Nonsense words like “whoa,” “la,” or “na” have always been one of my favorite features of songs. Instead of acting as filler, I think these words tend to act as harmony elements, recurring near choruses to add a little something extra; plus, they make songs way easier to sing along to. “Whoa” is kind of like the more melodic, less violent version of “Hey” that’s in so many recent songs. Paramore (of which Hayley Williams is the pictured lead singer) named a song “Whoa” so that they’d have a song that crowds could sing along with even if they’d never seen a Paramore show. Some of my very favorite bands (New Found Glory, Bayside, A Day to Remember - all featured on this list) use “whoa” fairly often, to the point that I joke that if a song has the word “whoa” in it, I’ll like it by default. It might not work for everyone, but this pop-influenced list is pretty solid.
Photo credit to Dan Cox