It only takes one song.
Comprehensive discographies are totally overrated. Brag about your consecutive No. 1 singles as much as you'd like, but few musicians can convince me to proudly announce that I get knocked down, but I get up again. You're never gonna keep me down.
Today (Sept. 25) is National One-Hit Wonder Day.
Music writer Steve Rosen created the holiday in 1990, according to a Huffington Post article. "Rosen stopped openly promoting National One-Hit Wonder Day in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks, but the day has lived on without him," the article notes.
Defining "one-hit wonder" is surprisingly difficult.
Wikipedia offers a commonly used definition: any act that's had only one top-40 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. Believe it or not, many acts fall under this umbrella. Case in point: Blink-182. "All the Small Things" was their only song to crack the top 40 on the aforementioned Billboard chart, but I'd hardly consider them a one-hit wonder.
But maybe I'm biased. After all, "What's My Age Again?" is among my go-to dance party tunes.
Confusion aside, I define "one-hit wonder" as any act whose additional singles don't come to mind within 10 seconds of mentioning their major song.
Here are my top five favorite one-hit wonders.
This list was surprisingly difficult to compile. I tried to stick to the "only one top-40 hit" definition, but that requirement really threw me. Many acts were more popular than I remembered. I'm looking at you, Eiffel 65.
"Tubthumping" by Chumbawamba
After this article's second paragraph, you probably saw this one coming. But what's not to love? The underlying focus on perseverance, paired with references to Danny Boy and vodka, is simply amazing. Sadly, Wikipedia says Chumbawamba broke up in 2012.
"Your Woman" by White Town
Few things about this song make sense...which is a big reason why it's so perfect. For what it's worth, White Town is the work of one man, according to Wikipedia. No word on new material.
"I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" by The Proclaimers
Pure awesomeness. The Proclaimers released their most recent album in 2012, according to Wikipedia.
"Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)" by Lou Bega
The only thing missing from this song? My name. I guess I'll forgive him.
"Mickey" by Toni Basil
Chances are, you'll have this song stuck in your head for the rest of the day. And it's totally worth it.