Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Roger Cook

I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing

First recorded (as “True Love and Apple Pie”) by Susan Shirley (1970).
First recorded (as “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke”) by The Hillside Singers (1971).
Hit versions by The Hillside Singers (US #13/MOR #5 1972), The New Seekers (US #7/UK #1 1972).

From the wiki: “The original melody was derived from a commercial jingle first written by Rose Malka Freidman for another, non-beverage product. A version of the jingle was then reworked into a full-length song by songwriters Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway, who had previously collaborated as performers and songwriters (‘You’ve Got Your Troubles’, ‘Softly Whispering I Love You‘). It was then recorded, titled ‘True Love and Apple Pie’, by Susan Shirley, and released in 1970 with little promotion behind it.

“The idea for its use as a Coca-Cola advertising jingle came originally to an advertising executive named Bill Backer, working for McCann-Erickson — the worldwide advertising agency responsible for Coca-Cola. Backer, Cook and Greenaway weres delayed at Shannon Airport in Ireland. After a forced layover with many hot tempers, the trio noticed their fellow travelers the next morning were talking and joking while drinking Coca-Cola. Backer wrote the line ‘I’d like to buy the world a Coke’ on a napkin and shared it with Cook and Davis.

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