Iconic. Inescapable. Made for wild fiestas and weekend DFMOs. You walk into a fraternity house, and immediately detect the distinctive bass of a familiar EDM tune. Like clockwork, your body starts gyrating to the beat, edging towards a dance floor full of sweaty, rowdy, and hormonal college students. Suddenly, the song changes, and most of the crowd groans while a select few cheer. Clearly, not all party songs are created equal. Some have staying power, some don’t, some are currently the rage, and some I really just like a lot. Without further ado, here are Street’s rankings of frat party songs.
1) “I Took a Pill in Ibiza” (Seeb Remix) by Mike Posner
Credit Seeb for singlehandedly revitalizing Mike Posner’s career, because it’s impossible to enter every house on a Friday night and not come across this gem more than a few times. The gloomy lyrics fit perfectly with a mesmerizing electronic instrumental, creating a masterpiece of lust and loss that hits one right in the soul as they slide to the chorus. “I Took a Pill in Ibiza” comes in first for this reason—it’s flawlessly crafted and resultantly omnipresent.
2) “Humble” by Kendrick Lamar
At the polar opposite of the musical spectrum, we have the thumping, bumping “Humble.” Better known for more conscious content–oriented music, Lamar switched up his style to release this mainstream tour de force. Sure enough, local house DJs were quick to notice and jump on a train that hasn’t slowed down since its release. You’re guaranteed to be whipping your neck back and forth to this one.
3) “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond
The throwback better than all other throwbacks, “Sweet Caroline” is timeless. From the moment Diamond utters “hands, touching hands / reaching out, touching me, touching you,” the crowd is definitely singing all of the lyrics. There’s something about the buoyant nature of this song that makes people scream it on the floor like they’re belting it in the shower.
4) “Lean On” by Major Lazer & DJ Snake ft. MØ
“Lean On” is a rarity: a reggae house record with a Bollywood influence that works way too well for its own good, particularly when the beat takes over between choruses. Lazer and Snake simply nailed the vibe that one looks for at a late night jaunt.
5) “Closer” by The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey
You knew this had to show up at some point. While opinions may be divided over the amount of merit this song deserves, there’s no doubt that its replay value is off the charts. There’s an entrancing sound to the light electronic instrumental and retro chorus that always has one swaying to the music at the end of a long night, much like the previous entry on this list.
6) “Sorry” by Justin Bieber
The moment Bieber begins crooning in this Skrillex–produced joint and the tropical beat kicks in, it’s clear why this is a mainstay of the dancehall–pop genre. It was between “Sorry” and “What Do You Mean” for the top ten, but the warm rhythms of the former ultimately win out on the floor.
7) “Hey Ya!” by Outkast
“Hey Ya!” is one of very few songs that can be enjoyed in just about any situation, including a frat party. At that moment when one begins to feel drowsy among the crowd and considers departing for the comfort of home, this is the track that comes on to wake you up and keep you going for another three hours.
8) “Hips Don’t Lie” by Shakira ft. Wyclef Jean
This Latin–pop classic is sure to have everyone, well, moving their hips. Like numerous other entries on this list, “Hips Don’t Lie” is a record that’s retained its popularity by encapsulating the dance atmosphere (in this case, salsa) within its genre.
9) “Bodak Yellow” by Cardi B
Frankly, the only reason this song isn’t higher is because it’s only a semester old and it might just wear out its welcome. For now, though, “Bodak Yellow” is still bouncing and getting people crunk. Cardi B struck gold with lines like “these expensive, these is red bottoms, these is bloody shoes,” and has created a current campus anthem.
Honorable Mentions (in no particular order):
“What Do You Mean” by Justin Bieber
“Gasolina” by Daddy Yankee ft. Glory
“Roses” by The Chainsmokers ft. ROZES
“Everytime We Touch” by Cascada
“Gold Digger” by Kanye West
“1985” by Bowling for Soup
“Stacy’s Mom” by Fountains of Wayne
“Temperature” by Sean Paul
“How Deep is Your Love” by Calvin Harris and Disciples
“Slide” by Calvin Harris ft. Frank Ocean, Migos
300) “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers
"I've been doing just fine" at a party, and then this always comes on to spoil the mood. If there was ever a song that was originally a fun change–of–pace but then actually became way too overplayed, this is the one. “Mr. Brightside” needs to fade into obscurity for a long time. It started out with a kiss, how did it end up like this?