Obscure Singles Heard at CVS

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I like Afterburner but yeah outside of "why am I hearing Sleeping Bag at CVS?" insanity I don't know why anything from it would make regular rotation on rock radio now

― da croupier, Thursday, October 11, 2012 2:32 PM

I tweeted this a few days ago. Recently:

Duran Duran - Do You Believe in Shame
Michael Penn - This and That

the ones that I'm near most: fellow outcasts and ilxors (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 11 October 2012 18:50 (four years ago) Permalink

Semisonic: All About Chemistry

50 Shades of Greil (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 11 October 2012 18:56 (four years ago) Permalink

Grocery store, not CVS, but "Echo Beach" by Martha and the Muffins.

Baked. And yet so soupy. (Dan Peterson), Thursday, 11 October 2012 19:03 (four years ago) Permalink

Not a CVS but I recently heard "I Am The Slime" by Zappa when I was getting my hair cut

chr1sb3singer, Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:19 (four years ago) Permalink

once heard the entirety of they might be giants' flood on the walmart radio station.

balls, Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:24 (four years ago) Permalink

jesus buddy were you waiting for an oil change or something?

there is no dana, only (goole), Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:24 (four years ago) Permalink

ie it wasn't some worker blasting flood thru the store pa, it was the corporate radio station piped into walmarts coast to coast for some reason doing a 'showcase' on flood.

balls, Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:25 (four years ago) Permalink

haha i think (dear god i hope) it started soon after i arrived and i may have indeed lingered to take it in, hear 'twisting' for the first time in however many years, take half an hour to decide whether or not i want poptarts, etc. something very fucked about hearing this blasting at walmart though:

balls, Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:28 (four years ago) Permalink

hahaha that's better than what I was guessing, which was "Your Racist Friend"

The Owls of Ja Rule (DJP), Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:29 (four years ago) Permalink

I heard Cracker's cover of "Shake Some Action" in CVS just two nights ago.

Johnny Fever, Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:32 (four years ago) Permalink

Others:

Boz Scaggs - Miss Sun
a-ha - The Sun Always Shines on TV
Tyler Collins - Girls Night Out
Toni Childs - Don't Walk Away

the ones that I'm near most: fellow outcasts and ilxors (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 11 October 2012 21:34 (four years ago) Permalink

Huh I heard echo beach at Barnes & noble last week.

we fed him, now he's an 8 million pound troll all over our board (Hunt3r), Thursday, 11 October 2012 23:47 (four years ago) Permalink

weirdest one i remember was "change your mind" by neil young while i was standing in line to get painkillers a few years ago. must've been a radio edit. felt appropriate.

tylerw, Friday, 12 October 2012 00:37 (four years ago) Permalink

Michael Penn - This and That
also, this song is so classic

tylerw, Friday, 12 October 2012 00:38 (four years ago) Permalink

Heard "Let's Hang On" which was a minor Top 40 for Barry Manilow at a Rite Aid once.

jetfan, Friday, 12 October 2012 02:27 (four years ago) Permalink

Sunrise by Duran Duran at Papa Ginos a month or so ago.
Why would THAT happen?

mr.raffles, Wednesday, 17 October 2012 03:21 (four years ago) Permalink

lite rock cover of Catch the Sun by Doves @ my bank

suggest butt (Pillbox), Wednesday, 17 October 2012 04:19 (four years ago) Permalink

"Heaven's on Fire" by KISS was playing on at least two separate occasions at the CVS by my college

not an obscure single really but jarring in the soft-rock context, heard "More Bounce to the Ounce" at the local grocery store a few months ago

no love spud webb (fadanuf4erybody), Wednesday, 17 October 2012 04:36 (four years ago) Permalink

REM - "All The Way To Reno"

da croupier, Wednesday, 17 October 2012 15:53 (four years ago) Permalink

ie it wasn't some worker blasting flood thru the store pa, it was the corporate radio station piped into walmarts coast to coast for some reason doing a 'showcase' on flood.

― balls, Thursday, October 11, 2012 5:25 PM (6 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

That is exceptionally weird and now I want to listen to that album which I haven't done in years.

