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Coca Cola Pop & Pour
Old 26th November 2016
  #1
Gear Maniac
Coca Cola Pop & Pour

Wondering if you can take us through your iconic Coca Cola Pop & Pour work, technically and conceptually?

In terms of trying to understand the cultural context of sound design and what "gear" can do, one of the most interesting things to me is the idea that a synthesized sound could be conceived of as more realistic than a "natural" one: that the "fizz" of a synth would be more convincing to audiences than the real recorded version...

With the level of synthesized realism available today in different fields, we take these things for granted now of course. But this ad seemed like quite an important artistic and commercial sound decision at the time. Any insight and further thoughts into this would be most appreciated.

You are a legend to many, and so many thanks for doing this!
Old 29th November 2016
  #2
Suzanne Ciani
 
Sevwave's Avatar
 

Aha...Okay...let's go back to the moment. I was a Buchla "session" player in New York City, playing an instrument that no one understood Advertising embraced "the new" and "different" and so I was welcomed, if not understood. The producer, Billy Davis, from McAnn Erickson, was from Motown and very cool and creative and daring. He was the one who brought Aretha Franklin and other great Motown artists to Madison Avenue and Coca Cola. I had muscled my way into the session that day because Billy had already cancelled three appointments. There was a blank space in the Coke jingle...it was a radio spot. They asked me if I could do something in there. My brain calculated that if I did something that had no pitch center, it could possibly work in any number of musical situations and keys...thus resulting in more residuals...and so I thought of doing the bubbles. The bubbles were made by picking off overtones in a sub audio sawtooth wave going through a highpass or bandpass filter...I can't remember now. The fizz was white noise frequency modulated with more white noise in the bandpass filter, as I recall.
In those days, it was discovered over and over that the real sound did not in fact communicate the audio concept adequately...if you recorded someone biting into a potato chip, it was dull, boring and flaccid. If I made a potato chip sound, it included several evolutions of the bite and also the sound of the salt spraying...it was poetry...it was heightened reality...The pop and pour was made in the late 70's...eventually, the Synclavier came along and one could do surgical interventions on a sound on a micro level...but the concept was always that a created sound could operate on many more levels than a "real" sound...you could tune snowflakes, you could sing like a fur coat...it was poetry.
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Old 29th November 2016
  #3
Lives for gear
 
loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevwave View Post
Aha...Okay...let's go back to the moment.
edit
The pop and pour was made in the late 70's...eventually, the Synclavier came along and one could do surgical interventions on a sound on a micro level...but the concept was always that a created sound could operate on many more levels than a "real" sound...you could tune snowflakes, you could sing like a fur coat...it was poetry.
You have a lovely way with words as well as music, Suzanne!

Tell me, is this the original sound?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORnlkEWB94w

Do you have a more recent version?

Thanks!
Old 29th November 2016
  #4
<moderator note: that youtube of the "pop & pour" Coca-Cola ad, is not available in all countries. here (Netherlands) it's blocked>
Old 29th November 2016
  #5
Lives for gear
 
loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
<moderator note: that youtube of the "pop & pour" Coca-Cola ad, is not available in all countries. here (Netherlands) it's blocked>
Gee that's too bad/ What about this page:
Early Ciani - Portraits of a Pioneer at Work
there's a link to a WAV file there.

Suzanne, do you approve this page?
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Old 2nd December 2016
  #6
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevwave View Post
Aha...Okay...let's go back to the moment. I was a Buchla "session" player in New York City, playing an instrument that no one understood Advertising embraced "the new" and "different" and so I was welcomed, if not understood. The producer, Billy Davis, from McAnn Erickson, was from Motown and very cool and creative and daring. He was the one who brought Aretha Franklin and other great Motown artists to Madison Avenue and Coca Cola. I had muscled my way into the session that day because Billy had already cancelled three appointments. There was a blank space in the Coke jingle...it was a radio spot. They asked me if I could do something in there. My brain calculated that if I did something that had no pitch center, it could possibly work in any number of musical situations and keys...thus resulting in more residuals...and so I thought of doing the bubbles. The bubbles were made by picking off overtones in a sub audio sawtooth wave going through a highpass or bandpass filter...I can't remember now. The fizz was white noise frequency modulated with more white noise in the bandpass filter, as I recall.
In those days, it was discovered over and over that the real sound did not in fact communicate the audio concept adequately...if you recorded someone biting into a potato chip, it was dull, boring and flaccid. If I made a potato chip sound, it included several evolutions of the bite and also the sound of the salt spraying...it was poetry...it was heightened reality...The pop and pour was made in the late 70's...eventually, the Synclavier came along and one could do surgical interventions on a sound on a micro level...but the concept was always that a created sound could operate on many more levels than a "real" sound...you could tune snowflakes, you could sing like a fur coat...it was poetry.
ha! you could sing like a fur coat... great anecdotes and answers. thanks a million for the insight, and the poetry.
Old 3rd December 2016
  #7
Suzanne Ciani
 
Sevwave's Avatar
 

Yes, that is the original sound!
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