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Song Stuck in Your Head? You're Not Alone
Reuters ^ | Monday, Feb 24, 2003 | Alison McCook

Posted on 02/24/2003 8:26:14 PM PST by InShanghai

 
Song Stuck in Your Head? You're Not Alone
By Alison McCook

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - The vast majority of people say they have been mentally tortured at one point in their lives by a song that keeps repeating itself over and over in their heads.

And new research shows that people most frequently plagued by this phenomenon are those with slightly neurotic tendencies , and people who enjoy and listen to music often.

These mental broken records are also more likely to play the first or last song we hear in different situations, such as the first song that comes on in the morning alarm, or the last song playing before we turn off the car, study findings show.

Songs that topped the list as being most likely to stick around in someone's head included the Baha Men's "Who Let the Dogs Out?" and the Chili's restaurant jingle about Baby Back Ribs.

But the number one song rated most likely to cause this phenomenon, referred to as an "earworm" in Germany, is "other"--indicating that many different songs can become stuck in our heads.

"Just about anything can get stuck in people's heads," study author Dr. James Kellaris of the University of Cincinnati told Reuters Health.

"We each have our personal demonic tunes that get stuck in our heads, I guess," he added.

Kellaris presented results from his current study on Saturday at the Society for Consumer Psychology Winter Conference in New Orleans.

Kellaris's previous research into the phenomenon of earworms revealed that "sticky" songs are those that are relatively simple, repetitive, and contain an element that surprises the listener. This incongruous element can be an interrupted pattern, or something that violates expectations of what comes next.

During the current study, Kellaris distributed surveys to 559 people aged 18 to 49 asking them about their personalities, how often tunes got stuck in their heads, how long the episodes lasted, and when the phenomenon was most likely to happen.

Ninety-eight percent of respondents said they had experienced stuck songs. Most said the episodes occurred "frequently," and lasted an average of a few hours.

Songs with lyrics were most often the culprits, a trend that Kellaris said is not surprising. Often what gets sticky is not just a tune, but also lyrics, a trend he calls "stupid lyrics syndrome." Combining a tune and lyrics ups the chance of song snippets staying with the listener for hours, he said.

Episodes of earworms also tend to strike people with neurotic tendencies more often. These people are not seriously neurotic, Kellaris said, but may simply be more prone to worrying and anxiety, and may have neurotic habits like biting pencils or tapping fingernails.

Women were more likely than men to report feeling annoyed, frustrated, or irritated about having songs stuck in their heads--a trend Kellaris said he is hard pressed to explain.

In terms of how to protect yourself from earworms, Kellaris recommended that people not worry about a stuck song as soon as it appears, and perhaps avoid listening to music for a spell if it becomes too sticky.

Strategies people report using to rid themselves of stuck tunes involved trying to listen to something else, distracting themselves with another activity, and trying to erase the repetition of one song snippet by singing the song all the way through.

"If they can't remember the lyrics, sometimes it helps for them to sing through the entire song, and then it will go away," Kellaris said.

Kellaris said he has also heard a "folkloric" recommendation of chewing on cinnamon sticks to rid the brain of a sticky song.

"Some people swear that will unstick a stuck tune," he said.



TOPICS: Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: greatthreads; lyricalneurosis; music; songs
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To: always paddle your own canoe
A thumb goes up, a car goes by, oh, won't somebody stop and help a guy? Hitchin' a ride, hitchin' a ride, been away too long from my baby's side. Ride, ride, ride, hitchin' a ride. Ride, ride, ride, hitchin' a ride.
751 posted on 02/25/2003 9:13:02 PM PST by Charles Henrickson
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To: Poser
You're as close as you need to be on the age thing!! Another novelty tune from that year was "Harry The Hairy Ape" by Ray Stevens. Also "Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport" by Rolfe Harris. Does "Dominique" count as a novelty?
752 posted on 02/25/2003 9:14:05 PM PST by speedy
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To: All
My boy lollipop!
You made my heart go giddyup!
753 posted on 02/25/2003 9:14:15 PM PST by Poser
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To: speedy
BTW, was a theme song ever created for Olga Korbut (sp?). The greatest gymnast of all times, imo. Anyone remember her at the olympics with her pony tails and her doll? Only 13 years old and first woman gymnast to score ten in all her exercises.
754 posted on 02/25/2003 9:15:38 PM PST by RecentConvert
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To: reg45
???
755 posted on 02/25/2003 9:16:07 PM PST by T Minus Four
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To: speedy
Flip side of Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport?
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
I met a man the other day and he was dressed in a very strange way!
756 posted on 02/25/2003 9:16:29 PM PST by Poser
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To: Charles Henrickson
eres tu, como el acqua de mi fuente, eres tu...
757 posted on 02/25/2003 9:17:22 PM PST by RecentConvert
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To: T Minus Four
Wonderful!! We'll just call you Florence LaRue!!

