RIYL: The Soft.Lightes, Ron Fountenberry
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- "Commercials: The New Frontier" · Oct. 17, 2012
- "Hokey Moses" · Nov. 12, 2008
- "Softlightes and Limelight" · Nov. 30, 2006
Ex-Band Members: Jason Blackmore, Guitar (acoustic), Guitar (electric)
Influences: Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the Black Keys, Wolfmother, the Avalanches, Cut Copy
When the Soft.Lightes were still known as the Incredible Moses Leroy, they released the album Electric Pocket Radio. Soon, their music was being heard in ads for Vespa scooters and Northwest Airlines, and the band took part in an ad campaign for the Gap stores that even landed them on NYC billboards
The second album, Becomes the Soft.Lightes marked their transition from syrupy pop to hook-laden rock. After taking on the new name and signing to Australian label Modular Recordings, Soft.Lightes was chosen by U.K. magazine NME as one of the top five bands to perform at the 2007 CMJ Music Festival.
By 2012, recording commercial jingles had become another good way for founder Ron Fountenberry to help pay their bills. In 2012, he was one of five local artists asked to record a 60-second spot for “Movin’ and Groovin,’” a TV and radio ad campaign created and paid for by the Metro Transit System (MTS) to get San Diegans to appreciate public transportation.
Vokab Kompany, Buck-O-Nine, the Kneehighs, Ron Fountenberry, and Todo Mundo were each paid a flat fee of $1500 for their jingle, and MTS has the rights to each jingle for three years.
“I kind of stopped doing the band thing,” according to Fountenberry, who says he didn’t get residuals or royalties when he cut spots for Ford, Vicks, American Express, and UCSD Health Systems. “I just got paid one upfront fee.” He won’t discuss figures. “Let’s just say I can’t complain. I sure get more [from commercials] than I ever got from being in a band. This is the new frontier, since radio isn’t playing much new music anymore.”
In 2013, his music was heard in a TV commercial for the Apple iPhone 5c, and he also landed a wife: Hannah Savenye.