THE ATTACK OF THE KILLER EARWORM PART 2: MORE COMMERCIAL JINGLES YOU CAN’T GET OUT OF YOUR HEAD

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commercial jingles earwormThe latest Songstuff By Cary Ginell

Nothing is treated with as much value and dread in the music industry as the earworm. Earworms are the industry name for commercial jingles that stick in your memory like peanut butter on the roof of your mouth, valued by advertisers but dreaded by consumers who can’t get rid of the catchy melodies. I shared a few last week, and here are some others that will bring us closer to the present:

1953

“Peter Paul Mounds”

Known by its first line, “Sometimes you feel like a nut…”

Music by Leon Carr, Words by Leo Corday. Carr and Corday also wrote the immensely successful “See the USA in Your Chevrolet,” popularized on television by Dinah Shore.

(Here’s a version from 1990)

 

1953

“Plop, Plop, Fizz, Fizz (Oh, What a Relief It Is)” – Alka Seltzer

Words and Music by Paul Margulies

 

1954

“Roto-Rooter Jingle” (and Away Go Troubles, Down the Drain)

Words and Music by Larry Wellington

This jingle can still be heard 60 years after it was first copyrighted.

 

1956

“A Lot to Like” (Marlboro Cigarettes)

Sultry singer Julie London sang the words to this successful jingle: “You Get a Lot to Like with a Marlboro – filter, flavor, pack or box” back when cigarette advertising was still permitted on broadcast channels.

 

1959

“Double Your Pleasure” (Doublemint Gum)

Music by Dick Cunliffe & Mike Chon, Lyrics by Mike Chon

(Here’s a version from 1986)

 

c. 1961

“The San Francisco Treat” (Rice-a-Roni)

Words by Charles Foli, music based on the 1923 song “Barney Google”

Often juxtaposed with images of cable cars.

 

1961

“The Jolly Green Giant” (Green Giant vegetables)

Unknown writers; the bass voice singing the famous “Ho-ho-ho” during the commercial was that of Elmer “Len” Dresslar, Jr.

 

1965

“The Wiener Song” (I Wish I Was an Oscar Meyer Wiener)

Music by Richard D. Trentlage, Lyrics by Arthur L. Zapel, Jr.

 

1972

“Nobody Doesn’t Like Sara Lee” (Sara Lee baked goods)

Music and Lyrics by Mitch Leigh

 

1976

“The Meow Mix Theme” (Meow, meow, meow, meow)

Music by Thomas G. McFaul (no credit for the lyrics, such as they are…)

Sung by studio vocalist Linda November

 

1987

“Gimme a Break” (Kit Kat candy bars)

Music and Lyrics by Ken Shuldman and Michael Levine

 

1980s

“1-800-588-2300, Empire” (Empire flooring)

This enduring jingle has become so popular, many people use it as ring-tones on their cell phones. It was even performed by Pearl Jam at one of their concerts.

 

2007

“FreeCreditReport.com”

Words and music by David Muhlenfeld & Shakur Green

After years of inaction, the FreeCreditReport.com company revived the commercial jingle with the first of nine different commercials featuring vocalist Eric Violette.

 

Megatrax’s own Robert Irving is responsible for a currently popular and successful jingle for Living Spaces furniture warehouse.

 

Next time, we’ll examine some commercial jingles that became bonafide top 40 hits.

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