The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Monday, March 24, 2014

Attacked By Earworms: Five Songs That Really Annoy Me

This post is my 1000th post on Tossing It Out!   Strike up the band.   Let the music begin!!!!!

It's a small small world
It's a small small world (Photo credit: weesen)
   

        Starting the week off with something light, this might also be the post that messes with your head and might drive you bonkers.   I'm talking earworms--those crazy little tunes that get stuck in your head and no matter how hard you try they keep coming back to haunt you.

         Usually these are quite innocuous pieces of music that in their original context are pleasant and fun to hear, but when they start playing in my head I can't seem to shut the durn things off.  They'll come back to play on a regular basis--sometimes daily and sometimes several times during the day.  They may echo through my head like the music torture the United States government has sometimes used.   Or that loud rap music that emanates from cars that sometimes pull up next to me at traffic lights.

         I love music, but it's a sad day when music starts to annoy me.  If you want to risk an earworm attack, you can click on the song titles to hear what my music nightmares sound like.  Most of you are probably familiar with these songs.

Five Truly Annoying Earworm Songs:

5.   "High Hopes" --From the film A Hole in the Head, the song was most notably sung by Frank Sinatra with a cloying chorus of children singing along.  It's been since covered by many artists.  When I was a kid we used to sing the song in school.  We have a rubber tree plant in our backyard and every time I see that damn plant that song starts playing in my head.  I wish an ant would come and carry off our rubber tree plant so I could possibly stop thinking of that song.

4.  "It's A Small World" -- Whether you've been on the Disney ride or not, you are most likely familiar with this song that is considered by many to be the ultimate earworm song.  Years ago when my oldest daughter was a toddler, we enjoyed the Small World ride at Disney World and then later in the gift shop bought a cassette tape soundtrack of the ride with the song played in different languages and different orchestrated arrangements.  My daughter loved hearing that tape.  We played that tape many times.  In the context of the ride it is a fun song, but not necessarily something you want to hear all the time.  All the time.  All the time. If you aren't hearing "It's a Small World" in your head right now after reading this, you need to click the link and listen to the song.  You apparently haven't heard it enough in your life yet.

3.  "Yellow Submarine" --Okay, I loved this song when it first came out.  I enjoyed the animated film and the accompanying soundtrack.  It's a fun novelty tune and it's the Beatles.  But enough is enough.  There are times when this song will pop into my brain and have me singing along.  I don't want to, but I just can't help myself.

2.  "Mairzy Doats" -- In a way the concept of the song is clever, but the lyrics can get pretty annoying upon repeated listening.  Why it happens I don't really know, but there are times when I will just spontaneously start singing this song to myself and as I sing I will start singing in various weird and obnoxious voices.  I always do this when I'm alone.   I hope I never do this when someone else is around.  Considering that I'm still alive I guess I haven't done this yet.

1. "Theme from The Bridge On the River Kwai"-- I love this film and in the context of the film this song is wonderful.  But once the song leaves the film it drives me nuts.  Every single day--and I mean every single day of my life--I will at some point start whistling this song.  And usually it's several times during the day.  Make it stop!  Please!  Oh, I can't help myself.

        Do you have any songs that are your earworms?   Do you actually enjoy listening to any of my choices?  What do you think is the ultimate earworm?

Be sure to visit my guest post at Unconventional Librarian where I discuss one of my favorite books.
Enhanced by Zemanta

54 comments:

  1. I can agree with your 'earworm' songs, Lee. When they get into your head there's no stopping them from going round and round.
    Congratulations on your 1000th blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love the term ear worm, and as soon as I read what it meant, I thought of It's a Small World. I wonder which of your ear worms will stick with me today? Right now, it's Bridge of the River Kwai, although I'm thinking that song is really a Navy or Marine song? Anyway, thanks for "sticking it to me!" :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congratulations on a thousand posts!
    It's a Small World makes my ears bleed.
    Can't think of any others, if only because I really don't want something awful in my head all day.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Well done reaching the 1000 posts, it is one of those little landmarks for a blog. . .

    I hate Yellow Submarine, but I was never a fan of the Beetles really. And now I have the rest of the day with the song in my head . . . . .

    DAMN

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm pretty sure most songs that get released these days are as annoying or more so than those songs you mentioned. ;)

    There's just a lot of crap music out there.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Congrats on the 1000 th post. Fun way to start the week.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Congrats Lee on your 1000th. here's to the next 1000.