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Wednesday, 17 October 2012 15:55 (four years ago) Permalink

It's not obscure but I was euphoric when I heard Amy Grant's "I Will Remember You" yesterday.

the ones that I'm near most: fellow outcasts and ilxors (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 17 October 2012 16:09 (four years ago) Permalink

was picking up prescription for antidepressant at walgreens and they were playing "i wanna be sedated." no lie.

andrew m., Wednesday, 17 October 2012 16:13 (four years ago) Permalink

heard velvet underground - oh! sweet nuthin' at walgreens last week

Anime Mann (diamonddave85), Wednesday, 17 October 2012 16:16 (four years ago) Permalink

Sugar Ray's "Chasin You Around" at Met Foods. The second single off In Pursuit Of Leisure, the album after the last one anyone cared about

da croupier, Sunday, 28 October 2012 13:52 (four years ago) Permalink

not obscure but heard like a 10-minute Tool deep cut in a 24 hour kroger once. it was weird because there was usually just soft rock & r&b playing there

turds (Hungry4Ass), Sunday, 28 October 2012 16:07 (four years ago) Permalink

a couple visits to shop rite ago i heard the 12-inch edit of "she's always in my hair"

charlie the luna (strongo hulkington's ghost dad), Sunday, 28 October 2012 16:10 (four years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

I'm just gonna use this thread for obscure songs heard in any retail setting:

Roxy Music - 2HB in Noodles and Company yesterday.

German Disco Songsmith (Dan Peterson), Monday, 13 January 2014 22:18 (three years ago) Permalink

The other week in Morrisons they were playing 'If I Could Talk I'd Tell You' by the Lemonheads (a #39 smash in 1996).

Gavin, Leeds, Wednesday, 15 January 2014 16:18 (three years ago) Permalink

Heard the Kinks' "Juke Box Music" in a grocery store a couple of years ago. Barely a hit in the US in 1977, never played on "classic rock" radio.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Wednesday, 15 January 2014 17:51 (three years ago) Permalink

lol i heard donna lewis's flop second single "without love" in a cvs once

dyl, Wednesday, 15 January 2014 18:22 (three years ago) Permalink

Heard "For What It's Worth" by The Cardigans in the grocery store the other day.

justfanoe (Greg Fanoe), Wednesday, 15 January 2014 18:30 (three years ago) Permalink

four weeks pass...

not that obscure really but heard dennis deyoung's "desert moon" followed by madonna's "this used to be my playground" on KRGR kroger radio last night, the algorithm was feeling some super intense nostalgia apparently

balls, Wednesday, 12 February 2014 21:06 (three years ago) Permalink

Thought this was a revival of this thread: albert hammond, "it never rains in southern california"

The Crescent City of Kador (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 12 February 2014 21:07 (three years ago) Permalink

Not obscure, but I really enjoyed hearing Scritti Politti at CVS yesterday.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 12 February 2014 21:20 (three years ago) Permalink

I heard the song 'On the Beach' by Neil Young at the grocery store once.

Austin, Wednesday, 12 February 2014 23:46 (three years ago) Permalink

Heard "Couple Days Off" by Huey Lewis & The News last night at Whataburger.

...out of that weakness, out of that envy, out of that fear.. (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 13 February 2014 03:17 (three years ago) Permalink

Heard "Emerge" Fischerspooner at a Florida water-park

Mark G, Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:14 (three years ago) Permalink

https://soundcloud.com/hennessyyoungman/cvsbangers

, Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:21 (three years ago) Permalink

haha thank you, a classic

raggett neds of your summer dress (The Reverend), Thursday, 13 February 2014 07:44 (three years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Jack In The Box is good for these. Today it was "Wild Wild Life" by Talking Heads, and last time a couple weeks ago I heard "Canary In A Coalmine" by The Police.

Interior. Ibiza Bar (C. Grisso/McCain), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 21:07 (three years ago) Permalink

It's not obscure but I was euphoric when I heard Amy Grant's "I Will Remember You" yesterday.

alfred i'd start straight up bawling

emo canon in twee major (BradNelson), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:04 (three years ago) Permalink

I heard that really sterile, generic, terrible ballad by "Sergio Mendes" from the 80s...."Never Gonna Let You Go"...in a Zaxby's.

Neanderthal, Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:06 (three years ago) Permalink

whenever i'm in cvs i hear "shattered dreams"

emo canon in twee major (BradNelson), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:06 (three years ago) Permalink

I heard Jack Wagner's "All I Need" and Richard Marx's "Hazard" once in an Albertsons during a 4 hour shift. I remain convinced that they had not changed their Muzak since my childhood.

Neanderthal, Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:09 (three years ago) Permalink

and whenever I hit the "from this empty heart" falsetto several mothers in the cold medicine section scowl

Bryan Fairy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:10 (three years ago) Permalink

hahaha. I can't help not singing along to that tune either. that or "All I Need is a Miracle".

