Deadsplinter Up! All Night: Earworms

(Apologies in advance.) Welcome to tonight’s insanely catchy and slightly annoying DUAN.

You know the songs. The ones that you hear a snippet of and keep singing for the rest of the day in your head. The ones that you love to hate because once you start humming it, it will keep you awake at night.

Share the catchiest earworm songs you can think of. But don’t blame me once you start tapping your feet and bopping along. You won’t be able to get the songs on this thread out of your head for days…. 😈

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  1. I’ll spare you the ringtone-era earworms (menaces, more like) of “Crazy Frog” and later children’s fare like “Baby Shark”. 
    These get me every time:
    Outkast, “Hey Ya!” 

    Carly Rae Jepsen, “Call Me Maybe” 

    (I also recently saw some BuzzFeed thingy that said if “Call Me Maybe” is the only Carly Rae Jepsen song you know, you’re definitely straight.)

    • The only time I ever got rickrolled was the one time I scored bleacher seats (“friends and family”) for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. (Googles. 2008) Rick Astley showed up on a float. No idea why. And sang the song over and over and over again. The kids loved it. The adults were mostly rickrolling their eyes, but a few seemed to enjoy it.

  2. I heard this on the radio this morning and have been singing it all damn day. I love Sly but it’s only April!

    Sly and the Family Stone – Hot Fun In the Summertime



  3. I refuse to listen to this song.  In fact, I’m deathly afraid that just by posting this video here it’ll get stuck in my head for the next three days.  

  4. According to record producer and Chicagoan Steve Albini, the song Private Dancer by Tina Turner is the antidote to any ear worm, because it’s so formless and hideous that it erases any tune that’s stuck in there.  He’s wrong of course, because now I have Private Dancer stuck in my goddamn head.  But then, I’m particularly susceptible to earworms.  Remembering music is my superpower, but it can also be a curse.  In fact – not to get woo about it – I swear I can even remember music that I’ve never heard.  I mean, I guess I must have heard it somewhere, but I don’t know…  I never listened to 80s power ballads, but I seem to know them all, lyrics complete.  Anyway, here’s Private Dancer in case one of the songs in tonight’s DUAN gets stuck in your ear canal like some musical version of the Ever Given container ship.

  5. I am a veteran of many weddings. I was walking the hound years ago and a car stereo was blasting this. I hadn’t heard it in years. It stuck with me FOR DAYS. At some point I said, “Better Half, you would do anything for me, wouldn’t you?” “Yes, of course! Do you need to go to the hospital? Do you need money?” “No, it’s a little worse than that, I’m afraid. I need you to dance with me to a song that’s been stuck in my mind and I think the only way to break the curse is to dance it out.” “Did someone in that sketchy dog run pass you some drugs?” “No, don’t be ridiculous. Just do this for me and I’ll be fine.” And it worked. And we both know (or knew) how to do this dance so well we could have been backup dancers.


  6. This song also induces in me what Thorstein Veblen accurately described as aesthetic nausea more than a century ago. I have a very strange personal history with this song. I used to love it. But then I got into New Wave in a big way and time marched on. In the early 90s I was a Jerry Brown supporter but he lost the nomination to Bill “Bubba” Ciinton. I used to reasonably say, “would you have rather lived in California in the 70s under Governor Jerry Brown or in Arkansas under Governor Bill Clinton in the 1980s?” Well, the answer was no. I lost friends over this, and stopped reading “The New York Times” because they were so in the tank for Clinton. 
    This, to me, is a great example of the “California Sound,” even if it’s a primarily British band. I can’t really describe what this is. It’s not 60s surf music, but Canadian-born Joni Mitchell also kind of encapsulates it. I welcome corrections and clarifications from the deadsplinterati. Imagine my shock and awe when, during the 1992 Democratic Convention, this was the crescendo. “You could have picked a fucking Californian, not taken time off the campaign trail to send a mentally ill Black man to his death!”

  7. I’m getting a little off-track but bear with me, this is is an ear worm song. 
    When Better Half and I first got together we were broke so I’d cook at home and we’d get a little tipsy (I a lot more tipsy) on weekends and dance around. I taught him song classic dances. 
    We were at one of the most boring parties I’ve ever been to. The hostess, sensing that she was facing failure, “pumped up the volume.” She played this song for a listless crowd of dull late-20/early-30-somethings. 
    “Mattie, this party—” “I don’t care. I want to dance to this. But we’ll do something different. You know the fox trot I taught you and we do in the apartment? Assume the position. Put your right hand in my left hand, that’s right, put your left hand on my shoulder, now I’m going to put my right arm around your back, and away we go!”

    • @matthewcrawley I know you have mentioned before that “better half” isn’t necessarily aware of your commitment to DS so I’m curious to know that when you host the DS in-person party after this pandemic is under control, is better half going to be ok with it? More importantly, your promise to teach me the fox trot?

      I remember things!

      When you say “pumped up the volume” I immediately think of this ear-worm song (for those who do the doo-doo-doo’s in their heads, at least):

      • I have actually thought about this. Ideally Better Half will be conveniently out of town, not that he’s not lovely and gregarious, but he is a very private person and you probably all know him about as well as you know me, thanks to my jabber mouth. His job theoretically entails a lot of international travel, but the company is very cost-conscious and with the entire world having gone through the pandemic I don’t know whether that life will ever return. Why ship someone off halfway around the globe when he can just sit at his dining room table and get the same results via Zoom?
        So suppose, post-pandemic, I manage to put something together. “I know! I can bill this as a university alumni reunion/fundraising event! He can’t keep track of the alumni that have passed through these doors, I’ve hosted things like this before.” This plan falls apart for several reasons. Chief among them is that when I do these things I have a tight circle of college friends who always come to these things to help fill up the room and generally make themselves useful. They’d walk in and after a few minutes would go to Better Half and say, “These people didn’t go to the same school as us.” “Something is up. They keep referring to him as Matt, but that’s not anywhere near his real name.” My friends, being sociable, would discover the truth in a New York minute. 
        I could always just level with Better Half and say that I’m part of a benign online community and now that New York is open again and we’re all vaccinated (should that day come to pass) I thought it would be fun to meet them in real life and they could see Faithful Hound. But at least one of you will slip. “How do all these people seem to know I’m from Boston? How do they know we spent so much time  around the Mediterranean? HOW DO THEY KNOW YOU KNOW HOW TO FOXTROT?” 
        Maybe we could just go to a restaurant, sans Better Half. Again, he’s private to the point of almost paranoia. He’s always been this way through inclination and what he does for a living. What he does is not nefarious, but it’s shrouded in confidentiality. He also comes from a family of grifters and con artists, and I’m sure that scarred him for life. Not his parents, they were living saints, but he has a sister, for example, who…well, I won’t go into details.

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