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Happy Jack

03/21/2010

While watching Paul Schaffer and some schmuck pitching shamelessly for a PBS “pledge drive” I am reminded of the guys holding cardboard signs declaring, “Viet Nam Vet, Homeless, Need $”. My sister-in-law, a nurse practitioner who works with the homeless will attest, “Those guys fight for the best corners…it’s a business, not a plea for help.”

Anyway back to PBS. The “sell” was a  CD collection of of artists Ed Sullivan brought to the living rooms of America – back in the day. 100% in black & white television. Mono sound. So what. The list is stunning. The Beatles, Stones, Hermits, Pacemakers, Pips, etc. Ed Sullivan may have done more for advancing rock and roll, soul and blues than Woodstock.

As the list of songs first performed on TV scrolled “Happy Jack” by the Who appeared.

I said, in a fit of glee, “”Happy Jack” is my favorite Who song”! The very small audience in attendance replied, “Why?” My response: A great song paired with a terrific commercial for a now-defunct brand. To this day I feel great watching this spot. Why? Jack is smart, clever, a winner, got the girl and was HAPPY! If that’s all it takes I should have bought a Hummer off the first delivery truck.

Hummer had a place in America’s auto mix. Not for me…I loved the military origins but couldn’t get past the association with manly shortcomings as a purchase motivation.

Just the same I’m sorry to see it go by the wayside.

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