It’s pretty common in music circles to encounter people who have spent literally decades trying to identify an obscure song on an old mixtape. They’ve had no luck Googling lyrics or playing the song into Soundhound, Shazam, or friends’ ears. There are entire communities—on websites like Wat Zat Song?Midomi, and Reddit—devoted to crowdsourcing the solutions.

Many times, without what felt like much work, I’ve been able to successfully ID such songs for strangers. Not because I’m Brainypants McMusicface; to the contrary. In every instance these have been songs and artists I’d never heard (or even heard of) before.

But the recordings contained the necessary clues and context, to which I applied some deductive reasoning and research done on freely-available websites. Here’s how I’ve gone about it, in case crowdsourcing isn’t working for you.

One example: Slicing Up Eyeballs posted this to both Facebook and Twitter.

Can you ID this funky post-punk song taped off WNYU in the ’80s?

A Slicing Up Eyeballs reader sent us the following note:

“I write from Germany so sorry if i put words wrong. A Friend of mine was in America in the 80s and he listened to WNYU – FM. He heard a Song there but did not hear the Name and Artist. So i have the Link here where you can listen to. If you don`t know it, maybe you can help us with the Lyrics. We went them up and down with no Result. Especially after the beginning words “Oh well oh welcome ….. This might be the Refrain of the Song because he repeats it often in this Song. I would be very glad to get an answer from you because this Song is searched for more than 33 Years.”

The post was accompanied by the song’s audio on Soundcloud (and had already been an open case on Wat Zat Song? for over five months).

1. Examine the audio and lyrics for clues, and search for keywords on Discogs.

Discogs is a website database detailing musical artists’ discographies and, among other features (like its marketplace and the ability to catalog your entire music collection), it’s a powerful search engine. The Advanced Search, which is free to use without creating an account, allows you to look just within Track (song) Title.

Discogs Advanced Search

Since this song didn’t have a traditional chorus (where the title would usually repeat), I started making out the lyrics from the top.

Oh well, oh welcome [turncoat?] Sam
He said he was a killer man
He doesn’t care about your love [life?]

Then something about napalm? Sounds a bit agit-prop. That first line repeats at the beginning of each verse, giving at least part of it the potential to appear in the title. A Track Title search for “oh well oh welcome” yielded 44 results which contained some combination of those keywords in their song titles (i.e. “oh”, “well” and “welcome” might appear in three different song titles on a given album, not necessarily all in the same song title).

2. Filter the search results to items released in a specific decade, geographic region, or genre.

Discogs Search Results

The OP said the tape was from the ’80s and the recording screams ’80s as well. Choosing Decade>1980 from the menu down the left side of the search window narrows it down from 44 to 7.

Discogs Filtered Results

As for genre, would Discogs have this filed under punk, funk, other? Those distinctions are subjective, which is why I opted not to use their filters for this step and instead eliminated results that obviously weren’t the genre I was looking for (i.e. skip over the items with “gospel” and “soul” in the titles, as well as the “Hot Hits” compilation. If this song had ever been a hot hit, someone would have identified it by now). That left me with only one result to investigate: Maxi Dance Pool Vol. 2 – Musikladen Eurotops.

NB: Discogs, due to the way its records are structured, returned three different iterations of this same album in the search results: one being the ‘master page’ for that release/album and the other two detailing the separate formats of the release, CD and LP. All three are interchangeable for my purposes, so no need to look at each.

3. Use streaming music resources to follow leads.

Discogs Master Release Page

Given that my keywords were spread across two track titles on this compilation—”Oh Well” (by an artist of the same name), and another titled “Welcome, Machine Gun”—and that my song hardly seemed like club fodder, this was probably a dead end but I was already here and decided to see it through. The former title was a better match to my lyric than the latter so I followed the hyperlink to the Discogs page showing Oh Well’s discography. The song “Oh Well”, since it was released as a single, had its own subpage with an embedded YouTube video, a quick scan of which proved it wasn’t the song I was after.

Discogs Single Release Page

“Machine gun” didn’t appear in the lyrics of my song, so it seemed illogical to assume that the latter song had any relevance to my search. Back to the drawing board.

4. Repeat steps 1-3 as needed.

I didn’t bother pursuing the words “oh well” any further because, on their own, they simply didn’t feel distinctive or interesting enough to be a title for this song. Instead, I turned my sights to “turncoat Sam.” Few writers would be able to resist making such a unique turn of phrase the hook on which to hang a song, so it had a better chance of appearing in the title. But that search yielded only two results, which were quickly ruled out. Additional searches for “turncoat” and “welcome turncoat” were similarly fruitless.

