• Mon, Mar 21 2011

10 Subversive Rock Songs Used In Commercials To Sell Stuff

Remember the Lou Reed/Susan Boyle controversy-that-wasn’t-really-a-controversy? In brief, Susan wasn’t allowed to sing Lou’s song “Perfect Day” on America’s Got Talent and everyone thought it was because Lou wasn’t a fan of the reality show performer. But it turns out Lou maybe didn’t have a problem with Susan tackling his song after all, and he even ended up directing the music video for her cover of the tune.

Well, the aging punker totally never had a leg to stand on. As anyone who has seen HP’s most recent commercial now knows, Lou is totally lame! The ad, which is sort of a general survey of their products, features a version of Lou’s transsexual-and-hustler-themed 1972 classic “Walk on the Wild Side” with insanely uncool lyrics that reference HP’s products. Ridiculous, right? Pretty much. Check out our video gallery of nine other subversive tunes that were misappropriated by the advertising powers that be.

“Walk on the Wild Side” by Lou Reed
We weren’t kidding about those lame lyrics. “Everybody Digg/Everybody Host/Everybody Skype/Everybody Post.” Seriously, everybody Skype?! Well, on the one hand, Andy Warhol would be proud.

“Lust for Life” by Iggy Pop
Royal Caribbean Cruises famously used “Lust For Life” in a series of ads, appropriating Iggy’s song about heroin use to sell vacations to grandmas. “Well I’m just a modern guy/Of course I’ve had it in the ear before” is about your goofy uncle giving you a wet willy on the upper deck, right?

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  • Jmaeby

    Re: “Brown Sugar” lyrics, I believe it’s “hear him WHIP the women just around midnight”

    • Liana Maeby

      Oops. Thanks, Dad!