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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Things Go Better with Coke: Sixties Coca-Cola Commercials (1965-1969)

It was in 1963 that Coca-Cola started using the slogan "Things Go Better with Coke." Advertising agency McCann-Erickson worked with popular acts to create musical jingles utilizing the slogan. The jingles became so popular that Coca-Cola eventually distributed 60,000 promotional "Let's Swing the Jingle for Coca-Cola" singles through their bottlers.

In these short radio spots, the original artists would rework their own popular songs to reflect the idea that "Things Go Better with Coke." What's amazing is that these short little reworkings are actually strangely compelling to listen to. In fact, even listening to several of them in a row is enjoyable, sometimes in a head-shaking kind of way. What's bizarre to me is that something that today would seem like such a crass sell-out was deemed not only acceptable, but was actually incredibly popular. What helps, I'm sure, is the earnestness that went into the production of these tracks. Clearly less cynical times, those.

I bought my buddy Bill the Splut the Things Go Better with Coke: Sixties Coca-Cola Commercials 1965-'69 bootleg CD for his birthday years ago. He was kind enough to loan it to me to rip. In doing research for this post, I discovered that there was another bootleg collection of Coca-Cola commercials from this same time period called, appropriately, Coca-Cola Commercials. While there was some overlap, both CDs had many different artists on them. I found a nice 192kbps rip of this on Soulseek. It runs 66 tracks, with 60 on the borrowed disc. The sound quality on the Things Go Better with Coke CD was slightly better, so I used those tracks as masters and eliminated 29 duplicates from the Coca-Cola Commercials CD. I also found 11 other tracks from various sources on Soulseek. These include single tracks from Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, The Shirelles & John W. Bubbles, Otis Redding and The Four Seasons, two tracks each from Little Milton and The Who and three additional tracks from Roy Orbison.

Check out the jingles from Marvin Gaye, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell and Roy Orbison:







In assembling this collection I decided to put it in alphabetical order by artist. The only exception to this is the final track, a "Pepsi Generation" track that also closed out the Things Go Better with Coke CD. The Coca-Cola Commercials CD listed years, but the Things Go Better with Coke CD did not, so not all of the tracks have a year listed. For some tracks there are two versions of the same song, :60 and :90 second spots. As these variants are actually edited differently with sometimes differing voice-overs, I decided to keep both, listing them as either "Short" or "Long". Also, while I scanned the cover of Things Go Better with Coke to use here, the original cover is yellow. I wanted to mark this compilation as different so I opened it up in Photoshop and converted the yellow to Coca-Cola red! The color filling was done very sloppily on the original, so I spent some time cleaning that up as well. While I don't presume that this collection of odd pop music curios is complete, I bet it's darn close!

Things Go Better with Coke: Sixties Coca-Cola Commercials (1965-1969)
1. The American Breed - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
2. The American Breed - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
3. Aretha Franklin - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
4. Aretha Franklin - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:01)
5. Aretha Franklin - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (1:29)
6. B.J. Thomas - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:57)
7. B.J. Thomas - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:58)
8. The Bee Gees - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:55)
9. The Bee Gees - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
10. The Box Tops - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:58)
11. The Box Tops - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
12. The Box Tops - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (1:00)
13. Brooklyn Bridge - Things Go Better with Coke (0:59)
14. Carla Thomas - Things Go Better with Coke (0:59)
15. Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich - Things Go Better with Coke (2:18)
16. The Drifters - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
17. The Easybeats - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:03)
18. The Easybeats - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:56)
19. The Easybeats - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (1:18)
20. The Everly Brothers - Things Go Better with Coke (1:25)
21. The 5th Dimension - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
22. The 5th Dimension - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
23. Fontella Bass - Things Go Better with Coke (0:58)
24. The Fortunes - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
25. The Four Seasons - Things Go Better with Coke (1:33)
26. Freddie and the Dreamers - Things Go Better with Coke (0:58)
27. Freddy Cannon - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
28. Freddy Cannon - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
29. Gary Lewis and the Playboys - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
30. Gary Lewis and the Playboys - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Short) (0:57)
31. Gary Lewis and the Playboys - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Long) (1:30)
32. Gladys Knight and the Pips - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
33. Gladys Knight and the Pips - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
34. Golden Earring - Things Go Better with Coke (1:49)
35. Jan and Dean - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
36. Jay and the Americans - Things Go Better with Coke (0:58)
37. Jay and the Techniques - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
38. Jay and the Techniques - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
39. Jerry Butler - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
40. Jerry Butler / Carla Thomas - Things Go Better with Coke (0:59)
41. Joe Tex - Things Go Better with Coke (0:57)
42. Lee Dorsey - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
43. Lee Dorsey - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
44. The Left Banke - Things Go Better with Coke (1:02)
45. Lesley Gore - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:31)
46. Lesley Gore - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Short) (1:03)
47. Lesley Gore - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Long) (1:32)
48. Little Milton - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:02)
49. Little Milton - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:05)
50. Los Bravos - Things Go Better with Coke (1:30)
51. Lulu - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
52. Lulu - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:58)
53. Marvin Gaye - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
54. Marvin Gaye / Tammi Terrell - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
55. Mary Hopkin - Things Go Better with Coke (1:00)
56. The Moody Blues - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Short) (1:01)
57. The Moody Blues - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Long) (1:35)
58. The Moody Blues - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
59. The Moody Blues - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (0:59)
60. Nancy Sinatra - Things Go Better with Coke (Short) (1:01)
61. Nancy Sinatra - Things Go Better with Coke (Long) (1:31)
62. Neil Diamond - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:52)
63. Neil Diamond - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
64. New Vaudeville Band - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:34)
65. New Vaudeville Band - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:31)
66. Otis Redding - Things Go Better with Coke (1:29)
67. Petula Clark - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Short) (0:58)
68. Petula Clark - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Long) (1:31)
69. Petula Clark - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:02)
70. Petula Clark - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (Short) (1:01)
71. Petula Clark - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (Long) (1:29)
72. Ray Charles - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:01)
73. Ray Charles - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:31)
74. Ray Charles / Aretha Franklin - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:28)
75. Ray Charles / Aretha Franklin - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:32)
76. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Short) (1:01)
77. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Long) (1:30)
78. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Short) (1:02)
79. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Long) (1:28)
80. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (Short) (0:59)
81. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (Long) (1:29)
82. Roy Orbison - Things Go Better with Coke #4 (1:01)
83. Sandy Posey - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
84. Sandy Posey - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
85. Sandy Posey - Things Go Better with Coke #3 (1:00)
86. The Seekers - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
87. The Seekers - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
88. The Shirelles / John W. Bubbles - Things Go Better with Coke (1:46)
89. The Supremes - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Short) (1:00)
90. The Supremes - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (Long) (1:30)
91. The Supremes - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (1:00)
92. Tom Jones - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:59)
93. Tom Jones - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:56)
94. Tommy Boyce / Bobby Hart - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
95. Tommy Boyce / Bobby Hart - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
96. The Tremeloes - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:00)
97. The Tremeloes - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:58)
98. The Troggs - Things Go Better with Coke (Short) (1:00)
99. The Troggs - Things Go Better with Coke (Long) (1:31)
100. Vanilla Fudge - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (0:58)
101. Vanilla Fudge - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:59)
102. The Vogues - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:30)
103. The Vogues - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Short) (1:00)
104. The Vogues - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (Long) (1:33)
105. Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders - Things Go Better with Coke (0:59)
106. The Who - Things Go Better with Coke #1 (1:06)
107. The Who - Things Go Better with Coke #2 (0:29)
108. Come Alive - The Pepsi Generation (2:01)

