Friday Five - Songs with product placement

Published November 26, 2010

Here I am with another list, and I can tell you that this one came about solely from my desire to talk about the first item mentioned below.

These are my top five songs with brand names mentioned in them. It’s not really product placement in the “money for saying our name” sense, but more where reality clashes with culture. Let’s get right on with the list.

Arctic Monkeys - When the Sun Goes Down

I really quite like this song, although I’ve never figured out why. The accent cracks me up, and my favourite thing about it is the capacity to rhyme “Ford Mondeo” with “didn’t have to say ‘owt.” Upon further investigation Ford get quite a good running in songs, with Elton John mentioning a Cortina, and The Offspring cruising in a Pinto. The Mondeo is my favourite though.

Travie McCoy feat. Bruno Mars - Billionaire

This song really gets on my nerves, but the Bruno Mars bit sticks in my head and goes round and round like the best ear worms do. He wants to be a billionaire so fricking bad. He wants to be on the cover of Forbes Magazine, smiling next to Oprah and the Queen. I’m not sure the Queen does many magazine covers these days, but still.

Lily Allen - LDN

I have never really been Lily’s biggest fan, but she does have some quite excellent pop songs, and her lyrics can be inspired. Except maybe the one where she rhymes Britain’s biggest supermarket Tesco with… al fresco. Makes perfect sense, no?

Sheryl Crow - All I Wanna Do

Sheryl makes mention of many, many different types of car in this including the excellently named Buick. However, my particular favourite bit is Billy peeling the label off his Bud. You can’t really argue with a good Bud. Well, not until Amy Studt covered it, and I remember a lot of controversy over whether she was really quite old enough to be singing about beer. Wikipedia tells me that Sheryl asked Amy to do that cover as well, which seems like a bizarre thing for an artist to do.

Scouting For Girls - She’s So Lovely

She’s so lovely, she looks like them girls in Vogue. This is our second magazine featured in the list. It’s not really a good idea to try and compare girls to magazines, we know that in this day and age body image is a big deal. Even so, I like the idea of rhyming Vogue with clothes. Good luck finding the song though, it sounds just like all the other SFG ones.

That’s my five. I also have an anti-product placement tale for you. Mr C advised me that Lola - you know the one, L-O-L-A Lola, had to be re-recorded to take out the product name. Well, back to Wikipedia, and we find this:

The original lyrics had the word “Coca-Cola” but because of BBC Radio’s policy against product placement, Ray was forced to make a six thousand mile round flight from New York to London and back- interrupting the band’s American tour- to change those words to the generic “cherry cola” for the single release.


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