The golden age of jingles

I’ve noticed that Miller beer has recently brought back its classic commercial jingle, “If You’ve Got the Time, We’ve Got the Beer” — the version with that tinkly Floyd Cramer-like piano and rich harmonies. It’s been surprisingly pleasant hearing that old chestnut on my TV, which is probably exactly how the worldwide behemoth SABMiller wants me to feel.

It’s rare these days for a product to go with an original song for its jingle — particularly one that’s so obviously retro. But in the 1970s, the golden age of jingles, it was commonplace for the commercials to be just as hummable as the Top Forty. All too often, I find myself humming some song I heard when I was 10 years old, only to realize it’s that 1975 Coca-Cola ad that has embedded itself in the channels of my brain.

(My friend Eddie and I once spent a hilarious evening parodying the song on his new GE cassette recorder. “Look for the worst, yeah, live life unrefreshed. Look for the fake thing!” Hey, we were 10.)

It was common enough, in fact, that even products that would seem immune to catchy jingles had catchy jingles. I mean, General Tire?

And then there’s that all-American — pardon me, Great American — chocolate bar.

Well, now I’ll saying “Hershey’s GREAT!” all day long. On to the Colt 45 melody

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