185MB ZIP archive
MP3: Constant and Variable bitrate (207.5kbps average)

DOWNLOAD

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

best....blog....post.......EVER!

(not the least because I'm old enough to remember constantly hearing these on AM radio as a kid...)

Sheila said...

I love your blog. Especially your post on the retro Coke. Since this is my favorite drink and I have a collection of pictures of different trucks etc.. I never knew they had so many celebs doing the jingle.
Lovely artwork too :) Thanks for sharing

rvd said...

thank you kevin.

these commercials are so much fun. i hope you do not mind that i used two of them in my podcast (http://qrz.podspot.de) as they fit in perfectly.

thank you again and all the best:
ralf

Titnia said...

This is genius. I'm DJing at at 60s night tomorrow and this will be getting an airing.

mouseonmoon said...

awesome > jus by chance found yr blog ....

and jus by coincidence recorded a song about being a 'soda addict' ...

the red and white glow
of the soda machine
like the Red Cross Flag...

(forgot the words! ...

great post,
best

Major Pepperidge said...

Wow, this is fantastic! Not only an amazing collection because of the sheer number of tracks, but the quality of the songs is suprisingly great too.

THANKS

twpeter said...

Every second of this is gold, Kevin. Thank you so much for all the work putting this together.

DirtyDave07 said...

Thanks Kevin!..I downloaded this for novelty value but it was much cooler than that,loved the second Tom Jones track.

paskunia said...

Hey! You left one out (lol)! I have a TV ad someone posted that has the Limeliters singing in the background, while a couple on screen are moving into a new pad. They and the moving men are guzzling away as they bring in the boxes.
For the record (so to speak), this jingle was replced with "It's the Real Thing", written by British songsmith Tony McCaulley, and sung in radio ads by the pop group, the Fortunes. It was later incorporated into the NEXT jingle, perhaps the most famous Coke jingle of all, "I'd like to Teach the World to Sing".

Anonymous said...

Absolutely marvellous.

I cannot thank you enough!

Nice work on the Dogs In Space music too!

Awesome!!!

Big Ern xxx

Melbourne Australia

Anonymous said...

Hi, These are the best sounding Coke commercials that I've heard. Fantastic job. Thanks very much.

Brad

Anonymous said...

You're a master. Love ya!

raybo said...

These are great!!! Does anyone have the old Tab jingle "How Could Just One Calorie Taste So Good?" that sounds like the Swingle Singers?

Anonymous said...

1001 thank yous. I have been searching for this since Napster went down. I had accumulated 38 of these, none of which were missing from your collection. Well done!

Steve Engler said...

This looks like a lot of fun, thanks! By the way, I'm dying to see some new post before long!

Chance said...

I knew there were two sets, I've got the "yellow" one, but was in search of the other. Thanks very much for this, both collated into one archive, that's the way to do it! Thanks again!

gkldders said...

A very nice compilation but I'm missing the very first one ever done for Coca-Cola, the Shirelles, that I found in this post on Youtube.

Anonymous said...

"Things Go Better" when you get your DL's from Psychotic Leisure Music too! This is just awesome! Thanks for all your hard work on this compilation! Just terrific! :)

Anonymous said...

Outstanding compilation!!

Thank you so much for sharing, and for all the time you put into finding the tracks and then compiling them, and eradicating any duplicates :)

Kevin Sartori said...

Share has been uploaded to MediaFire and is available now!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Kevin! This compilation of Coke jingles is awesome!

Anonymous said...

Frakking great!!! xoxo Jean-Erica

Kevin Sartori said...

Share has been reuploaded to Rapidgator and is available now!

Kevin Sartori said...

Rapidgator has become unreliable, so I've uploaded the share to Game Front and it's available now!