Surrey down, to a stone soul picnic.
758 posted on 02/25/2003 9:17:25 PM PST by speedy
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To: reg45
Barry Manilow?
759 posted on 02/25/2003 9:18:32 PM PST by RecentConvert
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To: Charles Henrickson
Sunny days, sweeping the clouds away...I'm on my way to where the air is clean, Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame street?....
760 posted on 02/25/2003 9:19:08 PM PST by always paddle your own canoe (Love many, trust few)
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To: Poser
Oh -- Epic Records -- was it "The Big Black Hat"? Remember Nick Teen and Al K. Hall?
761 posted on 02/25/2003 9:20:43 PM PST by speedy
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To: speedy
I was once out strolling one very hot summer's day, when I thought I'd lay myself down to rest in a big field of tall grass. I lay there in the sun and felt it caressing my face. And I fell asleep and dreamed. I dreamed I was in a Hollywood movie and that I was the star of the movie. This really blew my mind, the fact that me, an overfed, long-haired leaping gnome should be the star of a Hollywood movie. But there I was. I was taken to a place, the hall of the mountain kings. I stood high upon a mountain top, naked to the world in front of every kind of girl--there was black ones, round ones, big ones, crazy ones. Out of the middle came a lady. She whispered in my ear something crazy. She said. . . .
762 posted on 02/25/2003 9:21:12 PM PST by Charles Henrickson
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To: T Minus Four
I look at you and see the passion eyes of May.

Speaking of May.

I've translated Maggie May into two languages. Once translated they stop being "stuck" songs. But only if the melody is perfect. I'm interested in melodies, or what most of you call tune.

763 posted on 02/25/2003 9:22:20 PM PST by RecentConvert (Have I told you lately that I love you, have I told you there's no one but you...working on it.)
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To: RecentConvert
Don't remember one for her -- I think Nadia cornered the market on gymnast musical tributes!!
764 posted on 02/25/2003 9:22:35 PM PST by speedy
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Straight'nin' the curve,
Flat'nin' the hills.
Someday the moutain might get 'em, but the law never will.


Makin' their way,
The only way they know how,
That's just a little bit more than the law will allow.


Just good ol' boys,
Wouldn't change if they could,
Fightin' the system like a true modern day Robin Hood..
765 posted on 02/25/2003 9:22:59 PM PST by CARDINALRULES
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To: Charles Henrickson
Early in the morning, very very early without warning.
766 posted on 02/25/2003 9:23:13 PM PST by speedy
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To: speedy
Winnah again!
I don't remember A1 K. Hall. Nick Teen rings a bell.

My two favorite one hit wonders of all time:

Merilee Rush
? and the Mysterians

I've seen them both in concert.

I have more songs going around in my head than I can count. They're making me... uh... Happy!
767 posted on 02/25/2003 9:24:38 PM PST by Poser
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To: speedy; All
Well, to bed with me. After two nights of this delightful nonsense, I don't have songs running through my head any more - he voices are too loud and they drown them out.

I'll try to catch back up tomorrow. Night all!
768 posted on 02/25/2003 9:24:53 PM PST by T Minus Four
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To: Charles Henrickson
After all this build up, I don't know -- is this "Spill The Wine"?
769 posted on 02/25/2003 9:25:00 PM PST by speedy
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
(Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
Theres a man in the funny papers we all know (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
He lived 'way back a long time ago (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
He dont eat nothin' but a bear cat stew (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
Well this cat's name is-a Alley Oop (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)

He got a chauffeur that's a genuwine dinosawruh (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
And he can knuckle your head before you count to fawruh (Alley Oop, oop, oop-
oop)

He got a big ugly club and a head fulla hairuh (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
Like great big lions and grizzly bearuhs (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
(Alley Oop) He's the toughest man there is alive
(Alley Oop) Wearin' clothes from a wildcat's hide
(Alley Oop) He's the king of the jungle jive
(Look at that cave man go!!) (SCREAM)

He rides thru the jungle tearin' limbs offa trees (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
Knockin' great big monstahs dead on their knees (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
The cats don't bug him cuz they know bettah (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
Cuz he's a mean motah scootah and a bad go-gettah (Alley Oop, oop, oop-oop)
(Alley Oop) He's the toughest man there is alive
(Alley Oop) Wearin' clothes from a wildcat's hide
(Alley Oop) He's the king of the jungle jive
(Look at that cave man go!!) (SCREAM)

