Sunday, October 14, 2007

How much did Led Zeppelin sell out?

An interesting mathematical equation appears in today's Washington Post. The mathematical equation is about the extent to which an artist is a sellout for allowing a song to be used in commercial advertising for a product (and be compensated for doing so).

The article uses Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll" on Cadillac commercials as one of several examples. And it turns out that, once the equation is applied, Led Zeppelin's sellout isn't the world's biggest! Good to know.

The author's blog is here.

I'm down at the National Folk Festival in Richmond, Va., today. Mike Seeger (see previous post on his involvement on Raising Sand) is down here, and I'm hoping to say hello in person.


  1. I thought that was most interesting; first heard about that in a radio ad yesterday. When I think about artists that have totally pimped themselves, the Stones immediately come to mind and cast a wide shadow. In my mind, hearing "Rock and Roll" during a Cadillac CTS commercial isn't nearly as bad as the whining strains of a re-made "I'm Free" in some check card commercial with shiny-happy-families on the beach.

  2. Personally, I don't mind hearing songs I like, whether they're on commercials or something else. But I guess when they're on constant rotation, that can get pretty bothersome. There was a moment a few years ago when one couldn't get through a TV commercial break without hearing about half of the songs on Who's Next. Great album, but I just found it overbearing.


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