CTA commercials from 2004 -- Take It Everywhere!

Let's end the week with two "vintage" CTA TV commercials. The first one features a female singing the "Take It Everywhere" CTA theme song. It shows stylized cartoon drawings of trains and buses zooming through city neighborhoods, as they are enumerated by the songstress.

The second commercial riffs on the same theme with different neighborhoods sung by a male artist. He also pitches the "new" Chicago Card Plus.

Those were the days. Given current budget constraints, I don't think we'll be seeing anymore TV commercials.

Filed under: CTA in the news

Tags: 2004 commercial, CTA


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  • Somehow, the only thing I remember of these was the old guy saying "Uptown."

  • these were great. more stuff like this!

  • And what would today's ads say? "Our buses and trains are much dirtier than they were a year ago, we're about to cut our present barely adequate levels of service, but we didn't have to institute a fare increase due to fiscally irresponsible bond issues offered up by politicians who are desperate for your vote. But at least we're not in as bad shape as New York...." It could be inspiring stuff if set to the right tune. I'm imagining a graphic consisting of the Monopoly man on the "Pay Poor Tax" card riding around on buses and trains with his pockets turned inside out and his sad face.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Martha, I love it! You crack me up!

  • In reply to marthat3:

    I agree Martha. Lastnight I was at an event at the Shedd and of course I had to stop and gazed at our beautiful skyline. A friend that was with me said........that's Chicago. As long as those with power in Chicago keep that looking up to part, whats surrounding it is irrelevent. Sad to say but it seems to be truth in the statement.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    About those videos: Where did they find a Marianne Faithful/Dusty Springfield sound-a-like for #1 and who is the Johnny Cash impersonator in #2? I think I remember those ads seeping into my sub-conscious during my driving-to-work next to the X49/49 days back in the early aughts.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    Interesting...when and where were these on TV?!?!?! I don't remember seeing a SINGLE TV spot in my entire life by the CTA! And I'm not talking about the Chicago public works channel. Every time I see a car commercial (arguably, every single break!) I just wonder why in the hell we don't see transit commercials. Advertisement plays a big role in attracting new customers. It's a shame they don't do this more.

  • In reply to mugen:

    The underlined link indicates 2004.

    I did receive a Moving Forward, saying that the RTA was directed by legislation to consolidate marketing, so Pace was cutting its advertising budget, so it didn't have to cut so many routes.

    Anyway, why would CTA have to advertise that its service is like what Martha described in her first post? Why would CTA want to attract more customers when it is cutting the number of buses available to serve them (not just the number on the street, but retiring 280 of them) and the mentality is that we aren't getting the 95 cents in subsidy needed to match the 91 cent unlinked fare?

    The only effective CTA advertisement might be to repeat that it has video of people shooting up buses. However, if repeatedly showing them on the news doesn't work, I don't see how buying the air time would.

  • In reply to jack:

    Obviously 2004, I can read. Where these on network TV? Prime time? Cable Access? What? I've never seen them. Pretty fruitless effort if you ask me. I've seen Victory Auto Wreckers commercials more often than CTA.

  • In reply to mugen:

    Victory Auto Wreckers is glad that after running the same commercial for 30 or 40 years 20 times a day, you got the message. Now, if you have a 62 Cadillac that doesn't run anymore, take it down to Victory Auto Wreckers in Bensonville, and Dean Richards will give you cash for it.

    More than the CTA would ever do for you.

  • In reply to mugen:

    I know Cash did a cover of the real song. That really does sound like him.

    I don't ever remember seeing these, but then I don't watch a lot of tv anyway.

  • In reply to marthat3:

    I remember the one with the male singer. The line, "leave the car behind/cta'll get me there" cracks me up because this isn't always true. In my 'hood, the California bus stops running, essentially, after 11, so if you want to have a bar night, then you're calling a cab.

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