Phil Collins' 1981 hit "In the Air Tonight" is back on the U.K. singles chart thanks to a TV advertising campaign for chocolate-featuring a drum-playing great ape. As the campaign for Cadbury's Dairy Milk chocolate bars launched, the track hit the Official U.K. Charts Co.'s top 75 dated Sept. 15, climbing 42-23 the following week entirely on download sales.
The 90-second ad was directed by Juan Cabral for London advertising agency Fallon. Soundtracked by Collins' single, it begins with a closeup of the gorilla (in reality actor Garon Michael) before pulling back midsong to show the gorilla hammering out Collins' trademark drum break.
The ad has become hugely popular on YouTube, with several postings logging hundreds of thousands of hits. Collins, currently on the North American leg of Genesis' world tour, has made one widely quoted comment on the ad, namely: "Not only is the gorilla a better drummer than me, he's also got more hair. Can he sing too?"
And the link with chocolate? The agency and Cadbury admit there isn't one. They say the ad, part of a campaign that Cadbury claims has a total spend of nearly $18 million, simply aims to entertain.
© Billboard, by Tom Ferguson