Out of other options, I searched for “Sam”. Filtering down to just the ’80s still left nearly 2700 releases. Scanning the first page of 50 results, I eliminated anything immediately recognizable (e.g. T. Rex’s “Telegram Sam”), the foreign language items, the ones obviously in non-applicable genres like jazz, and ones in which Sam was inextricably paired with other words (“Play It Again, Sam”, etc.).

At the bottom of the page my eye was drawn to a dark, arty record cover that seemed to fit the vibe I was looking for—what looked like a monoprint of a face that was disjointed, disfigured, with violence or chaos implied.

Discogs Sam Search

It was for a single of a song called “Uncle Sam” by a group I’d never heard of, Rhythm of Life. Clicking through to that subpage showed that it was a UK release from 1981, classified as New Wave. On this type of page, Discogs displays suggestions of similar artists; while I wasn’t intimately familiar with the ones listed here (Josef K, Cabaret Voltaire), I knew enough to think they were reasonably aligned with my target.

Discogs Uncle Sam Page

I searched YouTube for “Rhythm of Life Uncle Sam,” which returned one result; after a brief drum intro that was missing from the original post, there was my song. It wasn’t “turncoat Sam” after all… it was “Oh well, oh welcome to Uncle Sam”, with “to” and “Uncle” sung so close together as to sound like one word.

[Editor’s note: that video used to be embedded right here so that you could hear it, but has since been removed from YouTube and not replaced. In fact, Rhythm of Life’s “Uncle Sam” appears not to be available on any legitimate streaming service—or for digital download—in the US, and can only be found on a 2-CD Paul Haig compilation from Brussels-based Les Disques du Crépuscule label. And that fact, dear reader—that the web giveth and the web taketh away—is a perfect example of why I always view my personal music library as more essential and comprehensive than any subscription-based streaming service can hope to be.]

To be fair, intuition played a part in arriving at the solution, as did good luck; if my song had appeared on the 50th page of “Sam” results instead of the first, would I have found it? (Not to mention other factors in my favor: that the song had lyrics at all, was sung in my native language, was from an era and genre of which I have a decent if not comprehensive knowledge, etc.) Still, this method has helped me solve half a dozen other mystery songs that had been plaguing people for 25+ years, where collective “Well, it kind of sounds like [artist name here]” guesswork failed.

Here’s one more example off the top of my head, using the same steps—identifying the audio clues, lyrical clues, and parameters for the search.

Example #2

Audio clues: a song taped off an American alt radio station in 1988. The artist sounded American, slightly roots-rockish but with sonic polish, and a bit Paisley Underground.

Lyrical clues: a mention of Jerry Falwell bolstered my notion that it’s American in origin. Focusing on the closest thing to a chorus, the only lyrics which repeat are variations of:

Whatever name you go by, she goes by now too
What else would she do?
She’s got her last resorts in the mail
To box three five comma oh oh oh

The search: the last line was the best bet. The number 35,000 spoken in that way, as its individual components, was so unusual that it took a while to realize that’s what I was hearing, as opposed to the oh-oh-ohs simply being vocal punctuations. Being catchy and unique, it was the most obvious hook. And radio being a contemporary medium, the song was probably either released in ’87 or ’88; songs generally don’t get airplay years after their release unless they’ve achieved some status. Searching Discogs in two fields—Track Title for “35,000”, and Year for 1987—took me straight to it: “35,000” by Insiders, from an album called Ghost On the Beach.

Discogs Insiders Search

I’m not surprised it eluded someone for decades; it was a deep album cut, not a single, and it’s not on YouTube, Spotify, iTunes or Amazon. I had to track it down on (now-defunct) Grooveshark in order to verify its identity.

Example #3, without audio

Again, Slicing Up Eyeballs posted a reader’s plea on Facebook.

NAME THAT TUNE: Scott’s having trouble tracking down a song he used to have on a mixtape. Does this ring a bell for anyone?

“I have what seems to be the common ‘I had a mix tape years ago, what the hell was that song’ problem. ’93 in college a buddy made me a killer mix tape. I lost the track listing after many moves, but have managed to hunt down almost all of the songs except one. Here’s what I remember:

“The song begins with a clip of a British man calling bingo. He mentions one number and then says ‘blue? 22. We have a bingo- in TWO places.’ Then it cuts into the song. That is all I remember. I can tell you it was ’93 or prior. Any help from the good folks who follow you would be fantastic.”

Audio clues: none. This time there’s neither a recorded snippet nor any indication in the OP’s wording about what type of music it is.

Lyrical clues: just the spoken ‘bingo’ intro. At this point, I don’t even know whether the rest of the song has lyrics or is purely instrumental.

