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The Music and Jingles of Commercials


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#1

Cet

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 12:24 PM

Music is an integral part of TV advertising. You know how it goes - You're just minding your own business, when all of a sudden that commercial comes on. The one ad with the one song guaranteed to get stuck in your head for a week.

Sometimes it's brand music (Target's "Design for All" campaign.) Other times it's popular songs- from The Beatles (Nike's 1987 "Revolution" campaign) to the Black-Eyed Peas ("Pump It" in a Best Buy commercial.)

Do you hum along or lunge for the remote, swearing at the TV? Is there one piece you absolutely cannot get out of your brain? Whether you think it's a clever marketing technique or the scourge of humanity, here's the place to discuss commercial music.
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#2

Decormaven

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 12:41 PM

To me, jingles are almost a lost art. Once advertising learned it could be "lazy" and catch the public's ear with a snippet of an already-recognizable past/current popular song, the number of original jingles began to dwindle.

Back in the day, people made a decent living, doing nothing but writing jingles. I'm blanking at the moment on definitive examples: Barry Manilow comes to mind. Didn't Carole King and others who worked in the Brill Building write jingles as well? Someone with music history knowledge help me out here!

Music "snobs" can turn their noses up about jingles, but you've got to admit- there's nothing like a good hook. The Oscar Mayer song- heck, more people probably know the lyrics to it than The Star-Spangled Banner.

No one wants to work to capture attention now. They use the argument of "it's such a competitive marketplace, and an established song brings the crowds." But I daresay if I heard a catchy ORIGINAL song for a product, I'd probably pay more attention. Some marketers (and artists) have earned my eternal disdain for selling out a song. Yep, Led Zep, I am looking at YOU.

Edited by Decormaven, Mar 10, 2006 @ 12:57 PM.

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#3

cutecouple

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 12:54 PM

Barry Manilow did a few noteworthy jingles. I half wish we had catchier jingles rather than louder ones.
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#4

mocksie

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 1:11 PM

I cannot cook with Velveeta without singing obnoxiously, "Forget the cheddar! Velveeeeeta's better!"

Drives my fiance *nuts*.
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#5

Mibbitmaker

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 1:28 PM

The irony is, music "snobs" should love jingles now, since the real offense is using popular songs in corporate propaganda that's repeated ad nauseum (no pun intended!). At least in the short term, it ruins the song in question. I most definately need to grab the remote or put headphones on for music not intended for said commercial, instead of memory-turned-sales pitch. I'm dreading the day that the first song on the radio at that moment is the same one in the ad itself!

I'm fine with ads for music collections, though, since what's being sold is the song(s). I've even watched half hour infomercials for things like '70s collections.
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#6

Stinger97

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 1:32 PM

Just wanted to let everyone know that all of this discussion on jingles is welcomed in this thread. I made it this morning, assuming that's where the talk of ad campaigns, slogans, AND jingles would go, I just didn't specify the jingle part.

I figure so many slogans have a jingle that go along with them (McDonald's i'm loving it, etc.) that this discussion is in the same vein as the other thread.

Edited by Stinger97, Mar 10, 2006 @ 1:35 PM.

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#7

Decormaven

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 2:49 PM

Here's an interesting article about jingles:Jingles Ate My Brain
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#8

FfrauleinN

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 3:21 PM

I cannot cook with Velveeta without singing obnoxiously, "Forget the cheddar! Velveeeeeta's better!"

Me either. I do it every time, and then I hate myself a little bit.
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#9

fangums

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Posted Mar 10, 2006 @ 8:09 PM

"Ch-ch-ch-CHI-uh Pet"
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#10

VersesBatman

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Posted Mar 11, 2006 @ 1:35 PM

"I am stuck on Band-Aid. Cause Band-Aid's stuck on me!"

