Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Hurt Doesn't Show But the Pain Still Grows

When "Don't Stop Believin'" was uses to underscore the final scene of "The Sopranos," it inspired a flurry of articles celebrating and/or deriding the self-diagnosed "renaissance of Journey." Most of the arguments put forth filled me with self-righteous smugness. In my world, the Journey comeback had started years before. In fact, over two years before "Don't Stop Believin'" appeared while Tony Soprano stuffed his face with onion rings, I attended the wedding of one of my best friends, and saw that he had made good on a promise to convince his bride to walk down the aisle while the wedding pianist cranked out the opening chords from the Journey masterpiece. As she walked down the aisle to get married! It was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen at any ceremony, and nobody in attendance needed David Chase to tell them that it was OK to appreciate Steve Perry.

Nevertheless, the bottom line is that people go apeshit when a classic song from decades ago forces itself back into pop culture, either genuinely or in a ironic sense. Case in point: Phil Collins is back people.

Exhibit A: The promo for a new sitcom "Carpoolers" centered around "In The Air Tonight." I know nothing about this show (other than Vern is riding shotgun!) but I'm betting the ad will run for a longer duration that the series.

Exhibit B: A stunning ad for Cadbury running in the UK. Apparently this ad launches a £6.2m campaign for the company, which may help explain why they're cutting costs by shrinking the Cadbury eggs.

Perhaps things are simply coming full circle. Today, virtually every television series uses commercial music in episode montages/flashbacks/establishing setups, but it was "Miami Vice" producer Michael Mann who in 1984 first had the vision to combine cheesy overdubbed drum compressions with amazingly hackneyed dialogue between Don Johnson and his ex-wife.

23 years later, Phil Collins is back in the forefront of the worldwide psyche. We are a nation of Alec Baldwins, repeatedly enjoying our mixtape from Tracy Morgan.


Kevin said...

That Cadbury gorilla commercial is brilliant. I was just in a discussion yesterday with how Don't Stop Believing is still in the top 100 songs on iTunes. It says a lot about our society if In The Air Tonight creeps its way in up there too.

monkey said...

eh, phil collins came and went in my eyes when the postal service brought it back. maybe the REST of the world is getting it now but eh, I've seen enough hipsters sporting a phil collins tee that I'm over it.

Ross McLochness said...

Is it wrong for me to want "Easy Lover" to make a comeback as well?

Nick said...