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Han’s Worst Hits of the 70’s- I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing [In Perfect Harmony} by The New Seekers- or Hillside Singers- take your pick of the poison. In listening to the replay of American Top 40 yesterday morning -both versions were on the Top 40 and at the positions they would peak at– The New Seekers were at #7 and Hillside Singers at #13.  You will of course remember the song most as a commercial for Coca-Cola. The song was originally a commercial jingle ‘Buy The World A Coke” the commercial was popular so both The New Seekers and Hillside Singers just had to re-record it as a song while dropping the advertisement for Coca-Cola. The Coca-Cola ad campaign is still considered one of the most successful in television history- and the two hit songs even though dropping references to Coca-Cola- well the seed was still planted and you thought Coke when you heard this song. Its bad enough that one version was hit- let along two at the same time.This song had to bring a lot of money into Coca-Cola over the years,millions, billions?  I haven’t drank pop/ soda since 1998.

The commercial by the way had started airing in July of 1971. The key to the success of these milquetoast singles has to be they were released around Christmas. Good feelings and all and in The Age of Nixon and Vietnam- people must have wanted to hear a song of peace, love and understanding.

The New Seekers had two other hits in their career- in 1970 What Have They Done To My Song, Ma #14 and after this in 1973 and I still haven’t felt brave enough this morning to listen to this- a cover of The Who’s Pinball Wizard/ See Me, Feel Me.  The Hilltop Singers- only had the one hit- this one.

I was in fourth grade and we had a music teacher who came into class once a week. She was a traveling music teacher. She would go to a different school each day and once a week she was at our school. She came into class one day and had a 45 with her. She was all excited she wanted to teach us how to sing this ‘great new song” and she even had handouts to pass out with the lyrics on it. The song was this one “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing”- I am not sure which version it was but first she played the song and then she ‘taught’ us how to sing it. I certainly wasn’t a ‘hip’ 4th grader but I could even tell at that age upon hearing the song one time it was lame ass awful. She was all excited though and we could sing the song by the end of the period. I hated the song then and still do today.




  1. Well, I’ll be the one who loved this song. I really did. We too sang it in grade school music class, and did some kind of arrangement where it was combined with ‘Make Your Own Kind of Music’. I didn’t know the New Seekers covered See Me Feel Me. That does indeed seem like an awkward choice for them.

    • A lot of people liked this song–I still can’t believe there were two versions of it that were hits at the same time. I wonder how many times that has happened- at that same time.

    • That was unusual indeed. I didn’t know they both were ranked so closely together in the Top 40. It’s not like one version was country and the other rock/folk, like has happened sometimes. They were basically the same genre.

  2. I definitely remember this song from the Coke commercial but don’t remember it getting airplay. Which came first? I know they steal old beautiful songs and use them to sell products in commercials, but it seems unusual to have a song simultaneously played on radio and in a commercial…

    • oh don’t worry about it! I bet coming up with that jingle made a few Mad Men- a lot of money with the folks running Coca Cola.

    • I don’t know if it escaped the UK, but there was a song called ‘Blue Jeans’ by David Dundas. Originally it was written for a ‘Brutus Jeans’ TV commercial.
      The song is neither here nor there, but Dundas was actually the second son of a Lord and his ancestors were important British soldiers in Victoria’s Army.
      So whenever I’m reading a history book and a Dundas is mentioned, I get ‘I got my blue jeans on, I got my Brutus Jeans on (clap clap)’ stuck in my head.

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