Friday, September 30, 2016

Classics in Commercials: Mahler for Gucci in a sucky commercial.

A new commercial for Gucci Guilty (a cologne) features Gustav Mahler's Adagietto (from his Fifth Symphony) as the musical backdrop. Actor Jared Leto is the star of the ad. (Loved him in Dallas Buyer's Club). But this commercial really sucks if you ask me. I don't know what's going on and it's "style" or attempt at "style" falls flat. It is stylish shit.
That being said, Mahler's Adagietto is one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever written, and even if it is part of a horrible ad, at least Mahler's music is given an appearance in mainstream media.
Mahler wrote the Adagietto for his wife Alma....a love song of symphonic magnitude. Maybe I'm Amazed by Paul McCartney, Layla by Eric Clapton and Something by George Harrison are beautiful love songs. But as great as they are, they are dwarfed by what Mahler composed for Alma.
The Adagietto is part of Mahler's Fifth Symphony...the fourth movement. It was composed in 1901-1902 and premiered in 1904.
I did some digging to see if there was any real world connection between Mahler and Gucci. They were contemporaries.Gucci lived from 1881-1953. Mahler lived from 1860-1911. I can't find any reports that they actually met or that Gucci heard any of Mahler's music, though I think there is a chance he did. Both men visited London, but not at the same time. Mahler was there in 1892, and Gucci lived there from 1898-1905. Gucci moved back to Florence, Italy to start his company in 1905. Mahler visited Rome in 1907 and conducted the Adagietto in a concert there. It is possible Gucci could have taken a train to Rome for that performance.....

Here is the commercial:

It's better if you only listen to the sound.

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