I guess there really is no one reason why a song is a good song. There are many factors that can weigh in but when it comes down to it, don't you like most songs simply because you like them? You can't describe why you like it, you just can't help but listen to it over and over again.
Besides that, there is one factor that I like to include into the mix that you might not even think about. It's the roll-off-the-tongue factor. What is that? Simply stated, it how the words of a song just seem to make your tongue do a happy dance when you sing along. Even before you truly know the words, you can feel your tongue doing the samba in your mouth in perfect fluid motion worthy of a spot on Dancing With The Stars.
I discovered the roll-off-your-tongue factor when my girlfriend and I were driving from Maine to Kansas in June of 2008. It was about a 1,500 drive which ended up being a 3-day trip, and since we both had a car we were stuck driving alone. There was a lot of music blasting and belting along in those 3 days.
A couple of months earlier I had purchased the new solo album from my fave band Our Lady Peace's lead man, Raine Maida called A Hunter's Lullaby. At the time I was really digging the track, "Yellow Brick Road". Oddly enough, it kinda fit our situation as we were moving to Kansas, home of Dorothy, Toto, and twisters that use houses to attack witches.
I must have listened to that track at least 30 times on that trip. (That and "King" by Weezer.) Each time I sang along I couldn't help but concentrate on what my tongue was doing. (While I was concentrating on the road of course.) I mean, how often do you really think about your tongue? It does so many things on a daily basis without you even thinking about it. It really blows your mind if you think about everything it does while you're sitting at the computer, eating a Nutty Bar, or singing.
"Yellow Brick Road" was the song that made my tongue dance a cha-cha inside my mouth everytime the track blasted out the speakers of my Corolla. Aside from the great lyrics, music, and outstanding performance by one of my favorite artists out there, for me, it's that dance that my tongue does every time I sing along that makes the song so great.
Take a listen to the song in the video below. It's set to footage from our drive from Maine to Kansas as taken by our cell phone cameras. Not the greatest quality, but I think we did a darn fine job if I do say so myself.
"Yellow Brick Road" by Raine Maida courtesy of Nettwerk Records 2007.