Neanderthal, Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:11 (three years ago) Permalink

haha otm

goole, Thursday, 27 March 2014 14:39 (three years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Shopping for pencils and invisible tape at CVS this morning I heard "Soul Drifter" by Lindsey Buckingham!

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 15 April 2014 14:49 (two years ago) Permalink

^^^^ I've heard it at CVS too

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 15 April 2014 14:49 (two years ago) Permalink

Manu Dibango - "Soul Makossa," in H.E.B. yesterday (though for some reason, in that store, the only place you can usually hear the music without straining your ears is in the restroom)

xhuxk, Wednesday, 16 April 2014 18:16 (two years ago) Permalink

Pavement, I think "Gold Soundz?" - at Trader Joe's

timellison, Saturday, 12 November 2016 07:11 (four months ago) Permalink

Talking Heads: "Warning Sign" at this mom'n'pop pizza joint I ate at last night (noteworthy mainly because it was surrounded by really played-out Classic Rock stuff--think "Carry On Wayward Son" & such--and Johnny Cash for some reason)

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 19 November 2016 02:45 (four months ago) Permalink

John Mellencamp: "Key West Intermezzo" at the FedEx Store.

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Wednesday, 30 November 2016 22:49 (four months ago) Permalink

Marshall Crenshaw: "Someday Someway" actually at CVS (and interrupted at least twice for ads)

― Don A Henley And Get Over It (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, November 13, 2014 7:19 PM (two years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I too have heard "Someday, Someway" at CVS. Also heard "IGY" by Donald Fagen.

― ablaeser, Friday, November 14, 2014 9:45 PM (two years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Crenshaw - Whenever You're on My Mind. Hear it all the time now in the grocery...

― Jimmy_Chop, Sunday, May 1, 2016 8:59 AM (seven months ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

My friend is interviewing Crenshaw on the radio rn, and they just had a little sidestep wherein they discussed hearing his music (particularly "Whenever You're On My Mind") in stores and restaurants.

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Tuesday, 6 December 2016 20:32 (three months ago) Permalink

"Recover" by Chvrches at Cane's.

Bee OK, Wednesday, 7 December 2016 05:13 (three months ago) Permalink

Carl Perkins: "Matchbox" at Whataburger.

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 12 December 2016 18:01 (three months ago) Permalink

White Stripes: "Conquest" and Black Crowds: "Go Faster" at Freebirds

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Wednesday, 14 December 2016 01:01 (three months ago) Permalink

Black CROWES

a full playlist of presidential apocalypse jams (C. Grisso/McCain), Wednesday, 14 December 2016 01:01 (three months ago) Permalink

Thanks to Spotify/Pandora it's easy nowadays for obscure stuff to slip into background music.

skip, Wednesday, 14 December 2016 07:23 (three months ago) Permalink

live version of Life During Wartime from Stop Making Sense

how's life, Wednesday, 14 December 2016 12:31 (three months ago) Permalink

Heard a version of The Cramps' "TV Set" in a restaurant yesterday. Turns out it's a cover by Spoon, from the Poltergeist OST, I had no idea.

Snorting and all (Dan Peterson), Wednesday, 14 December 2016 15:00 (three months ago) Permalink

The Cure — Cut Here

Singing along at the top of my lungs whilst driving the forklift.

Austin, Friday, 16 December 2016 05:44 (three months ago) Permalink

Howard Jones "Life in One Day" at the bank.

who even are those other cats (Eazy), Friday, 16 December 2016 17:11 (three months ago) Permalink

Delaney & Bonnie: "Only You & I Know" at Fuzzy's Taco Shop

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Sunday, 25 December 2016 02:05 (three months ago) Permalink

Saint Etienne: "I Was Born On Christmas Day" (on Deep Cut Xmas Muzak) at Denny's

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Sunday, 25 December 2016 22:41 (three months ago) Permalink

"Hong Kong Garden" at a Vons grocery store in San Diego.

timellison, Thursday, 29 December 2016 18:51 (three months ago) Permalink

lol

how's life, Thursday, 29 December 2016 18:52 (three months ago) Permalink

Moby Grape "8:05" in a McDonalds, how did that happen?

Lee626, Thursday, 29 December 2016 19:44 (three months ago) Permalink

Ray Kroc was a head

Forty Watson & the Jute Gute (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 30 December 2016 08:51 (three months ago) Permalink

Edwin Starr: "Agent Double-O-Soul" at McDonald's

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 5 January 2017 01:26 (two months ago) Permalink

Polly Brown "Up In A Puff Of Smoke" at a restaurant in Kissimmee, FL. I'm certain I have not heard this since it was new in 1975.

