It’s Not Xmas Until You’ve Seen Oklahoma’s Most Famous Commercial
As we get into the holidays, I think it's fair most people will get a little nostalgic at some point between Thanksgiving and Christmas. They'll start remembering the holidays they had in their childhood or maybe the first they shared with their significant other in their youth, and those memories just need a trigger.
If you grew up pretty much anywhere in Oklahoma, that first initial rush of childhood Christmas wonder usually comes flying back to the forefront of your thoughts the first time you hear the infamous BC Clark Anniversary Sale jingle on the television. It has been the same for decades, and I think every Oklahoman would agree that thirty-second commercial is the true kickoff to the Christmas season.
At least, most Oklahomans would agree.
If your only exposure to Oklahoma was living only in and/or growing up here in Lawton, oddly enough, you may have not even heard of BC Clark's before...
Lawton is and remains a pretty unique place when it comes to television media. I'm not exactly sure why, but all of the polished and pretty professional television stations are locked out of our town. I wondered for years if it was because Cablevision was locally owned way back when, but this "local station only" trend has continued now through two other faceless corporate cable company owners.
Lawton is a television desert. The powers that be decided long ago that since we're barely closer to Wichita Falls, we would elect the Texas TV stations to represent everything going on here locally instead of airing the OKC channels. Not only does that skew our news to a different state, but it also keeps Lawton from enjoying a Christmas holiday classic every Oklahoman can identify with.
Case and point, I played this for Critter and Jeri Anderson... They swore they'd never heard it before.
I'd bet if you asked someone in Medicine Park, Cache, Elgin, Apache, Duncan, Waurika, or any other of the small towns around Lawton, they'd know exactly what the BC Clark Anniversary Sale is because I'm fairly sure all of those towns have access to real OKC news stations.
As much of a holiday classic as it is though, it's not technically "unchanged" since the 1950s. There was a time in the 70s where some marketing professional convinced BC Clark to swing and update to the "old and tired" jingle. Not so shockingly, Oklahoma responded by calling and writing in their disapproval for the change.
Think about that... it's such a beloved commercial, people complained about an updated local jewelry store commercial. It's crazy.
While it sounded almost identical, it was the additional line that had everybody in a tiff.
Here we are now in 2021, sixty-five years after some ad agency came up with a simple jingle, and it still marks the official start of the Oklahoma Christmas season across the state.
To tell you the truth, of all the Oklahoma songs out there, I think this commercial jingle is the only thing that could unseat the Broadway classic "Oklahoma" from holding the title of Oklahoma's State Song. It was made here, every Oklahoman identifies to it, and as catchy and stuck in your head as it gets, it's still a joy to jam with.
If you want to learn a Sooner State classic, here is the lyric video...
If you'd like to take a quick dive into the history of this crazy story, here's that too.
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