We’re very much in the midst of a sonic renaissance. Podcasts, streaming content, and voice tech are all on the rise, sound and music are driving social media on TikTok, and it seems like every week, another big brand is coming out with a new sonic signature.

But it’s not always new sonic signatures. With sound being so integral to media and marketing strategy, many legacy brands are reviving classic sonic assets, and of course there are a number of ways to do that. Let’s look at just a few.

Bounty’s started as a jingle created by songwriter and composer Lynn Ahrens.

Bounty decided to go super streamlined. They removed the singing and most of the melody, leaving just the last two notes.

Meow Mix took a totally different approach. Their original jingle was written by Tom McFaul in 1974. Within two years, Meow Mix was the top cat food brand.

Like most jingles of its era, it was retired in the mid 90s. But funny enough, according to the CBC,

“…in a survey done 16 years after the jingle was taken off the air, 81 per cent of respondents claimed to have heard the jingle in the last 12 months and 39 per cent said they remembered the jingle better than they remembered their online passwords.”

No word on whether or not they were just remembering The Simpsons. Regardless, they did something completely different to bring it back in 2023. They reimagined the piece in a boy band format featuring N Sync’s J.C.

This next one’s before my time, but I know it anyway because, you know… jingles. I’m Stuck on Band-Aid was composed by Barry Manilow back in 1975.

This is another one that went away for a long time, that is, until just recently. In this case, they didn’t change much at all. It’s basically just a modern production of the old composition.

One of my favourite sonic identities has to be State Farm Insurance, also by Barry Manilow. He composed this one in 1971, but unlike Band-Aid, they’ve stuck with it in one form or another ever since. That’s over 50 years of sonic brand equity they’ve built.

It’s so ingrained in the public consciousness, all they have to do is play the melody. The way they wove it through last year’s Super Bowl commercial is spot on.

There are many reasons why jingles are coming back. The increasing importance of sonic branding is certainly a driving factor. Part of it is more modern composition methods, making them more adaptable and versatile.

But of course a big part of it is simply the power of music. A few months ago I had a great chat with singer Katelyn Dawn while recording (of all things) the Quinte Hearing Centre jingle. She suggested that in a time when A.I. continues to influence modern media, perhaps people simply yearn for a more spontaneous and human presence.

I reckon she’s on to something.