Archive for May 9th, 2017

I was listening to our classical music station early one morning, and I hear the Rheingold beer jingle. OK, it wasn’t, really. But it certainly REMINDED me of it.

I discovered here that the melody I heard was in fact the Estudiantina Valse, Opus 191, No. 4 (The Students’ Waltz), a title I had never heard of.

“The tune was composed by a pair of obscure French composers, the tune itself by Paul Lacome (1838 – 1920); But ironically it is often incorrectly attributed to the man who arranged it in a rollicking Strauss-like arrangement for two pianos — named Emile (“Emil”) Waldteufel (1837 – 1915).

“Waldteufel included it in a set of tunes arranged for 2 pianos, published under his own Opus number, which blurred the issue of authorship right down to the present day.” In fact, I have found almost NO one to attribute this to Lacome, only to Waldteufel.

“The Beer jingle with a lyric by an unknown ad agent, used the melody of this famous light-classical waltz tune.”

The lyric was:
My beer is Rheingold the dry beer.
Think of Rheingold whenever you buy beer.
It’s not bitter, not sweet, it’s the extra dry treat
Won’t you try extra dry Rheingold beer?

I remember the third lyric as “it’s refreshing, not sweet…”, but there are a lot of variations.

“Ironic that this melody, which some may remember as the quintessential German Beer Hall tune (images of people with swaying cups all singing in unison) is actually of FRENCH, rather than German, origin.

The beer sponsored Rheingold Theater, a dramatic anthology series, on NBC Primetime in 1955 – 1956. Rheingold Beer, “despite its Wagnerian opera name, was brewed in a little brewery located in Brooklyn, NY; and which tried to use the early medium of TV to get a little respect — or “brand recognition” at least.

Still, Rheingold Beer, “introduced in 1883, is a New York beer that held 35 percent of the state’s beer market from 1950 to 1960. The company was sold by the founding German American Liebmann family in 1963… Rheingold shut down operations in 1976, when they were unable to compete with the large national breweries… The label was revived in 1998…” but it’s not the same, or so I am told.

WHY do I remember the lyrics to a song for a product I have NEVER consumed? Herwitz Associates suggests “a dozen principles for improving memory, but the concepts can just as easily be applied to making a message memorable.”

Listen to Estudiantina Valse here or here or here or here, featuring a 26-tone Violinopan (thanks, Jaquandor!)

Listen to the Rheingold beer jingle here or here or here or here (modern)

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