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The Best Song About the Periodic Table of Elements You'll Ever Hear: VIDEO


Think of this as ASAP Science's version of 'Schoolhouse Rock'.


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  1. Encodes a lot more information than the Tom Lehrer song, but somehow doesn't pack the same punch. Lehrer managed to be entertaining as well as educational.

    (Or rather, he was going for "entertaining" and managed incidentally to be educational, inspiring thousands of nerds to learn his song.)

    Posted by: BABH | May 18, 2013 9:17:10 AM

  2. Tom Lehrer did this forty years ago with a much punchier song....

    Posted by: Keppler | May 18, 2013 10:30:14 AM

  3. @KEPPLER, While you may find the earlier version to have more "punch", it is missing many elements, which can easily be found with a search, some people have even put out corrected versions with the missing elements added on at the end.
    Regardless of the elements that have been added since Lehrer, this one puts them in order, making it far more valuable as a learning device than Lehrer's.

    Posted by: Chris | May 18, 2013 11:12:35 AM

  4. Um.. I like remember 3 or 4 of those elements from high school...carbon? what's that? No one needs to know what radon is except plumbers maybe.

    Posted by: dumbnhung | May 18, 2013 11:26:07 AM

  5. Um.. I like remember 3 or 4 of those elements from high school...carbon? what's that? No one needs to know what radon is except plumbers maybe.

    Posted by: dumbnhung | May 18, 2013 11:26:07 AM

  6. my boyfriend is a geologist and I'm a dancer/singer, finally I found the point were our two universes converge :-))

    Posted by: Kylian | May 18, 2013 12:05:31 PM

  7. *the point WHERE. Sorry, me stupid dancer (and french speaking..)

    Posted by: Kylian | May 18, 2013 12:06:45 PM

  8. It would be nice if this song went into how all elements (except hydrogen and some helium) are manufucatured inside the hot core of stars. And how the exploding of supernovae dispersed these new elements that were not created by the Big Bang throughout the universe. And how molecules of inanimate matter can eventually lead to life (simple molecles, complex molecules, nucleotides, RNA, DNA, then later bacteria and algae) when chemistry becomes biology. All animals, including people, evolved from bacteria in the sea. They are our ancient ancestors. And rocks, planets, and people are all connected. Rocks are responsible for life. The Periodic Table is part of the cookbook, the ingredients, that make life possible. And when we die, we become part of the universe and part of the rocks again.

    Posted by: will | May 18, 2013 12:20:43 PM

  9. @Chris: As I said, this one is more educational, but I think far, far fewer people will ever take the trouble to learn this one by heart.

    And Lehrer didn't miss any - he allowed for the fact that "there may be many others / but they haven't been discovered." An expression of the joyful incompleteness of our scientific knowledge - there's always more to discover! - that is sadly lacking from this song.

    Posted by: BABH | May 18, 2013 2:58:25 PM

  10. @will

    then stop bitching and write IT YOURSELF

    Andy I love this site, but it should be called Trollroad. Negative comments, armchair bitchery, and general clueless snobbery abound.

    Posted by: QJ201 | May 18, 2013 3:35:23 PM

  11. Will, I'm really surprised that they were not able to get in all of your suggestions into a 3 minute song. I'm loooking forward, though, to your comments when Andy posts a haiku. There will be a lot of pressure on those 17 syllables...

    Posted by: bravo | May 18, 2013 7:58:20 PM

  12. Tom Lehrer is a god. Yes I learned the Gilbert and Sullivan setting of the elements word for word and can fumble through it on piano. Love, love, love that man.

    Posted by: Rob | May 19, 2013 2:32:19 PM

  13. @QJ201: "Trollroad." LOL. Thank you for that.

    Posted by: MickleSt | May 20, 2013 10:53:46 AM

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