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You’re sitting on the couch, snack in hand, when the theme song of your favorite show starts playing. You shout out the lyrics that you know by heart and are ready to mindlessly watch the lives of fictional characters. At least, this was my experience growing up. 

There’s something about lyrics and a catchy tune that makes the content we watch so much more memorable. Unfortunately, intro theme songs aren’t as prevalent anymore, but this is a list of some classics and how they became so popular. 

Friends

The famous fountain, iconic orange couch and hand claps became a national phenomenon when “I’ll Be There For You” by The Rembrandts debuted as the “Friends” theme song. The creators of the show, Marta Kauffman and David Crane, actually helped co-write the song and executive producers added the clapping. Audiences loved the song so much that it was released as a pop song and became a #1 single on the American pop charts. I don’t foresee a day where this theme song will ever get old.

Full House

“Full House” was a classic family show where everyone could find a character they related to. The theme song “Everywhere You Look” was written specifically for the sitcom by Jesse Frederick and Bennett Salvay. The song encapsulated the meaning of the show so well and as soon as you heard it and saw the short clips playing of each character, you almost felt the comfort of being with your own family. The outpouring of love for this show lasted so long that it was remade over 20 years after the original aired. “Fuller House” used the same theme song, but was sung by Carly Rae Jepsen and given more of a pop sound. I personally thought the new version missed the mark, but that doesn’t take away from the legacy that the original “Full House” theme song left. 

The Golden Girls

This one is a personal favorite because I am a 60-year-old at heart. “Thank You for Being a Friend” was actually written as a single by the musician Andrew Gold seven years before “The Golden Girls” premiered. The song was repurposed in 1985 for the show and that’s when fans fell in love with it. The song has since been played during World Series games, at the end of Super Bowl XL, during an NFL ad, on “The Simpsons”, and in a “Saturday Night Live” sketch. “The Golden Girls” had such a warm and nostalgic feeling that the theme song captured so well and fans are still able to enjoy it decades later. 

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

You’re probably living under a rock if you haven’t heard the “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” theme song. Even if you’ve never seen the show, you have likely heard the longest TV theme song of the 90’s, running a little over a minute. The song was written by Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff in just 15 minutes, and will likely continue to be known in households nationwide for years to come. There’s just something so special about it that brings out the inner rapper in all of us. 

Hannah Montana

“The Best of Both Worlds” from “Hannah Montana” single-handedly made girls from my generation want to live double lives when they were eight years old. I have to say, I was pretty disappointed when I found out this song wasn’t actually written by Miley Cyrus. It was written by Matthew Gerrard and Robbie Nevil, who I owe many thanks to because this song never left my head from 2006 to 2011. They also wrote “Nobody’s Perfect” for the show, which was another classic that shaped my childhood. My dream of living a double life might have died a while ago, but whenever I hear this song, I’m taken back to nights sitting on my couch wishing I was Miley Stewart/Hannah Montana.

Each of these shows were great on their own, but their theme song made them so much more memorable and the excitement would build as the song was playing. I don’t know why TV theme songs are dying out, because they brought so much joy to viewers even when the show wasn’t playing right in front of them. This is something that I definitely hope makes a comeback in the near future. 

Kelsey Thomas is a junior Professional Writing and Rhetoric major at Baylor University. She was born and raised in the Rose Capital, Tyler, TX. Outside of school, she loves going to the movies, checking things off her bucket list, and organizing anything possible. She can always find comfort in rainy days spent snuggling with her pets and listening to her worship playlist.
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