Over the last few weeks just about everyone has experienced one of those stifling hot days when sanity was maintained by the thought of an ice cold glass of beer. I’m not talking about a craft beer here, I’m talking about I’m ice cold American yellow lager beer. Last week while walking on a sidewalk hotter than a match head I found myself whistling a tune. It only took a few seconds to realize I was whistling a tune that was written for a beer. I was whistling the old Schafer commercial. Yes, my friends, there was once a time when people wrote songs about beers. It was back in the days when there were such things as “jingles” used to market products primarily on radio. Growing up in the 1960s I have fond memories of three beer “jingles”.

In those days there were three beers that call New York City home: Ballantine, Schaeffer and Rheingold. Each of these three beers had its own distinctive sound when it came to the commercials.

The one that evokes hot summer afternoons mowing the lawn and listening to AM radio are the cheerful notes of the Rheingold commercial. “My beer is Rheingold the dry beer. Think of Rheingold whenever you try beer. It’s not bitter, not sweet, extra drive flavor treat, won’t you try extra dry Rheingold beer.”

For your entertainment and edification I offer the following…

 

In my late teens I developed a preference for the more “cool” sound of the Shafer commercial…

 

Finally, I’ll let Ballantine step up to the plate, literally. Ballantine, in the 1950s and 60s, was a major sponsor of New York Yankees baseball and the voice of New York Yankees baseball was Mel Allen. Another favorite radio voice of that time was a fellow by the name of Jean Shepherd. The following is a sound clip of a Ballantine commercial from a March 16, 1961 Jean Shepherd radio show on WOR in New York…

 

 

And that’s my trip down memory lane.