The search: I have two facts—the bingo intro and a release date no later than 1993—and one assumption: that the artist is British, since there’s no obvious reason for a non-UK artist to source a few seconds of audio from a British bingo hall. Of course there’s no guarantee that the song’s title has bingo in it, but that’s the only practical starting point.

Searching Track Title for “bingo” yielded 2,848 results. I filtered those down to items released in the UK (since odds are good that an artist’s work would be released first and foremost in their native country), which narrowed the results to 562. I applied a second filter in order to see only items released in the 1990s, which reduced the results to 143. Then I clicked on the View options at the upper-right of the window to see the results as Text With Covers, which enabled me to see the release year for each item.

discogs_bingo_search_results

Ignoring anything released past 1993, I worked my way down the first page of 50 results, clicking through to each item’s detailed release page and looking up songs on YouTube (if they weren’t already embedded in the Discogs page). Eventually I arrived at the album Reach by Snuff, released in 1992.

discogs_snuff_reach

Since the release page featured a YouTube video of the full album and “Bingo” was track nine of twelve, I scrubbed about 3/4 of the way into it, pausing at the gaps between songs since I was interested only in the beginning of any given track, and at the 21:32 mark is where I found my British bingo player. All told, this process took me less than 30 minutes.

I thought I was done, but something nagged at me: YouTube also has a standalone video of just the song “Bingo”, and that spoken word clip doesn’t appear in it at all, either at the beginning or the end. Further, the song in that video isn’t the one following the bingo hall clip in the full-album video!

After adding up the track times seen on the Discogs page, I realized that 21:32 into the album puts you at the end of “Bingo,” not the beginning of it. Therefore, if the OP is seeking the song that comes after the clip, it’s really the next track on the album—”Ichola Buddha”—that’s he’s after (and, when making the mixtape, his friend may have mistaken the bingo hall clip for the intro to that song instead of what it really is: the tail end of “Bingo”).

Obviously my method is dependent on certain factors—not to mention some luck and intuition—and won’t work in every instance, but I hope it’ll be a useful tool to help you get closer to solving your own mystery song. If it does, I’d love to hear your stories about where and when you originally came by a song, where the search took you over time, and how you arrived at a solution.

(cassette photo by Laurent Hoffmann)

Join the conversation! 99 Comments

  1. this is so awesome!!!!!! the mystery has been solved, and i love your play-by-play!!! so helpful!!!

    Reply
  2. Superb detective work, Mark. Very much the way I approach solving stuff like this. I also lean on a big bookshelf of non-net reference material that’s quite valuable.

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    • Hello Orlando. There are probably a number of tracks from the 80s with “Feel It” in the title or chorus (like Funk Fusion Band’s “Can You Feel It”, at the link below). Can you remember the name of any song that sampled it?

      Reply
  3. Brilliant!! I love that even lost songs can still be found and live on. Thanks for posting this.

    Reply
  4. Awesome Post! I’ve had unknown bits of songs stuck in my head for years, and thankful for all the options you listed in helping me find the artist/title!!!

    wanderoke.blogspot.com

    Reply
  5. Forgive my contrariness here–but you could save yourself all of this legwork, and play back the song in question (if you have a recording of it) to an app on your smartphone like Shazam or SoundHound, which will automagically recognize and tell you what song it is. Works 8-9 times out of 10 for me, but these steps in this article are good if it’s a tune that stumps those apps.

    Reply
  6. I find this sort of detective work to be utterly fascinating. Thanks for sharing it.

    Reply
  7. Making it a bit hard. If you have bits of the lyrics figured out it’s quite easy to search those “within quotes” and just add the word lyrics.

    Reply
  8. […] didn’t give me any results. Then one day earlier this year, I found an interesting blog in which music obsessed Mark Griffin explained how to use Discogs to identify tracks. One of his […]

    Reply
  9. […] final title we came up with: Need Help Identifying a Song? Here’s One Way to Find It. The key phrase is “identifying a […]

    Reply
  10. Have searched everywhere for an old song we had on a record when we were kids. I believe the name of the song was “Boobalac. Not sure of the spelling. It was about a bird named “Boobalac. Some of the lyrics were “itty bitty bird they call him a Boobalac. Another part said some thing about him being “high up in a cottonwood”. The main chorus said “Boobalac, Boobalac, corn’ll make a Boobalac tweet. Boobalac, Boobalac, now ain’t a little Boobalac sweet. Please Help.

    Reply
  11. Hi Mark,
    I wasn’t going to comment but it seems you’re still here! You’re kinda my only hope, I can’t figure this out. I HAVE the song. What I don’t have is any way of identifying it … there’s a clip of it here.
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/poik9r297okskye/artist%20-%20Unknown%20Track%201.mp3?dl=0
    It doesn’t have lyrics, only “Go”, a couple of words, and a sentence half way through that I can’t hear (sounds like something other than English). It sounds kinda trance-y, and seems as though it gets cut off before the end … I’ve got nothing else to go on. I’d appreciate any help!

