I’m not entirely sure what the appropriate jukebox selection is at a Waffle House. A mellow track to help you wind down the night with a short stack? Some laid-back classic rock on a Sunday morning? According to a list of the Top 10 choices last year on the TouchTones jukeboxes inside Waffle Houses, I’m way off—the appropriate choices are high-school party stalwarts like Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop The Feeling!” or strangely sexy mood-setters like Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud.”
The list, compiled from 2018 song choices at the roughly 1,900 Waffle House jukeboxes, indicates that people are either trying to keep the party going or work through some confounding feelings:
1. “Location” by Khalid
Okay, this is actually a fairly chill track and despite the fact that it has a flirty subtext, I’d listen to this while housing some French toast.
2. “Body Like A Back Road” by Sam Hunt
I swear I hear this song once ever 30 minutes on the radio, so I guess it makes sense that it would infiltrate Waffle House speakers as well. Call me a prude but I don’t really want to hear “Got hips like honey, so thick and so sweet” while I’m trying to enjoy my smothered hash browns.
3. “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” by Justin Timberlake
This song is everywhere and I can’t take it anymore. It even has an exclamation point in its title, ugh.
4. “Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran
5. “Blue Ain’t Your Color” by Keith Urban
This style of semi-contemplative country ballad is what I figure plays in the background of roadside diners where steely-eyed cowboys eat pie late at night, so I dig this choice.
6. “Tennessee Whiskey” by Chris Stapleton
Ditto. This plays.
7. “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson feat. Bruno Mars
Bar mitzvah classic, and also apparently a Waffle House go-to.
8. “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
More Ed Sheeran, this time featuring the line “Will your mouth still remember the taste of my love?” No, because it’s full of pancakes.
9. “Too Good at Goodbyes” by Sam Smith
This is a weirdly soulful choice and I’m fine with it.
10. “Can’t Feel My Face” by The Weeknd
It’s a song about uppers, which is naturally what I think of when I’m making the arduous bacon vs. sausage decision.