    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh Lee leave it to you to come up with a term I've never heard of for songs getting stuck in your head. I like High Hopes - have sung it in Sugartime. It's a happy song. I always have a song stuck in my head, but can't think of one that annoys me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Earworm songs! Hahahaha. Often a song that I use for BOTB will get stuck in my head for a month or so. Then there are other songs that I don't even know the whole song like Hit The Road Jack whose chorus can, and does, torment for days on end. My mother is a hummer and she CONSTANTLY has a song in her head. If I know it, it sometimes transfers to my head until I knock it out. I am super impressionable.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Fanny -- Maybe my naming them all at once will cause them to cancel each other out.

    Liza -- The "River Kwai" song was written for the film though I'm sure it's now a standard of military bands.

    Alex --Yeah, we don't want to encourage earworms do we.

    Rob - I'm still a Beatles fan but even they cranked out some triteness.

    Trisha -- I agree about the crap that's out there today, but they all sound so similar and many modern songs have no melody that I'm able to retain very well. They're unforgettable and not in a Nat King Cole sort of way.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  11. DJ --- I had a heavier topic scheduled and then changed it on Saturday. I'll do that one later. Today is Funday Monday.

    Yvonne-- Thanks! Considering that it took me almost 4 1/2 years to hit a thousand and that I was blogging daily for the first year, it's going to take several more years to hit the next thousandth post.

    Karen -- I do like the song "High Hopes" but that darn rubber tree plant in my back yard is always triggering it.

    Robin --- Did you really have to mention "Hit the Road Jack"? That is an annoying song to me. And I'll add "We Will Rock You". I think songs sung by crowds at sporting events can be weird and creepy.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  12. How about 'Don't Worry, Be Happy' Love your list too though I can't say I've overheard Yellow Submarine.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Congratulations for your 1000th post - I haven't heard the Maizy dotes - but the others are all very catching. I know a bloke that always hums the same tune, it stays with me for days and I don't even know what it is. Thanks to you I've already started humming The Bridge... theme

    ReplyDelete
  14. I agree with the Small World song; it still pops up now and then. I also hate Haley and the Comets "Gonna Rock around the Clock today","Little Bunny Foo-Foo" from Girl Scouts, "Bippity Boppity, Boop"....I could go on and on here.

    ReplyDelete
  15. 1000... wow!
    I passed 500 not too long ago.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Congratulations on your 1000th post! :D

    Music has been playing in my head since I was a child. There is never not music playing in the background of my mind no matter what I'm doing. Now the expression for that is 'earworm'. My current one is 'Happy' by Pharrell which is absolutely A-OK with me b/c I LOVE it. Sometimes I'll get an annoying one stuck in my head but I try to force it out w/ a better tune.

    Agree with you 'Small World'. My dad wouldn't stop singing it both times we went to Disney when I was a kid. My mom used to really snap at him to shut the hell up already.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Susan GK -- I haven't heard "Don't Worry Be Happy" in so long that I've forgotten how it goes. If I don't hear it again I guess I'm safe from that one.

    Ida - I'm pretty sure you've heard "Mairzy Doats"--think "Mares Eat Oats". I don't guess I've heard it in a while but it used to be a very prevalent novelty tune.

    Susan Kane -- I once went through a "Rock Around the Clock" earworm phase, but I think I'm immune to that R&R classic.

    Andrew -- 1000 was about 4 1/2 years of blogging where I did 7 days a week in the first year. I'm in no rush to make the next thousand.

    JoJo -- I've heard "Happy" but not enough to remember how it goes. I did like it though if I remember correctly.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  18. Congratulations on the 1000. Many 1000 more.
    Earworms bug me when I want to do something really important and well just be assured the Bollywood songs are much worse than the English numbers that I get stuck with.
    Recently it was " theme for a dream."
    The hindi song was well......."Aaiya" title track from the movie named, well Aaiya😜

    ReplyDelete
  19. Lilly the Pink is one of my worst ones. I find it helps if I play music on my CD player which helps me get rid of the earworm. Just remembered another one State Fair. Drives me nuts.

    ReplyDelete
  20. You cracked me up again. I had not heard the term of 'ear worms' before. lol I'm still chuckling.
    thanks for your wit.
    love, LinnAnn

    ReplyDelete
  21. I do have some earworm songs, but they are usually a temporary thing. The worst might have been a few Easters back, when (I think) Cadbury had the ever-multiplying bunnies singing "Here Comes Peter Cottontail." Wasn't that I didn't like it, just wouldn't hop off the turntable. Now, if they have to be something you don't like, I remember cursing ACDCs Back In Black a day or so ago...

    ReplyDelete
  22. Oh no...now I can't get "It's a Small World" out of my head lol!!!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Congrats on your 1000th post! Now I don't feel so lonely (got 1070 on my first blog before switching gears).

