Earworms

Earworms

As “trad” musicians, we tend to learn the vast majority of our tunes by ear. Because of this ability to hear a phrase and transfer it to our instrument/mind, do you think that make us more susceptible to earworms than the average person? I know I almost always have a tune or something of the like inching through my head… 🙂

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A further thought: Maybe we are no more susceptible to them than the average person, but we know better how to interpret what we are “hearing” in our head. What do you think?

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I can’t walk away from a session without having some tune stuck in my head

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That’s why I hate piped muzak in buildings and ‘background’ music on videos and radio programmes – I always have my own internal music going through my head, and it causes interference.

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Gam, what happens when you try to go see a band? 😛

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I always have a tune, or a song, or something going on… it’s just natural to me but people I’m with complain about me constantly drumming or tapping my foot…

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Possibly, we are average people who have just chosen to partake in music sessions.

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Not just trad. I have always had ear worms regardless of the music type. Now that trad is one of my two primary music genres I always walk out with some tune particulary “stuck”.

Where it is annoying is when I leave a session that was loud because of high background noise. I often get in the car and shut off the radio/cd/ipod aux in music just to decompress and enjoy the silence. Then comes the tune…loud and clear

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I think anyone who enjoys any type of music will get earworms. I also get scraps of quotations etc, and particularly songs. I love the way the unconscious mind works. e.g. you look at a fruit stall and two minutes later your mind breaks into ‘YES - we have no bananas!’ One of the most poignant examples of this was after my father died suddenly (in 1969). He was a Scot & brought us up with Scots songs and all that week my little sister found herself singing, ‘O there’s nae luck aboot the hoose … there’s little pleasure in the hoose noo our gudeman’s awa’!’

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If you get an earworm of a song/tune you hate, just over-ride it with one you like. Works for me!

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Love the crawly earworms that wiggle into my ears for tunes I’m learning.

A trick that I learned for scary, bad pop, etc … music that tries to attach to my ears is to humor sing the old Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit” …

“One pill makes you larger

And one pill makes you small.
.
And the one Mother gives you don’t do anything at all.“

The invasive tune will vanish

I take no responsibility for what happens to anyone who tries this. It works for me.

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Another example of the games one’s unconscious plays: today, as I was driving along Lowestoft seafront on the way to my fiddle lesson, I saw Billy Smart’s big top. Two minutes later I burst out into: ‘Goodbye, cruel world, I’m off to join the circus!’ - Which, given the way the lesson went, I probably should. 🙂