Music in ads: Happiness Runs…everywhere

A few weeks ago, I wrote about how one of the unexpected benefits of getting older is how so much of the music in tv ads (and in lots of tv shows, come to that) seems plucked directly from your childhood or teenage years.  

This week, I was reminded of this yet again, when Friskies started running this spot:


It’s actually a great commercial – I’m no longer a cat owner, but I’m quite certain we can all agree that it’s long past time for canned cat-food ads to move beyond showing the stuff perched on a crystal cake stand or garnished with parsley as though it was, in fact, human-grade salmon they’ve put in there.

But it was the soundtrack that hooked me on this one:  The song is “Happiness Runs”, from a 1969 album by folk singer Donovan.  We used to sing it at camp in the 1980s, and I hadn’t thought of it in years – but it brought back all kinds of happy memories, and I’ve found myself singing it to the baby all week.

Turns out that Donovan hasn’t been shy about licensing his song all over the place.  In the past few years, it’s turned up in other spots: 

Of course, I can’t help but notice that all three of these spots are clearly targeted toward my demographic, so I guess lots of other women my age remember this song from camp (since they probably weren’t born when the song came out).

What’s my point?  I guess I don’t have a big one…I just think it’s interesting how, no matter how unique you think you are, eventually you have to face the fact you’re just a data point in a demographic chart.  Some days, this makes me a little depressed, but other days – well, I’m kind of glad I got reminded of this song.