The Washington Post

Callin’ Hall & Oates: The hotline for musical emergencies


Hall & Oates (Wolf Trap/WOLF TRAP)

No matter. You should program this number into your cell phone anyway: 719-26-OATES (local rates may apply). It’s a Hall & Oates emergency hotline, and when you dial it, a warm British-accented voice will give you four choices: “One on One,” “Rich Girl,” “Maneater,” or “Private Eyes.” At the touch of a button, you’re nodding your head along to your favorite Hall & Oates song.

The hotline, called “Callin’ Oates,” was built as a work project by Michael Selvidge and Reid Butler, who work for the San Francisco communications company Twilio. Twilio requires that all new employees build an app, and the two put their heads together to come up with the pun, and app, they told The Verge (Selvidge is a fan of “Go Solo”).

Already, Hall & Oates fans are tweeting their thanks to the pair for saving them from H&O emergency urges. The Callin Oates Twitter account says that they’ve gotten more than 250,000 calls in less than two days. “Had an intense and unexpected urge to hear Rich Girl by Hall & Oates, @CallinOates saved my life,” tweeted @rylcrvns.

For Hall & Oates fans, or just people looking for a laugh on a slow holiday week, Callin’ Oates is a small holiday gift from two jokey developers to you. As they say on Twitter: “Happy HALLidays.”

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts.

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