Monday, March 12, 2012

Iconic Meow Mix Theme Comes Out Of Retirement...Or Does It?

AdWeek reports that Meow Mix is bringing back its iconic advertising jingle after a sixteen year absence - which is odd because many cat lovers (myself included) never realized it left.

Del Monte Foods, which acquired the brand in 2006, surveyed more than 1,000 cat lovers across the country and found that 21 percent believed they heard the song at some point within the past three months, while 81 percent claimed to have heard it within the last year. Even more alarming, "half said they remember most or all of the lyrics to the Meow Mix jingle (they're talking about the English subtitles, not the endless meow's), and 39 percent said they know the jingle better than all of their online passwords."

While it's possible that a Meow Mix commercial including the jingle AND the singing cat AND the bouncing ball subtitles hasn't been made since 1996, it's a bit misleading to say that the theme has been lounging in retirement. A brief YouTube search brings up at least two Meow Mix commercials I can remember from recent years (2009 and beyond) that feature a variation of the tune, including one of a cat playing it on a piano, and another which parodies the Fancy Feast cat clinking it out on a crystal bowl.

The memorable Meow Mix campaign (who among us hasn't sung along?) was originally created by Ron Travisano, at the advertising agency of Della Femina Travisano and Partners in 1976. Before the days of CGI, Travisano and an editor cut together looping images of a cat to make it look like it was singing, and added in meowing vocals, provided by a professional, non-feline singer named Linda November. Travisano also had the idea to add in a bouncing ball over the "Meow meow" subtitles, before "English" lyrics such as "I like chicken, I like liver, Meow Mix Meow Mix please deliver!" were later added.

When is the last time you (think you) heard the infectious jingle?

Via AdWeek



Cat and DOG Chat With Caren said...

wow I thought I heard it more recently than SIXTEEN (?) years ago too...thanks for all of the background info!

The Kitties of Purring Pines said...

We thought it was still around too!

Unknown said...

The sequel is never as good as the original!

Rachel Shubin said...

It was on an episode of Malcolm in the Middle. Malcolm is trying to learn how to play guitar and he writes a song to the meow mix commercial without realizing it! He plays it for the family and they realize it's the meow mix song and they start singing the real words to it!

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