Snorting and all (Dan Peterson), Thursday, 5 January 2017 15:17 (two months ago) Permalink

I have literally never heard Sugarloaf before in my life. Song was decent.

Austin, Sunday, 8 January 2017 01:50 (two months ago) Permalink

Oh, that's a big one! Love that kinda lumpy, good-natured but insistent riff.... I guess there's not much else to it as a song. You'd hear it - the single edit anyway - infrequently on classic rock radio when I was a teen. Not a total out-of-the-blue thing but not in regular rotation. I can remember a point in tenth grade or so when I specifically registered it as a song that existed and got excited figuring out that riff in keyboard class (it didn't take long). Their other hit, "Don't Call Us, We'll Call You" is pretty different in style/vibe, honestly not too great but interesting if you're into "rock stars bitching about the rock business" things.

mega pegasus for reindeer (Doctor Casino), Sunday, 8 January 2017 05:21 (two months ago) Permalink

The touch-tone phone dialing you hear in "Don't Call Us, We'll Call You" was the real (and unlisted) phone number of their previous record company that had just dumped them, the band likely hoping they'd get lots of prank calls

Lee626, Sunday, 8 January 2017 06:48 (two months ago) Permalink

Ha! Wow.

mega pegasus for reindeer (Doctor Casino), Sunday, 8 January 2017 14:41 (two months ago) Permalink

not exactly fitting for this thread, given its status as an underground classic, but i was surprised to hear "Vitamin C" by Can at a Chipotle in south Phoenix last month

intheblanks, Sunday, 8 January 2017 17:32 (two months ago) Permalink

IMHO that counts! Although it crystallizes something about this thread to me, which is that there's at least two versions of this. One is where retail playlist designers design or lease some algorithm meant to add "hippitude" (I'm guessing) - hence the Can and Television and Buzzcocks and so on. The other is where an algorithm meant to capture popular, well-liked music omnivorously consumes anything that's ever charted or been semi-popular or was released as a single by a top-40 act.

Version two is sorta more interesting in that it gives the uncanny sense that you are dealing with a live human DJ pulling out unjustly overlooked faves, even though everything they play can still be found in a reasonably well-stocked karaoke binder. AFAICT the people who make professional licensed karaoke CDs are similarly wont to include anything that was ever a 'hit.' A shame there is no way to measure the actual performance rate of these things - I have a strong suspicion nobody has ever once actively chosen to sing Van Halen's "Feels So Good" or Swing Out Sister's "La La," but there they are in the listings...

mega pegasus for reindeer (Doctor Casino), Sunday, 8 January 2017 18:11 (two months ago) Permalink

Actually there is a sort of way to track karaoke performance rates--albeit a very localized one. For my friend's birthday last summer, his wife rented out a private room at one of the big (although imho not the best) places in town. Alongside the binders (which were a bit out of date), they had a computer terminal where you would actually pull up and queue the track you wanted to sing. Each entry had a play count for the venue alongside it. There were several obvious Pop and Country things that were in the thousands. As for me, I gave (iirc) "Dead Flowers" and maybe a couple other things a debut.

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Sunday, 8 January 2017 18:27 (two months ago) Permalink

Oh, yeah, that makes sense. I pretty much avoid booth-style karaoke though, and there's no tracking with the "hand in a penciled-on slip to the emcee" version.

mega pegasus for reindeer (Doctor Casino), Sunday, 8 January 2017 19:29 (two months ago) Permalink

last week, I went to a different location of the grocery store that I always go to (where I've heard everything reported on in this thread) and it was all instrumental smooth jazz.

how's life, Sunday, 8 January 2017 19:37 (two months ago) Permalink

Heard "Fascination" (the Human League song) in At Home. Not so obscure, but at the same time not something I can ever remember hearing in a store, while out and about, at least since the 80s.

_Rudipherous_, Monday, 9 January 2017 00:08 (two months ago) Permalink

not exactly fitting for this thread, given its status as an underground classic, but i was surprised to hear "Vitamin C" by Can at a Chipotle in south Phoenix last month

Very interesting to see this, because there was something I've wanted to post here for a while but I felt it might not be relevant. At the gym I go to - and this is why I hesitated, I wasn't sure if a gym is comparable to CVS or a similar retail outlet, but anyway - they normally play one of two things, a) a spectacularly dull classic rock mix, with CCR played at least once every half hour, or b) a Top 40 dance mix. Well one day recently I was doing my exercises and suddenly Can's "Vitamin C" came on. I don't know why, or what algorithm brought that about, but there it was.

