For better or worse, summer is here, courtesy Katy Perry and Dr. Luke


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We’re not talking about the obvious signifiers -- warm temps, blue skies and a preponderance of boho sandals on Sunset Boulevard. Summer is here because the new Katy Perry jam has leaked. Expect this glob of aural suntan lotion to be liberally slathered all over the radio, as sure as the coconut-scented tanning beds in the O.C. mega-malls are cranking away at full occupancy.

“California Gurls” nods to all the innocent and naughty tokens of summer life -- bikinis, daisy dukes, Popsicles, sex on the beach -- with a West Coast spin. The mayor of LBC, Snoop Dogg, drops in and gives his slack-jawed blessings, with Perry returning respects to the Doggfather with a classic gin-and-juice reference. Dr. Luke mans over the production -- the two hit gold with “I Kissed a Girl” two summers ago.


The music is a throwback to old stripped-down house, like a candy-coated version of C&C Music Factory, with a vintage-hoarding Santa Barbara girl on vocals instead of buxom ladies with buxom lady names like Zelma. (Though Perry tries her best to blow out those pipes, too often overdoing it, in our humble opinion ...) And of course, there are some giggles sprinkled throughout, lest we question anyone’s good time and in case we weren’t convinced by those fruity, smacking guitar lines.

Perry’s celebration of the Gold Coast is certainly appreciated -- she recently complained to Rolling Stone that in the fever over “Empire State of Mind,” little ol’ California was getting pushed to the wayside. So she’s doing her part, not to mention starting the most sweet-natured beef that will ever be known to Jay-Z ... but we couldn’t help but get misty over the ‘80s love letter to our tanned beauties, David Lee Roth’s “California Girls.” We might prefer it still -- sorry, Katy. Watch the goofball video after the jump for a shot of Pina Colada nostalgia.

-- Margaret Wappler

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