I have an ear-worm… it arrived maybe ten minutes ago, just the chorus of a popular song on repeat in my head. The word ear-worm isn’t that old, probably first used in print by Desmond Bagley in his 1978 novel Flyaway, but the phenomenon of a song stuck in your head has probably been a human condition ever since people first made music.
It has been researched by scientists, theories and ideas of the causes and reasons have been propounded by psychologists, ‘cures’ have been suggested by just about everyone and their dog! Apparently ear-worms can be triggered by having heard a certain song, or having certain things associated with a song – a word, a memory, a sound, a couple of notes – and I’ve said song because it usually is songs; apparently just over 73% of stuck song syndrome is in fact songs, and the rest music without lyrics.
For the most part, for most of us, ear-worms are just a harmless annoyance, but if we should say they drive us mad that isn’t actually so – although it may have been for one woman. Jean Harris killed her lover Herman Tarnower; she was obsessed by the song “Put the Blame on Mame”, apparently – did this have anything to do with the murder?
Honestly, I’m not going to murder anyone, just share my ear-worm… which I think originated from a blog I wrote about the them music from ‘Whistle Down the Wind’ by Malcolm Arnold… ‘No Matter What’ was based on that melody, recorded by Boyzone and here it is: