The iPod commercials left an impression on a young me. I don't remember the first time I saw those silhouettes dancing in front of neon backgrounds, but I do know that I can't forget them. They defined a specific iPod-obsessed era: the early and mid-2000s. People dressed up as the anonymous dancers for Halloween, downloaded the singles from the commercials, and, well, bought iPods. And because it's Apple's 40th birthday today, and because I can't resist revisiting past music choices, I'd like to look back at those ads. Join me!
Here we have the first iPod commercial, which ran in October 2001. The ad features "Take California" by the Propellerheads, and brags that the iPod can hold 1,000 songs in your pocket. I've never heard of the Propellerheads, but according to the highly accurate Wikipedia, they broke up in 2003 after releasing only one album. Pour one out for the Propellerheads.
Hm, what else do we have in the iPod commercial vault? I think we should jump ahead to the silhouette commercials because, really, those were the pinnacle of iPod commercials and lasted for roughly a decade. One dedicated YouTube user compiled every silhouette ad into a 13-minute video. If you have some time to directly stream branding into your brain, you should check it out!
Of the silhouette phase, the commercial that sticks out most in my mind is Jet's "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" spot. The band formed in 2001 and broke up in 2012. They had a solid 11 year run with three albums, 14 singles, one iPod commercial, and a very NSFW Pitchfork review.
The Ting Tings put their song "Shut Up And Let Me Go" in a revamped silhouette commercial. Premiering in 2008, the video is from what I call the silhouette's Late Period.
Are you already sick of these? Too bad, I have more! Here's Eminem. Yes, Eminem, also advertising iPods. Remember the "Lose Yourself" era? People were throwing up their mom's spaghetti left and right. Couldn't keep it down. Oh, it was just horrible.
And now, to cap this post off, let's go with some Coldplay. This isn't even the old, generally accepted as a good band, Coldplay. This is Viva La Vida-era Coldplay.
I rarely see iPods anymore. I'm not even sure if the company still advertises them. We're living in the iPhone and iPad era, people. But we'll always have these fond commercial memories cemented into the internet. Brand music choices are never forgotten.