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5 Songs More Infectious Than the Flu

Flu Patient
Scott Olson, Getty Images

You know the songs — those catchy little ditties you hear once or twice and quickly find stuck in your head, infecting your body and entire state-of-being like nasty viruses. They stay with you for days, weeks, months, sometimes even years. With flu season reaching epidemic proportions all across the country, we couldn’t help but think of the songs that have most sickened us with melody. There’s plenty of them out there, but our picks for the 5 Songs More Infectious Than the Flu simply cannot be eradicated. There’s no shot or cure. All you can do is sing along.


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From ‘Green’ (1989)
If you’re too young to remember when this came out, consider yourself lucky. R.E.M. were known for being overly “deep” at the time, so it was nice to see the band show off its humorous side. Unfortunately, that side came in the form of ‘Stand,’ which, decades later, still has its feet firmly planted in our craniums.


‘Shiny Shiny’

Haysi Fantayzee


From ‘Shiny Shiny’ Single (1983)
Nobody churned out British New Wave in the early ’80s quite like Haysi Fantayzee, and few songs in the history of Western recorded music are quite as gratingly catchy as ‘Shiny Shiny.’ If you’ve never heard this one, listen at your own risk. You might be looking at decades of wrestling with that earworm of a hook.


‘Tom’s Diner’

Suzanne Vega


From ‘Solitude Standing’ (1987)
On Tom’s Diner,’ another ’80s hit, Suzanne Vega finds a sincerely catchy melody — then proceeds to pound it into the ground, over and over again. Repeatedly.


‘Sugar, We’re Going Down’

Fall Out Boy


From ‘From Under the Cork Tree’ (2005)
Emo went viral in the mid-aughts thanks in large part to Fall Out Boy and their biggest hit, ‘Sugar, We’re Going Down,’ which spawned an endless parade of imitators. But none managed to infect our eardrums with pop-infused confections quite like ‘Sugar,’ which is more addictive than the sweetener that gave it its name.


‘What’s My Age Again?’



From ‘Enema of the State’ (1999)
Pop-punk doesn’t get much catchier than Blink-182 singing their trademark hit — and that’s a good thing. The world simply isn’t prepared to survive another ‘What’s My Age Again?’ attack.


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