I’ve had Miley Cyrus’s song “Party in the USA” stuck in my head for a week.
I chaperoned a small middle school girls’ dance party last week, outfitting some of the girls in borrowed formals or skirts and a few well-placed pins. I even donned a formal myself. It was the same one I wore to a college function two weeks before graduation – does that make me skinny now?
And it was my job to build the playlist. Hoo boy.
Have you ever had to research popular songs among middle-schoolers? There just isn’t that much out there. Try your favorite search engine – if you’re lucky, you’ll get a list of songs from six months ago published by the School Dance Network. I didn’t even know there was a school dance network. What do they do, come up with new ways to reverse baldness and graying hair?
Whatever it is they spend most of their time doing, they did publish a list of “safe” songs for school dances. I didn’t recognize half the names on the list. Who names their band Pitbull? And the ones I did recognize triggered earworms* – like Carly Rae Jepsen.
So I started shooting in the dark and begging for help from friends, via Facebook.
They suggested I listen to a viral song called “The Fox.” It’s a music video performed by a couple of Norwegian comedians, apparently. If you have any desire to keep your sanity… Just. Don’t. Do. It. It’s like the stupid song from the ‘50s, “The Witch Doctor,” and his “ting-tang-walla-walla-bing-bang,” except with a European accent.
“What does the fox say? Ting, tahng, wolla wolla bing bahng.”
I fell back on a few standards from years back, some remembered from countless days spent babysitting. Amazingly enough, kids still love Miley Cyrus. On the other hand, they’d never heard N*Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye.” Sigh.
I was lucky enough to have picked a couple of currently popular ones just by the luck of hearing them on the radio. Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” comes to mind. You know, if you listen real hard to the chorus, you can hear the singer saying he’s “Ready to Whack You.”
I swear, the first five times I heard the song, I thought that’s what the lyric was.
– Sarah Einselen
Friday editor / they’re playin’ my song
*According to Sarah’s Personal Dictionary, “earworm” is defined as “songs you love to hate and can’t help tapping to.” See also: One Direction.