    My earworm song has bothered me since I was elemenatary school (that's the early 70's, when gas was 60 cents a galloon and you could buy regular leaded gasoline), is "Puff The Magic Dragon".

    Damn song used to give me nightmares when I was a kid and still bothers me to this day.

    ReplyDelete
  24. IKU-- I've enjoyed the music from Bollywood films but probably because it's been a novelty and I've not heard any one song enough for it to sink in.

    Jo -- "Lilly the Pink" is one that I don't recognize. If I'm playing other music it drowns out any earworm tunes that might be in my head.

    LinnAnn -- Google the term "earworm" and you'll see it's a commonly used term. Don't know where it first came from, but I've heard it for a while.

    CW -- Commercials can be devious, but creating something that sticks in people's heads is probably the point. I have always avoided AC/DC.

    Gregg -- Thanks! I think you beat me to it some time ago.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  25. Angela -- Just the mention of "It's a Small World" using triggers the song in the mind of anyone who knows it.

    GB -- I was never a fan of the "Puff" song so I avoided it. Never stuck in my head.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  26. Wow! 1000! Congratulations. Those songs don't bug me too much.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Forgot, congratulations on the 1,000 post.

    You can here Lilly the Pink at this link http://youtu.be/-XEDkVHrUWk. I hope you realise the jeopardy I put myself in risking an earworm.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Woohoo on the 1000!!! Wow! :)

    I was babysitting for a friend the other day and now have the Wiggles theme song as my current earworm! :P

    ReplyDelete
  29. Southpaw -- I may have some OCD going on.

    Jo -- Have never heard this song before and will probably not listen to it enough to have it stick in my head.

    Jemi -- I've seen the Wiggles on TV but I don't recall how their theme song goes. When my kids were little there were many such songs that would worm their ways into my head. Kids music. I think of Raffi.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  30. Congratulations, Lee! My next post is my 500th. Quite a way to go, then :)

    Jemima
    Blogging from Alpha to Zulu in April

    ReplyDelete
  31. Oh my....
    Mairzy Doats will now be stuck in my head alllll day! Amazingly, I remember the lyrics that I learned in 5th grade chorus - nearly 30 years ago!

    Congratulaions on your 1000th post!

    ReplyDelete
  32. You do know it's actually "Mares eat oats and does eat oats but little lambs eat ivy, kid'll eat ivy too, wouldn't you?" I hope.

    ReplyDelete
  33. "The Trolley Song" by Judy Garland gets me every darn time. It was before my time but it matters not. It holds me like a spider's web and spits in my face like a camel.

    ReplyDelete
  34. By the time I got to the third song, I had to skim the rest of your posts - they simply don't go well together, especially when they're all playing in my head simultaneously!

    Congratulations on 1,000 posts! You da man, Lee! You da man!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Jemima -- 500 is quite a feat. Congratulations on that milestone.

    C. Hill-- I doubt whether kids today even know that "Mairzy Dotes" song.

    Jo -- Exactly. That's essentially the crux of the song as it is explained in the chorus. Probably why it annoys me so. Who would ever think of such a thing anyway?

    Jennifer -- Yes, that was a commonly heard song many years ago, but never registered in my head that much.

    MJ -- Such a cacophony of annoying music all at once!

    Lee


    ReplyDelete
  36. You've picked some frightfully annoying songs all right. I'll probably not be able to shake at least one of them all day.

    Row Row Row Your Boat gets to me every once in a while. It's usually after I've written a particularly rotten bit of prose.

    ReplyDelete
  37. C.Lee -- When we get into the realm of children's ditties then we're in a whole different realm of annoyance. I usually don't have any of those playing in my head, but every once in a while....

    Jo -- So that's who responsible? Must been something from the old music hall days? They were always thinking up bits of novelty songs back then and I'll admit that they are much more entertaining in the context of a live performance.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  38. It's certainly been around 70 years to my knowledge Lee. It could well have been from a music hall.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I have odd earworms. Rarely do the most obvious (like "Small World") entrap me. But I did spend days - literally DAYS - trying to write a rondeau to http://open.spotify.com/track/7aA1s5G6Kx97f8w8xBsr1g that basically ended up sounding something like: "Oh, my God, I hate this form; wish Purcell was never born; God I hate this form; really hate this form; God I really hate this form..."

    Finally gave up and wrote a sonnet. But thanks for reminding me. I hope you click the link and suffer... :)

    ReplyDelete
  40. Jo -- I looked on Wikipedia and it says there that the song was written by an American songwriting team in 1943 and they based it on an old English nursery rhyme. So it was mostly the fare of big bands and groups of that era who performed novelty songs.