Thair he goes, look at that cave man go
He sure is hip ain't he?
Like what's happening?
He's too much
Ride, Daddy, ride
Hi-yo dinosawruh
Ride, Daddy, ride
Get 'em, man
Like--hipsville.
770 posted on 02/25/2003 9:25:15 PM PST by CARDINALRULES (for mom :-`)
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To: T Minus Four
We'll be here and looking for you!!
771 posted on 02/25/2003 9:25:58 PM PST by speedy
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To: CARDINALRULES
Suicide is painless
It's the theme from M*A*S*H-
dadadada dada daaaa
dadadadadddaada...you get the point!
772 posted on 02/25/2003 9:26:16 PM PST by always paddle your own canoe (Love many, trust few)
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To: speedy
Yes. I was in an "Eric" kind of mood: Eric Carmen's "All By Myself," Eric Burdon (and War)'s "Spill the Wine."
773 posted on 02/25/2003 9:27:55 PM PST by Charles Henrickson
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To: RecentConvert
We'll sing in the sunshine, we'll laugh every day. We'll sing in the sunshine, and I'll be on my way.
774 posted on 02/25/2003 9:29:03 PM PST by Charles Henrickson
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To: Charles Henrickson
"Eric Burdon"

Oh lord...

Skyyyyyyyy Pilot!
How high can you fly!

We gotta get out of this place!

775 posted on 02/25/2003 9:29:14 PM PST by Poser
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To: Poser
Great concert finds!! Especially ? and the Mysterians. Although they did have some other minor hits like "Can't Get Enough Of You Baby." I once saw The Critters ("Mr. Dieingly Sad" and "The Younger Girl") in concert and also The Music Machine ("Talk Talk"). Just two years ago I saw The Soul Survivors in NYC -- they sounded great!!
776 posted on 02/25/2003 9:29:40 PM PST by speedy
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To: T Minus Four
Well, if we weren't neurotic when this thread started, we most certainly are now.

Grandmas sit in chairs and reminisce
Boys keep chasing girls to get a kiss.
The cars keep going faster all the time.
Bums still cry 'Hey buddy, have you got a dime?'

And the beat goes on, the beat goes on.
Drums keep pounding a rhythm to the brain.
La de da de dee,
La de da de daa.


777 posted on 02/25/2003 9:30:43 PM PST by Willie Green (Bwahahahahahahaha!!!!)
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To: Poser
It's my life, and I'll do what I want -- It's my mind, and I'll say what I want.
778 posted on 02/25/2003 9:30:50 PM PST by speedy
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To: InShanghai
I don't know what you're talking about.

HERE SHE COMES JUST A WALKIN' DOWN THE STREET, SINGIN' DOO WAH DIDDIE DIDDIE DUM DIDDIE DUM - - -
SHE LOOKED GOOD!
SHE LOOKED FINE!
AND I'M ABOUT,
TO LOOSE MY MIND!
S-I-I-I-N-G--I-N' DOOOO WAH DIDDIE DIDDIE DUM DIDDIE DUM

779 posted on 02/25/2003 9:30:59 PM PST by unspun (SINGIN' DOO WAH DIDDIE DIDDIE DUM DIDDIE DUM....)
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Hard to forget:

OK! Sing along!


780 posted on 02/25/2003 9:31:05 PM PST by reg45
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Oh I know....Toby does a good rendition of it.

Along with the always favorite Take me out to the Ballgame and Jingle Bells.

781 posted on 02/25/2003 9:31:40 PM PST by CARDINALRULES
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To: Charles Henrickson
Oh, MAN!
Straight out'a the past! I read those first few words and the rhythm and lazy spoken words came rushing back. Amazing how music can stick so long in your brain....long after more useful things are vanished. Thanks for the memories......
782 posted on 02/25/2003 9:32:03 PM PST by AmericanPhoenix911
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To: reg45
That one hits me some times after a shower.
783 posted on 02/25/2003 9:32:32 PM PST by unspun (SINGIN' DOO WAH DIDDIE DIDDIE DUM DIDDIE DUM....)
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To: speedy
And of course:

Well let me tell you a story about a man named Charlie
on a tragic and fatefull day
He put ten cents in his pocket, kissed his wife and family
went to ride on the MTA
784 posted on 02/25/2003 9:33:29 PM PST by Poser
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To: InShanghai
thanks for this post, I thought I was the only one and I kind of thought perhaps I am becoming OCB.. who knows , maybe we are :):)
785 posted on 02/25/2003 9:34:55 PM PST by DreamWeaver
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To: CARDINALRULES
I'm gonna wash that man right outa my hair, I'm gonna wash that man right outta my hair....and send him on his way
786 posted on 02/25/2003 9:35:15 PM PST by always paddle your own canoe (Love many, trust few)
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To: Poser
You've got to walk that lonesome valley. You've got to walk it by yourself. Oh, nobody else can walk it for you. You've got to walk it by yourself. Also the Kingstons.
787 posted on 02/25/2003 9:36:23 PM PST by speedy
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Just for you:

Suicide Is Painless


788 posted on 02/25/2003 9:37:40 PM PST by reg45
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To: always paddle your own canoe

A long, long time ago... I can still remember how
That music used to make me smile.
And I knew if I had my chance,
That I could make those people dance,
And maybe they'd be happy for a while.

