Kosheen, “Hungry” (Windows Media)
The Food Network has been using a catchy dance number for their promo music. A memorable montage includes the flashing of dim sum on the screen, and then an Asian (Chinese?) mother and daughter looking down Victoria Peak to the skyscrapers of Hong Kong. I thought it was something that they came up with themselves, but I saw a public television promo for I think some sort of report of starvation in Africa which used the same music. Curious, I hunted down who it was: a UK dance group called Kosheen. The rest of their album, Resist (which you can preview on their website) is really good. The lead singer, Sian Evans, has been compared to Annie Lennox. I want to get a copy.
There are many other instances of sound recycling. The theme music for Iron Chef, for example, originally came from the “Backdraft” movie soundtrack. The most egregious case of sound abuse is the “Wilhelm Scream” which was mentioned recently on Slashdot. The unmistakable “scream and fall off a cliff” sound has been in continual use since 1951 in many major motion pictures, including the Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Lord of the Rings series. If you look at the bottom of this Star Wars fan’s page, you can download the Wilhelm’s video portfolio to prove it is the same sound.