Talib Kweli featuring Bilal: "Waiting for the DJ"
We can't tell exactly what he's saying because Talib is just so quick and smooth, but there's definitely some talk of sun and summertime in the second verse. Plus, isn't that pretty much all anyone does in Brooklyn during the summer: wait for the DJ to make their body rock? Look no further.
Little Jackie: "The Stoop"
No matter the decade, temperature, or degree of gentrification, it wouldn't be summer in Broolkyn (or, more specifically, Bed-Stuy) without a stoop to sip paper-bagged beers on, now would it? Another important lesson to take from this jazzy jaunt: proper front stoop etiquette ("I don't mess with you/you don't mess with me," Stella over Corona, and more).
Fabo and beatsmith Just Blaze will forever be living down the absurd awesomeness of this song, which reminds us of those suffocatingly hot summer days in Brooklyn, when you really can't breathe, the concrete radiates heat and the thick air won't budge. Those days are kind of what summer is all about though, ya know?
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Jay-Z: "Dear Summer"
Though there are other, more obvious choices ("Big Pimpin'", for instance) than this random a cappella intro to his protegé Memphis Bleek's album 534, no Jigga track quite encapsulates all the wonderful things about summer in the evocative, melancholic way Jay does on this beautiful song. Also, coming when it did (2005), it seemed like the perfect heartfelt goodbye to the game... But we're glad that he didn't actually retire.
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Mos Def: "Brooklyn"
An epic love letter to his home planet off his solo debut, Black on Both Sides, Mos's triptych is full of neighborhood shout-outs and local allusions. He raps repeatedly about Biggie, whose track "Who Shot Ya?" provides the final instrumental section, wherein Mos describes Brooklyn thusly: "It's where my fam is at, the summertime jam is at/they play Big and get you open like a sandal back/hotter than candle wax, hustlin' you can't relax." That pretty much sums it all up. Have a great, awesomely-scored summer!
(Thanks to Paulie D., Hank-N-Dank, MC Ka$ch and Diamond Grillz for your helpful suggestions.)