    Reply
    • Never mind – just as I posted this, I actually found it using some of your methods. More like, I kinda stumbled on it, but either way, success!! Thank you so much for this post!
      (the above link has been deleted)

      Reply
      • Hi Yuki. This post gets a lot of views but most people never let me know how their searches turned out, so I appreciate the feedback and knowing that I’ve been of some small help.

        Reply
  12. I’ve been trying to find a song for years that i always thought was (Noosha) Fox, either as a band member or solo artiste, i’ve trawled through all the stuff of theirs (and hers) i could find, but have drawn a blank!

    The only lyrics i have is…
    ‘The Sheik of Araby’ (but i can’t find it using that title)
    and…
    ‘then you(‘ll) go far, yes you(‘ll) go far, people will say, what a big man you aaaaaaaare, what a BIIIIIG man you aaaaaaaaare’

    Just to explain the letters in brackets, i cant remember if she’s singing you or you’ll

    I hope someone can solve this for me, it’s drove me nuts for years 🙁

    Reply
  13. I have been searching for a song for 40 years no I am NOT kidding! Sadly I have no lyrics I can remember,no real melody all I can remember is that last ‘shots'(bass and drum parts of the ending).There is NO talking,rapping,no brass,or orchestra in this song.It is not a dance song or new wave.

    It is a Progressive Rock type tune from between 1975 and 1980 or so. It starts with an ascending scale or pattern on a chorused electric piano keyboard.It builds adding bass,drums and guitar with a slow ballad feel and 4/4 tempo.The middle the guitarist plays a amazing lead guitar solo ad it gets slightly heavier.It is full of atmosphere. I’ve checked numerous sites and many artists from that genre and I know my music

    I am now offering $75.00 Canadian Funds(certified cheque ) to anyone who can find this or give me leads,
    Thanks for reading

    Batphink

    Reply
  14. https://youtu.be/B2dKL5EIFro pls someone identify the song in the background ive tried everything and cant find it

    Reply
  15. Thank you, Brainypants McMusicface, you’re my new hero!

    Reply
  16. Tough one: song heard on KROQ (Los Angeles) in the early 80s. Hook was “I was impressed/ when you got undressed”. Other lyrics “let’s not talk about love I say, you never liked me anyway” [or, I never liked you; not sure]
    Probably an indie; standard searches turn up nothing. Does anybody know it?!
    I’ll be impressed 🙂

    Reply
    • I was looking for the same song. I used to have a mix tape of KROQ with Jed the Fish DJing and they played that song. I was hoping to find it too as it brings back great memories (but I cannot remember the song).

      Reply
      • Still haven’t found it… maybe it;s worth a visit to KROQ, on the off chance they have archives / playlists?!

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  17. I’ve been looking for the name of a song for years now. The chorus goes:
    I will be your guardian angel, pride and joy, your secret spirit, cosmic you. Guess I’ll have to wait and see if heaven has /hooks a place for me.

    Any help will be great, as no one knows.

    Reply
    • Sorry, I meant cosmic toy.

      Reply
      • I’ve spent a couple of hours trying to find it, but no luck yet sadly. I thought for a second I had it with the Abandon All Ships ‘Guardian Angel’ song from 2010 but if you are certain about the lyrics then it can’t be the one! I’ll try some more!

        Reply
    • I’m also really looking for this song. I’ve been looking for it for years. I started to think I’d made it up ☹️

      Reply
  18. It seems like I don’t have enough context clues to use the search strategies listed above. All I have to go on are these lyrics:

    in a room that’s elegant and well appointed
    you can find me, find me
    keeping all the cold things warm at night
    you can find me, find me
    ,
    Find Me would be the obvious possible title of this track, and I know it came out in the 90’s (’99 at the very latest), and that it’s probably an american afab person singing, but that’s not turning it up so far. I know I got the song from a person who was way into 4AD and a bunch of other small late-90’s labels. Is this ringing bells for anyone? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Hi, do you remember if it was a female or male vocalist? If it was female, it could be Tarnation – they were on 4AD in the late 1990s. Equally, it could be someone like Mazzy Star or Cowboy Junkies…

      Reply
    • Husikesque – Soul of Gold
      from Green Blue Fire, 1996

      Reply
  19. Please, I would like do download a song with lyrics some like that:

    “let’s one way just you and I, You and I”

    It´s a girl singing it. I think it´s like indie song, not sure. Do you know the name of the song?

