Girl Talk Gives Vulture His Ideal 154-Track Backyard-Barbecue Mix

Photo: Skip Bolen/2011 Skip Bolen
Photo: Skip Bolen/2011 Skip Bolen

When we asked Girl Talk mastermind Gregg Gillis to put together his ultimate summer playlist, he immediately thought of a party he went to last year. “My friend Lord Grunge from the rap group Grand Buffet had this cookout,” he remembers. “People were drinking all day, relaxing, listening to tunes. At night, it got crazy, and by noon the next day we were all swimming in the pool and trashing his kitchen.” Gillis is just coming off the raucous Governors Ball Music festival, so we asked him for something a bit mellower. “At the Girl Talk show, people really want to rage,” he said, “but here I was thinking more about what you want to listen to while hanging out on your porch all afternoon.” Summer is all about ease, so Gillis has taken care of your summer soundtrack: queue these up, hit shuffle, and warm up the grill. (And then go download last year’s summer mix, from Danger Mouse.)

Aaliyah, “Try Again”

Aerosmith, “Sweet Emotion”

Alice Cooper, “School’s Out”

Alicia Keys, “Unbreakable”

America, “Sister Golden Hair”

Amerie, “1 Thing”

Annie, “Heartbeat”

The Apples in Stereo, “Tidal Wave”

Ash, “Goldfinger”

A Tribe Called Quest, “Electric Relaxation”

Baby ft. Clipse, “What Happened to That Boy”

Anita Baker, “Sweet Love”

Bananarama, “Cruel Summer”

David Banner ft. Lil Flip, “Like a Pimp”

Beach Boys, “Feel Flows”

The Beatles, “Here Comes the Sun”

Beyonce ft. Bun B and Slim Thug, “Check on it”

Big Boi ft. Gucci Mane, “Shine Blockas”

Big Tymers, “Oh Yeah!”

Blue Öyster Cult, “Don’t Fear the Reaper”

Blur, “Boys and Girls”

Boards of Canada, “In a Beautiful Place Out of the Country”

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony ft. Eazy-E, “Foe tha Love of Money”

The Breeders, “No Aloha”

Joe Budden, “Pump It Up”

Bobby Caldwell, “What You Won’t Do for Love”

Camp Lo, “Luchini AKA This Is It”

Cam’ron, “Hey Ma”

Mariah Carey, “Shake It Off”

The Cardigans, “Lovefool”

Carl Carlton, “She’s a Bad Mama Jama”

The Cars, “Let the Good Times Roll”

The Chairman of the Board, “Give Me Just a Little More Time”

Chicago, “Saturday in the Park”

Da Backwudz, “You Gonna Luv Me”

Daft Punk, “Digital Love”

DeBarge, “Rhythm of the Night”

De La Soul, “Stakes Is High”

DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, “Summer Time”
“If people end up dancing, no, I won’t be pissed. It’s all good!”

DMX, “Ruff Ryders’ Anthem”

The Doobie Brothers, “What a Fool Believes”

Dr. Dre, “Let Me Ride”

Earth Wind & Fire, “Fantasy”

Electric Light Orchestra, “Sweet Talkin’ Woman”

Missy Elliott, “Pass That Dutch”
“Maybe only 10 to 15 percent of these — like this track or the new Lil Wayne, ‘6 Foot 7 Foot’ — I’ve used either on an album or in a live show.”

Fleetwood Mac, “Dreams”

Fountains of Wayne, “Sink to the Bottom”

The Game ft. 50 Cent, “Hate It or Love It”

The Gap Band, “Outstanding”

Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing”

Ghost Town DJ’s, “My Boo”

Grateful Dead, “Touch of Grey”

Guided by Voices, “Game of Pricks”
“On the tour bus, people will be passing around the iPod, and there’s a feeling of ‘Oh, man, no one thought he’d put this on’ or ‘What is this again!?’ That sensation is also important for a tight summer mix.”

Daryl Hall and John Oates, “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)”

Harvey Danger, “Flagpole Sitta”

The Honey Cone, “Girls It Ain’t Easy”

Hot Boys, “We On Fire”

Huey Lewis & the News, “If This Is It”
“Girl Talk is heavily influenced by American radio culture. Classic songs that weren’t necessarily huge but that have carried on — songs you’re always hearing in the grocery store.”

R. Kelly, “Step in the Name of Love”

Len, “Steal My Sunshine”

Ice Cube, “It Was a Good Day”

Jackson Browne, “Somebody’s Baby”

The Jackson Five, “It’s Great to Be Here”

Janet Jackson, “When I Think of You”

Jadakiss ft. Styles P, “We Gonna Make It”

Jane’s Addiction, “Jane Says”

Jade, “Don’t Walk Away”

Jay-Z ft. Foxy Brown, “Sunshine”

Billy Joel, “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me”

Juelz Santana, “Oh Yes”

Junior M.A.F.I.A., “Player’s Anthem”

Junk Culture, “West Coast”

Kelis, “Milk Shake”

Killer Mike ft. Big Boi, “A.d.i.d.a.s.”
“I’d almost forgotten about this one, which came out in the early 2000s. There’s so many feel-good hip-hop songs from the last ten years that came and went. You never hear them, but they’re classics.”

