As I write this, I'm 52 minutes into this five-and-a-half hour rendition of "The Song That Doesn't End," recorded by Jordan Nicola Bridget Raskopoulos (formerly of the Australian comedy music group Axis of Awesome, who created the brilliant "Four Chord Song"). The Axis of Awesome YouTube uploaded the song on September 2, 2020, with the following description:
On August 28 Jordan smashed the world record for the longest performance of The Song That Doesn't end and raised a bunch of cash for LGBTQIA+ youth organisation Twenty10
American Songwriter provides a great history of the endlessly looping "Song That Doesn't End," which has only one verse:
This is the song that doesn't end
Yes, it goes on and on, my friends
Some people started singing it not knowing what it was
And they′ll continue singing it forever just because
The charmingly annoying earworm was first recorded by singer and puppeteer Shari Lewis, and was written by her producer Bernard Rothman. It found fame through the PBS television show Lamb Chop's Play-Along—at the end of each episode the characters sang the song ad nauseum until Lewis could convince them to stop.
While the Axis of Awesome YouTube asserts that Jordan's rendition is the world record for the longest performance of the song—and I found no evidence to the contrary—the Guinness World Record for "Longest Officially Released Song" was set in the spring of 2023 by Dr. Jagadeesh Pillai (India) in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India. The song is 138 hours, 41 minutes, and 20 seconds. Guinness World Records explains:
Dr. Pillai composed and recorded a single track based on the entire book of the poetic work "Shri Ram Charit Manas," which consists of more than 15,000 verses. The epic poem is in the Awadhi language (a folk form of Hindi), and composed by the 16th-century Indian bhakti poet Goswami Tulsidas.