Plagued by the Disease of Music

The constant dumb beat I hear from the world is how wonderful music is, how music is like the universe taking your soul, putting your soul in its lap and petting your soul right behind the ears, right where your soul likes it (and if it’s not behind your ear, just substitute “taint”). Couples pick “their song”, people constantly talk about the soundtrack of their lives.

“Danse Macabre” by Michael Wolgemut

Movies are made about song writers and players, and mountains of articles are written about movie soundtracks. Apparently we wouldn’t even know the name Quentin Tarantino if it weren’t for his gift of choosing just the right song. Some wield their musical knowledge like a cultural cudgel, bludgeoning anyone who dares to attempt to question their knowledge of the newest band, as though esoteric knowledge of bands and sub-sub-sub-genres of music are a true definition of self or can act as a measure of someone’s self-worth.The popular trope is that music is important and knowing music is the only passage to cool that one can cultivate.

However, rarely, do people talk about the downside of music, how evil and vengeful it can be. People talk about how music can be inspirational, but forget that music also inspire negative thoughts and feelings, even in the musician (re: Cobain, Winehouse, and probably a score of drummers but no one cares about drummers). Music has been used for decades to torture people or flush bad guys out of hiding.
Hear Some Evil
I have been subject to sonic torture of my own doing. This is Day 9 of my being plagued by Katy Perry. Everything I do or say, in the background is a low hum in the back of my head of one of four Katy Perry songs. And not the full song, a part of a part of a song that just incessantly loops. This is through no fault of her own–unless you consider excelling at being the singer of insanely catchy tunes the result of her nefarious machinations–but, I am plagued by her dulcet, inoffensive tone(s).
She's wearing a flame dress riding a giant lion with red eyes, nope, nothing evil to see here.
She’s wearing a flame dress riding a giant lion with red eyes, nope, nothing evil to see here.

I do not own a Katy Perry song, which I say only to underline how amazing her performance must have been to latch on to my subconscious. This is a result of her recent, highly covered and hypnotizing performance (I’d be more specific but, they aren’t a sponsor). It was great. I very much enjoyed it despite it not being my preferred genre(s) of music. Yet, here I am, more than a week past the date and in the back of my head there’s an unavoidable dull hum of “California Gurls” with a derpy shark struggling to wiggle in-tune with even a modicum of rhythm.

There is no end in sight. “Firework” is still on a loop, accompanying everything I do. When that dissipates, it is supplanted by “Roar.” Release my brain from your talented, catchy pop-tune talons, Perry! Or maybe I should stop resisting and just acquiesce to my new Katy Perry-driven reality. Because, after all, baby, we are all a firework.
Sometimes I hate music.


Add yours →

  1. As soon as I saw Katy Perry I went CUZ BABY YOU’RE A FIIIIREWORK!

    These pop sings are catchy on purpose. It’s like all the sugar and chemicals they add to junk food to make it super addictive so you crave more. I know that makes me sound like a conspiracy theorist but it’s trueeee!


  2. Keep an eye out for “Derpy Shark” cartoon/ t-shirt/ lunchboxes. You will be owed royalties.


  3. I have no opinion of Katy Perry.

    And yes, I am a music snob, but here’s the thing: I am not opposed to having an opinion of Katy Perry. I just don’t.

    I was asked what i thought of her halftime show and could not think of an answer. I was trying to say, “The lion puppet thing was cool,” but then I thought I might be confusing it with a Cirque du Soleil clip.

    There was an episode of Sponge Bob where he had to try and get an earworm out of his head. It sounds like that is what you’re facing here with Perry. I would recommend fumigating.


  4. I’m not a real fan of pop music, but I have to say her half-time show was a pleasure to watch….how many times can a person change costumes inside 10 minutes? The “Roar” is one that sticks in my mind. I’m glad “How about that bass” is now slipping away.


  5. Am I the only person in North America who didn’t see Katy Perry’s half-time show? I know I could catch it on YouTube or somewhere but now my natural hipster stubbornness has kicked in and I REFUSE to watch it.


  6. I like her songs, just not her voice. She doesn’t sing she screams.


  7. I didn’t watch the game or the half time show… I’m happy…:)


  8. I’m afraid I don’t really know what you’re talking about. I saw about 15 seconds of a video of the Stupor Bowl half-time show. I believe that was Katy Perry on some mechanical creature. She made noise. I turned it off. Just so you know, Willy Dunne Wooters and I don’t have a song. The only song I associate with a Quentin Tarantino movie is Stuck In The Middle With You. I hope you recover quickly from your Katy fixation.



  9. There’s only one way to deal with an earworm. Just start singing! Sing your heart out, Pickleope! When it starts playing in your head just belt out, “I’VE GOT THE EYE OF THE TIGER…” at the top of your lungs (in falsetto, if necessary) & don’t be afraid to bust out a few dance moves… maybe even a spin & jazz hands. You’ve got to take the fever to its breaking point. It’s the only way to be cured!


  10. Sometimes I got songs stuck in my head that I don’t even know the words to. It’s my own personalised torture.


  11. God, I can so relate, only the song that’s been tormenting me for YEARS is ‘you are my sunshine.’ Why??? I would welcome Katy Perry into my head if only I could get rid of that song!!


  12. This may come as a surprise but I agree with every single word you wrote. Except maybe that Katie Perry can come and plague me whenever she feels like it. Just don’t sing, is all. But, hey, you’re right. Music can be more evil than two kitty posts in a row.


  13. Much like a cold, the best way to get a song out of your head is to get it stuck in someone else’s head. I recommend pointing a boom box at the wall and starting a music feud with the neighbors.


  14. Do you ever get the problem where you have TWO ear worms that are fighting it out in your head, only they don’t suit each other at all, and you find yourself switching between humming Slipknot and belting out Taylor swift?


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