Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Actual Telephone Numbers Made Famous by Artists in Popular Music

As someone who has lived in rental units as a tenant since leaving home at age 19, numerous times I've had to move to a new area and relinquish an old phone number. In picking a new one, I've always put some time, thought and care into it, wanting my new phone number to be easy for me to remember when giving out to people, and difficult for people to misdial. One thing that has always amazed me is how contemporary artists will include what I believe to be their actual telephone number in their music. Google Answers has a subject, "famous telephone numbers in songs", that shows people have been singing about phone numbers since the 1960s, back when the format was, to place a call, you had to dial a live operator, say a place name first, then say a five-digit number, before being connected by the operator. Now that we are in the age of seven digits (or age of ten digits if you include area code), one of the more famous phone numbers may be 867-5309, and hearkens back to the early 1980s, for which there is an entire Wikipedia page devoted to it.

If you ever are in the position to pick a new phone number, you might wish to steer clear of these, or contrarily, you may try to seek out these phone numbers, as they are easier to remember when set to a catchy tune (but be sure to expect multiple people trying to call you asking for somebody other than you):

Tony! Toni! Toné! - Whatever (1991): "Whatever you want, girl you know I can provide. Whatever you need, call 632 2135"

Alicia Keys - Diary (2004): "Oooh baby if there's anything that you fear, call 489 4608 and I'll be here"

Mike Jones - Back Then (2005): "281 330 8004, hit Mike Jones up on the low, cause Mike Jones about to blow"

Scientists have conjectured that the reason why every human culture that has been studied has music, why music appreciation is innate in almost all of us, is because the early man that was musical was more in tune with other early humans and more willing to cooperate with those that could appreciate music; musical human societies were more cohesive and likely to stick together than societies made of non-musical humans. Even if you don't accept that premise, music can be seen as a kind of social glue that binds us all together. The person who devotes him or her self to making new forms of music, if s/he is lucky, can step into the role of entertainer, and as an added benefit, when performing, that performance and song can serve as a sort of mating call, if you will, demonstrating to the audience his or her social and sexual value. The next time you feel lonely, pining for a mate, you could do a lot worse than create something, be it music, art, technology or science, that includes, or is based on, your actual telephone number.

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