Playlist: Hangin’ On The Telephone

Phones are these really interesting devices that you tap on and put up next to your face and then they let you talk to anybody, anywhere in the world. You can call your grandma on her birthday! You can call the pizza shop and ask them to bring you pizza! If you want a cute person to call you, you can give them your secret number code and then spend the next few days glaring at your phone until it rings. You can stay up talking to someone awesome until it’s the next day and you didn’t even notice. Once I called my best friend who lived across town and I saw a plane cross the sky, and then thirty seconds later she saw it too. Technology is amazing.

These are situations full of dramatic potential, so it’s natural that so many great songs have been written about phones.  Next time you’re waiting for a call, throw this on in the background. Perhaps it’ll give you the courage to call first, even.



Hangin’ On The Telephone


Stephanie Says – The Velvet Underground
Telephone – The Black Angels
Golden Phone – Micachu
Call Me Maybe – Carly Rae Jepsen
Long Distance Operator – Bob Dylan & The Band
Angel, Won’t You Call Me – The Decemberists
My Number – Tegan & Sara
Girl On The Phone – The Jam
Telephone Wires – Mirah
Hanging On The Telephone – Blondie
Telephone – Lady Gaga feat. Beyonce
Hello Operator – The White Stripes
I Wanna Be Your Telephone – Jamie Lidell
Bratty B – Best Coast
The Call – Backstreet Boys
Answering Machine – The Replacements
Call Your Girlfriend – Robyn

Hangin’ On The Telephone from Autostraddle on 8tracks Radio.

Want to suggest a playlist theme? Hit Crystal up on Formspring and someone of the team might make it for you.

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Cara is a former contributing editor for Autostraddle and a current staff writer at Atlas Obscura. She lives in Somerville with her girlfriend, their roommate, and a cat who can flush the toilet, and is generally thinking about gender, sustainable biodiversity, and/or rock & roll music. You can follow her on twitter @cjgiaimo if you want.

Cara has written 113 articles for us.


        • UGH.

          Okay but actually I just looked up the lyrics to that and I can’t decide if the really degrading puns are offensive sooo maybe good call on that, Cara.


  1. Thanks for the playlist! Late night marathon calls that go til the birds start chirping and the sun comes up are the best.

    I’d like to add 867-5309/Jenny by Tommy Tutone to this list.

  2. After The Call by Electrelane

    extra relevant because
    a) it’s a girl singing about a girl
    b) it’s featured in S03E06 of skins which is the one where Naomi & Emily get it on (I probably shouldn’t know that but I do, sorry not sorry)

    P.S. Hanging On The Telephone is one of my all time favourite songs and my love for Blondie is undying

  3. Exceptional playlist.

    My favourite phone-related song right now is Walk Off The Earth’s cover of “Payphone” (Maroon 5) (I know).

    • i almost put “Payphone”! But then I figured there were enough soaring pop beats. Haven’t heard that cover, I’ll check it out!

  4. the problem with this playlist is that it makes me wish i was hangin’ on the telephone with a cute girl instead of transcribing interviews and putting together a calendar of events for tiny humans in manhattan. possibly this means i should stop listening to it at work…

    (definitely not gonna stop listening to it at work though.)

    • There is also “LOL Smiley Face” by Trey Songz feat. Gucci Mane. But it has the same issues as the Ludacris feat. Nate Dogg number mentioned above. Ah well.

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