That Mellencamp Chevy Truck Commercial

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I've only seen the new Chevy Truck commercial twice so far, this one featuring John Mellencamp singing a new song, "Our Country" that replaces Bob Seger's "Like A Rock." 

It will be interesting to see if there's any fall-out from the Mellencamp ode.

Truck commercials like to bathe themselves in red, white and blue (and mud brown) of the most Common Joe variety, not the patriotism of celebrating diversity, dissent and all that stuff. But the Mellencamp version, called "Our Country, Our Truck" and produced by Campbell-Ewald,  is accompanied by video of Rosa Parks making history at the front of the bus, a Martin Luther King video possibly from his "I Have A Dream" speech, and what appears to me to be the last bizarre and sad V-for-victory salute by Richard Nixon just before he boarded the helicopter and headed for ex-Presidentdom.

The video montage segues eventually to an aerial shot of New Orleans after the hurricane and ends with video of the two beams of light that replaced the World Trade Center on the first anniversary of 9/11.

The song, meanwhile, in various verses celebrates religion that forgives, and attacks poverty and bigotry, and Mellencamp sings about his ability to "stand besides things I think are right…and the idea of stand and fight."

In a 30-second commercial, we're not hearing much of the whole song (I'm cribbing the lyrics from a music  Web site, in fact), but what we are hearing, coming  from a grassroots liberal like Mellencamp, coupled with the video,  seemed more Pete Seeger than Bob Seger.

I wonder if this will sell trucks. I wonder if it might do just the opposite. (I suppose I also begin to see how 9/11 footage has become a superb selling tool.)

If you watch the baseball playoffs or NFL game, you're sure to eventually see the spot. Tell me what you think.

–P.J. Bednarski

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