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Raisin' California: Iconic Ads

Published on: June 3 2023 by pipiads

The California Raisins were a popular advertising campaign in the mid-80s that turned simple raisins into pop culture icons. They were created using stop motion animation and became so popular that they even made a cameo appearance on someone's dessert. In this article, we will delve deeper into the phenomenon of the California Raisins and how they became such a cultural icon.

Main Body:

- The birth of the California Raisins:

- An advertising agency approached Will Vinton Studios with an idea to use the song I Heard it Through the Grapevine and personify characters in a Motown style.

- The team brainstormed and doodled to create a character with a sense of humor, personality, and attitude.

- The raisins were born using claymation and stop motion animation techniques.

- The popularity of the California Raisins:

- The raisins transformed a simple snack into a pop culture icon and became a sensation overnight.

- People collected the raisins and still do to this day.

- The raisins even had a cassette tape of their greatest hits and were inducted into the Smithsonian.

- The success of the raisins can be attributed to their entertaining and cool personalities that resonated with people.

- The making of the California Raisins:

- The animators used live action reference footage to give the characters their personality and movements.

- The clay figures were sculpted one frame at a time, making it a tedious and time-consuming process.

- The animators had to pay close attention to detail, especially in scenes with multiple characters, to avoid mistakes that would require redoing the entire scene.

- The impact of the California Raisins:

- The California Raisins paved the way for other advertising characters to come to life and have a personality.

- The use of stop motion animation continues to be a popular technique in animation.

- The success of the California Raisins shows the power of advertising in creating a pop culture icon and influencing people's perceptions and behaviors.

The California Raisins were a cultural phenomenon that turned a simple snack into pop culture icons. The success of the raisins can be attributed to their entertaining personalities and the use of stop motion animation. The impact of the California Raisins can still be felt today, and their legacy continues to inspire advertisers and animators alike.

The California Raisins 🎙️ This Object in History | Smithsonian Channel

In 1986, the California Raisin Advisory Board was looking for a way to boost sales of raisins. They decided to create a campaign using personified raisins with unique personalities and music.

The Power of Music:

The California Raisin campaign utilized the power of music to transform the image of their product. The upbeat and danceable song I Heard It Through the Grapevine was the perfect choice for raisins to sing. The use of music was innovative and exciting, making raisins seem hip and cool.


The California Raisin campaign also utilized the hot new animation technique of claymation to bring their personified raisins to life. It was a difficult and expensive process, but the end result was a huge success.

Motown Influence:

The dance moves of the California Raisins were influenced by African American singing groups of the 1950s and 60s, particularly Motown. While some may view this as cultural appropriation, the campaign was not met with significant protests.

Success and Controversy:

The California Raisin campaign was a huge success, with two animated films, records, and merchandise. However, after an initial burst of popularity, sales eventually leveled off. The producers wanted to keep more of the profits for themselves and produce fewer claymation movies.

The California Raisin campaign showed the power of music in transforming the image of a product. While the use of Motown dance moves may have been controversial, the campaign was ultimately a celebration of African American musicians and popular music. While raisins may no longer be considered hot and hip, the California Raisin campaign remains a memorable example of successful advertising.

Unwrapped: The California Raisins

Television advertising has come a long way since the use of cute little characters in commercials. The use of animation in advertising has become a popular trend, thanks to groundbreaking techniques like claymation. One classic creation that transformed a simple snack into a pop culture icon is the California Raisins.

Bullet points:

- Advertisers can use animation to bring characters to life in commercials

- Claymation is a groundbreaking technique that has changed the animation industry

- The California Raisins are a pop culture icon that have been inducted into the Smithsonian

- Will Vinton Studios is the creative force behind the California Raisins and other animated characters

- To make a successful character, you need a sense of humor, personality, and attitude

- Stop motion animation involves manipulating an object or puppet and shooting one frame at a time

- Digital tools are now extensively used in dimensional animation

The California Raisins will always be remembered as a special part of America's past. The use of animation in advertising continues to reshape itself, and digital tools are now extensively used in dimensional animation. Advertisers must find a way to create characters that have a sense of humor, personality, and attitude to make them successful.

Meet The Raisins! (1988 Part 1)

Music has always been an important part of human life, and world-renowned recording artists have brought it to a new level. This article will explore the roots of such musical genius by examining the career of the California Raisins, a working-class band that became a pop phenomenon.


- The musical history of the California Raisins began with two brothers, AC and BeBop Ottoman, who discovered tonal resonance and harmony at a young age.

- By age 12, the brothers had learned to sing and were performing at school functions. Soon, their cousin Red joined them, and they became a serious trio.

- The Raisins added a bass singer and became the Vine Elves, but their lack of business representation hindered their success.

- A hustling young vegetable named Rudy Begaman became their manager and helped them get their first paying gig.

