Out of Tune

A British furniture store recently bought the rights to Nickelback’s “Rockstar” in order to provide the theme music for their commercials. Television viewers have been “treated” to the sight of customers of varying types dancing in front of their new sofas and miming the lyrics as the tune blasts on.

However, unless I’ve completely misunderstood the song, it was meant as an attack on excessive materialism, not intended to support it. Here’s the video:

Nickelback: "Rockstar"- Official Video

Note the following segment from the lyrics:

‘Cause we all just wanna be big rockstars
And live in hilltop houses, drivin’ fifteen cars
The girls come easy and the drugs come cheap
We’ll all stay skinny ’cause we just won’t eat

This hardly sounds like a ringing endorsement; in fact the lifestyle that is mentioned sounds particularly empty: for example, “I want a brand new house on an episode of Cribs / And a bathroom I can play baseball in”. Mentions of drug taking also feature.

If the furniture store has misjudged it, they wouldn’t be the first. Remember, Windows 95’s anthem was the Rolling Stones’ “Start Me Up”:

If you start me up
If you start me up Ill never stop
If you start me up
If you start me up Ill never stop
Ive been running hot
You got me ticking gonna blow my top
If you start me up
If you start me up Ill never stop
You make a grown man cry

This perhaps is some truth in advertising, particularly the bit about making “a grown man cry”.

Hillary Clinton too, was guilty of picking a bad theme tune for her first Senate campaign. Her team thought Billy Joel was appropriate. As he is from Oyster Bay, Long Island, New York, this was a reasonable assumption. However, they chose the song “Captain Jack”:

Saturday night, and you’re still hangin’ around.
Tired of living in your one-horse town.
You’d like to find a little hole in the ground,
For awhile.
So you go to the Village in your tie-dyed jeans.
And you stare at the junkies and the closet queens.
It’s like some pornographic magazine,
And you smile.

This is followed by:

Your sister’s gone out,she on a date.
You just sit at home and masturbate.
Your phone is gonna ring soon, but you just can’t wait
For that call.
So you stand on the corner in your new English clothes.
And you look so polished, from your hair down to your toes.
Ah but still, your finger’s gonna pick your nose
After all.

Just a recommendation to furniture stores, software manufacturers and indeed Hillary Clinton: try listening to the music before you actually select it!

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