For several years Volkswagen has been relaunching musical careers as successfully as it has its own discontinued models.
Thanks to Volkswagen's music-friendly commercials, the popularity of Trio, Styx and others has soared since the clips began airing during the mid-'90s and you can bet they're grateful.
Now the car company that ignited the hip-commercial-music craze and created a new outlet for Moby and Sting is releasing VW Street Mix, Volume 1, a compilation CD featuring music from Volkswagen's first commercials.
Nick Drake's "Pink Moon," Trio's "Da Da Da" and Styx's "Mr. Roboto" are included, along with tracks from Hooverphonic, Spiritualized and Pitchshifter.
"We've been putting this together for a couple of years now," said Alan Pafenbach, whose Arnold Worldwide advertising firm creates the commercials for Volkswagen. "It doesn't have all of the songs we have used, but hopefully we will keep releasing CDs and getting them out there."
Music fans have already demonstrated they will buy a song they like from a commercial. U.S. sales of Nick Drake's Pink Moon album rose from 6,000 copies, prior to the song's use in a Cabrio commercial, to 74,000 copies in 2000, according to Palm, which distributes Drake's music through Hannibal Records.
Volkswagen have pressed some 30,000 copies of VW Street Mix, Volume 1 and plan to sell them through the company's Internet radio station, RadioVW (www.radiovw.com), by the end of April. Local VW dealers will also eventually sell the CDs, Pafenbach said.
Track listing for VW Street Mix, Volume 1, according to Arnold Worldwide:
- Nick Drake, "Pink Moon"
- Hooverphonic, "Renaissance Affair"
- Charles Mingus, "II BS"
- Styx, "Mr. Roboto"
- Master Cylinder, "Jung At Heart"
- Ben Neill, "Turbonium X"
- Pitchshifter, "Subject To Status"
- Fluke, "Absurd"
- Spiritualized, "Ladies And Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space"
- Trio, "Da Da Da"
- Velocity Girl, "Sorry Again"
- Psychic TV, "Roman P"