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Queen Tops List of Most Addictive Songs

By Amanda Wicks

If you ever wake up with a certain song in your head and you can’t shake it, well, you’ve got an earworm. As neurologist Oliver Sacks explained, they are those pesky bits of music that arise out of nowhere and get stuck in your head for hours or days on end.

Related: Brian May on Trump Using Queen’s Music: ‘We’d Never Give Permission’

A team of researchers at the University of St. Andrews has been studying the inexplicable phenomenon and they discovered an interesting fact: Queen’s songs are some of the most addictive. Of the top 20 most addictive songs, Queen made the list three times with “We Will Rock You” coming in at number one (via NME).

Researcher Bede Williams told NME an earworm depended upon five key factors: surprise, predictability, rhythmic repetition, melodic potency and receptiveness (how the listener feels about the song). “If you look at the songs which emerged from the research, they all have a distinctive rhythmic fingerprint. If we remove the melody, they’re still recognisable by their rhythm alone,” Williams said.

Other songs include Pharrell Williams’ “Happy,” which came in as the second most addictive, and several classic rock tunes like Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer” and  Europe’s “The Final Countdown.” Then there are the pop numbers, like Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” Meghan Trainor’s “All About the Bass” and Mark Ronson’s song with Bruno Mars “Uptown Funk.” Good luck shaking those once you’ve heard them.

Check out the full list below and listeners beware.

1. Queen, “We Will Rock You”
2. Pharrell Williams, “Happy”
3. Queen, “We Are the Champions”
4. The Proclaimers, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)”
5. The Village People, “YMCA”
6. Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody”
7. Europe, “The Final Countdown”
8. Bon Jovi, “Livin’ on a Prayer”
9. Various artists, “Jingle Bells”
10. Baha Men, “Who Let the Dogs Out?”
11. Psy, “Gangnam Style”
12. Rick Astley, “Never Gonna Give You Up”
13. Journey, “Don’t Stop Believin'”
14. Mark Ronson, “Uptown Funk” featuring Bruno Mars
15. Taylor Swift, “Shake It Off”
16. Michael Jackson, “Beat It”
17. Kaiser Chiefs, “Ruby”
18. Cast of The Rocky Horror Show, “The Timewarp”
19. Meghan Trainor, “All About the Bass”
20. Culture Club, “Karma Chameleon”

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