    Reply
  20. I heard a song in the early 1980’s and I have been searching for the name but no luck. Male artist, possibly USA artist, possible blues feel, lyrics …there’s been some long and lonely nights since I first fell in love with you, ….. tell me baby/darlin ? what am I gonna do…. first you love me, then you leave me, and I can’t remember any more.

    Reply
    • Is it Roy Buchanan – ‘Lonely Days, Lonely Nights’?

      Reply
      • Thank you so very very much – I have been searching for years.
        This is the song – I am so happy you found it for me.
        Masses and masses of appreciation & thanks

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        • I am so happy that I’ve been able to help you find this! 🙂 I know what it is like to love a tune, only to then find it impossible to reach!

          Reply
  21. I am looking for slow dancing song with lyric
    “TAKE ME BACK THE WAY IT USE TO BE”

    Reply
  22. I am looking for a song where the refrain repeats a girl’s name, something like ~”Ramona, Ramona, I love you so.”

    Reply
  23. I remember reading Jane’s post about this post, and a year (two?) later, driven mad by a song stuck in my head, I found these suggestions really helpful! I *finally* identified the track and artist 🙌🏻. It was recorded at least once (appeared in a TV episode), but I can’t find it to stream or download anywhere. Almost like it’s been scrubbed from the Internet, except for onr terrible live performance video. Any suggestions on that front?

    Reply
  24. At 9:30pm I decided to search for a song I love and needed in my library. It’s an instrumental Cha Cha and I figured it started in the early 60s. No luck. Then I broke the music down in my head…why is it so familiar to me…it’s Tea For Two…then I added Cha Cha…and it’s a Tommy Dorsey song, Tea For Two Cha Cha from 1958!
    It only took me two hours of non stop brain storming. I’m a Melomaniac so I feel extremely proud, because I was just about to ask for your help.

    Reply
  25. Hello all, I am looking for this track released btw 1988/1989
    The verse is like
    I aint got no ???, I aint got no money
    I really miss my honey
    With the chorus
    What am I gonna do
    I just cant get over you
    I really miss my honey

    Reply
  26. Could anybody help me find a song that I believe is called ‘Crickets’ Festival’ please? It’s from the 70’s and has a folk-y sound, if I recall! All the research I have found just points to Wanda and Willard Feldmann being the writers of the song, but I may be barking up the wrong tree?! I’d be forever grateful knowing the name of the act, and just to hear it again!

    Reply
  27. It always happens to me. I find a new beautiful song, I listen and then forget to bookmark it. After some days I sudden remember the song and forget the name of the track.

    I always have to fight against this.

    Reply
  28. Had the LP and CD of the Insiders album. Saw them jn Chicago in the 0s. Produced by George Martin I think or remember. Nick Hopkins is on one track.

    Reply
    • Hi Fred. I stumbled across the LP in Stockholm last year and picked it up. Yep, Nicky Hopkins plays on “Sad Songs.” Can’t find any mention of George Martin, though; the album was produced by Jay O’Rourke, one of the band’s guitarists.

      Reply
  29. You won’t believe this, but I’ve been trying to track down a song I believed to be called “Devotion” since it came out. Only problem is, I only knew the line “All I need is your devotion” and didn’t know who the band was – always thought it was Lone Justice! Anyway, this morning I was determined and by chance stumbled across this blog, and decided to search using Discogs. I knew it was no later than 1988, as there was a girl at my school who was a big Lone Justice fan and I remember asking her about the song. Unsurprisingly, she’d never heard of it. Anyway, scouring the 1980s section, and figuring it was a UK band, as I heard it on BBC Radio One at the time, I found it on the second page! The song was an album track called “Devotion” by Fruits Of Passion. Next stop – buy the LP!

    Reply
  30. I’ve been trying, but so far, no luck. All I have to go on is that it was on a mix cd around 2000, was a female house DJ who sang along to her own mixes, possibly nordic, and the song stuck in my head starts with her saying what sounds like “Elizabeth, Elizabeth.”

    …I might die without hearing it again. [laugh]

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  31. Can you remember the name of the DJ? Just wondering if she put out any compilations/mixes around that time. I used to follow Mrs Wood but she was more hard house. Can only think of ‘Underwater’ by Elizabeth Fraser, Crazy Red by Elizabeth, The Real Thing/Stop Playing Game by Reasons feat. Elizabeth Brown. Wish I could think of house tunes called Elizabeth!

