The Simple Science Behind Our Favorite Songs!

Whatever rap tune is playing in the background just became
the favorite song of at least one person in this photograph.
We all have favorite songs. What makes yours so special to you, though?

Is it the lyrics that speak to your soul, the ripping guitar solo that brings tears to your eyes, or the sinister synth lines that tickle your goth bone?

Maybe its the production that painstakingly ensures that every voice, instrument, and subtle nuance is captured in pristine surround sound or the singer, whose seductive way with syllables is such that your heart often hears their voice before your ears do, whether it be across a field of mud at Glastonbury or playing in a car all the way on the other side of the intersection in the middle of mid-day traffic.

Any of the above would all be fine and good, but, more often than not, our favorite songs tend to be those songs that just so happened to be playing every time we fell in love, copped a feel, or won a door prize at Dick's Sporting Goods that included a kiss on the cheek from the cute cashier. I mkean, what are you gonna do with a cross bar pad for a BMX bike?

Now before we go bashing those whose favorite songs are by Hootie & The Blowfish, Fall Out Boy, or, worst of all, Skrillex, let's first show some compassion for the poor soul who went looking for love at an EDM festival, found it, and will now forever love the music of Skrillex, which just happened to be pounding in the background as you grabbed your first kiss from the new object of your affections.

"We both love the new Fall Out Boy Ghostbusters theme because it was playing when we traded lipstick."
That's why I always made sure to control the situation by making sure good music was playing already. I mean, the last thing you want is for some putrid post-Sports Huey Lewis nonsense to be playing or else you'll wind up annoying a whole bunch of people who are already mad at you for making them come to your wedding when they could be out hitting garage sales or nursing a Subway sandwich in the mall food court.

Take, for instance, that Tubes album (Outside/Inside) I was raving about a couple weeks back. I had no sooner procured a copy of the album when I ended up kicking it at the house of a girl I happened to like. We met up after school to study for an algebra test that I wound up failing because, instead, we spent three hours studying anatomy, stopping only long enough to flip album sides on, you guessed it, the Tubes' Outside/Inside.

Of course, music critics and/or snobs will try telling you that their favorite songs were arrived at by employing their stunning intellect to root through a yet another mile-deep fly-infested dung heap  of abject mediocrity to find the one shiny musical diamond of awesomeness hidden within, thereby confirming their superiority to we mere mortals once again.

This, of course, is total bullshit.

A dear friend, journalist, and musical mentor of mine who has written more about the greatness of Television's Marquee Moon, Velvet Underground, and Radiohead's Amnesiac than any other person on the face of this earth also just so happens to secretly LOVE Grand Funk's "American Band" and Brownsville Station's "Smokin' In The Boys Room" because both songs were huge the summer he lost his virginity, fell in love, drank his first beer, bought his first van, and met the woman he would later marry.

"Abra, abracadabra, I wanna reach out and grab ya..."
He couldn't help that Cub Koda and Mark Farner would providing the butt rock soundtrack to his first "wet hot American summer". On the other hand, there was absolutely nothing wrong with digging Grand Funk or Brownsville Station on their own musical merits, but something tells me it was a lot harder to do without some willing teenage arm candy to go along with it.

Sure, it might be a tad dickish to judge others by what music they love because it happened to be playing when they got to third base for the first time (or first base for the third time), but that doesn't make it any less fun.

Take, for instance, my last boss, who insisted on driving together to a conference in Las Vegas and, in doing so, introduced me to his love of the song "Abracadabra" by the Steve Miller Band.

Nobody in their right fucking mind - not even Steve Miller - has ever heard "Abracadabra" and said "Yes, please".

Except this guy.

He didn't just have a CD with "Abracadabra" on it, he had a CDR with "Abracadabra" on it 18 times because that's how many times you can fit the song on a standard blank CD.

Without me asking, he then went on to explain that he'd gone through the trouble of doing so to prevent having to hit the BACK button on his CD player to hear the song again and that the last time he drove to Vegas, he listened to nothing else except "Abracadabra" the whole way.

After sighing "Oh shit" to myself,  I then pointed him to the button on his own CD player that allows you to set a song to repeat infinitely knowing full well that by doing so I would a) blow his mind and b) ensure that the rest of our trip is all-"Abracadabra", all the time, baby!

I asked him how he came to like the song so much and, after giving it some thought, he replied that it was his first serious girlfriend's favorite song and just kinda "rubbed off on him".

"Did you like the song before you two were dating?"

"Oh, God no."

'Nuff said.

Superior St. Rehearsal Facility

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