The Most Popular Hold Music: An Insightful Ranking

Choose the hold music you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 24, 2024 06:11
Welcome to StrawPoll, where your opinions truly matter! Ever been on hold, tapping your foot to a catchy tune or humming along to a melody that's hard to forget? It's time to settle the debate once and for all as we delve into the fascinating world of hold music! Join us in ranking the most popular tunes that have graced our ears during those long waiting periods. We've carefully curated a list of the catchiest, most soothing, and downright unforgettable hold music tracks for you to vote on. Can't find your favorite earworm on the list? Fret not, as you can also suggest a missing option to make sure your pick gets the recognition it deserves. So, let's get those votes rolling and find out which hold music reigns supreme!

What Is the Most Popular Hold Music?

  1. 1
    This classic bossa nova tune has been used as hold music by countless businesses over the years. Its smooth and relaxing melody makes it an ideal choice for calming customers while they wait.
    The Girl from Ipanema is a bossa nova jazz song that became one of the most popular and iconic hold music choices. It was originally composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim, with Portuguese lyrics written by Vinicius de Moraes and English lyrics translated by Norman Gimbel. The version by Astrud Gilberto and Stan Getz is the most recognized and widely played rendition.
    • Genre: Bossa Nova, Jazz
    • Release Date: 1964
    • Duration: 4 minutes and 48 seconds
    • Language: English and Portuguese
    • Record Label: Verve Records
  2. 2
    This Baroque piece has become one of the most recognizable and popular classical compositions in the world. Its repetitive structure and gentle, soothing sound make it a perfect choice for hold music.
    The 'Canon in D' is a highly popular and widely recognized classical composition known for its beautiful and soothing melody. It is a canon, which means the piece is constructed in such a way that multiple parts play the same melody in succession, creating a layered and harmonious effect. The composition is written for three violins and basso continuo, with a simple yet elegant structure.
    • Genre: Baroque music
    • Key: D major
    • Time Signature: 4/4
    • Form: Ground bass
    • Structure: Canon
    "Canon in D" by Johann Pachelbel in other rankings
  3. 3
    This song, made famous by Audrey Hepburn in the film "Breakfast at Tiffany's," is a timeless classic that evokes feelings of nostalgia and romance. Its gentle melody and dreamy lyrics make it a great choice for hold music.
    Moon River is a timeless and enchanting melody written by Henry Mancini. With its soft and dreamy quality, it captivates listeners with its romantic and introspective mood. The song has gained tremendous popularity and has been recorded by numerous artists from different genres over the years.
    • Year of Composition: 1961
    • Genre: Film Music/Pop
    • Length: 2 minutes and 41 seconds
    • Key: C major
    • Tempo: Moderate
    "Moon River" by Henry Mancini in other rankings
  4. 4
    This traditional English folk song has been used as hold music by many businesses over the years. Its haunting melody and simple, repetitive structure make it a calming and soothing choice for customers on hold.
    Greensleeves is a traditional English folk song that is widely recognized for its beautiful melody and lyrics. It is a popular tune that has been performed and recorded by numerous artists in various genres.
    • Genre: Folk
    • Language: English
    • Time Signature: 3/4
    • Key: E minor
    • Melody: Complex and haunting
  5. 5
    This famous piano piece is instantly recognizable and has been used as hold music by many businesses. Its playful yet soothing melody makes it a great choice for calming customers on hold.
    Für Elise is a well-known piano piece composed by Ludwig van Beethoven. It is a solo piano composition in A minor, featuring a delicate and enchanting melody. The piece is often admired for its elegance, simplicity, and emotional depth.
    • Genre: Classical
    • Tempo: Moderato
    • Form: Bagatelle
    • Time Signature: 3/8
    • Key: A minor
    "Für Elise" by Ludwig van Beethoven in other rankings
  6. 6
    "The Entertainer" by Scott Joplin
    Scott Joplin · Public domain
    This ragtime classic is upbeat and playful, making it a great choice for hold music that will keep customers from getting too bored or frustrated while waiting.
    The Entertainer is a classic ragtime piano composition written by Scott Joplin in 1902. It is one of the most recognized and iconic piano pieces in the world.
    • Genre: Ragtime
    • Year of composition: 1902
    • Key: C major
    • Meter: 4/4
    • Tempo: Moderately fast
    "The Entertainer" by Scott Joplin in other rankings
  7. 7
    This beautiful piece for string orchestra is calm and soothing, making it an ideal choice for hold music. Its gentle melody and simple structure make it a classic choice that has been used by many businesses.
    ''Air on the G String'' is a well-known musical composition composed by Johann Sebastian Bach in the early 18th century. It belongs to a larger instrumental work called Orchestral Suite No. 3. This piece is known for its soothing and melodic qualities, making it a popular choice for hold music.
    • Composition date: Early 18th century
    • Genre: Classical
    • Instruments used: Violins, violas, cellos, and basses
    • Key: D major
    • Tempo: Andante
  8. 8
    "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Stannered · Public domain
    This lively and cheerful piece is instantly recognizable and has been used as hold music by many businesses. Its upbeat tempo and joyful melody make it a great choice for keeping customers on hold entertained.
    Eine Kleine Nachtmusik is a serenade composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in 1787. It is one of his most popular and widely recognized compositions.
    • Genre: Classical
    • Composition Date: 1787
    • Instrumentation: String ensemble
    • Number of movements: 4
    • Key: G major
    "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in other rankings
  9. 9
    This famous waltz is elegant and sophisticated, making it a great choice for hold music for more high-end businesses. Its flowing melody and graceful tempo make it a classic choice that has been used by many companies.
    The Blue Danube is a waltz composed by Johann Strauss II, a prominent Austrian composer known as the 'Waltz King'. It is one of his most famous and enduring compositions. The waltz was first performed in 1867 and has since become synonymous with Viennese culture.
    • Composed: 1867
    • Genre: Orchestral waltz
    • Key: A major
    • Meter: 3/4
    • Duration: Approximately 10 minutes
    "The Blue Danube" by Johann Strauss II in other rankings
  10. 10
    This lively and playful opera overture has been used as hold music by many businesses over the years. Its energetic tempo and catchy melody make it a great choice for keeping customers on hold engaged and entertained.
    The Barber of Seville is a comic opera composed by Gioachino Rossini. It premiered in 1816 and has since become one of the most popular and enduring operas in the repertoire. The opera tells the story of Count Almaviva and his pursuit of love, aided by the clever barber Figaro, as they outwit and overcome various obstacles to win the heart of Rosina. It is known for its catchy melodies, lively and humorous plot, and vibrant characters.
    • Genre: Opera
    • Premiere Year: 1816
    • Language: Italian
    • Number of Acts: 2
    • Main Characters: Count Almaviva, Rosina, Figaro

