There was a pretty cool reddit story the other day about an internet stranger casually solving a huge song mystery for another redditor. After a year of the mystery lingering, one day a stranger sent a link to the song, and it blew the original searcher’s mind.

Oh my god. Oh my fucking god. I’m actually freaking out.
Who are you? How did you know? WHAT IS GOING ON?
Thank you so much. But also, WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON

And the kind stranger just responded with:

Shh bby is ok

And, just like that, a meme is born. The internet is amazing, sometimes.

But I can totally relate to the poster’s original excitement. Sometimes a song just gets under your skin, and you’ll do anything to find it. Before the modern internet, finally locating a song felt just as satisfying, and I remember distinctly trying to hunt down the following songs in the following ways, and feeling just as excited once each of them was in my possession.

1989

“Girl I’m Gonna Miss You”, by Milli Vanilli. I’d hear this on the radio, and the melody line in the chorus (1m 24s) rocked my little 8 year old heart so much I just had to find the geniuses who created it.

I called up the local radio station and hummed the melody on the phone in order to figure out what it was. I was gifted the tape by a family friend shortly afterwards.

(And listen, I realized the error in my ways regarding Milli Vanilli not much later. We all did. We all did.)

1997

“Incense and Peppermints” by The Strawberry Alarm Clock. I heard this song in Austin Powers, and it blew my teenaged mind. I wanted more. More Strawberry Alarm Clock.

I searched far and wide for a recording of this song during Christmas break of ‘97, and had to go up to the Sam Goody in The Mall Of America in order to finally find the truth: that there was no available back catalog of Strawberry Alarm Clock, that they were basically a one hit wonder, and I’d have to settle for the Austin Power’s soundtrack. Which I did.

1998

I heard this song every so often on the radio for months and months and months, and it would haunt me. I wanted it. But every time, the DJ would say nothing about it. I delayed plans and waited patiently in my Mom’s 1995 Dodge Neon for a song set to end, hoping to get a clue about the song that had been captivating me.

I tried to savor every second the song was playing, knowing it might be weeks before hearing it again. At night after getting back on the 1998 internet in my parent’s basement, I’d Altavista the shit out of the lyrics that I scribbled down earlier in my pocket-sized memo pad.

I don’t even remember exactly how I ended up finding the song, but I do remember that when I finally did locate the MP3, it was named incorrectly. I went around for years afterwards thinking the song was called something else, but I was also thrilled to have it.

2015

Yesterday, I held up my phone up for a few seconds and it identified a Barbara Lynn song from 1963 that was playing on the radio.

I was satisfied.

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