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We cannot return to the previous dark night, even if we wanted to. If I am wrong about the C to D-flat key change as a metaphor for progress, it could be that the flat key symbolizes a return to a bucolic past or an ancient mythology of America as wide-open spaces of unoccupied land. Whatever the specific interpretation, though, the shift from C to D-flat has a positive musical meaning that viewers are expected to associate with the incumbent president. At any rate, the final key change is preceded by a dramatic musical colon: Capitol building bathed in soft dawn light.

In fact, here the main theme is augmented. This key change from C to D-flat is marked by a striking visual aspect: Although it has a pleasing contour, the theme itself is static, its chief interest coming from instrumental timbre and the modulations it goes through. It is static because the fundamental motion in the first two A sections is mere oscillation between scale degrees 5 and 6 in the first two key areas. Similarly noteworthy is the legato phrasing throughout, which lends the ad a soothing and reassuring cast.

59a. "Morning in America"

This is true for music as well as for visual images and words. The images are merely a disjunct series of pictures that we are meant to associate with America and more specifically with pleasant feelings about the U. As Nicholas Cook remarks, writing about music in television commercials: Typically it is far too fragmentary to make sense in its own terms. Its logic is not the logic of concert music. Campaign ad music is more than a soundtrack for a minidrama. A typical viewer does not recognize how much thought and effort goes into crafting emotional appeals in political ads.

Hardly would she be able to articulate exactly how this ad functions so effectively. Music sets the tone for the whole ad and provides a sympathetic backdrop to the voiceover—together they form a unified whole.

Television Commercials and Their Music in 1984

Music draws the whole together and channels the discourse; it is the binding element in nonverbal or poetic arguments. Music belongs to the aesthetic dimension that images also inhabit.

Ronald Reagan It's Morning In America 1984

The key changes operate in parallel to the text, but in fact, music supersedes the text of the voiceover in importance. The line does not assert this so baldly, though; it merely allows the viewer to connect the assertion to the candidate, leaving the thoughtful viewer to wonder whether the increase is accounted for merely by an increase in population, a decline in unemployment claims, or whether other factors irrespective of who is president may be responsible for the increase in employment.

But since the main appeal is emotional, cogent arguments are not de rigeur ; indeed, they might distract from the powerful emotional appeal. In conjunction with the music, this voice lends gravitas as well as reassurance. It was hard to miss the clear evocation of the Soviet Union in the first group and the U.

Morning in America - Wikipedia

It first ran on December 31, , and then again on January 22, , during the second half of the most watched television event in the U. Music connotes rather than denotes. It can evoke associations, but only in the most abstract manner. One can speak about internal relationships in music—about how various musical elements interact with each other—but such analyses are necessarily divorced from any concrete associations one might make with the music.

Conclusions drawn from purely musical analyses can only address strictly musical concerns. It is only when the music is given images and text does the message come into focus. Yet when interrogated, music casts a sideward self-effacing glance, modestly gainsaying any persuasive role in political discourse. The Tuesday Team in essence created a new musical genre: This afternoon 6, young men and women will be married, and with inflation at less than half of what it was just four years ago, they can look forward with confidence to the future.

It's morning again in America, and under the leadership of President Reagan, our country is prouder and stronger and better. Why would we ever want to return to where we were less than four short years ago? The ad was written and narrated by ad man Hal Riney , who also wrote and narrated Reagan's resonant " Bear in the woods " ad titled "Bear" as well as his "America's Back" ad.

America 101: What is a "Political Outsider"?

To many, his rich, avuncular voice represented wholesomeness and authenticity. This advertisement won industry awards and praise from the political and advertising world.


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  • Republican strategist Dan Schnur said of Riney's work: During the presidential primaries , Republican Party candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz both referenced "morning in America" rhetoric in attempts to reflect the politics and spirit of Reagan. Rubio's "Morning Again in America" television ad, which features montage footage of everyday American life in both cities and suburbs, drew widespread criticism for opening with a shot of Vancouver, British Columbia , Canada.

    After winning the Republican caucus in Iowa on February 1, , Cruz said: Preston Brooks and Charles Sumner The South Secedes The Road to Appomattox The Assassination of the President Rebuilding the Old Order Politics of the Gilded Age Debs and American Socialism Artistic and Literary Trends The Print Revolution The Wounded Knee Massacre The Election of Woodrow Wilson's New Freedom The Panama Canal The Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations Fads and Heroes Domestic and International Politics Sinking Deeper and Deeper: Social and Cultural Effects of the Depression An Evaluation of the New Deal The Decision to Drop the Bomb Voices against Conformity Martin Luther King Jr.

    Years of Withdrawal The New Right The End of the Cold War The End of the American Century. Ronald Reagan swept into office in , capturing nearly 10 times as many electoral votes as his incumbent opponent Jimmy Carter. The Republican Party was also able to ride Reagan's coattails to capture their first majority in the Senate since Chaos ensues following an assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan in March Reagan was hit in the chest but managed a quick recovery, returning to the White House less than two weeks later. Mondale and his running mate Geraldine Ferraro managed only 13 electoral votes to Reagan's Ronald Reagan defeated Jimmy Carter by over electoral votes in , and Walter Mondale by over electoral votes in Ronald Reagan left office in , but the U.

    Leading up to the election of , Republicans coined the term "misery index" to refer to the combination of inflation and unemployment that was plaguing America during the Jimmy Carter years.