We'll avoid the two obvious ones, but from a pop music standpoint there's no question that the Summer of '13 will be remembered as the summer of "Get Lucky" and "Blurred Lines." Those two songs dominated the zeitgeist like none in years, culminating in one of the funniest and most brilliant episodes of "The Colbert Report" ever. But here are a few lesser known gems that have been in heavy rotation for me all summer long:
"You Don't Know Me," written by John Mellencamp and performed by Rosanne Cash on the "Ghost Brothers of Darkland County" album. A perfect match of song and singer - Cash lends the tune an aura of mystery that might otherwise have been missing. And kudos to T-Bone Burnett's production.
"Out of My League," Fitz and the Tantrums. I don't own this one yet, but I sure do enjoy turning up the radio when it comes on.
"Songs That She Sang in the Shower," Jason Isbell. It's nice to see that Jason has recovered from the problems that led to his departure from the Drive-By Truckers. On this great tune, he sounds strong and confident, even though the song is about a guy who's a loser, more or less, in love.
"Humiliation," The National. For about 80% of their new album, The National sustain a tone and mood that is pretty damn awe-inspiring. It's got a sure spot in my Top 10 for the year, but had it been pared by a song or two, it might have contended for album of the year.
Yeah, so this one isn't exactly what you'd call obscure. But good luck getting that beat out of your head, regardless of what you might think about the words.