On this date in 2011, according to new scientific research, Queen’s “We Are The Champions” was found to be the catchiest song ever written.
Musicologist Dr Alisun Pawley from the University of York and Dr Daniel Müllensiefen fo Glodsmiths University of London conducted research into what makes a song memorable and compiled a list of the ten “catchiest” songs of all time. During the research, they discovered that sing-along songs contained four key elements:
· long and detailed musical phrases
· multiple pitch changes in a song’s “hook”
· male vocalists
· higher male voices making a noticeable effort
Dr Pawley said: “Freddy Mercury’s vocal style typifies what we found inspires people to sing along—a full energy male voice, using a high chest voice and clearly pronounced words.”
Dr Mullensiefen added: “Every musical hit is reliant on maths, science, engineering and technology; from the physics and frequencies of sound that determine pitch and harmony, to the hi-tech digital processors and synthesisers which can add effects too, makes a song more catchy.”
“We’ve discovered that there’s a science behind the sing-along and a special combination of neuroscience, maths and cognitive psychology can produce the elusive elixir of the perfect sing-along song.”
The top ten are:
- “We re the Champions” – Queen (1977)
- “Y.M.C.A” – The Village People (1978)
- “Fat Lip” – Sum 41 (2001)
- “The Final Countdown” – Europe (1986)
- “Monster” – The Automatic (2006)
- “Ruby” – The Kaiser Chiefs (2007)
- “I’m Always Here” – Jimi Jamison (1996)
- “Brown Eyed Girl” – Van Morrison (1967)
- “Teenage Dirtbag” – Wheatus (2000)
- “Livin’ on a Prayer” – Bon Jovi (1986)
Queen guitarist, Brian May, commented: “Fabulous. So it’s proved then? We truly are the champions. Science is a wonderful thing!”
Featured image via Promipool.
Source texts: University of York, This Day in Music.
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