So I’ve been thinking about earworms and the phenomenon of the one-hit wonder.

I’m certain you’ve done it. You hear the song, you fall in love with the song, you buy the single, you listen to the single, you buy the album… and you even listen to the album. You may even play the holy heck out of the album. Band comes up with a follow-up album and you say “ugh, I never want to hear anything by Hanson ever again.”

Or whomever. It doesn’t have to have been Hanson. (Though it probably was.)

Other times, you hear an album (like, I dunno… The Black Crowes, or Oasys) and you do the exact same thing and when the next album comes out, you practically hurt yourself getting to the music store before it opens so you can get the next one and you just start listening to it just as intently as the last one… and that album makes you remember the debut album and so you listen to that one some more, then you listen to the new one again.

Exhibit A: I’ll probably end up buying Gotye’s next album, for example, despite that song (THAT INESCAPABLE SONG) that had me breaking my index finger and running off the road whenever it came on the radio in my hurry to change the station.

This is not that song.

I don’t know that I’ll buy Mika’s:

I’m trying to figure out how I make the distinction.

So… what are you listening to?


Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to


  1. One of the things that Gotye does (and many of my favorite singers do… including, of course, Freddy Mercury) is the effortless shift from his modal singing voice into his falsetto one.

    I *LOVE* that.

  2. Latest ear worm for me: Everybody Talks from the Neon Trees

  3. My latest earworm isn’t new at all, but in the last few weeks I have become re-obsessed with this dark art-pop song, whistling the string arrangement at all hours, and listening to the song up to 5 times per day.

    Not the original video, but I like it better:

  4. Here’s a one-hit wonder (power/jangle-pop has a million of ’em):

    The album’s just OK, but this song is as good as any the genre’s produced. Jangly guitars with a hint of crunch, soaring melodies/ harmonies, with a real melancholy at center.

  5. Good lord do I love that first Mika album.

    I’d say my most recent earworm is “Anna Sun” by Walk the Moon.

    • I listened to the crap out of that first Mika album. Like, nonstop for a couple of weeks.

      I didn’t even google to see if he’s in the studio or what. (Though, bringing it up, I have to *NOW*… huh. He released an album The Boy Who Knew Too Much already a couple years ago and his next, The Origin of Love is coming out in September.)

      • I’ve got the second album. It never completely invaded my person the way the first one did, but it’s okay.

  6. I’ve had Mandolin Wind stuck in my head since evil Jaybird mentioned Rod Stewart’s album. I thought seriously about a voodoo doll and playing Red Rubber Ball until it stuck in the evil one’s brain, but, decided not to because I am a good person.
    Sidebar: Would someone with superpowers make that goddamned hurricane move.

    • Hey dhex, I got the most recent Shackleton too now (eMusic had it cheap), digging it so far…

      By the way, what is your incredibly disturbing gravatar? It makes me think of the American ‘Ring’ remake.

      • the gravatar is taken from a youtube video of the conet project recording set that came out on in the late 90s iirc. had to be late 90s as i remember torturing people on my floor with it, as it’s hellaciously annoying and disturbing simultaneously. i recognize now that it was probably a crime against nature, but at the time it made a lot of sense.

        enjoy the shackleton. and speaking of new music, just got notice that my preorder of the new swans album has shipped. oh hells yes.

        • i recognize now that it was probably a crime against nature, but at the time it made a lot of sense.

          Ah, SLAGIATT (Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time)

          AKA, my proposed epitaph.

          • i still think it was a good idea, it just wasn’t a kind idea. plus it introduced the whole wacky numbers station thing to a few dozen stoned fratboys.

          • Who were thereby imprinted to become ‘Manchurian Candidate’-style assassins, just awaiting their trigger.

            And NOW you know the REST of the story. It’ll be all your fault.

          • “And NOW you know the REST of the story. It’ll be all your fault.”

            once, two gentlemen of the greek fraternity persuasion found themselves in my room, as i was known to work in the campus counseling center, which meant that – for whatever reason – people having bad times on drugs would knock on my door at odd hours. very inconvenient when trying to have one’s own bad times. i happened to be playing last rights, aka the one truly great skinny puppy album. they did not appreciate it (because they were philistines) but we did have an interesting and oddly deep conversation about why apparent ugliness in art is not necessarily a reflection of ugliness in life.

            and two thumbs up for the new swans album. three if i could mutate a third hand. they’re a band i would recommend to anyone seeking to have a completely new experience, if not a “good time”. (though i found them to be a good time)

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