No matter what month of the year it is, there’s always a reason to go to the beach. Whether it’s to unwind and relax for a bit or to spend quality and fun time with your friends and family, the beach is the best place to head to.
Before you head there, make sure that you have the best playlist to make the trip more memorable. To help with that, here are some songs about the beach you may want to listen to.
Songs About the Beach
1. “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie” by Brian Hyland
Ah, yes. Who could forget about this classic? While it was recorded by Brian Hyland (who was only 16 years old at the time), the song was actually written by Lee Pockriss and Paul Vance. The song is about a girl who’s hesitant to head to the beach and out of the locker because of her small swimwear.
The song was inspired by a real event with Paul Vance watching his daughter, who was two years old at the time.
2. “California Gurls” by Katy Perry
Let’s head on over to pop songs and listen to one of Katy Perry’s most popular songs. The tune of California Gurls already hints at the song being beach-friendly. If you’ve heard of Perry’s I Kissed a Girl, this song was written with the same team, which includes Max Martin and Lukasz Gottwald.
California Gurls is actually Perry’s homage to the band Beach Boys, who produced a song with an almost identical title, California Girls. With its lyrics and history, nobody can deny that California Gurls is the perfect song for your next summer getaway.
3. “Settled” by The Ransom Collective
The Ransom Collective is a Filipino indie folk band that produces spirited music and songs perfect for traveling. Of course, that means they’d have at least one song about the beach. Settled is an upbeat song that talks about exploring the world and seeing all the things it has to offer.
The band wrote it as a reminder for everyone listening that whenever you feel unhappy and dissatisfied, you don’t have to settle with the way things are. You can always take the steps necessary to chase your dreams.
The chorus perfectly captures the entirety of the song;
To the sea
You’re telling me
There’s so much more
Wait and see
What it means
I’m telling you
There’s so much more
Than what you settled for”
4. “Only the Ocean” by Jack Johnson
Jack Johnson is a professional surfer turned musician, so you can expect that he is bound to write songs about the beach. In fact, even the album where it came from is an homage to the place he loves the most.
Only the Ocean is a song written by Johnson to pay tribute to his late father, Jeff Johnson, who was also a professional surfer. He says that every time he visits the beach, or the ocean, he feels as though he visits his father, especially because they took his ashes to the sea.
5. “The Dock of the Bay” by Otis Redding
While The Dock of the Bay was released in February 1968, it’s unfortunate that Otis Redding didn’t get to see its success, as he died on December 10, 1967. It’s the first single in the US to hit #1 after the artist had died.
Redding is one of those people who take inspiration from even just a single moment and turn it into a work of art. The Dock of the Bay is an example of that, as he merely watched ships come and go by the bay and wrote an entire song about it.
The song includes Redding’s whistling ad-lib and sound effects of the beach like seagulls and waves.
6. “Some Beach” by Blake Shelton
Blake Shelton loves going to the beach or to the tropics whenever life feels a little down. That’s probably why Some Beach really showed his personality, even though he wasn’t the one who wrote it.
Some Beach was written by Paul Overstreet and Rory Feek one afternoon while sitting outside Starbucks sipping coffee. It’s about how we regularly face stress and frustration and how it would be nice to just be sitting at a beach somewhere.
The first verse of the song talks about the persona driving down the interstate when another person in a car flipped him off and yelled at him. It then transitions to the chorus that goes;
There’s a big umbrella casting shade over an empty chair
Palm trees are growing, and warm breeze’s blowing
I picture myself right there
On some beach
7. “Escape” by Rupert Holmes
Escape, otherwise known as The Piña Colada Song, is a rather comical narration of the persona’s love story about how he tried to run away from his lady with another woman from a newspaper ad only to find that the woman from the ad was the very lady he was with.
Holmes said that they first recorded the track without any lyrics in mind. Since the music is quite repetitive, he knew that he had to make the lyrics rather interesting. He grabbed a newspaper and indeed saw an ad of a woman trying to find a lover, and the rest is history.
The song became a nationwide hit and was used in various films like Shrek, Grown Ups, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and The Guardians of the Galaxy.
8. “Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffett
No list of songs about the beach or the sea will be complete without Jimmy Buffett. In fact, the song Margaritaville is very much beach-vibe that it’s used as a reference in other beach songs like the one we mentioned earlier, Some Beach.
Margaritaville talks about a rather terribly eventful day of Buffet when he lost one of his slippers, stepped on a can top, and couldn’t find the salt to put in his margarita. All in all, Margaritaville perfectly captures the carefree lifestyle in the Caribbean.
9. “Knee Deep” by Zac Brown Band feat. Jimmy Buffett
Knee Deep is a song about feeling lost after a breakup, so the best thing you do is to buy a boat and enjoy a permanent vacation. The chorus sums that up with the lines;
“Wishing I was knee deep in the water somewhere
Got the blue sky breeze, and it don’t seem fair
Only worry in the world is the tide gonna reach my chair
Sunrise there’s a fire in the sky
Never been so happy, never felt so high
And I think I might have found me my own kind of paradise”
The band recorded the song with Jimmy Buffett after being friends with him on a camping trip.
10. “Surfin’ Safari” by The Beach Boys
What’s a list of songs about the beach without The Beach Boys, right? The name says it all. Most of their songs are about surfing, and Surfin’ Safari is the perfect example of that. It talks about the most popular spots to practice or enjoy surfing. Honestly, that’s all we need to know that this song is a great track to listen to when you head to the beach.
The beach is one of the best places to forget the troubles of the world for a while and just have fun. All of us need that at different points in our lives.
If you feel like you might need some more vitamin sea sooner or later, get the keys, bring out this playlist, and enjoy the beach!
Eduardo Perez is a multi-instrumentalist with over 20 years of experience playing instruments such as piano, guitar, ukulele, and bass. Having arranged songs and produced music in a recording studio, he has a wealth of knowledge to share about analyzing songs, composing, and producing. Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Musical Studies at Berklee College School of Music. Featured on Entrepreneur.com. Subscribe to his YouTube channel, or follow him on Instagram.