Please make it stop. I need your help. Not because I object to infectious songs, but because I am powerless over this phenomenon I call “bubble gum pop.” It’s euthanasia of talent. It also may lead to my own demise as I play that music five hundred times before changing tracks. But I can’t help it.
Don’t get me wrong, I love lyrics that get in my head and under my skin. Song lyrics that make me wanna dance with somebody. Or that I (try to) sing even when I really don’t know the words. You know THAT problem, don’t you? When I was a wee lad in the Deep South, I thought the song “Elvira” by the Oak Ridge Boys was actually “Hell’s Fire.” Maybe that’s more of a problem of being told as a five-year-old that I was going to hell if I didn’t memorize John 3:16, but I digress.
Tim Miller (www.timmiller.com), a friend and very talented singer in Texas (he actually writes his own songs!), once told me that the greatest thing he experiences on stage is watching people in the audience sing along. So, music should be infectious, right? It sells records. It creates stars. It moves people and makes memories. Like mixed tapes and stuff.
However, I am not writing to you about a run-of-the-mill pop song that I’ll ask the DJ to play at the typical Brooklyn Sunday afternoon dance off. Today, I am writing to you about the infectious song that is like a fifth of vodka in the hands of a relapsed alcoholic. I will not stop with just one play, but will repeat over and over and over, again and again, for three nauseatingly back-to-back days until I collapse with exhaustion or the neighbors call the cops. Last night, I think had a mild seizure that caused me to throw my iPod across the room at what I thought was a mouse. On second thought, maybe that was a mouse. I’d better call my super.
If you’ve ever tried to eat your iPod in panic or vowed never to dance The Macarena again, then you know the kind of character defect that I’m talking about. It’s the thing inside of me triggered by the song overheard once at the gym that briefly becomes the “best workout tune ever.” That “best song ever” after 137 plays on repeat then becomes the trainer I want to punch in the face because he just screamed “one more!” when all I really want to do is to die peacefully with a cheeseburger in hand.
I blame, not my addictive tendencies, but a music industry after a quick dollar with the next big thing. Sure, take some cute wholesome girl-chasing-the-ungodly-hot-homosexual-next-door with a fun song about “maybe” calling her back that everyone on YouTube likes, and then run it into the ground because you’ll make a bazillion bucks while it’s still hot. Knowing that I’ll never buy another Carly Rae Just-Leave-Me-Alone song again, the record industry will look for another bubblegum star on YouTube or Flitter or Crackbook to ruin. While also using it to torture me, of course.
So, Fred. Please. Make it stop. Because I can’t. You know people, right? Meanwhile, I need to get my iPod fixed, because I just got this great awesome version of a breakup song about Somebody That I Use to Know that I can’t stop playing.
OCD in NYC