How to get rid of ear worms


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Whenever someone tells me they’ve got an ear worm I say, “I know how to fix that.” And then I pause just long enough for them to wonder before breaking into “OH MICKEY YOU’RE SO FINE, YOU’RE SO FINE YOU BLOW MY MIND HEY MICKEY!”

I tell them it’s because the only way to get rid of an ear worm is to replace it with another but the truth is I’m just a terrible person.



I don’t want my earworms cured, I want them curated. They are the soundtrack of my waking life!

Have you ever noticed how you can make a 3-minute song can last for days? Sometimes it only takes a 10-second excerpt! It’s tearin’ me apart, when I’m with you…


Turn around bright eyes, every now and then I fall apart


My normal walking pace is 98 steps per minute… the same as Shout from Songs From The Big Chair and it’s been in my head for 31 years now. I’ve tried replacing it with other 98 bmp songs but the stupidly simple lyrics of Tears for Fears is a powerful earworm. As a result, I lost my mind in 1991.


That particular one can be cured by listening to older versions:

Listening to the full version of songs never helps me. I had this Carmen Miranda song stuck in my head for nearly a year, and watched the linked video (full song) repeatedly. All it did was teach me the lyrics (which are honestly a little surreal).


Personally to cure an earworm I just beatbox the theme song to Sandford and Son.


I never get these earworms stuck in my head.

I used to play modern jazz for many years. I think I lost all normal sense of melody and harmony.

But no, seriously. If I do have an unwanted melody doing rounds, I just imagine white noise with a polyrhythm on top and the original melody is gone.


My mind is too flighty to get stuck on one thing.


You need coolin’,
baby, I’m not foolin’
I’m gonna send ya
back to schoolin’
Way down inside, a-honey,
you need it…


Kill it with a drill.

The following trailer for Driller Killer contains adult themes which may be troubling for some adults. Apparently.

Also, you can get rid of any earworm bar one by singing the original, 80’s theme song to My Little Pony.
That one other tune?

The birdie song.

ETA: SRSLY, you take out Driller Killer and leave in the fucking BIRDIE SONG!?!?!?!?!

What kind of monstrous nonsense is this!



I generally get songs stuck in my head if I know some, but not all, of the words; I’ve been most successful curing earworms simply by learning the lyrics. Doesn’t always have to be the whole song; usually the first verse and the chorus (if any) does it for me.
It’s been a mixed blessing; on the upside, I have a song lyric to fit practically any occasion. On the downside, I have a song lyric to fit practically any occasion.

Edit: When I just need to chase’n’replace, my go-to is the theme song from “The Itchy and Scratchy Show”.


This works for me: watch a video of someone singing the earworm on mute.


I always figured that my brain just wants to hear some music, but my subconscious has terrible taste. I just think of another song that I actually enjoy and let that one cycle endlessly in my brain.

I write a lot of music for self-amusement. No song quite gets stuck in your head like one that you’re writing. I just let it happen and, unexpectedly, I end up with interesting arrangements of the music spontaneously unfolding over time. It’s a way for me to work on music while doing other things I might actually get paid for.


Damn you!


I had this in my head for about 10 days.

You’re welcome.


Will the Chicken Song do instead?