Earworms: What's the song most commonly stuck in your head?

Categories: Hot Topic

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Yesterday, while I was doing the dishes, I inexplicably got the theme song from Jurassic Park stuck in my head. This wasn't the first time. It happens all the time, in fact, no matter what I'm doing, and it's just the main "catchy" part, not the rest of the song. I don't have a special affinity for the film -- well, other than the fact that robotic dinosaurs are incredibly awesome. But there is something deeper there, probably something even psychological, that causes this to happen.

It's not the only song, of course, but while many songs will get stuck in your head now and again, there are always a couple that feel like they'll remain with you for the rest of your life. For instance, when Arrested Development was on the air, "The Final Countdown" was being hummed by nearly everyone who watched the show -- all the time. It didn't stop. It couldn't stop.

It's estimated that 99 percent of us have fallen prey to earworms at some point in our lives. The scientific explanation is pretty simple: When we listen to a song, it triggers a part in our brain called the auditory cortex.

When a familiar song is listened to, the brain fills in the rest. It will do this over and over again. Some researchers even think songs stick in our heads because we're trying to suppress thoughts; others think we're just trying to keep our brains occupied. In the case of this clip from Jurassic Park, I have no idea what that means.

Thus, today's Hot Topic: What song gets stuck in your head the most? Why? Feel free to weigh in below.


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2 comments
Ambs
Ambs

Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" gets me every time. I have no idea why. (And I apologize to everyone who just got it stuck in their head. It's a tenacious one.)

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