Arts & Culture

How a Meme Got a Classic Song Back on the Charts

Holly Fritz, Contributor

Is there anything memes can’t do these days? On March 22, after an Internet troll criticized British-American rock band Fleetwood Mac’s music as “so boring, you can’t even dance to it,” Twitter user @bottledfleet was not having it.

@bottledfleet tweeted in response with an edited video of dancer Elexis Wilson and backup dancers from Alcorn State University in Mississippi dancing to Fleetwood Mac’s hit song, “Dreams” from their 1977 album, “” The tweet and video instantly went viral with over 142,000 retweets and over 336,000 likes.

Many reproductions of the meme have since appeared on other social media outlets, such as Facebook. The original video has been viewed 6.92 million times, and the song is back on the charts, peaking at No. 14 after on Billboard’s Hot Rock Songs after a week, and is now at No. 16. Billboard also reported that download sales for the song increased by 36 percent, and it was streamed 1.9 million times in the first week after the meme went viral.

Originally written by Stevie Nicks for fellow bandmate and then-boyfriend Lindsey Buckingham, “Dreams” was first released in the US in 1977. It reached No. 1 in the U.S. and Canada, and held the spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for one week in June of that year. In the U.K., it peaked at No. 24, and stayed in the top 40 for 8 weeks. It was also dubbed Fleetwood Mac’s highest charting single of the 1970s when it reached No. 11 on the Adult Contemporary chart.

This isn’t the first time Fleetwood Mac’s music has seen a resurgence in popularity. “Rumours” had increased album sales and online streams after Marvel’s  “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” featured “The Chain” on the soundtrack. “Rumours” was also just inducted into the National Recording Registry, among other artists such as Tony Bennett and The Temptations.

The Internet is an incredibly powerful tool for the modern world. But this is a small example of the little things that it can do that often go underappreciated. It can make people laugh, and it can remind us of those that contributed to how we got to where we are today. If a contemporary joke can suddenly bring back an appreciation of something from decades before, then it just goes to show that social media is a growing power for voices of a new generation with a sense of humor that is distinctly their own.

This article first appeared in the Friday, April 20 Edition of The Echo.