My heart was broken this week at Apple’s product unveilings. No, not by the iPod touch’s disappointingly small storage capacity; not by Apple’s Wi-Fi-themed partnership with the Starbucks mega-corporation (although my stomach turned as if from one too many frappuccinos when I heard that). Goosebumps surfaced on my body and my jaw dropped when Steve Jobs showed the new iPod nano commercial. A familiar tune filled the Moscone West room, accompanied by a soulful female voice. Oh, dear God, no. It was Feist —for years, my favorite singer-songwriter. In an iPod commercial. It was over.
Let me make something clear. I love my iPod; I love my MacBook Pro; I love almost all things Apple. But I absolutely despise those iPod commercials. Whenever I see those earbud-wearing silhouettes on white or neon backgrounds bobbing heads to some obnoxious tune (think “My Humps”), I hit the Mute button on my remote and close my eyes until I know it’s over. And while I love Feist, it really kills me to have to associate her with something I hate.
Why, Feist? I still remember when I saw you for the first time here in San Francisco about three years ago. It was your first performance ever in California. You were opening for Kings of Convenience, and after you performed a song someone in the audience had to ask you what your name was. You were but a wee and unknown artist, and over the years I watched you climb up the ladder of stardom. Was the HSBC Direct commercial not enough? Or recording some songs for Paris Je T’aime ? Why, oh, why did you slip through the fiery chasm that is the iPod commercial?
Suddenly I feel so uncool. The artist I list as a favorite in my Facebook profile is in the new iPod nano commercial. Should I remove her? Now, listening to Feist is as cool as owning an iPod. And everybody owns an iPod ! This is your fault, Apple. Why did you have to take Feist away from me? She was mine, dammit. Who are you going to take away from me next? Fionn Regan ? Stars ? Broken Social Scene ?
Take me instead. Stick me in one of those godawful commercials, blot me out into a silhouette and shove those trendy earbuds in my canal. I’ll do anything: the Robot, the electric slide, or that thing that indie kids do where they shrug their shoulders and nod; I’ll even pretend to enjoy the new Hilary Duff song. Just stay away from my beloved bands!