Burger King has released many commercials over the years, and most recently, the fast-food chain’s new commercial known as “Sourdough King” dropped in February. The spot felt vaguely familiar to viewers — even though it was 15 seconds long. The commercial’s premise announces the return of Burger King’s sourdough sandwich burger, complete with a standard voiceover from a male narrator, and it’s safe to say people love it.
“Whoever wrote the @BurgerKing Sourdough commercial needs a raise,” one person tweeted, while someone else wrote, “Yo, @BurgerKing, that sourdough king commercial makes my mouth water!”
Unlike Burger King’s past commercials, this one is pretty short and direct. There is no appearance of the fast food’s royal mascot or artsy direction, as used for its April commercial called “Confusing Times” about the Impossible Whopper. Instead, the familiarity of Burger King’s “Sourdough King” commercial comes from the backing music that fans and music buffs might’ve immediately recognized. In case it isn’t as easily distinguishable what the song sample is, here is a breakdown.
Burger King did a twist on Lil Wayne's iconic line
During the 15-second run of Burger King’s “Sourdough King” commercial, the background music is a fast-paced instrumental that almost distracts from the narrator’s voice. The instrumental used in the commercial is rapper Lil Wayne’s 2010 hit “6 Foot 7 Foot” featuring Cory Gunz. Although Lil Wayne’s voice and lyrics don’t appear in the commercial, the opening narration is a direct reference to the song. The narrator’s punchline “Real G’s move in silence like sourdough” is a twist on Lil Wayne’s original line, where instead of “sourdough,” he says “lasagna.”
To go even one step further, Lil Wayne’s “6 Foot 7 Foot” includes its own samples as well. The track’s opening chorus — which also appears in the background of “Sourdough King” — was originally from musician Harry Belafonte’s 1956 cover song “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song).” Belafonte spoke to BET in 2011 about Lil Wayne’s usage, explaining, “It’s a song that belongs to millions of people in the Caribbean… An ancient work song that people, of which my family was one of them, [who] were plantation workers … sang in the day and they sang in the night. They sang every opportunity they could get to throw off the burdens of poverty, and therefore the song has great significance.” He added, “I’m just glad to see that the younger generations have picked it up.”
So the next time customers hear the “Sourdough King” commercial, they can thank Lil Wayne and Belafonte for inspiring the bit.
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