What if a song you don’t know comes into your head? Frustrating, isn’t it? What can you do when all day there’s a single line that repeats in your head, over and over, and the only way to get it out is by trying to identify the song? If all you know about a song is a single phrase, it can seem impossible to find out the artist and listen to the rest.
Before, you would probably go the whole day feeling that if the rest of this hook or passage goes unheard, the unbearable void it made will be omnipresent. Thankfully, these days, with the power of the Internet or a smartphone, it is decidedly easy to find out those songs. Using simple search tools and apps, you can find the names of hit releases, discover new artists or reconnect with forgotten records. There are two primary ways to do this: 1) use online sites to search indexes of songs; and 2) download an app for your iPhone or Android device.
Method 1a: Search Engines
The first and easiest method also usually has the best results. All you need is Internet access and the phrase in mind. Using search tools available to many search engines, such as Google and DuckDuckGo, you can get real results.
For example, let’s say you’re trying to find out which song the line “They make the children really ring” is from. You can just enter it into any search engine. The results on DuckDuckGo list articles on activities with children, among others. That’s certainly not what you wanted, so now to narrow the search. Add quotation marks (“”) before and after the line, and the only results that come back this time are lyrics related. The first listing even has the artist and song title as its title. (Yes ” Roundabout!)
Note that this only works when the exact lyrics are remembered. That’s because adding quotation marks to a search term makes the engine search only for that exact phrase. Guessing words within the quotations will skew the results away from the intended song, to a completely different song, one with guess words in it.
However, what if you don’t recall the exact phrase from the song? In this case, using a search engine like Google and looking for inaccurate lyrics will give you mixed results, and sometimes not even a single song will show up. In this case, you should further narrow your search by accessing a searchable lyrics database, so that at least all the results are songs.
Method 1b: Lyrics Databases
There’s plenty of open access sites around the web dedicated to storing lyrics. To list only a couple: darklyrics.com has an extensive collection of rare heavy metal lyrics, and cowboylyrics.com is an extensive catalog of country classics.
Among such sites, The Lyrics Wiki (lyrics.wikia.com/Lyrics_Wiki) stands out. This site is good because it has millions of songs from all genres, popular and underground artists and for its reliability. Thousands of users of the Lyrics Wiki read, correct and upload the lyrics that appear on the site. So new albums and obscure ones get extensive treatment here.
For an example of an inexact line, here’s the results of the search “shock me like an electric eel electric feel.” Here, the first line is remembered correctly, but only the last part of the second line is. The results give Katy Perry, and a long list of songs from a band called Electric Eel. It’s definitely not Katy Perry and none of the Electric Eel lyrics match. Then, a little bit below that the suggestion is MGMT’s “Electric Feel,” which is indeed the name of the song.
Method 2: Phone Apps
Well now, what can you do if you hear a cool song, don’t know it, but remember the lyrics and there’s no Internet? Well, either go find a computer with Internet access or, if you happen to be a smartphone owner, whip it out, because there’s free apps for looking up song lyrics.
iPhone users have the choice of LyricFind or MyLyrics. Both comes free: . These free apps have many popular songs as well as a few lesser-known ones. Not the most extensive library, but the premium features of the app include Deep Search, which may increase the chances of finding the song you’re looking for.
Android users have LyricFind, from lyricfind.com/android. LyricsFind has a large collection of song lyrics, and it makes it more likely to get it right if the song is popular enough, though there are some obscure artists, too.
Overall though, whether you’re searching the world wide web or the index of an app, the chance of you finding your song depends heavily on these three factors: 1) how much of the song you remember; 2) the popularity of the song; and 3) the status of the artist. If you happen to remember an entire verse or chorus, you can enter that into Google and the chance of you finding your song is very high. If all you got is a few misheard words, you may have trouble. Of course, if your artist isn’t very well known, the lyrics themselves may be so deep within the Internet it will take many pages of scrolling to find your answer.
Lastly, sometimes the artists themselves will keep you from finding their lyrics. For instance, when having member issues, the band Gorgoroth lead an aggressive campaign to remove their lyrics from the web, and for a while you genuinely couldn’t find their lyrics on any site, official or otherwise.
So regardless of who you’re looking, there can always be roadblocks and you can always save with Tuneup media coupon codes and special offers. However, with diligence, accurate recall and search tools, you can finally find out what that song about bouncing cats was called.