    Reply
  32. Hi I am trying to find a song from the early 1970’s can’t remember the artist, I think Australian blues/rock, about a baby not wanting to be born. Memory is cloudy but I think some of the lyrics are (all I can remember and may not be correct)

    “ don’t want to go through that tunnel, don’t want to be someone’s trouble.”
    “Look out momma I’m on my way, from my whipped cream paradise”

    I have searched for hours with no luck, hoping someone can help

    Reply
  33. Hi, I have used all the methods above, and sadly no longer have the cassette. All I know is the track was played by Tommy Vance on the Friday Rock Show (UK) sometime in 1983. It was an extended jazz-prog rock song, with a pronounced fretless bass, starting off quiet, with just one simple piano chord repeated. The vocals kick in eventually – sounding croony, kind of like Zappa’s style. The only lyrics I can remember are his singing “strange, strange, strange” slowly, in descending chord shapes. Stylistically it was in the same ballpark as Brand X, UK and bands like that. If anyone can work it out, I’ll be forever in your debt (PS I have a vague recall of it poss being a solo artist – something like Big Bill Broonzy, that kind of name, but I might be entirely wrong)

    Reply
    • Hi Guy, could it be ‘Strange’ by The Big Jim Sullivan Band from their album ‘Test Of Time’?

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      • Thank you so much – you have solved a mystery that I thought would never be solved in my lifetime!! My next mission is to try and find a copy of the album. I owe you a very large drink of your choice.

        Reply
        • I’m so glad it was the tune! Used to love the Tommy Vance show, good memories! I know what it’s like to be after a tune for many years – there are a couple on my list that I have pretty much given up on! p.s Anything vodka-based please haha!

          Reply
  34. OK, trying to find an 80’s song. I remember the video (MTV), an African tribe was in a circle among some rocks, there was a circle painted on a rock, only lyrics I can remember where “C’mon and talk to me, you better talk to meeeee, fire in the mountain, (something) on the lake, … and I’ve took all I can take”. Very powerful, had an Afro-beat. I just had a couple of hours’ look through Discogs, nothing.

    Reply
    • Hi Rebecca. I’m really hoping that what I think this is – is it! Because it’s a great tune. Is it ‘Talk To me (I Can Hear You Now)’ by Iam Siam?

      Reply
  35. Hi Mark,

    I have been looking for a song I taped off a college radio show in the late 1990s. I have searched for it all over the internet to no avail and recently posted about it on Reddit (https://www.reddit.com/r/tipofmytongue/comments/h8j236/tomt_song_70s80sor_90s_help_me_find_this_punk/)

    Someone posted the link to your blog post and I tried the methods listed and have found the song. Just wanted to write a note of gratitude to you. THANK YOU!!

    Reply
  36. Mark – pls help me ! all my friends think I’m making this up. I have partial lyrics to a late-1960’s (?) song that literally NO ONE else that I know …. knows !!! I have no idea who the group is either, making this search even more impossible. here are the lyrics that I do know (chorus ?) :

    (Direction)
    Ya, you’re the one I love
    (Direction)
    You’re the one I’m dreaming of
    (Direction)
    …. don’t know this next line ….
    You’re the one that I want to save me

    that’s all I can recall. like I said – probably late 1960’s, and I don’t know the band.

    I’m old now, and may just have to take this one to my grave, without sharing with others ?

    Reply
    • “you’re the one” by the vogues (1965)

      Reply
    • I Cathy, I am pretty certain that the song you are after is ‘Direction’ by ‘Grin’.
      If it is, the lyrics go:
      (I need direction)
      I need a girl to love
      (direction)
      you’re the one I’m thinking of
      (direction)
      I need an innocent lady,
      you’re the joy that I want to save me…
      I have my paws crossed that it’s your tune!

      Reply
    • Hi Cathy, I am pretty certain that the song you are after is ‘Direction’ by ‘Grin’.
      If it is, the lyrics go:
      (I need direction)
      I need a girl to love
      (direction)
      you’re the one I’m thinking of
      (direction)
      I need an innocent lady,
      you’re the joy that I want to save me…
      I have my paws crossed that it’s your tune!

      Reply
  37. that’s not it. thanx anyways

    the lyrics that I remember clearly repeat the word “direction”. which always lead me to believe that the song itself is called either “Direction” or “I need Direction”

    Reply
  38. Dear detective, I’m froma little third world country in South America, sometime in the 80’s /90’s befor I came to the USA, there was a gospel song playing in my homeland, never got the group’ s name nor the name of the song, I’ve tried using my limited skills to find it since, but no success. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I Could only remember the chorus:

    The grass is always greener
    The sky forever blue
    We all know that something’s better there for us to do
    We feel we can get over
    You believe you’ve got it made
    All problems will be solved
    If we could only find a way to the other side.

    Reply
  39. I am looking for a song from the 1980–1990s decade. The first line was “I want to be a star da da…I want to be a star”. I cannot remember the group nor song name.