Josefa, Monday, 9 January 2017 05:19 (two months ago) Permalink

Bowie's "Sound and Vision" in the supermarket just now.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Monday, 9 January 2017 23:17 (two months ago) Permalink

IMHO that counts! Although it crystallizes something about this thread to me, which is that there's at least two versions of this. One is where retail playlist designers design or lease some algorithm meant to add "hippitude" (I'm guessing) - hence the Can and Television and Buzzcocks and so on. The other is where an algorithm meant to capture popular, well-liked music omnivorously consumes anything that's ever charted or been semi-popular or was released as a single by a top-40 act.

A third version of this kind of works as a fusion of the first two. BACKGROUND: Both my Mom and my sister are merchandisers for a magazine & other goods company that services most of the major chains in America. This jobs takes then into multiple stores daily, incliding CVS, Walgreens etc. Occasionally they'll ask me about some song they hear in those stores. one that sticks out was a single by JD McPherson, a neo-Rockabilly guy who's on Rounder, which was getting a lot of play in drug and grocery stores. I imagine his label, knowing that there is no place for him on commercial radio, instead turns promotion towards Muzak and related services. His song gets played in stores, getting exposed to way more ears than any terrestrial radio could (since alot of these services can guarantee one spin being heard coast-to-coast in thousands of Krogers), and hopefully a % of those hearing said song will Shazam it with a purchase or stream following.

So you get a song that is already kind of hip and at best will only be semi-popular chart-wise rubbing shoulders with the latest dispatches from Adele, Taylor, or Meghan Trainor in every grocery/drug/clothing store.

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 9 January 2017 23:55 (two months ago) Permalink

I think this was discussed somewhere on ILM when it broke, but it needs to be here too:

http://www.chartattack.com/news/2015/10/09/someone-just-uploaded-their-complete-collection-of-kmart-in-store-background-music/

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 9 January 2017 23:57 (two months ago) Permalink

Not me, but a friend is at Pearson Airport in Toronto and heard the Yardbirds' "I Can't Make Your Way" over the PA.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 12 January 2017 19:58 (two months ago) Permalink

"Sleeping Satellite" by Tasmin Archer in a local burger joint (#32 in the US).

naus, Wednesday, 18 January 2017 05:37 (two months ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Lulu: "Oh Me Oh My" at Goodwill

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 4 February 2017 23:39 (one month ago) Permalink

...and Mercy: "Love Can Make You Happy"

"I must believe that my charm was not in my ass." (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 4 February 2017 23:59 (one month ago) Permalink

Doobie Brothers - "Echoes of Love" at my local supermarket.

MarkoP, Wednesday, 8 February 2017 18:27 (one month ago) Permalink

War: "All Day Music" at the FedEx Store

to fly across the city and find Aerosmith's car (C. Grisso/McCain), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 22:27 (one month ago) Permalink

Reminds me that I heard "Cisco Kid" last week st the supermarket.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Wednesday, 8 February 2017 23:10 (one month ago) Permalink

Steve Miller: "Dance Dance Dance" & Boz Scaggs "Breakdown Dead Ahead" at Krogers

to fly across the city and find Aerosmith's car (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 9 February 2017 05:24 (one month ago) Permalink

The Yardbirds' "For Your Love" at Walmart.

timellison, Monday, 13 February 2017 22:08 (one month ago) Permalink

Not obscure, but it's still kind of strange to hear "London Calling" when I'm (lost) in the supermarket.

Hideous Lump, Tuesday, 14 February 2017 05:34 (one month ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

Holy Shit!

Big Star: "September Gurls" at FUDDRUCKERS

to fly across the city and find Aerosmith's car (C. Grisso/McCain), Friday, 10 March 2017 21:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

the fuck are you doing at a Fuddruckers

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 10 March 2017 21:55 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Elton John "Tower of Babel" at Foodtown

Hideous Lump, Saturday, 18 March 2017 04:00 (one week ago) Permalink

ok woah.

tales of a scorched-earth nothing (Doctor Casino), Saturday, 18 March 2017 05:51 (one week ago) Permalink

Lyle Lovett: "Private Conversation" at Randall's

to fly across the city and find Aerosmith's car (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 23 March 2017 04:21 (one week ago) Permalink


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