Musical Stuff That Makes Me Smile

Recently, I tweeted this:

I’m a total sucker for songs with “do-do-do-do” parts or whistling. True story.

That started me thinking about other musical things I’m “a total sucker” for. What makes me smile, will 99% of the time mean I will have a new favorite song?

Well, I’ll start with the two I mentioned in the tweet and move on from there.

Do-do-do parts

Love ’em. Anytime I find a song where a singer does this sort of thing well, I feel a need to hear it again. Bop bop, do-wop, lie-de-die, anything like that. (Yeah… I really like ’50s stuff.)


Almost everybody can do it and that’s probably why I like it. I don’t know, it just adds a spontaneous flavor to the music that I absolutely adore.

Hand claps

If they’re real and not digitized drum hand claps. See above about how I love the feeling spontaneousness.

Trumpets or other funky horns

Funky trumpets are way too much fun and absolutely cool.

A surprise guest

Accordions that come out of nowhere are great. Same with dulcimers, hurdy-gurdies, those funky trumpets, or anything I didn’t think would work in the current genre. Creative use of a surprise instrument makes me smile.


The world needs more of it.

Group harmony

More than just a single harmonizing voice, a whole group of people singing together is almost always a draw for me.

Cross-genre covers

I love it when I hear a cover of a song best-known in one genre, but given a totally new spin by a new genre and feel.

Genre melding

Can’t get enough of genre melding. Particularly when folk meets pop/rock. Keep that groove, but bring on the fiddles and mandolins!

A “just for fun” feel

This is ultimately what all of the above pours into. It’s hard to nail down, but a sense of give and take between singers or a very raw, all-in-the-same-room sound are some of my favorite musical things. Because to me, the best of music is when a group plays together and has fun doing it.


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