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Ranked: Every 'song of the summer' from the past 20 years

Summertime requires its own soundtrack. And every year, pop stars compete to deliver the “song of the summer,” the track that defines the season on the charts and in listeners’ memories.

Officially, the song of the summer is the track that spends the most time atop the Billboard Hot 100 between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The songs on this list weren’t chosen by personal tastes; all of the tracks shown below were the top-charting hits on the Hot 100 for their respective summers, objectively, based on charts data. So if a favorite song isn’t included below, pick a fight with the Billboard charts, not the list.

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(Photo: Getty/PWC/FIlmMagic.)