Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Now a Song From Our Sponsor

A deal between Hanna-Barbera and Kellogg’s resulted in the best-ever seven-minute TV cartoons being put on the air. Ad agency Leo Burnett bought or bartered for a half-hour each weekday on various stations in the U.S. and then handed the stations a complete show of cartoons (or a live-action-adventure). That deal brought us the first runs of the Huckleberry Hound, Quick Draw McGraw and Yogi Bear shows. Kellogg’s products were plugged in commercials between the cartoons with Hanna-Barbera characters (and others developed by Burnett) doing the plugging, occasionally assisted by announcer Art Gilmore.

So it is we present this wonderful selection of Kellogg’s jingles uncovered by reader Dan Cunningham.

This is from a not for sale/broadcast/public performance record made in 1965 strictly as a reference recording for the company’s sales staff. It’s called “A Kellogg Concert of Best Cereal Sellers” by the pseudononynous “Philmore Bowls.” The cover features Tony the Tiger conducting an orchestra that includes Quick Draw McGraw and Baba Looey, Huckleberry Hound, Snagglepuss and Yogi Bear.

Alas, none of those Hanna-Barbera characters is featured in the jingles. We do get Mr. Jinks, who is not voiced by Daws Butler (this Jinks sounds closer to Kermit the Frog in tone). We also get Toucan Sam, who is not voiced by Mel Blanc (he was the original voice), Hillbilly Goat, who is not voiced by Howard Morris (for Sugar Stars) and a Tony who’s the best impression of Thurl Ravenscroft I’ve ever heard (if it’s not him). I hate guessing at these things, but the guy doing the around-the-world jingle for Rice Krispies reminds me of Dave Barry.

I’m a sucker for really good ‘60s jingles, and there are great ones here. I’ve always liked “Snap, what a happy sound!” song for Rice Krispies, the Beatles Raisin Bran tune is lots of fun (especially the TV commerical version by Daws Butler and Don Messick) and the song on the disc for Sugar Frosted Flakes has a terrific faux Broadway air with a wonderful arrangement. If you can name who the main voice is on it, let me know. I recognise who it is but can’t pull out the name.

The fifth song, for Kellogg’s Variety Pack, is the quintessential ‘60s jingle, at least in terms of instrumentation. And maybe in terms of sexism. I still don’t understand the lyric “Variety—nice in a wife.”

So have a listen. My thanks to Dan and to Vintage Kiddie Disc, who got this record for less than 50 cents at a thrift market and was kind enough to post it on the internet.

(Yowp update: about two years after this was originally posted, music expert Greg Ehrbar revealed the names of each tune at the fine Cartoon Research blog. This post has been modified to list the real names, though I kind of liked mine better).


2. CORN ROUSER (Corn Flakes)

3. LIVE IT UP (Sugar Frosted Flakes)

4. COUNTERPOINT (Rice Krispies)

5. SPICE OF LIFE (Variety Pack)


7. TONY’S SONG (Sugar Frosted Flakes)

8. FROOT LOOPS SONG (Froot Loops)

9. TRIPLE SNACK (Triple Snack)

10. SNICKETY SNACK (Snack Pack)

11. RAISIN ROCK (Raisin Bran)

12. ROCK ISLAND HENRY (Corn Flakes)

13. LANGUAGES (Rice Krispies)

1 comment:

  1. Jinks in Raisin Beatles sounds almost like Kermit the Frog.