Adams
Voted by his Canadian countrymen as “best driving song” ever, Bryan Adams’ tune is a paean to being young, and free, and discovering what life is all about during the “best days of our lives”. As we wrap up our top ten, we hope you’re out there this weekend, building a memory that will last the rest of your life. “I knew that it was now or never.”