Happy: how it works

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music -

Phar­rell: “Be­cause I’m happy. Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do.” Ste­wart: There is the im­por­tance of move­ment (in the song’s video) in re­in­forc­ing the song — so­called em­bod­ied lis­ten­ing — while the call to “clap along” is highly en­gag­ing and so­cial. Phar­rell: “Be­cause I’m happy. Clap along if you feel like a room with­out a roof.” Ste­wart: It’s re­plete with rep­e­ti­tion, so we can grasp the tune with the min­i­mum lis­ten­ing ef­fort. Phar­rell: “Be­cause I’m happy. Clap along if you feel like hap­pi­ness is the truth.” Ste­wart: It’s an ear­worm. It gets stuck in our head be­cause of its long-du­ra­tion notes and rel­a­tively small changes in the melody — like a jin­gle — which make it easy to sing along to.

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