Wednesday, August 06, 2008


If you're of a certain age and grew up with parents with no interest in rock and roll you probably first encountered The Beach Boys song "Good Vibrations" in an ad for Sunkist soda. Specifically, this ad:

The lyric is changed, the arrangement pretty lazy, and the harmonies aren't exactly soaring. Hearing "Good Vibrations" this way is a bit like seeing Hamlet on Betamax in a production in which Hamlet wears a Burger King t-shirt the entire time. Maybe that's why it took me a while to understand the song's genius.

So where did the commercial come from? I have a partial answer for that. I just wrote a review of the album Brotherman, a long lost soundtrack to a never-produced Chicago-set, '70s blaxploitation film with music performed by the unfortunately named Chicago soul act The Final Solution. It's due out in a bit on the great Chicago boutique label Numero Group which specializes in such oddities. Numero sends out updates every once in a while, and the most recent one linked to that YouTube clip above. Turns out it was The Final Solution, or at least members therof, providing the vocals.

I doubt they regarded it as their finest moment, either. In fact, the Brotherman album makes a pretty convincing case for their best moment never seeing the light of day until now. Here's a taste:

Love that guitar line, which was apparently going to be swapped out for a more polished guitar sound, strings, and horns. Maybe it's best it never got completed after all.


Eric Grubbs said...

Didn't New Order OK the usage of "Blue Monday" for a Minute Maid ad? Coupled with the Final Solution, I wonder what's with the connection between band's with Nazi-like names and fruit soft drinks.

Keith Phipps said...

Apparently The Final Solution weren't aware of the implications of their name. Joy Division, on the other hand...