6.11.08

meaningful folky song ad

Are you the marketing exec for a technology/car/entertainment brand? At a loss as to what sound to put behind your latest concept ad? Do you enjoy ads w/ people 'doing normal things' but also being kind of 'original' and 'authentic' at the same time? Are you are fan of slow-motion, drifty editing techniques? Do you like to 'empower' your customers? Do you prefer not even to call yr customers that, rather "partners in happiness maximisation"?

You've come to the right place: introducing, the latest genre of music/commercials - the meaningful, quiet/effusive folky song ad! It almost requisite has to be sung by a girl, or at the very least someone with a quiet, unassuming, airy voice. There's got to be hand claps, plinky percussion (glockenspiel more or less requisite), piano is good (very earnest, not too earnest like a violin tho), etc. etc.

Furthermore, the entire hook/melody to the song must be instantly graspable within 30 seconds (pref. 15sec) and the lyrics cannot mean anything. But they have to be seeming meaningful, like you know, like they really meant this song to be on this ad, and we're not really selling you anything, hey - in fact, why don't you even have this song for free?




Because, it seems, companies are getting nicer! No more harsh, shiny edges with electric guitar peels or thundering drums, or some kind of pseudo-futuristic synthy music (see most all shampoo adverts) - no, today's modern entertainment/car company cares about its customers. This care is expressed in their provision of dainty little songs for dainty little ads! It's all so happy and carefree. Kind of romantic actually.



Share the love ppl! Just don't think about the fact that your social life is so atomised you now need a mobile phn to contact separate friends/family for xmas!


It was all started by those trailblazers of uber-cool and urban and progressive lifestyles/products - Apple. Remember this ad? Although it would take a little while longer before things got more meaningful, seemed less product-focused:



(Extra dope bonus track/ad: the new NanoChromaticiPodCommercialElevatorMuzakQuirkyFemaleVocalHookAd)


Who provides this kind of music? Well, thankfully, there's a whole stable of obscure local and not-local indie bands that make folky quiet or folky happy songs for your backing track. All you need is someone with the 'inside knowledge' to hunt out these little 'gems'! Already taken: Whitley and Sia:



WARNING: MEANINGFULNESS OVERLOAD!!!!!! 2 meaningful can b 2 much!


Their categories of meaning are not directly meaningful, but they really sound or feel meaningful - the test is this: if you had this on your iPod and were looking out of a car window, would everything just seem really evocative/interesting/meaningful? But not too meaningful? Because only meaningful if you have the meaningful or useful product to go w/ your meaningful song.

Also, doesn't this song/ad/product just make you feel like it's time to have a good time with yr friends? But only through listening to and using this meaningful brand! In a fun way, too - there's a good chance the beach will be involved:


Wow, it's like a short film! So much meaning in such a little space!


In fact, it's all so meaningful that its a bit magic - isn't it? But only really in a whimsical way, nothing too heavy. Just remember what great fun this is - bouncing along in slo-mo and being carefree:



Talk about a techno-bubble LOL!!! Never mind, we've got our phone caps and lisa mitchell to make us feel meaningful and 'connected'


How long will it take before major financial institutions realise the awesome power of the alternative meaningful folky ad song? As soon as they roll these out it will end th 'credit crunch' in an overwhelming sea of goodwill and custom and community:



Bendigo Bank report that their profits and 'customer satisfication' rose 399% directly as a result of airing this commercial!!!


Like all great styles, there are many subgenres to the meaningful folky ad song - the 'old, unknown-til-now blues singer' brand is quite popular:



SAMPLE YOUTUBE COMMENT: "OMFG !!! u have no idea how long ive been trying to find this song and to find out wat add it was cos ive been lookn for ages and i eventually saw the add"
PS - This short/scruffy-hair guy is v. popular w/ Vodafone execs; someone in marketing is ttly crushin'


It's not like we even really made this music, says the companies, because our products are so meaningful to yr personal life that they just fit so well with already meaningful music, right? Well, that's the problem I guess - whaa happens when this genre becomes so codified that companies learn they don't have to find this shit anymore but they can just make it!



(Wait til the last 15sec!)
"For the Honda "Jazz Comes to Town" advertisement, original music was composed by Jamie Masters and Stephen Patmanby at Adelphoi Music, London, with producer Greg Moore. Vocalist was Jo Coombes. Sound was mixed by Paul Baxter at Risk Sound with producer Kath Momsen."


Becoz we all know that no one listens to radio or reads magazines or any other boring old media crap like that anymore - but neither does anyone even bother with last.fm or myspace or whatever antiquated 'social networking tool' you used to find music on. No, now advertisements tell us what to buy and what to listen to at the same time! What a relief! It was getting sooooo annoying trying to find new folkly girly singer songs! But, then, the problem is that these fucking companies don't list the song on the ad itself! Never mind, we are resourceful enough to GOOGLE IT for the lyrics - or ask on the YouTube page or whatever.

Like some resourceful laddy or lass did for the Honda Jazz ad!

"Harls said...
Is there anywhere I can download this song. Its a very good song. Reminds me of Kate Nash, if you've heard of her.
Its a great ad though.
I'd buy the car."

Anonymous - bless him - provided the perfect reply to complete the circle of the evolution of the meaningful folky song ad:
"Anonymous said...
i think its from feist .. the reminder."

From Feist to 'Jamie Masters and Stephen Patmanby at Adelphoi Music' - these meaningful songs have come a long way!

I can't wait for the next installment tho, I have no idea what to listen to atm!

Finally, seems things are getting a bit more sporty/rocky in the meaningful folky song/ad - are we witnessing the transition into the future with this Yves Mitsubishi Blue jam?

3 riffs:

dave said...

Bonds Tee for the win.

richard said...

i know yr mostly talking of the nonthreatening folk stuff on ads, but i just wanted to say that this year i've watched much more TV than i used to and in doing so have stopped listening to indie pop (which is used to enjoy on a regular basis) maybe because i get my pop intake just watching commercial breaks

Lawson said...

the greatest thing is, richard, that indie/electro/folk sort of steez just blends into each other on television so you need not keep up with any of those styles outside of tv!