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Apple Releases Video Showcasing the Making of Its Latest Holiday Ad

The latest in Apple’s phenomenal run of holiday ads came out earlier in the week, and it focuses on a granddaughter who uses Apple’s technology to create a contemporary duet with an old recording of her grandmother’s. Today Apple released a followup video discussing how the ad was made, showing that its latest short is not just about bridging the gaps between two generation of people, but also between two generations of technology.

Specifically, the ad features a young woman (played by musician Dana Williams) who finds her grandmother’s recording of “Love Is Here to Stay” (sung by Rhiannon Giddens) that was made with a 1940s “Voice-O-Graph” machine. The ad (or “film,” as Apple calls it on its website) implies that her grandmother made it for her husband, who was apparently stationed overseas at the time.

The story might be sentimental fluff, but there’s a shred of truth to what we’re seeing on screen, particularly since Apple used an actual working Voice-O-Graph in the possession of Third Man Records. Giddens sung the part for the original recording, and then Williams recorded her own vocals and mixed the two together in GarageBand. Williams claims in the short documentary that she uses Apple’s GarageBand for most of her her music, and that she likes it because “anyone who’s not tech savvy like myself can find their way around it.”

The ad itself is somewhat understated, especially in comparison to last year’s “Misunderstood,” which won Apple its first Emmy Award for Outstanding Commercial since its iconic “Here’s to the Crazy Ones” short, created in 1998 at the height of the “Think Different” campaign. While “Misunderstood” focuses on an introverted teen’s use of his iPhone’s video capabilities, “The Song” highlights GarageBand and the iPad mini.

Follow this article’s writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.


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