Thursday, July 29, 2010

Musical keys unlock election advertising

At least the piano players are working in America.

The latest season of televised political attack ads feature the usual array of out-of-context charges, unflattering photos, loose attribution of facts, and general mudslinging.

I've noticed, however, that the palette of poppycock is often presented to voters over a soundtrack that features tidy work on the eighty-eights.

It's clear that political consultants have determined that tickling the ivories can help create an aura of authority and intellectualism for their candidates. Or dark, sinister Darth Vader-like notes for the opposition.

Major stars such as Elton John, Diana Krall, David Benoit and Billy Joel can still perform their piano magic as great entertainers. But anonymous players now toil in ads for everyone from county commissioner to U.S. Senator.

If their candidate doesn't get elected or if the newly minted office holder bungles the public trust, it may be time to drag out the old adage, "Don't shoot me, I'm only the piano player!"