- The Raisins' popularity skyrocketed, but when Emmanuel Pinky Pitfall, the best-looking member of the group, was dropped, it caused hard feelings.

- Stretch Thompson, leader of an all-bass quartet, replaced Pitfall, but there was still a bitter grapefruit in the group.

- The Raisins' first appearance on television was a success, but they soon learned that you're only as good as your last hit.

The California Raisins were a talented band that rose from humble beginnings to become a pop phenomenon. Their journey highlights the importance of talent, hard work, and representation in the music industry. Music has the power to transcend boundaries and connect people, and the California Raisins were a testament to that power.

Mad TV - California Raisins THS

The story of the Hollywood raisins is a tale of fame, fortune, and mass murder. This article will delve into how a struggling Fresno group called the Wrinkle became the beloved Hollywood raisins, how they sold their souls to Kellogg's to popularize the eating of raisins, and how their party lifestyle came to a screeching halt with the raisin trial of the century.

The Rise of the Hollywood Raisins:

- The Wrinkle, a soulful group from Fresno, rocketed to the top of the raisin board Hot 100 with their harmonies and hip moves.

- They soon became known as the Hollywood raisins, with members Captain Chilly Sunshine, Fought, and Dexter the drummer.

- The Hollywood raisins sold their souls to Kellogg's, the country's largest cereal company, to popularize the mass eating of raisins.

The Party Lifestyle:

- The Hollywood raisins lived the sweet life, partying with sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll.

- They were guaranteed survival while signing the death warrant of trillions of their raisin brothers.

- The party lasted for two years until the day of reckoning finally came.

The Raisin Trial of the Century:

- Drugged with a man, the Hollywood raisins were tried for the wholesale slaughter of raisins.

- Despite their apologies and claims of following orders, they were sentenced to death for raisin genocide.

- The symbol of purity and nature in the world returned, as justice finally caught up with the Hollywood raisins.

The Hollywood raisins' story is a cautionary tale of how the pursuit of fame and fortune can lead to the downfall of even the most beloved celebrities. As we examine the cross-country crime sprees of other pop culture icons like Pop 'n' Fresh and the Hamburger Helper, we must remember the lessons learned from the Hollywood raisins and strive to live pure and natural lives.

Claymation Christmas: Carol of the Bells(Original Version)

The article talks about some of the popular Christmas traditions and symbols such as bell ringing ceremonies, Christmas trees, and fixed deck shuffle. It explains the history behind these traditions and how they became a part of the Christmas spirit.

Christmas Traditions:

- Bell ringing ceremonies originated from early midwinter celebrations as a way to drive away evil spirits

- Christmas trees have become a focal point of Yuletide celebrations and are adorned with lights, chains, and popcorn chains

- Fixed deck shuffle is a popular game played during Christmas time

History Behind Christmas Traditions:

- The ringing of bells during Christmas time is a holdover from early midwinter celebrations when evil spirits were powerful

- Christmas trees have been a part of German and Scandinavian traditions since the 16th century and were popularized in England by Queen Victoria

- Fixed deck shuffle was a popular game during the 19th century and is now played during Christmas time

Christmas traditions and symbols hold a special place in people's hearts and are an integral part of the holiday season. The history behind these traditions adds to their charm and makes them even more meaningful.

California Raisins (1980's) Overview

Hey guys, it's John here, and today on my show, I'll be discussing one of the most memorable marketing campaigns from the 1980s. If you grew up during this time, you'll probably remember the California Raisins. I've got a bunch of these figurines to show you, but before I get into that, let's take a look at the history behind this iconic campaign.

The History of the California Raisins Marketing Campaign:

In the mid-1980s, the Board of California Raisins wanted to boost sales for their product. One of their ad campaign members came up with the idea of creating a commercial featuring raisins singing I Heard It Through the Grapevine by Marvin Gaye, which came out in 1968. The commercial used claymation, which became hugely successful.

The Success of the California Raisins:

The commercials featuring the California Raisins became so popular that they even featured musical celebrities like Ray Charles and Michael Jackson. Merchandise such as t-shirts, lunch boxes, and comic books were also created. One of the most successful merchandise items was the figurines. They were released in 1988 and discontinued in 1990. The figurines were given personalities, which made them even more popular among consumers.

The California Raisins in Popular Culture:

The California Raisins became so iconic that they had a CBS special called Meet the Raisins and a 13-episode cartoon series. Capcom even planned to release a video game called The Grape Escape, but it was eventually canceled. Claymation was popular in the 80s, and other campaigns like the Noid from Domino's Pizza used the same technique.

The California Raisins will always be remembered as one of the greatest marketing campaigns of the 1980s. The figurines were a hit among consumers, and the characters had personalities that made them relatable. Do you remember the California Raisins? Let me know in the comments what items you owned growing up that were part of this iconic campaign. Thanks for watching, and don't forget to subscribe for more content. See you soon!

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