Monday, February 23, 2009

One Hit Wonder Or One Hit Blunder

Today's Subject: "Macarena" by Los Del Rio

We all know the song. We've all probably, to a degree, done the dance. We, as in mainly English speakers, have tried to sing the song.


It may sound like a pasta dish and it is performed like you should be in a late 90's boy band (since there's a lack of foot movement involved) but it is the dance and song that swept the country in the mid 90's causing hysteria to almost anyone, aged 4 to 100+, within a mile of the song. This hysteria led people folding their arms and shaking their hips. This song, like many other one hit wonders, transcending the music and brought forth a dance. A dance which many people performed until the its dying breath at weddings, clubs, sporting events and wherever, it was ok to perform it. The dance was nothing spectacular, nothing extraordinary but the song however was a stroke of brilliance.

Ok, maybe not.

The song, however, caused Americans to mumble their way through the chorus because the lyrics in the verses aren't very memorable. Well, neither was the chorus but it had a catchy melody that you could hum along to. Besides the melody, what else is their to say about the song and, furthermore, if you were randomly stop someone on the street, over the age of 17, would they be able to hum the song off the top of their head. without the assistance of the dance.

The song has been covered and parodied by many people thus giving it some sort of legacy. All of these parodies and covers only existed within the time frame of that song's popularity which indicates the song's short existence. Also, the song is not a frequently played song on the radio. Some would say why would it be played now given that it was a one hit wonder from the 90's. I would then ask how often do you still hear "What Is Love?"

Catchy melody.
Sung in a foreign language, depending of which version you've heard, which provides learning and knowledge of other languages.
Created a simple dance.
Unified people of various groups and ages.
Instant popularity on American radio.

Annoying catchy melody.
Since it was in a foreign language, it is harder for you to sing along to (once again, this depends on the version you're listening to).
The dance looks silly and even Al Gore made a joke about him doing it.
Unified people into thinking something was cool but made people look like dancing robots.
A one hit wonder that has rarely, if ever, been heard past it's peak of popularity.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present the question: Is "Macarena" a one hit wonder or a one hit blunder? I say blunder. While, it did teach the importance of at least a fourth grade or high school Spanish education, it provided a reason for people to dance in uniformity and like robots. For that, Los Del Rio, you will never be forgiven. Also, if a song invites you to dance because of the music, it is safe. If a song invites you dance and then provides you with the dance you have to do when it is playing, that, my friends, is a very evil song. "Macarena" has the mark of the beast written all over it.


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