"Drop! Drop! Fizz! Fizz! Oh what a relief it is!"
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#11

SnowDog

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Posted Mar 11, 2006 @ 2:15 PM

Glade's Plug-in jingle got my junior-high algebra class in trouble with a student teacher many moons ago. When she was explaining variables, she told us we would take a value and plug it into the equation. The whole class sang, "Plug it in, plug it in!" Detention slips for all!
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#12

MisterIdol

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Posted Mar 11, 2006 @ 9:59 PM

Would anyone happen to know the song used in that TAB Extra commercial that aired during the Oscars? It's familiar but I can't place what it is.
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#13

arena73

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Posted Mar 11, 2006 @ 11:25 PM

Does anyone know the song in the Budweiser ad that shows various people and the Bud "crown" icon/logo showing up in their lipstick, ripped jeans, stuffed fish, etc.? It's a really groovy funky dance song.
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#14

makelikeatree

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 12:50 AM

I was watching Turner Classic Movies and they're doing a marathon of "19 movies about divorce." There was a promo with a great montage (at least much better than those craptastic Academy Awards montages) of classic clips from the 19 movies that they will be showing and what song is playing over the clips? Cake's version of "I Will Survive." The songs fits so well over the clips, especially during the line, "I should have changed my fuckin' lock..." The word "fucking" is replaced with a door slam. Anyway, I absolutely love it! Very cute and mostly because of the song. Has anyone else seen this? I'm pretty sure it only airs on TCM since it's pretty much just a two minute promo.

ETA: Do you guys know about this site? It's a website dedicated to songs from commercials including movie trailers, tv shows promos, etc. I think that there is a search option that you can use to find the commercial in question and get info on the song used. They also have forums that you can join and ask your questions there. It might help those of you asking about particular songs.

Oh, arena73, I believe that song is "Galvanize" by the Chemical Brothers. Awesome song.

Edited by makelikeatree, Mar 12, 2006 @ 12:57 AM.

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#15

cal331

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 1:19 AM

Payless is using a snippet of "Finding Out True Love is Blind" by Louis XIV, and it bugs because they cut off a lyric midway through. I like the song okay, but it's annoying to start singing along with a lyric and then be thwarted midway into it.
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#16

C.

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 10:19 AM

I have to say that I appreciate the Punky Chips Ahoy ad because it puts Blitzkrieg Bop in my head without actively destroying the song for me.
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#17

Sandman87

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 11:04 AM

"Drop! Drop! Fizz! Fizz! Oh what a relief it is!"

Picking a nit here, but it is, in fact, "Plop plop, fizz fizz".
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#18

babycakes

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 11:18 AM

My favorite jingles are old school McDonald's ones.

"Good time. Great taste. That's why this is our place. The good time great taste of McDonalds." I use to dance around to that one when I was a kid.

Does anyone remeber when McDonald's had that rap where they said all the items on their menu.
"Big Mac, McBLt, a quarter pounder with some cheese...."

And my all time favorite McDonald's one was this little kid who was trying to grow up to fast.
"Catch a lighting bug, while it glows, put it in a jar. You better make the best of these years, cause you won't be comming back, where you are." Still tears me up.

I was goober kid. I'm still a goober, but I love me some McDonald commercials. It all went down hill with the arch deluxe.
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#19

Decormaven

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 11:39 AM

Damn, the Go-Gos are cashing in the royalty checks. There are three ads out now, for three separate products, using Go-Gos songs. Vacation, Head Over Heels, and We've Got the Beat. I won't even give the brand names because this bugs me to no end. I know their work wasn't High Art, but I did enjoy it at the time.
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#20

SteveJRogers

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 4:15 PM

Thinking of some really dumb decisions by ad agencies that make you wonder if they really listened to the songs they want to use.

-Mercedes Benz using the Janis Joplin song by the same name. The point of the song was to parody the materialsim that the commercial would then imply! Ditto with the "If I Had A Million Dollars" being used for state lotteries.

-The ultimate would be Nike using The Beatles' "Revolution" which was such an unpopluar decision all around I think the ad only aired one time.

-Granted the commercial, song and product was something that fitted his image something about Johnny Cash singing "Our Way" from Laverine & Shriley seemed quite cringe worthy.