    Reply
  40. today on the radio i heard some rock song, vaugely led zepplin-y, it was very catchy and was repeating a lyric like “love me please” or “love me again”. i know i’ve heard it before, but i can’t remember enough lyrics to find it online.

    Reply
  41. Searching for years a song that i’m not sure for the lyrics

    I heard it for first AND ONLY ONE TIME IN 2002

    IF I REMEMBER GOOD the lyrics goes something like this

    ” We found you OR we fond year ”

    At the end of the chorus i remember this

    ” We told you, we disappear tonight, we disappear tonight ”

    It was a pop rock song,
    and the vocals are SO SIMILAR TO CARTOON BOYFRIEND ( that was not the band )

    Sorry, but i really hope some one to understand what i’m mean

    Reply
  42. I read your article and tried your recommendations among many others and I still can’t find my song. A piece of it is all I can find, appearing at the end of Cold Case Files episode A Son Remember. Sounds very Chris Cornell ballad-ish. Among lyrics are “I can’t tell you what it takes to process everything I still make my mistakes (unintelligible) Reassure my spirit now it’s ok (unintelligible) do what you can to survive.” Here’s that episode on A&E’s site: https://play.aetv.com/shows/cold-case-files/season-5/episode-6

    Reply
  43. I just found your site and I am THAT guy. 27 years of searching and still no idea what this tune is. I’ve tried most things, crowd-sourcing, contacting DJs who may have played it and looking through Discogs. This one is elusive to say the least. There is just this one vocal sample in it ‘ooh ooh ooh woah wo’ – I’m totally stumped. I can tell you that every other tune on this mixtape was released in 1993 so it is likely that this is from that year.

    Here is the track: https://youtu.be/ljRV65XmY2Q?t=4068

    Reply
  44. I have tried to no avail to find the sample to what I was told was an 80’s song by the artist who used it as a sample. Artist’s name is ‘sparkly night’ & the song is called ‘make it right’—it is on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYM4TRqEv8M. Any help or direction would be greatly appreciated! Thank you

    Reply
  45. Hi Mark. I’m hoping you can help. I heard a song on a country radio station in the 90’s by a female singer. (Although the song may be more rhythm and blues than country.) The theme was a young girl is taken to her mother’s work and another “waitress” sits her down to tell her about the “boys and the blues.” All I can remember other than the catchy tune and her deep voice, is the below lyrics and maybe a horn/trumpet (?)

    “You’ve got more class than your Mamma and there’s a lot more at stake to lose

    Never give your last name
    never take a deep breath
    never give your number, he’ll bug you to death,”

    I’ve tried searching the lyrics for years, singing the song on the apps with no luck. I’m hoping you have more luck. Thank you.

    Reply
  46. Hello. I’m writing to you in the hope that you’ll be able to find in your archives. I am specifically looking for the title of a piece of music that was used to promote the program Cinéma 12 Midnight Movie in the 1975’s at CFCF 12 TV channel in Montréal. This tv promotion usually ran in the afternoon and broadcast excerpts from films accompanied by orchestral music with a distinct synthesizer beginning. The piece mixed orchestral sound with modern sound.

    I’ve been trying to find this piece for a long time now and I’ve been looking for the name of the LP album I bought in 1975. From memory, the whole album was instrumental. Thank you for helping me in my search and maybe finally find an answer to my questioning that has been going on for so many years.

    Reply
  47. i recently tried your suggestion about searching through discogs for songs with little information. sad to say, i came up empty. i was wondering if you could help me out. the main lyric i remember is “the radio is still playing.” the audio that i can remember is what sounds like am stations being tuned in at the beginning, a mellow bass line, and very calm vocals. thank you.

    Reply
  48. OMG LOL your brilliant mark haha! I do this same thing and it makes me NUTS CUZ I HAVE OCD! and I can’t do ANYTHING right until I find out what song it is because it drives me CRAZY! And most the time 99% of the time I end up finding it but this song I only have like 1 or 2% of it! 😭 this happens to be one of those 1% times and I’m losing my MIND!!!!! I can’t think of It for the life of me!!!! anymore and if I did it probably would be wrong so I’ll just say what I know for sure and maybe genious you ir someone else ( one of your followers off of here ) will know?! ( I HOOE ! ) crossing fingers!) so my boyfriend was watching a show on tv and I heard a song play only a few seconds before it switched scenes and I freaked out cuz I love that old song and I wanted to hear it he had me go and look up this website to apply for a job since he’s been asking all day and we only have my one phone for web access unfortunately at this time so I went to go it dreading cuz I kept thinking of the song….. so then I couldn’t stop thinking of it so I started to search….. after 20 minutes or so I remembered he would know what show he was watching so I asked him to rewind but he says he changed channels since then!!!!! Ugh and he didn’t know the band or never seen it see it’s not a big deal he don’t have OCD so he don’t understand how important it is to me!!!!! but now I can’t! rewind the show he moved way to far from there!!!! So hopefully you can help all I know is I’m pretty sure Italy’s an older rock song but it’s very soft and slow with a really cool sound effect in background…. a man singing it….. and only things I remember him saying is “ I’m not alone! I think he says I’m not alone following oh no! So it’s something like “ I’m not alone, “ oh no” , I’m not alone!

