What are some worn and used songs in other countries?
October 23, 2007 9:44 AM   Subscribe

In the U.S., there are those songs that relentlessly show up everywhere. Songs like C&C Music Factory's "Good Vibrations," for example. I've heard it on numerous commercials, shows, in arenas, etc. These are songs that are still used LONG past their 15 minutes of fame due date. But what about other countries?

I'm curious about what pop songs are relentless in other countries. I'd love to know if Japan, for instance, has some typical songs that everyone there recognizes that have been around a while and are used for many different applications. Does anyone have any insight on this?
posted by agregoli to Media & Arts (21 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
"Good Vibrations" is Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.

C&C Music Factory's earworm is "Everybody Dance Now".
posted by jozxyqk at 9:47 AM on October 23, 2007

Thanks - you get the gist.
posted by agregoli at 9:53 AM on October 23, 2007

In China at what would be lovely serene vistas or revered historical sites (or both in the case of site like the Wall) are "enhanced" with the blasting of the Titanic soundtrack at top volume over the PA system.
posted by Pollomacho at 10:08 AM on October 23, 2007

The Hockey Night in Canada theme.

Most Canadians could hum it in the sleep. Quite a few probably do just that.
posted by GuyZero at 10:12 AM on October 23, 2007 [2 favorites]

C&C Music Factory's "Good Vibrations,"

"Good Vibrations" is Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.

or do you mean Beach Boys song by the same name (different song)? I never thought the Marky Mark song was big.
posted by caddis at 10:37 AM on October 23, 2007

Nope, I meant Marky Mark, ahem, I mean Mark Wahlberg. I hear that one still all the time.
posted by agregoli at 10:42 AM on October 23, 2007

I was thinking of "Mas Que Nada" for Brazil and "La Vie en Rose" for France, but maybe those are songs that are overused in US things about those countries. I wouldn't really know if they're overused in their own countries, but maybe?
posted by lampoil at 10:48 AM on October 23, 2007

In Germany:
Life is Life by Opus
Country Roads- Extremely bad cover by Hermes House Band
99 Luftbalons by Nena (although there is a soft spot in my heart for this song, I don't need to hear it every time I walk out the door)
Hey Baby by DJ Ötzi. Seriously, this is bad. I warned you.
posted by chillmost at 10:57 AM on October 23, 2007

Rock and Roll Part 2 by Gary Glitter
Final Countdown by Europe
posted by GarageWine at 11:00 AM on October 23, 2007

Overused songs in China:

"Take me to your heart", Michael learns to rock - an English-language song specifically produced for the Asian market by some Danish band. You hear this one all the time in stores and even instrumental versions on train rides.

"Credits roll" jazz music - there's a certain 80s-ish saxophone song that plays EVERY TIME a train, ship, or plane reaches its destination. It's also used quite often when stores or malls are closing. I can even hum the tune, but I don't know what it's called - does anyone else know what I'm talking about? What is it called?
posted by pravit at 11:15 AM on October 23, 2007

In Thailand, that Linkin Park song - ummm, in the end it doesn't really matter - plus I'm sure Thai lyric songs that escape my notice in their saccharine blandness.
posted by conifer at 12:03 PM on October 23, 2007

The "Ode to Joy" from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony is apparently quite popular in many parts of Asia. I was watching a news segment a couple of weeks ago about Wal-Mart opening stores in Asia, and the employees at one of the stores were all singing a song about being loyal to the company, set to that melody.
posted by Vic Morrow's Personal Vietnam at 1:31 PM on October 23, 2007

Here in Mumbai, if you're out at a bar or club, you can't escape Bryan Adams' "Summer of '69" (with bonus mandatory singalong).
posted by erlkonig at 1:38 PM on October 23, 2007

Poland: In the Army Now gets constant airplay on the radio and is also a pretty popular ringtone.
posted by juva at 2:02 PM on October 23, 2007

In Japan, you'll sometimes hear "Auld Lang Syne" as a store is closing for the evening.

"Ode to Joy" from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony is apparently quite popular in many parts of Asia.

The nominal max playing time of a CD was developed to be 74 minutes in order to contain the entire 9th symphony (wiki cite) because of a Japanese New Year's tradition of playing the whole thing.
posted by Rash at 3:33 PM on October 23, 2007 [1 favorite]

I don't know if they count as pop music, but tracks from the Zero 7 album Simple Things are everywhere on British TV. I don't know their later albums, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if they are also heavily used but I haven't recognized the songs.

The plinky-plonky intro from Dead Already from the American Beauty soundtrack was insanely overused a couple of years ago and still turns up fairly often.

I suspect not many people can actually name these, so they might not be exactly what you're looking for.
posted by tomcooke at 5:43 PM on October 23, 2007

"Credits roll" jazz music

Could you possibly be thinking of "Baker Street" by Gerry Rafferty? Cause I picture the same sort of thing every time I hear that sax riff. It's like the sun going down on The Big Easy in my head.
posted by fishmasta at 6:43 PM on October 23, 2007

I found one of the Chinese "end of journey" songs - Kenny G's "Going Home."

But there's another one that I was thinking of that eludes me. It's more fast-paced and sounds like something that would play at the end of an 80's movie involving deceit and intrigue.
posted by pravit at 11:03 PM on October 23, 2007

One I've heard multiple times here in SA, and I also heard getting decent play up in Greece, was The New Radical's "You Only Get What You Give." But I think they're great, so I don't mind the recurrence.
posted by allkindsoftime at 12:35 AM on October 24, 2007

I almost forgot. Country Roads, the original John Denver version (thank god), is way overplayed in China as well. I sang it with a group of Tibetan yak herders who spoke not one word of English around the fire one drunken night way up in the snowy moountains of Yunnan and they knew every single word phonetically!
posted by Pollomacho at 2:10 PM on October 24, 2007

A fun question agregoli.

In England, Flanders & Swann's The Hippopotamus Song (lyrics).

Among Tibetan refugees living in India and also popular amont people from the Philippines, the ancient You Are My Sunshine, (played here with Pete Seeger on an inflated rubber glove). Also among the Tibetan refugees in India, Lyin' Eyes and Hotel California (here with Chinese subtitles) by The Eagles. In Tibet, this folk song and these from Eastern Tibet.

In India the 70's classic, Kabhi Kabhi. This version especially.

In Greece Mikis Theodorakis' music, Zorba.

In France Edith Piaf's- Non, je ne regrette rien, the national anthem, La Marseillaise.

In Italy the Neapolitan song, Funiculi funicula.
posted by nickyskye at 1:43 PM on October 26, 2007

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