Missing your favorite hold music?


Ranking factors for popular hold music

  1. Universality
    The music should be appreciated and well-received by a wide range of audiences, regardless of their age, gender, or cultural background. It should have a broad appeal and not be associated with any particular niche or genre.
  2. Tempo
    Hold music should typically have a moderate tempo, as very slow or very fast music can be irritating or distracting to the listener. The tempo should be neither too slow nor too fast as to induce impatience or tension in the caller.
  3. Tone and mood
    The music should convey a positive and calming atmosphere to help the caller feel at ease while waiting on hold. The tone should be soothing and create a sense of comfort and reassurance.
  4. Instrumentation
    Hold music should ideally feature simple and pleasant melodies, often with a mix of both acoustic and digital instruments. The instrumentation should avoid being overly complex or loud, which can be irritating to the listener.
  5. Familiarity
    Popular hold music should preferably be recognizable tunes or melodies, as familiarity can evoke positive emotions and create a more enjoyable experience for the caller. However, it's important to avoid using copyright-protected music without permission.
  6. Loop-ability
    The hold music should be able to loop seamlessly without creating abrupt or jarring transitions. A smooth, continuous loop of music ensures a consistent listening experience for the caller.
  7. Duration
    Ideally, the hold music should be long enough to prevent repetition from becoming tiresome for the caller. It should provide enough variety to maintain interest without being too lengthy or complex.
  8. Non-offensive content
    The hold music should be free of any potentially offensive or controversial content, including explicit language, controversial themes, or divisive political or social messages.
  9. Volume levels
    Hold music should be played at an appropriate volume that is not too loud or too soft. It should be loud enough for the listener to hear it clearly but not so loud that it disrupts or overwhelms the call.
  10. Accessibility and user preference
    In some cases, it may be valuable to offer an option for users to select their preferred genre or style of hold music. This can help to cater to individual preferences and create a better overall experience for the caller.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular hold music. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or hold music is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 215 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each hold music once every 24 hours. The rank of each hold music is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular hold music

Hold music, also known as elevator music or Muzak, is the music played for callers when placed on hold during a phone call. This type of music has been around since the early 1900s and was originally used in elevators to calm nervous passengers. Today, hold music is used by businesses to keep callers entertained and engaged while they wait on hold. With so many options available, it can be difficult to determine which hold music is the most popular. At StrawPoll, we've collected data and insights from our users to help shed some light on this topic. Read on to discover which hold music reigns supreme!

Share this article