Musical Cheese

Ready to feel even older?

So, which pop song’s use in a commercial represents the greatest sell-out of a generation’s attitudes?

  • Led Zeppelin’s "Rock ‘n Roll" for Cadillac?

  • The Clash’s "Should I Stay or Should I Go" for Pontiac’s G6 "Oprahmobile?"

  • The entire Who catalog for everything from the Hummer to cholesterol drugs?

  • Jefferson Airplane’s "Volunteers" for E*Trade?

I was going to mention using Devo’s "Uncontrollable Urge" in the Mitsubishi commercial, but it’s hardly the first time they’ve leased out their tunes, and besides, more people are hearing their songs now than in their heyday. Still, there’s an unpleasant attempt to sell one’s irony back to the post-ironic consumer when we’re told "When a problem comes along, you must Swiffer…"

And besides, when the Jeffersons recorded "Volunteers," they were recording for RCA Records, owned at the time by General Electric, the country’s second biggest defense contractor. No conflict of interest here!

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