April 28, 2004

Impulse Research

I was watching the Sharks attempt to sweep their series against the Avs tonight. A Yahoo! ad came on, and as it ended, one of those strange, over-tired realizations washed over me: that yodel, so familiar, catchy in its unashamed lameness...it's, it's...Slim Whitman! It's gotta be! It sounds just fucking like him!

A quick search, however, reveals the truth. It's not Slim Whitman. It's some dude named Wylie Gustafson, who was originally paid $590 to do it for one commercial. Then Yahoo! used it over and over again, and Wylie sued them for $5,000,000.

I vaguely recall having heard this at the time. I'm glad Wylie got his money. But it begged the question: shouldn't Slim Whitman be suing Wylie for copying his signature stylings? And that question begged another question: would Slim himself sue, or would it be the estate of the late Slim Whitman? I mean to say, is Slim still kicking? Another quick search revealed this site, which is definitely worth a look. Slim's got a smiley face, which means he's still alive. He's 80! Dead people get a skull. Hey, Archibald Cox is still alive! Alfred Hitchcock died on this day in 1980!

As near as I can tell, Slim never sued Wylie for combining twang with yodel. There's still time, Slim! Turns out, you're still alive! Can you hear me? Turn the hearing aid up, Slim! Get out of that casket and sue that warbly bastard!

Posted by Chris at April 28, 2004 11:35 PM | TrackBack

If Slim Whitman sues that guy then Jimmie Rodgers' estate should sue Slim Whitman (you need to hear Jimmie Rodgers...late 20's I'll try to make a compilation). I should sue all of them for influencing them retroactively.

Posted by: Dana at April 29, 2004 10:20 AM

Good ol' U.Sue.A


Posted by: Nabil at April 29, 2004 12:04 PM

Amazingly I agree with this sueing... that yodel is now the trademark of yahoo. a little preemptive fairness on yahoo's part, and they could have gotten away without the court battle and without the $5m settlement.

Posted by: Dave at April 29, 2004 04:53 PM

I'd agree with that. Less money, less headache, less public disrespect.

The Real Slim Whitman should definitely sue. I'll have to check out Jimmie Rodgers. He's not the DYN-O-MITE guy, right? ;)

Posted by: Chris at April 29, 2004 10:47 PM


Posted by: Dana at April 30, 2004 05:04 AM
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