It could only be “Macarena” by Los del Rio (although some might make a strong argument for “Who Let the Dogs Out” by Baja Men.
The great thing about “Macarena” is that it represents nearly everything that is so compelling about one-hit wonders.
It’s a novelty song…just like “Disco Duck” by Rick Dees.
It’s a dance craze…just like “The Hustle” by Van McCoy.
It’s a passing fad…just like “Pac-Man Fever” by Buckner and Garcia.
It’s obnoxious…just like “Who Let the Dogs Out” by Baja Men.
It gets people off their butts and onto the dance floor all these years after its release…just like “Jump Around” by House of Pain.
It’s a one-hit wonder legend that will likely never die…just like “Baby Got Back” by Sir Mix-a-Lot.
It’s performed by a bunch of old guys…just like “Amazing Grace” by The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards.
It held “I Love You Now and Forever” by Donna Lewis out of the top spot on the Billboard charts since it was the number-one song for 14 weeks.
Nothing about this Spanish-language song should have transformed it into a hit. Nothing!
But “Macarena” lives on and both delights and torments listeners daily and will for years to come.
Listen to Macarena – Los del Rio (Bayside Boys Mix)
I ran a poll on Top One-Hit Wonders.com that asked “What is the most annoying one-hit wonder of all time?”
Although voting was remarkably close, “Macarena” emerged victorious with the dubious title of “Most annoying one-hit wonder.” Its only real competition was “Who Let the Dogs Out” by Baja Men. It was a hard-fought battle but I’ll stand by the results that “Macarena” is the most annoying hit ever.
But I don’t believe it. Not for a second.
“Macarena” isn’t really that bad. In fact, there are way worse songs that became hits. Try “Sugar Don’t Bite” by Sam Harris or “Disco Lucy” by the Wilton Street Band. Now those are some awful songs and deserving of the title, worst one-hit wonders.
In 2002, VH1 ranked “Macarena” the #1 Greatest One-Hit Wonder of all Time. I’ll stand by the results that “Macarena” is the greatest one-hit wonder ever, too.
“Macarena,” like so many massively popular songs before it, is simply overplayed. Sure the dance is silly and ridiculously easy. Sure there is nothing rock ‘n’ roll about two middle-aged men singing a song in Spanish while beautiful women frolic on the video and teach you a dance that is silly and ridiculously easy. Sure you’ve heard the song way too often and your mom and grandmother know the dance. So does your father in law and your seventh-grade chemistry teacher. And the first girl or boy you ever kissed.
But admit it; you don’t hate “Macarena.” Society and your friends just tell you that you should.
Embrace your inner “Macarena” I say. Go against the grain and like a song people love to hate. Dance “Macarena” at the next wedding reception with reckless abandon. Go with the flow instead of against it.
“Macarena” hit #1 on the Billboard Top 40 in 1996 making Los Del Rio a one-hit wonder. Gentlemen, I salute you. You’ve achieved what so many artists only dream about: immortality and infamy with the greatest, worst, most annoying, most joyful one-hit wonder ever.
Filed under: 1990s, Pop · Tags: 1996, Baja Men, Buckner and Garcia, Disco Duck, Donna Lewis, I Love You Now and Forever, I'm Too Sexy, Los Del Rio, Macarena, Mickey, novelty hit, novelty song, Pac Man Fever, Rick Dees, Right Said Fred, Sam Harris, Sugar Don't Bite, The Hustle, Toni Basil, Van McCoy, Who Let the Dogs Out, worst one hit wonders