Lose Yourself (In The Digits)
“…if I’m not mistaken, my memory’s wakin’…
This number’s mine for the takin’…”
Listen to the song now!
(Or download the mp3 for your own creative purposes here!)
Rarely do the worlds of mathematics and hiphop collide, but when they do, well, it’s probably worth hearing (or at least your students will think so).
It’s called “Lose Yourself (In The Digits),” and it’s about the agony and thrill of getting up on stage and trying, under extreme pressure, to recite the digits of pi. It’s a close parody of the wellknown Eminem hit, “Lose Yourself,” which is about, well, the agony and thrill of getting up on stage and trying, under extreme pressure, to rap.
The rap was written a few days before Pi Day 2004, in what makes for a pretty strange tale. It has since been performed by its creator in front of hundreds of students, from 5th graders to college kids, and was recorded in late 2005. We hope it will put smiles on the faces of your students, as you download and play it in your classroom, wherever you are and whatever ages you may teach.
If you find it as entertaining as other folks have, we encourage you to tell your colleagues and students to come to TeachPi.org and download it for themselves. It’s simply a quirky gift to the Pi Daycelebrating community, and we want it to reach as many pi lovers as possible.

Our Favorite Music Video Tribute
Among the many videos of the rap created by classes around the country, here’s a great one from 2008 by math students at Fort Vancouver H.S. in Washington. Enjoy!

The Lyrics
Want to read the lyrics at your own pace? Trust us, they’re perfectly clean and mathematical. (Lyrics are the property of TeachPi.org.)
Look, if you had…one shot…one opportunity…
To recite the digits of the number pi… One moment…
Would you capture it… or just let it slip?His palms are sweaty, knees weak, head is heavy
The numbers cloud his vision already, keep it steady
He’s nervous, but on the surface he looks calm and ready
To recite, but it’s not quite offsettin’That he’s froze now, and the whole crowd knows he vowed
To get it perfect, but the numbers won’t come out
He’s chokin’, how – everybody’s jokin’ now
Three point one five—woops—kablouw!Snap back to reality, oh, it’s a malady
Oh, it’s so random, he choked
He can’t stand, but he won’t give up
That easy, no
He won’t have it, he knows – all his fans really hope
He can shatter the glob……al world record of Fo’…
…rtytwothousand*, although
Ifhelooks down at his notes, he knows that’s when it’s
Back to the learnin’ by rote
To feel rapture
He’d better capture those digits a little fasterYou better lose yourself in the digits of pi, it’s a high
But you got a thousand more to go
The numbers do not stop
Or drop into pattern, no
And memorizin’ ‘em takes most of a lifetimeIf I’m not mistaken, my memory’s wakin’
This number’s mine for the taking
Hear it ring, as I list all the, digits in order
And whole numbers are borin’, approximations just keep me snorin’,Pi only grows longer to get more precise
A roundedoff fraction just won’t cut the ice
So twentytwo sevenths, you take my advice
If I catch you round here, you willPay the price, so give up this façade,
Raysheeos are oh so flawed
They close the door to those who like infinite
Strings of oh’s, 2s, 9s, 3’s, and 6’s, itShows the woes ofallthe schmoes who chose
To forgo Pi’s logic, and I
Don’t suppose those bozos applaud it
When I throw down the gauntlet, with a
“Three point one four”… I got it!You better lose yourself in the digits of pi, it’s a high
But you got a thousand more to go
The numbers do not stop
Or drop into pattern, no
And memorizin’ ‘em takes most of a lifetime
Pi is 3.141592653589793238462643383279…No more games, I’ma bust right outta my cage, and
Get my Pirecitin’ groove on, on this here stage
I was playin’ in the beginnin’, the mood all changed
I been broken up from soakin’ up this whole pageBut I kept churnin’ and kept learnin’ to decipher
The rhythm of the number that makes me so hyper
All the pain and strife amplified by the
Fact that I can’t get back to my life, I’mWhacked and I don’t exactly know why, I’m
Acting like I am attracted to Pi! So
Back to a kid jampacked with random numbers
I think this whole process is makin’ me dumberIt still shakes me up, man, it makes me sentimental
That a number so essential is also transcendental
Caught up between bein’ in fashion and bein’ irrational
It’s passion flashin’ through my brain
Whenever I explain itI just think pi is nice, Would you… like a slice?
I’ve gotten to the point, it’s like a vice, I’m not
Afraid of gettin’ caught, but still it hurts a lot
Success is my only mathematic option, failure’s notPi, I love you, but these people got to know
A million tiny circles haunt my every thought
So here I go with my shot
Brain, fail me not,
This may be the only opportunity that I got!You better lose yourself in the digits of pi, it’s a high
But you got a thousand more to go
The numbers do not stop
Or drop into pattern, no
And memorizin’ ‘em takes most of a lifetime
Pi is… 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510582097494459…yeeeah.You can do anything you set your mind to, man. Even memorizin’ pi. I’m out.
* We realize that the new world record (though not yet verified) is 100,000 digits. The song was written when the record was 42,815. We stayed with the original number, because frankly, it fits the rhyme better!
Share any thoughts, reactions, or stories about playing the rap for your students.