Take a bite out of our ‘Jaws’ 40th anniversary playlist this Fourth of July weekend!

This summer marks the 40th anniversary of Steven Spielberg’s classic thriller Jaws. Its 1975 release is considered a watershed moment in motion picture history as it was pivotal in establishing the modern Hollywood business model — a high-concept premise filled with tons of action and adventure. It was the highest-grossing film in history at the time (until Star Wars came around) and was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.

In celebration of this monumental movie, 70s on 7 programmer Human Numan presents his Jaws playlist for your Fourth of July listening pleasure – a compilation of songs that will get you in the summer mood before putting you in danger’s way as you struggle for survival in a boat that’s too small.

Fins by Jimmy Buffett 

I’ve been a ‘Parrothead’ since before there was a name for it and have seen more summer Carnivals than I can count. It’s a full day experience that will hook you as a fan for life. The tailgating is epic. But there is one moment during the show in particular that gives me goosebumps every single time. During the song Fins, 10,000 fans become one school of fish as they mimic a shark fin about their heads, tilting left-right-left in unison. If you turn around or see it from the back row, the view is unforgettable. Jimmy Buffett is the definition of summer fun.

Beach Baby by First Class

Jaws is set in the fictional seaside resort town of Amity, but Martha’s Vineyard is the location where Spielberg actually shot the unforgettable beach scene.  Visit Joseph Sylvia State Beach near Edgartown, MA this July 4th to recreate the moment of mass panic. But keep your eyes open, Beach Baby … all those shark teeth washing up on the shorelines of Cape Cod this summer — they’re real!

Hooked on a Feeling by Blue Swede

Björn Skifs’ band Blue Swede remade BJ Thomas’ ‘69 hit and rode it to number one by tweaking the lyrics to avoid referencing drugs and adding that goofy, repetitive “ooga-chaka, ooga-ooga” earworm. I picked this one to honor hooking a big one.

Summer by War

The perfect easy-listening track for some fun in the sun, the lyrics say it all: “♫ Stretched out on a blanket in the sand … yes, it’s summer, my time of year! ♪”

Fish Ain’t Bitin’ by Lamont Dozier

A funny — even prophetic– line from this song about catchin’ some greenbacks … “♫ Tricky Dick … please quit!♪”  Lamont was no fan of Richard Nixon, and this socially conscious song mirrored concerns of the times while maintaining a dance floor groove.

Rock the Boat by Hues Corporation

One of the first disco songs to break in the US, Rock the Boat echoes the classic line from Jaws, “We’re gonna need a bigger boat.”

Fish Heads by Barnes and Barnes

Dr. Demento, host of a ‘70s syndicated program that featured many musical oddities, introduced us to this bizarre song by Barnes and Barnes, a comedy-rock duo made up of fictional twin brothers Art and Artie Barnes, who are from the fictional mythological civilization of Lumania. The song would later become known through its use on Saturday Night Live in 1980.

Wet Dream by Kip Adotta    

This cult classic by comedian Kip Adotta was never a chart hit but reappeared during the MTV era after being introduced on Dr. Demento.  The film short pre-dates music videos. If you like fish puns, this songs for you!

Mr. Jaws by Dickie Goodman

Goodman had been making parody records using song clips since 1956 with his chart hit The Flying Saucer, and jumped on the Jaws bandwagon with the novelty song Mr. Jaws. The chart-topping record sees Goodman interviewing the shark as well as the film’s main characters Brody, Hooper, and Quint. They all “answer” his questions through break-in music samples from popular songs.

Theme from Jaws by John Williams

Believe or not, this theme song actually charted on the Top 40. That simple alternating pattern of two notes has since become a staple of suspense music.

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