On meeting Ric Ocasek: “I thought he was very intelligent and very tall. The moment I laid eyes on him, I could talk to the guy. I don’t get that way with a lot of people. But Ric was like some guy I grew up with.” — from “Benjamin Orr: The Cars’ Mr. Casual Steps Out” by Rob Tannenbaum, Musician Magazine, March 1987
“He was smart and clever, and he was movie-star handsome, better looking with every year he grew older. Physically, he was still the marvelous changeling child dropped into a plain family. More than that, he had a glow about him, a wild, rakish charm that well-nigh hypnotized anyone who came close. He was kind and considerate and infinitely amusing and attractive. Everyone wanted to be his friend.”
Okay… this is just one of those ‘rabbit hole’ things I stumbled across. I was working on my obsession of clipping out Cars references in television and movies and I came to Circuit City.
From 2004-2006, Circuit City used “Just What I Needed” in their ad campaign to try to revive the suffering sales of their consumer electronics chain. As awesome as the song is, it couldn’t work any magic (groan) for Circuit City, and the company filed bankruptcy in 2008. Here are the deets on that advertising plan:
Though The Cars had allowed their music to be used in many movies prior to this, I think this might be the first time that it was part of an ad campaign. I’m not positive on that, though, so if someone knows otherwise, please let me know. Of course, several other Cars songs have made there way to commercials since then. As you may or may not know, I’ve got a Youtube playlist where I’m trying to gather all those bits:
I do remember an interview where Ric Ocasek felt sure that he wouldn’t permit his songs to be used in such a way. He was speaking with the late Bob Coburn on Rockline in 1987. Here’s the clip:
I suppose Ric must have had an offer that made it worth his while. Not that I’m complaining; I love it when I see commercials featuring the music of my favorites. Not only does it make me happy and hyper because I dig the song, but I think it’s an important part of continuing a band’s legacy, and it is instrumental in introducing classic music to a new generation of listeners. And this current generation needs to hear The Cars! As always, though, I do hope that all of the members of the band gained financially from the deal (not that that is any of my business, really, but I do think about those things).
Anyway, here is a compilation of all of the Circuit City commercials that I could find, and now I can cross this one off my list. Haha!