What do you do when they won’t change the music at work?

Earlier this year, I was in a London hotel with a lobby stuck on a time warp. From what I could tell, they played the same music on two-hour loop 24/7. When I asked the guy behind the desk if they ever changed the music, he just sadly shook his head.

I remember the hell of working at a grocery store at Christmas. Inside the office–which was locked, naturally–was an 8-track player that fed speakers throughout the store. From about mid-November to New Year’s Eve, the same dozen songs were played over and over and over again. To this day, Burl Ives’ “Holly Jolly Christmas” activates my PTSD from the era.

I was reminded of all this with an email from Brenda.

In April of this year, I had to return to the workforce. I am in a retail environment and am slowly losing my mind after listening to the same crap music since I started. I recently asked a co-worker how often they change the loop. They told me that they’d been there for about two years and it’s never changed. Yikes! Have you or do you know if anyone who has either studied or given tips on how to survive this auditory hell?

I dread the Christmas season.



I feel her pain. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

One thought on “What do you do when they won’t change the music at work?

  • October 3, 2018 at 5:33 pm

    If you have access to the library of music played, slowly add songs that you like. At least it is something to look forward to… I don’t speak a word of Spanish… but I can perfectly sing along to every word of the Gypsy Kings’ Greatest Hits…


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