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Music and Diet Coke

Marketers are smart people, and know when they hear a song that will work in a television commercial.

There are a few types ways to go, it seems. Using well known songs by popular artists is one approach. A second and related approach seems to be using a melody that is sort of close to one that is deeply ingrained in our minds. They’ve been studies, I’m sure…

The third source of music for television commercials is the use of new or unknown songs with strong pop hooks. One of the great clips I’ve watched over the past few years is Mohammad Rafi’s “Jaan Pehchan” from the Bollywood movie “Gumnaam.” (All of those spellings may be wrong.) The song and accompanying marathon dance routine are a couple of levels beyond great. The road I took to that video went through a Heineken commercial.

That brings us to today’s post, and Diet Coke. The song above is “Suit” by “Boom! Bap! Pow!,” a few seconds of which is used in the current commercial for the drink. It’s a very catchy. It’s sort of a naughty GP-rated song that fits right in with our current weird 50 shades of gray culture. It’s appropriate that the band ended up on television, since it seems to have been named with a nod to “Batman.” Below is “No Pleasin’,” which also displays what could be called the band’s pop chops.

There is nothing at all wrong with using music in this way, in my opinion. We are a capitalist society, and using songs to promote products is a legitimate avenue for artists to prosper on their work and for the companies to push their products. It also is fine and refreshing, of course, for folks such as Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen to just say no.

Here is Boom! Bap! Pow!’s Facebook page. It’s interesting that there is a shout out to The Divinyls in one of the photos at the page. If you’ve never heard of the Divinyls, well, I can’t really explain it.

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Here’s What’s Here

The Daily Music Break explores every genre of music, from hip hop to opera. It's simple: Boundaries are dumb. It's all good. Here is more about the site and here is our index:

--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

--Indigo Girls to Queen Ida (I to Q)

--Radiohead to ZZ Top (R to Z)

Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.

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What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.

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The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.