Compelling Song


(permanent link) added: 2011-10-15 22:06:32 sponsor: zero24 (last reply: 2011-10-25 20:55:30)

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Music is usually made to be catchy and pleasing to the ear. The reason behind this is that a piece's creators benefit from fame, recognition, and a decent profit when their music is popular. Of course, some songs are better at staying in your mind than others. These are the songs that make you get up and dance, that make you sing the tune whenever it hits your eardrums.

In fiction this effect can be ramped up, causing people to sing and dance on impulse. Trying to avoid responding to the beat can actually be a struggle for some characters. Listeners reflexively react to the tune by singing unfinished lyrics and making uncontrollably rhythmic movements. However, this effect is often limited to fans of an artist or a production associated with song. Sometimes it only works on one individual. In that case, they have usually listened to it quite often because they enjoy it so much.

This is often exploited by people who want to flush someone out or otherwise identify members of a fanbase. Another way this is used is by create a musical distraction, causing opponents to turn their attention to the music. Although effective, songs of this nature doesn't have the force or mystical properties of a Brown Note. They're just really catchy and invoke the natural love of a Fandom.

Another way this trope is used is by having a song calm characters instead of exciting them. Listeners who hear a lullaby being played will get drowsy to the point of falling asleep. This is commonly done to someone who is stirring as a means of keeping them from waking up.

This kind of song is frequently described as Awesome Music, at least by the in-universe fans. Compare Magic Music, Music Soothes the Savage Beast, and Musical Trigger.

Examples:

Anime
  • Exploited by the Para Para brothers in Dragon Ball GT. They take out a stereo, do a wacky dance, chant, and clap. Then whack their enemies who can't stop moving to the beat.

Fairy Tales

Film

Live-Action TV
  • That's So Raven: In one episode, Raven danced to her favorite song to the point of causing collateral damage.

Mythology
  • The sirens from Greek mythology, lured sailors to their deaths with their irresistible songs. Pretty much the Ur Example.

Tabletop RPG
  • Dungeons & Dragons. Korreds can play music that causes those who hear it to dance uncontrollably.

Western Animation

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