We've all heard this song a million times before. We've heard slight variations in the lyrics where some people say, "This Is The Song That Never Ends", while others sing "This Is The Song That Doesn't End".
No matter the twist on the song, it gets stuck in your head. And on top of that, it has the ability to never end.
My nerdy songwriter brain randomly decided that I wanted to do a late-night analysis on this song and why it's so catchy, so let's take a deep dive into the structuring of this masterpiece together since you're here.
The lyrics are always something close to this:
This is the song that never ends
Yes, it goes on and on, my friends
Some people started singing it not knowing what it was
And they′ll continue singing it forever just because...
No one actually knows who wrote this song. It's so simple that a kid could have written it. Whoever they were, their age, or their background was, they were a musical genius, and I want to tell you why.
This song, which is more like a great chorus, is one of the most catchy hooks of all time. It's up there with the greats like "Ms. Jackson" by Outkast, and The Rolling Stones' "I Can't Get No Satisfaction".
If you're a songwriter like me, try to add some of these sauce elements to your songs, specifically the hooks, to make them golden.
Related Post: How To Write A Hit Song
Most great hooks and songs overall are extremely catchy. To be catchy, your melody must be something a musical person can learn, and a non-musical person can pick up pretty easily.
Simplicity plays a big role in a song that is catchy, especially when it comes to lyricism.
Another aspect that can make your lyrics catchy is lyrics that anyone can relate to. This song can be sung in almost any environment, at any age, in any race, and in any language.
The best hooks are the ones that can loop over and over without you getting tired of them. A hook that's really great can be a song on its own, which is how this song happens to set up its structure.
Many great hit songs like Whitney Houston's "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" have hooks that repeat at the end, and you never get tired of it. You could let that hook loop over and over forever because it's just that good.
The chord structure of this hook has an ending that doesn't resolve and makes for a perfect loop since the start of it acts as a resolution to the ending.
If you were to sing the song in the key of C, the chord progression would be C G G C C F F#dim G. To end the phrase on the dominant G leaves the chorus unresolved until you start again with the tonic C at the beginning of the phrase.
The sung melody does not end on a strong note either.
The last two note of the sung phrase on the word "because" ends on the 7th and 6th of the scale, while the beginning of the phrase ends on the 5th of the scale, ideally giving the singer the push to continue to the beginning of the phrase again.
Related Post: Why Are There Only 7 Notes In A Scale?
The musical elements aren't the only thing that is unresolved in this tune. The lyrics ending with the word "because" and starting with "this" makes for the perfect loop to get stuck in your head.
Your brain will want to continue through the phrase until it is resolved, which it never is, and that's why it's stuck in your head!
The first half of this hook makes for a great singalong to chant with others. It's fun to sing alone, but singing with a crowd will really bring out the magic in this song.
The first half is made up of simple quarter notes and neighboring tones that are easy to sing through. It's also often sung in a key that can easily be sung up or down the octave for higher or lower-pitched voices.
This dish's last bit of spice is thanks to the straight-up annoyance of it all. Kids will love to annoy their siblings and parents by singing this over and over.
It's fun to annoy someone with this song, and it's fun to complain about how annoying this song can be.
The lyrics are great to sing to spite someone or to have a moment of camaraderie with someone while you annoy others. Chances are, the most annoying songs you know are hits!
Related Post: How To Write A Song For Kids
As a session singer, writer, and producer that has worked with over 200 clients to provide high-quality jingles, singles, and features, Yona spends her time creating and marketing new music and helpful resources for creators. Her recent collaborations include work with PBS Sound Field, Tribe of Noise, and the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Check out Yona’s latest releases on her Spotify, her Youtube and share if you like it!
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