So let’s talk a bit here, OK. If commercials drive television revenue, it is a given that the music used in these commercials are viewed as one of the following categories: trendy, accepted, popular, viable genre with somewhat mass appeal . . . then I see a great future for Blues music currently and into the future.
Seriously. Now I don’t watch tons of TV, but of late with the just ended World Series, and the NFL season heating up to a level of parity that is almost entertaining, I have been spending some quality time with my 60 inch flat screen.
Usually commercial breaks are a signal for me to get a drink, hit up some peeps on-line, check the flush valve on the, ahh you get my drift, but of late there has been regular sightings (soundings, hearings) of Blues music and hearing it has compelled me to stop and listen, and watch the tube.
With hearing the familiar strains of ‘I’m A Man’ by Muddy Waters, I look up at the screen and see some young brother trying to stretch his sporty car into a sporty family sedan – yeh whatever – but that voice, and the unmistakable riff of ‘da da da, dah dum’ just hooked me like a gap mouthed trout. It is obvious I don’t remember what car company or make of car it was, plus it seems there’s a plethora of young brothers featured in car commercials, but to me as George Thorogood said, “that don’t confront me!” I heard Muddy on the TV.
Now Muddy has a pretty wide audience ‘Q’ rating, and that his music was featured in of itself might not be a big thang. But this next one was a surprise, because of the limited fan base the artist has (IMHO). It’s the velvet voiced Ms. Julia Lee, fully exposing the double-entrendre laced ‘Snatch and Grab It’ ( Snatch & Grab It ) for the NFL Network. I’m not sure what the NFL Network and their ‘creative people’ were thinking, but the fact that this song and artist are featured is huge for the Blues community.
Shortly after we snatched and grabbed it – we heard the howls of ‘ahhhh-ooohhhh’. The Wolf was on the prowl, and he was howling for his baby in a Viagra commercial. http://www.viagra.com/viagra-tv-commercial.aspx Personally I would’ve chosen ‘ Back Door Man’ , but that’s another story for another time, but ‘Smokestack Lighting’ was shining just like gold as images of overheated engines, and an age-appropriate man fixing the problem. That’s evil, but again, look it is playing on these commercials in major television events for major products.
Now I don’t know if this is the new Renaissance for Blues music or that the baby boomers have finally reached a level in corporate America to dictate what is in these spots, or what but it is good to hear these refrains even if only for 30 or 60 seconds. Let’s try to put this in some perspective here, music sales are driven by TV usage in commercials,, come on how many of you or your kids have heard a song on a commercial and needed to know what it was. In your child’s world, where they would have run to the iTunes store and downloaded it to listen to as they drove around town texting. It’s exposure folks, and that’s a key to keeping the Blues alive and vital.
So just for giggles I decided to write down some of the Blues tunes I have heard on commercials of late, some I remember what they were used for others the product escapes me (oh yeh please don’t get too hung up on ‘that’s not the Blues’ when reading the list, united we stand divided we fall brothers and sisters).:
Move It On Over – Hank Williams – Chevy Trucks (great one)
Smokestack Lightning – Howlin’ Wolf – Viagra
Boom-Boom – John Lee Hooker – ?
Bad To The Bone – George Thorogood – Wrangler/Brett Favre
Snatch and Grab It – Julia Lee – NFL Network
Gangster of Love – Johnny ‘Guitar’ Watson – Axe Deodorant
Can’t Judge A Book By Looking at The Cover – Bo Diddley – ?
Give Up The Funk – Funkadelic/Parliament – MasterCard
I’m A Man – Muddy Waters – some car company
Hold On I’m Comin’ – Sam & Dave – ?
Personality – Lloyd Price Cover by ? – NFL Custom Shop
Who Do You Love - George Thorogood – too many to remember
Until Next Time
Love, Peace & Chicken Grease
photo image: chefjimi