Says Staak: "The star of the campaign was RoadRunner, a young stock car driver played by soap opera actor Phil McHale. RoadRunner's sidekick was Ernie, his mechanic. They traveled the racing circuit, stopping at Hardee's in every town to try their favorite roast beef sandwiches (or whatever new product Hardee's wanted to advertise). They also had a hometown Hardee's where they were regulars and the female manager swooned over Runner. McHale was always on the road doing personal appearances at Hardee's and drawing huge crowds. Our own personal company celebrity."
Thanks, Lee! Not an answer you could get from Google or Wikipedia — or Hardee's headquarters. CKEckr, parent of Carl's Jr., bought Hardee's in 1997 and knew nothing about the 1970s campaign.
Q: I was wondering if you know the name of the song that is sung on the Jeep commercial with all the forest animals in it? It starts "Rock me gently, rock me slowly …"
A: The song is Rock Me Gently by Andy Kim, a Canadian-Lebanese singer who had a number of Top 40 hits through the 1970s.
In the Jeep Liberty ad, a young man drives along a wooded road with the windows open and music cranking. Soon, a menagerie of animals ends up in the car with the driver, singing along to the upbeat, infectious song.