-I forget if it was a jean company or a truck company, but after 9/11 someone decided the lyrics "...Some folks were born, to wave the flag OOOOOH that red white and blue..." was good enough to throw into an ad. Did that empty suit realize that the rest of that line reads: "And when the band plays "Hail To The Chief",oh, they point the cannon at you, Lord, It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no senator's son, It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no." Not exactly a patriotic song!
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#21

greybear

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 4:48 PM

I can't stand to listen to "This Will Be" by Natalie Cole anymore. I hate you, Dr Neil Clark Warren, with your three-part name that can be arranged in any order because each part is both a first name and a last name.
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#22

bluejaylove

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 5:02 PM

KFC using "Sweet Home Alabama"? WTF kind of sense does that make?! It's not AFC, it's KFC.
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#23

scotti

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 5:03 PM

Cadillac driving Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll" into the ground.

Circuit City using The Car's "Just What I Needed", but that'll end since the ad agency lost CC's contract.

Edited by scotti, Mar 12, 2006 @ 5:05 PM.

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#24

SteveJRogers

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 6:05 PM

Can't believe I forgot "Lust For Life" being used by a Cruise Ship company. Yeah a song about druggies being used to promote a family cruise ship!
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#25

krushsister

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 7:49 PM

All of these aforementioned never really got to me because they [edit: "they" = the songs] were before my time. But Maxwell House's appropriation of "Our House" by Madness??? To the point where I have to mute my TV every time I see those commercials lest I lose it and shout at the TV? At least whatever cell phone company that used "Talk Talk" by Talk Talk only aired their commercial relatively briefly.

Edited by krushsister, Mar 12, 2006 @ 7:50 PM.

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#26

jolly_roger

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 8:03 PM

What kills me is when a commercial that has to be twenty years old gets burned so deeply in my brain that I still think of it when I hear the original song on the radio. Like, I can still hear "Sittin' with my Hires Root Beer..." whenever "Sittin' On The Dock Of The Bay" comes on. Gah!
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#27

makelikeatree

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 10:32 PM

Does anyone remember Jaguar using "London Calling" by the Clash a few years ago? It was just strange to see a commercial using an ominous song about war, government control, and the fall of Western civilization to advertise a ridiculously expensive status-car. Also, it was one of those events that pisses fans off because it means that their punk heroes have "sold out."
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#28

No Touching

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Posted Mar 12, 2006 @ 11:18 PM

I forget if it was a jean company or a truck company, but after 9/11 someone decided the lyrics "...Some folks were born, to wave the flag OOOOOH that red white and blue..." was good enough to throw into an ad. Did that empty suit realize that the rest of that line reads: "And when the band plays "Hail To The Chief",oh, they point the cannon at you, Lord, It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no senator's son, It ain't me, it ain't me, I ain't no fortunate one, no." Not exactly a patriotic song!


Yes, this was the example I thought of when I saw the topic. I believe it was Tommy Hilfiger, although I could be mistaken. That's kind of similiar to the way Ronald Reagan embraced Springstein's "Born in the USA" without paying attention to the lyrics.

A little piece of me dies every time I hear a Beatles song in a commercial.
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#29

greybear

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Posted Mar 13, 2006 @ 1:38 AM

But Maxwell House's appropriation of "Our House" by Madness?

And why are those kids singing the praises of coffee? Usually we just feed them CocaColaŽ to get them caffeined-up.
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#30

BostonsKrissy

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Posted Mar 13, 2006 @ 3:32 AM

Was anybody freaked out after seeing the M&M commercial with the steamy windows, a fireplace in a log cabin during winter, with the steamy sex music in the background? Ahh!

Can somebody tell me who sings the song in one commercial (can't remember which one) where the lyric goes "we can step intothe sun..." and it has a girl dancing around and going off into what looks like the sunset. I tried googling but don't get any goo results.

makelikeatree, you rock my socks. And I adore your sn.

Edited by BostonsKrissy, Mar 13, 2006 @ 8:10 PM.

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