    Holly-- I would have to listen to something like this Purcell piece a lot of times before it would get stuck in my head. That is a pretty obscure one.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  41. You would think, wouldn't you? I heard it one night on the radio and had to look it up on Spotify. That led to trying a rondeau. Which led to listening to this particular bit over and over until I was wishing Purcell all sorts of evil torments in the afterlife.

    Apparently, I can just conjure up random earworms at the mere suggestion of it - and then psychically induce them in my son. He came to me this morning complaining that the theme from Space Jam was stuck in his head. Me? I went to bed with 14 notes of Pink's "Just Give Me a Reason" stuck in my head, and no earthly clue what it was. Over the next hour or so, I managed to eke out three phrases from the lyrics (mind you, I don't listen to Pink - or any contemporary music - much, so this was far odder than it sounds). It took these THREE phrases before Google would yield the answer as to just WHAT song was stuck in my head. Because the first two were "misheard" (and wrong) and the LAST of the three was the title. Enjoy: http://open.spotify.com/track/4VC5nFbYO4avKksJ9jN4pY

    ReplyDelete
  42. Oh, Jo! Lily the Pink is one of my favorites! "Weeeee'll drink a drink a drink to Lily the Pink the Pink the Pink the savior of...the human ra-a-ace..."

    And thanks to Arlee Bird, I now know the Irish Rovers didn't write it, but brought it to America! I'm a big Irish Rovers fan. It's always the odd ones that get stuck in my head, though. Jo, remember "Here's to the Horses"? Good luck even finding that, anywhere, today.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Damn Holly, you have started it up again - She invented medicinal compound, tra la...

    Don't know the horses one.

    Lee, I guess '43 would be about right, I said 70 years. Thought it was written in the UK though.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Holly, did you mean Here's to the Horses by the Irish Rovers, you can find it if you Google.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Oh, bless your heart! I've searched for it before with no luck (or maybe I found the one on YouTube, but it has a NASTY skip in it).

    I have a great story about this song. (Pretty sure the Irish Rovers would hate me for this.) We had neighbors, many years ago, who were loud and abusive to each other. I got tired of hearing them slam each other against our shared wall. It was nothing the cops would get involved with, particularly since SHE had once come to our apartment to call them, then left - so they couldn't do a thing about it.

    I decided to try a little behavioral conditioning. I turned my stereo speakers backwards and leaned them up against the wall. Then I'd crank this up with FULL BASS ("Scotland the Brave" played by the Scottish Military bagpipers was also effective). As soon as they stopped yelling and slamming, I'd turn the volume down. Start up again - get the bass and one of these two songs. Behave, it gets quiet again. They were stupid, but trainable.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Oh - and here's a decent recording of "Here's to the Horses": http://grooveshark.com/s/Here+s+To+The+Horses/3CyKlI?src=5

    "Here's to the horses that pull the Budweiser, here's to the ribbon, round the Blue Ribbon can... Here's to the ladies that pour golden rivers that fill up the glass of the beer drinkin' man!"

    ReplyDelete
  47. Holly -- I'm not very familiar with Pink's music but I did recognize "Give Me a Reason" after it started playing for a while. It's a nice song.

    Jo-- But at least "Mairzy Dotes" started in the UK.

    Holly -- I've thought about musical revenge before. Bagpipe music would be great if it didn't drive me nuts first. You're introducing me to music sites I wasn't familiar with. Very nice.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  48. Really? That was all new to you? You should read this post on my blog, then: http://jahangiri.us/2013/i-searched-for-images-of-awesome/ Might find a few items of interest there. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  49. I'm with you on #3 & 4! Never heard them called Earworms before though. Pretty funny! Gail at Making Life An Art

    ReplyDelete
  50. Great post! I grew up in Anaheim, only 2 miles from Disneyland. "It's a Small World" gets stuck in my head just reading the title. Kill..Me..Now!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Gail-- Yes earworms is the actual term for a song that gets stuck in your head.

    Geri-- The earworm is lodged hopelessly in your mind if you don't even have to hear the song.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  52. 1000 posts?! That is truly impressive!
    Now as for your earworms... ugh that 'It's A Small World' is so bad for me. I got stuck on that ride the first 3 times I ever went on it- and these were 3 seperate times over several years. I will not go on that ride ever again. Period! I still recall noticing and counting ceiling tiles with that song being sung by creepy little marionettes, over and over- the horror!
    I am a good whistler and have had people realize what song is stuck in my head by what I am whistling repeatedly. Luckily it isn't the same song over and over very often.

    ReplyDelete

Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee