UM BONGO - 80S TV ADVERT
by Mark Nobes, chief editor
The Um Bongo drink was launched in 1983 and the song on this ad was sung by Tony Jackson, who had a #4 hit with a cover of Bryan Adam's classic Run to You in 1992 with his band Rage. The band's name was changed to En-Rage just for the release of Run to You.
So is Um Bongo still available? Well, the following info is a little complicated, but I hope I've got all of my facts correct.
The original drink contained nine tropical fruit flavours, but new regulations on children's drinks (caused by moaning parents) forced the Gerber Juice Company (who use the name Libby's on the drink) to reduce the sugar and artificial flavours. The original formula was replaced with a 100% fruit juice version in 2003, but with only three flavours which totally destroyed the original formula.
However, after being inundated with complaints from the public since altering the drink (you can't please all of the people all of the time!), the original formula was re-introduced in 2009 as Classic Um Bongo, although at one point it was called Tropical Um Bongo. I'm not sure which came first, tropical or Classic? Anyway, Since May 2011 Um Bongo Original has been on the shelves (at Asda I believe - other supermarkets are available!) and the 100% juice version discontinued.
Confusing or what? Basically, we're back to where we started in the 80s then. The bottom line is that we should leave all of the "stuff" we loved in the eighties well alone - it was perfectly okay to start with!