Theme Song Contest – All Entries

The Science of Music (Courtesy Flickr user wlodi)

How On Earth’s Theme Song Contest is no longer accepting submissions.

Thank you to all the talented musicians who offered their music in support of KGNU’s local, community programming. We were very impressed with all of the entries, and you can still listen to them here.

For comparison, here is the theme we were replacing after many years of faithful service to How On Earth. It was written by Tim Morton and produced by Tom Wasinger.

How On Earth Theme


  • Paper Bird is a local band putting their own unique spin on the folk genre. They submitted a track from their 2010 album When The River Took Flight.

Yellow Sun - Paper Bird

  • T3KL3R is a composer whose music is featured in the games of Boulder-based design company Team Phobic, including Electropy and Undead Ocean.

Patient Truth - T3KL3R

  • Jon Stubbs is a composer, musician, educator, and long-time KGNU member. He is also part of local band Hamster Theater.

Dancers - Jon Stubbs
Phoenix - Jon Stubbs
Dreams - Jon Stubbs

  • The Buck Fifty is an emerging Boulder-based trio playing their acoustic blend of folk and bluegrass – Mile High Americana.

Spray - The Buck Fifty

  • Jababa is a 5-piece instrumental group from Boulder. They blend elements of funk, fusion, and progressive rock to create a new hybrid genre that both honors the traditions of these styles while simultaneously forging new ground..

Booty Sox - Jababa
Green Slime - Jababa
Look Paw No Hands - Jababa

8 thoughts on “Theme Song Contest – All Entries”

  1. It’s hard not to like the Dancers theme from Jon Stubbs. Very classily mysterious and versatile. I like the other two also. These seem to make more of a commitment to the more odd or surprising aspects of science news. Can’t go wrong here though, I’d say!

  2. Patient Truth is my favorite. It stands apart from the rest because it is well-mastered and has a catchy melody, yet it still leaves me feeling inquisitive. Phoenix and Dreams also put question marks in my mind. But, I feel like they are almost too disjointed and uncertain. (I don’t want to be apprehensive about listening to the show!) I also like that the sound of the human heart beat is the foundation of the composition.

  3. Jababa’s Green Slime immediately caught my attention as having the strongest and most intriguing theme. Not only would this song make me recognize that How on Earth was about to begin, but its melody would also stick with me beyond the duration of the program, as Tom Wasinger suggested a good theme song should. I think several of the other submissions tend to have a darkness and/or electronic quality that only speaks to a small part of science and fails to capture its ability to create a sense of wonder at how amazingly complex and interconnected our world is. The way that Green Slime begins with a slightly more questioning edge and then rejoins with a fuller, more upbeat second half before closing with another questioning note brings to mind the scientific method, with its progression from observing phenomena, to formulating hypotheses, to the thrill of gaining new insight into how the world works, while always uncovering new questions and ideas in the process. Come to think of it, this also mirrors the trajectory of many How on Earth stories, too. My vote is for Green Slime!

  4. I vote for:
    Green Slime – soft and classy
    Dancers – inspires wonder
    Patient Truth – I feel like it has more of the science-like voice
    Spray – energetic

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