At certain times of my life, I wrote ‘Catch Phrases’ as part of radio and television commercials, and printed advertisements. I wrote catch phrases for products, companies, city and state governments, individuals, and events.
Private dining with a view
There was one time that I felt I was working for the ‘bad guys’. It was in 1967, and a ultra conservative group paid me to draw anti-union cartoons. That made me feel dirty until I did some much better work for peace and freedom organizations to redeem myself.
The object is to capture your attention. At least that’s the meaning that I feel best describes ‘catch phrase’. It’s like the ‘hook’ in a song that makes it a catchy tune, ( I write them, too ).
The tricky thing about catch phrases, for me, is to be sure that I am setting loose a benign spirit that does no more harm than manipulating someone to buy a particular jar of pickles. Whatever awards and accolades I got for television, radio, and print advertizing, were because my messages made people feel good about what they were persuaded to do.
Casting on the airwaves
At some point in the 70’s, there began a concerted effort to turn the power of the catch phrase into a cudgel to bash ones competitors. The positive messages were still moving products like coke and junk food, but the right wing industrialists were having success in getting their people elected to political offices by besmirching the other candidates.
Those writers evidently did not feel they were blackening their souls with rampant negative catchphrase creation.
Happy in the sunlight
So, here we are, 40 years later; We now have 24 hour television and radio networks broadcasting lies, outrageous disrespect for the president, and negative catchphrases designed to persuade people to give up civility and social responsibilities.
Okay then. I can see that it’s still good to spread some sunshine, and positive messages, wherever, and whenever the spirit moves me. It is what I do.
I must remember not to criticize or correct those who have been caught in the net of negativity. They really think the bulls..t that they are being served on radio and cable news is tasty patriotic burgers and beer. They feel threatened by anyone who would suggest otherwise.
A Singer Of Note