Level 42, “Something About You”

Lil Flip, “This Is the Way We Ball”

Lil Kim, “Lighters Up”

Related: Danger Mouse Gives Vulture His Endless Summer Playlist

Ludacris, “Saturday (Ooh! Oooh! Oh!)”

LL Cool J, “Around the Way Girl”
“There’s songs on here where it’s like ‘Ooooh, yeah, I haven’t heard this one in ten years, but this was the jam in 1993.’ Or 2002, or whatever.”

Cheryl Lynn, “Got to Be Real”

Manfred’s Mann’s Earth Band, “Blinded by the Light”

Martha Reeves & the Vandellas, “(Love Is Like a) Heat Wave”

Masta Ace, “Born to Roll”

Michael McDonald, “Sweet Freedom”

MGMT, “Congratulations”

Kylie Minogue, “Love at First Sight”

µ-Ziq, “Brace Yourself (Remix)”

Nas, “Memory Lane (Sittin’ in da Park)”

Naughty by Nature, “Feel Me Flow”

Next, “Too Close”

Nirvana, “Molly’s Lips”

The Notorious B.I.G., “Juicy”
“These songs were designed to work in the daylight hours but can still be effective when it gets dark and people start partying a little harder.”

Outkast, “Ms. Jackson”

Freda Payne, “Band of Gold”

P.Diddy, “Bad Boy for Life”

Pastor Troy, “Are We Cuttin’?”

Pavement, “Range Life”

CeCe Peniston, “Finally”

Katy Perry, “Teenage Dream”

Peter Bjorn and John, “Amsterdam”

The Pharcyde, “Runnin”

Phoenix, “If I Ever Feel Better”

The Pixies, “Here Comes Your Man”

Prefuse 73, “Nuno”

Billy Preston, “Nothing From Nothing”

Raekwon ft. Ghostface, Cappadona, and Method Man, “Ice Cream”

Smokey Robinson, “Crusin’”

Tommy Roe, “Dizzy”

Diana Ross, “Stoney End”

Rufus ft. Chaka Khan, “Sweet Thing”

Scarface, “On My Block”

Seals and Crofts, “Summer Breeze”

Shawty Lo, “They Know [Dey Know]”

Paul Simon, “You Can Call Me Al”

Sly & the Family Stone, “Hot Fun in the Summertime”

Smashing Pumpkins, “1979”

Snoop Dogg ft. Pharrell, Uncle Charlie Wilson, “Beautiful”

Sonic Youth, “100%”

Soulja Boy Tell’em, “Donk”

Spinners, “I’ll Be Around”

Squarepusher, “My Red Hot Car”

Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You”

Starr, “Twenty Five Miles”

Steve Miller Band, “Swingtown”

Stone Temple Pilots, “Big Bang Baby”

The Strokes, “Hard to Explain”
“This weekend, we played one of my mixes before we went onstage. I was eager to see how the crowd reacted because some of it was on this playlist — selecting songs to hear is so different from sampling. But they were way into it!”

Superdrag, “Sucked Out”

Swing Out Sister, “Breakout”
“I love stuff like this: There’s that kind of eighties music that’s hard to describe, it’s a little funky, it sometimes has horns, it relates to Lionel Richie’s ‘All Night Long.’”

Supergrass, “Alright”

SWV, “Right Here”

10cc, “I’m Not in Love”
“This is one of my favorite songs, one that doesn’t find a place in anything I do, so I’m psyched to include it.”

T.I., “Why You Wanna”

That Dog, “Never Say Never”

Three 6 Mafia, “Stay High”

Trick Daddy, “I’m a Thug”

Thunderclap Newman, “Something in the Air”

TLC, “Waterfalls”

Max Tundra, “Which Song”

2pac, “I Get Around”

U.G.K. ft. OutKast, “International Player’s Anthem”

Waka Flocka Flame ft. Kebo Gotti, “Grove St. Party”

Weezer, “In the Garage”

Matthew Wilder, “Break My Stride”

Bill Withers, “Lovely Day”
“Over half of these songs you would like to party to, and the other half are songs you relax to. That’s the essence of summertime — you can be sitting around drinking beer outside or you can be up celebrating.”

Wiz Khalifa, “The Thrill”

Stevie Wonder, “Living for the City”

Xscape, “Just Kickin’ It”
“There are so many of those nineties feel-good R&B tracks, and this one is the top to me.”

Wreckx-N-Effect, “Rumpshaker”

Yg, “Toot It and Boot It”

Yo La Tengo, “Season of the Shark”

Young Gunz, “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop”

Young Jeezy, “Go Crazy”

Zhane, “Hey Mr. DJ”

We’ve also assembled all of the songs into four alphabetical YouTube playlists if you want to score your barbecue directly from Vulture. Just hit play and get grilling:

Related: Danger Mouse Gives Vulture His Endless Summer Playlist

Girl Talk Gives Vulture His Ideal 154-Track Backyard-Barbecue Mix