    Ugh I can’t find NOWHERE ITS MAKING ME Nuts! Thanks in advance n I’ll let you know if I find it! Thanks!
    Ps: it’s not any of these songs I list! Cuz I BEILEVE it’s an 80s song! And I know it doesn’t help that it has same lyrics or song name As a lot of songs! So I feel I might never find and the craziest thing about it is I can year it in my head now but just don’t know any other words 😭😡 lol!
    It’s not:
    Calvin Harris
    David Bowie
    Bruce springsting
    Heart
    Chicago
    Marie Miller

    Love, Sarah

    Reply
  49. Is this thread still active?
    Tried to use Discogs to find a song but can’t.
    It was on the sound system in a retail store. It was an R & B song. The song right after it was “Weekend Girl” by SOS so maybe this mystery song is from the 1980s or maybe not.
    The lyrics were something like “brothers and sisters I’ll give you shelter.”
    Then at times he seems to be singing “You and I”.
    The ending seems to have a lot of “I’ll keep you warm. I’ll keep you warm.”
    Anyone?
    Cool stuff Mark. Thanks.

    Reply
  50. Hope this is still active… Reposting my question:

    Tough one: song heard on KROQ (Los Angeles) in the early 80s. Hook was “I was impressed/ when you got undressed”. Other lyrics “let’s not talk about love I say, you never liked me anyway” [or, I never liked you; not sure]
    Probably an indie; standard searches turn up nothing. Does anybody know it?!
    I’ll be impressed 🙂

    Reply
    • Hi George, I saw your comment and originally spent a few hours searching. My fave music seems always be from that time period so we especially keen to know the song too. Sadly I didn’t find anything, but I’m going to try again for you! – Bluey G

      Reply
      • Thx Bluey!…I’ve been searching too. Almost certainly an indie, it doesn’t show up in the usual places, discogs, databases… I wonder, does KROQ have archives that far back? Next time I’m in LA I should pay them a visit.

        Reply
        • You’re welcome! Wish I could reply with good news, but nothing yet. Was it a male or female vocalist? I’m wondering if it was the next track on a compilation featuring SOS Band, or a ‘same label’ record being played, or no links to them at all!

          Reply
          • Male vocalist.
            I doubt it’s SOS, didn’t sound like them.
            –did some local band just slip a tape to Jed the Fish or somebody?!

  51. Apologies George, that comment was mean’t to be for David above, as was searching for both again, oops. Just reading about Jed The Fish, sounds like a very cool DJ (I’m in the UK and din’t know him so good to learn something today!) Right i’m going to try and do another search. The lyrics you heard sound so familiar that it’s driving me crazy!

    Reply
  52. I’m still hunting for a mid 70s tune that it seems only I know and nobody else does! 😉

    I’ve tried all the lyric finder apps. Anyone here any good at finding mid 70s pop?

    This is how I remember the lyric:

    “Baby baby baby I can see it in your eyes you don’t have to tell me that it’s over,
    Baby baby bay, baby baby baby, you don’t have to say you love ‘just because the way it used to be”

    If anyone can give me any pointers I’d be very pleased as I have sung these few lines to myself for well over 40 years 😉

    Reply
    • Hi Lilpink. Can you remember if it was a male or female singing, and was it rock, pop, disco? I’ll try and do some searching 🙂 Best wishes.

      Reply
      • Thank you Bluey G! It was definitely a pop or very early pop meets disco sort of track. I *think* it was a male voice and it would have been mid 70s I’m sure. I can’t be 100% but I’d surprised if it was later than 75 or 76.
        Appreciate your help. So infuriating to have a 40 plus year old ear worm 😀

        Reply
  53. Looking for song just heard but couldn’t shazam before it ended. Know it was a real popular song in past decade I believe. Female singer, pop song. Main chorus is “You’ve got….” then I couldn’t hear. Think it also said “you and I are are in this together” or something similar.

    Reply
  54. Can someone please help me identify the song title that includes the following lyrics:

    “I can’t take it, I just can’t take it, now I’m leaving and I ain’t coming back, before you grooving, I’ll be packing and moving and you’ll come home finding me gone.”

    It may have been a 70’s slow R&B song.

    Thank you for any leads!

    Reply

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