But February made me shiver,
With every paper I'd deliver,
Bad news on the doorstep...
I couldn't take one more step.

I can't remember if I cried
When I read about his widowed bride
But something touched me deep inside,
The day the music died.

Soo..Bye, bye miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry
And good ol' boys were drinking whisky and rye?
Singing this will be the day that I die
this will be the day that I die

789 posted on 02/25/2003 9:38:11 PM PST by CARDINALRULES
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To: speedy
Obscure Kingston Trio Question

What was "The finest atomic ship to ever sail the seas"?
790 posted on 02/25/2003 9:38:13 PM PST by Poser
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To: Charles Henrickson; Poser
Fair play for Gale Garnett!! How about Reparata and the Delrons "Whenever A Teenager Cries"? Okay, I missed enough sleep last night on this. I'm outta here. Enjoyed it. Later.
791 posted on 02/25/2003 9:39:11 PM PST by speedy
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To: reg45
Thanks. Never have been good with the words, but I love the melody. kinda gets stuck in the head if ya know what I mean.....
792 posted on 02/25/2003 9:40:12 PM PST by always paddle your own canoe (Love many, trust few)
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To: Poser
My last post tonight, and the answer is I don't know!! Wish you had asked me a "Desert Pete" question -- there's just enough to prime it with, so don't you go drinkin' first -- you just pour it in and pump like mad and buddy you'll quench your thirst. G'night.
793 posted on 02/25/2003 9:41:11 PM PST by speedy
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To: DreamWeaver
DreamWeaver, I believe you can get me through the night. DreamWeaver, I believe we can reach the morning light.
794 posted on 02/25/2003 9:41:12 PM PST by Charles Henrickson
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To: speedy
Good night Speedy.

795 posted on 02/25/2003 9:41:59 PM PST by Poser
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To: always paddle your own canoe
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight,
Schlimiel, schlimazel, hasenpfeffer, incorporated.

We're gonna do it!

Give us any chance we'll take it,

Read us any rule, we'll break it.

We're gonna make our dreams come true.

Doin' it our way!

Nothing's gonna turn us back now,

Straight ahead and on the track now.

We're gonna make our dreams come true,

Doin' it our way!

There's nothing we won't try,

Never heard the word "impossible."

This time there's no stopping us,

We're gonna do it!

On your mark, get set, and go now,

Gotta dream and we just know now.

We're gonna make that dream come true.

And we'll do it our way, yes, our way,

Make all our dreams come true.

And we'll do it our way, yes, our way,

Make all our dreams come true

For me and you.
796 posted on 02/25/2003 9:44:58 PM PST by CARDINALRULES
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To: Interesting Times
You fill up my seeeeenses. Like a night in a forest.
Like the mountains in spriiiiingtime. Like a walk in the raaaaaain.
- - -
And by the same token:

Crossin' the highway late last night,
He shoulda' looked left and he shoulda' looked right,
Didn't see the station wagon, car,
The skunk got squashed and there ya are,
YA GOTCHER DEAD SKUNK IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD,
DEAD SKUNK IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD
DEAD SKUNK IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD....
797 posted on 02/25/2003 9:47:05 PM PST by unspun (SINGIN' DOO WAH DIDDIE DIDDIE DUM DIDDIE DUM....)
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To: T Minus Four
Read the lyrics carefully and think about the date.
798 posted on 02/25/2003 9:47:27 PM PST by reg45
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To: CARDINALRULES
Girls, they wanna have fun, oh girls just wanna have fun...

Dancing in the street....

Gonna party like its 1999.....

I'm leaving..on a jet plane, don't know when I'll be back again

Little red corvette/Purple Rain/Raspberry beret


I think its time to go to bed....might take a while with all these running thru my head...
799 posted on 02/25/2003 9:49:46 PM PST by always paddle your own canoe (Love many, trust few)
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To: always paddle your own canoe
Damn and I just found a ton that I know would drive you nuts...oh well.
800 posted on 02/25/2003 9:55:14 PM PST by CARDINALRULES (;-)
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