This is the recording of Walt Whitman’s Pioneers! O Pioneers! that was used in this Levi’s Jeans commercial:
I do think that the recording could have been put to better use (I would have chosen different images) but the intention is fairly clear. I’m not quite sure to make of the commercial itself, as it seems to be a call to action of some sorts, yet by tying it to Levi’s it hurts its own message. If the intention is more around a symbol of youth, then it’s questionable as to who the target audience is, as the only people concerned with youth are not young. Is it supposed to tie into an American pioneering spirit? I would argue that that no longer exists.
Still the recording, by Will Greer, is an incredible one. While it lacks the flourishes of the Levi’s version, it’s nonetheless incredibly powerful.
The University Players | Pioneers! O Pioneers!