Back in the 90s people paid attention to adverts, so much so that some would be anticipated like the release of a new album. The latest big advert would be a TV event and every now and then they would become a social phenomenon. These weren’t the quick and to the point adverts of old either, these were big budget productions by some of the the world’s most renowned directors. As well as selling the product many of these adverts would help promote up and coming bands as well as established artists. A lot of these songs would go on to storm the charts so let’s take a lookback at ten of the biggest tunes and the classic adverts that launched them. Starting with... Leftfield – Phat Planet (Guinness - Surfer) Tick follows tock follows tick follows tock. The Guinness Surfer advert took everyone by surprise. It was hugely emotive and when coupled with the deep rumbling bass of Leftfield’s Phat Planet it became a sensation. Babylon Zoo – Spaceman (Levi’s - Spaceman) One of the most 90s adverts you could possibly imagine. 3D computer graphics and a pitched up rave vocals sold this to the masses. Bablylon Zoo's Spaceman quickly became a number one hit and deservedly so. Some were left disappointed, expecting an all-out rave banger and getting a Grunge infused slab of electronic rock. It’s still a classic to this day though and rightfully so. Stiltskin – Inside (Levi’s - Creek) Grunge was massive at the start of the 90s and Levi’s knew it. Their use of this Stiltskin track was perfect and captured the mood of the time. The playful advert was a must watch when it came on. Lenny Kravitz – Fly Away (Peugeot - 206) Lenny Kravitz was already a big star before this advert but this gave him a UK number 1. Fly Away is a classic 90s rock tune that sounds as fresh today as it did then. This inspiring track definitely helped Peugeot sell a lot of 206's back then as well. Spice Girls – Move Over (Pepsi – Generation Next) Pepsi and Coca-Cola were still very much at war in the 90s and adverts became their battleground. Both brands utilised the biggest artists of the time and in 1997 Pepsi recruited the world’s biggest pop act at the time, The Spice Girls. The rest as they say is history. Dr Alban – It’s My Life (Tampax - Compak) Eurodance always lent itself well to adverts and It’s My Life was the perfect fit, excuse the pun, for Tampax. Believe it or not this advert caused huge controversy at the time for its Feminist message of independence and actually showing a Tampon on television. Laughable really if you think about it today. Yanni – Aria (British Airways - Face) Whilst this may not have become a huge hit single everyone of a certain age will know this tune. This British Airways advert was so popular that it would stick in your head for weeks which in the world of advertising is a job well done. Perfect Day (BBC) The BBC generally pride themselves in their lack of advertising but in 1997 they released a 4 minute advert to advertise, well, themselves. The song itself was a cover of Lou Reed’s classic Perfect Day and it was performed by the cream of the music industry at the time. Lou Reed, David Bowie, Heather Small, Burning Spear, Boyzone, Bono, Elton John, Sarah Brightman, Shane McGowan, Ian Brodie, Gabrielle, Ginger Wildheart, Brett Anderson, Tom Jones and many others performed and made it a number one single. Perez ‘Prez’ Prado – Guaglione (Guinness - Anticipation) If you were a teenager in the 90s then this tune is probably the first thing that springs to mind if you mention Guinness. Everyone knew the funny little dances and it came to personify the brand. However, many people didn’t realise is that the tune was originally released in 1954 and Perez had actually passed away in 1989 aged 72. This didn’t stop the track from reaching number 2 in the UK charts, all thanks to this advert. Shaggy – Boombastic (Levis - Boombastic) Mr Lover Lover Mmmmmmh. That’s right, Shaggy hit the big time in 1995 with this massive dancehall smash. Again it was all thanks to an advert and yet again it was Levi’s who were at the top of their game. This one was also helped by some controversy, the hero of the advert taking his jeans off and then snogging the damsel in distress was deemed too racy by some. Of course there were plenty more classic tunes that came from adverts and all of them helped both the acts and the products they advertised to reach immortal status. Feeling Nostalgic? Which classic adverts introduced you to new music? Why not head over and join Retroheadz Reddit group and join in the chat or add your comments below.