Pi Day Playlist: 11 Mathematical Songs to Calculate Your Day
Happy Pi Day! March 14 (also known as 3.14) celebrates the irrational number. While many take this day to indulge in their favorites pies, we here at Music Times are all about the math.
To coincide with this Pi Day, we've compiled our favorite numerical hits, from the addition of Radiohead to the countdowns of Feist and Beyoncé. So get out your calculators, pens and textbooks and study up with our 11 favorite math-y songs!
01. Radiohead, "2+2=5"
"Two and two always makes a five," Thom Yorke sings at the end of the first and second verses of this standout Hail to the Thief track. That may or may not be mathematically correct, but it's been a while since we've taken arithmetic, so who are we to say it can't be true? All you have to do is believe.
02. Barenaked Ladies, "One Week"
Remember those word problems you had to solve in elementary school, figuring out who is standing where in line? There's something about the timeline of this classic '90s rock track that feels like those puzzles. If today is Monday, and it's been one week since you looked at me, on what day will we finally say we're sorry?
03. Brian McKnight, "Back at One"
Numerology, the practice of assigning a deeper meaning to a number, is not really a scientific component to math, but that didn't stop Brian McKnight in this legendary 1999 love ballad. One is the dream of love, two is simply being together, etc. It's romantic and based in taking careful steps based on numbers!!
04. Feist, "1234"
Brian McKnight isn't the only one who can count to love. Feist's big breakout hit "1234" ties together the innocence of teenage love with counting to 10. Though she forgets numbers seven and eight, Feist's song is so delightful for learning basic counting that she even appeared on Sesame Street with the tune.
05. Britney Spears, "3"
If Feist's song and counting to 10 are all about innocent love, Britney Spears proved that "3" is the naughtiest number. In this controversial hit, Spears proved that "3" is the sexiest number, as she teamed up with Peter and Paul for a little bit of a pow-wow.
06. Beyoncé, "Countdown"
Thus far, we've been counting up, but Beyoncé has always been one to buck the trends. She ties together dressing to the nines, being a lucky number seven and being the one in this clever anthem from her numerically titled album 4. Singing the alphabet backwards is hard, but Bey makes counting down from 10 as easy and catchy as pie.
07. Manchester Orchestra, "Simple Math"
Simple math is comprised of things like addition, subtraction and maybe your multiplication tables. But, it's also the basis for existence, which Manchester Orchestra tackles here. Simple math, it's how our bodies even got here / Sinful math, the ebb and flow to multiply... / Simple math, the truth cannot be fractioned," Andy Hull sings. 1+1 gets heavy really quickly...
08. Violent Femmes, "Add It Up"
If math makes you angry, feel free to channel that into this classic punk jam. Whether its bills, homework, making change or an indecisive lover, feel free to scream along "Add it up!" Trust us, it can be quite cathartic.
09. Spice Girls, "2 Become 1"
Two can mathematically become one by being divided by itself, but soulfully, two can become one through sweet, sweet lovemaking, which the Spice Girls sang about in this sultry late-'90s jam. And who said math couldn't be sexy??
10. Brand New, "Seventy Times 7"
490 is the answer to this multiplication problem, in case you were wondering. But, Brand New and Jesse Lacy sing about everything school doesn't teach you in this Your Favorite Weapon track, like how to forgive... or maybe not.
11. Modest Mouse, "Never Ending Math Equation"
According to this song, "the universe works on a math equation / That never even ever really even ends in the end / Infinity spirals out creation." And everything from the hours in a day to the tides of the moon are driven by math. So, memorize your pi beyond 3.14 and marvel in it all.