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Crazy Frog is back for the TikTok generation

By | Published on Thursday 18 November 2021

Crazy Frog

Oh hey, you know what would make 2021 even better than it’s already been? That’s right, of course, it’s the return of Crazy Frog. Yes, that blue CGI frog you thought had died with the ringtone is back.

For those who have blocked all this out of their memories, allow me to remind you. The annoying animated frog first came to popular attention around Christmas 2004, in a TV advert promoting ringtones company Jamba that seemed to play about sixteen times during every ad break on every channel (even the ones that don’t show adverts) during that festive period.

For our younger readers, ringtones were sounds that people’s phones used to make in order to alert them to the fact that someone was trying to contact them, before everyone except your nan and her friend Janet put their phones permanently on silent.

People actually used to pay to get new ringtones so that their phones played a different tune when someone called them. And sometimes they would pay actual money to get the sound of a cartoon frog doing an impression of a motorbike. Yeah, and you thought a global pandemic was bad. You kids have it easy.

Anyway, because people are awful, it was decided that this ringtone should be given a music career. And so, in May 2005, the ringtone was stretched out and expanded into a cover of ‘Axel F’. Again due to people/awfulness, it went to number one. In fact, it beat Coldplay to number one, which was actually quite funny.

People wouldn’t put up with this shit for much longer though, eh? Wrong. So wrong. There were other singles. There were all sorts of copycats trying to muscle in (I still have a particularly annoying song by and animated gummy bear stuck in my head). None reached the heights of the original Crazy Frog though.

A whole Crazy Frog album was released. By Ministry Of Sound, no less. You wouldn’t think anyone would want to hear that, but it went to number five in the UK. Number five! The second album a year later only went to number 64 though, so that’s something. Except, that does mean some people still bought it. A third album didn’t chart. But nevertheless, there was a third Crazy Frog album that you could, if you wanted to, go and listen to.

Anyway, back to now. The phenomenon of the ringtone is long dead, and so too is the Crazy Frog. Except it’s not though, is it? People still go and watch the video for ‘Axel F’ – it currently has over three billion views on YouTube – and the frog has a a following on social media. Not the biggest following, but enough. Enough to make someone think that the dream is still alive.

That person is Sony Music Head Of A&R Wolfgang Boss, who owns the Crazy Frog music catalogue through his Mach 1 record label. He reckons the TikTok generation is in prime position to think that this shit is funny, being too young to remember what happened the last time.

“When we started Crazy Frog, there was no TikTok, it didn’t exist”, he tells the BBC. “But right now TikTok is super important. It’s basically the number one platform for people to share new music and funny things connected with music”.

A new single is set to be released on 10 Dec, created by the frog’s original producer, Reinhard ‘Voodoo’ Raith. Mark your calendars.

Oh, one more thing. I know some of you will be wondering, and I don’t want to leave you sitting there not knowing. It’s too important. There will be a penis.

Oh what? I have to explain that too? Alright, one of the most striking things about the Crazy Frog has always been that – like many cartoon characters – he does not wear trousers, but – unlike most cartoon characters – he has a penis poking out between his legs. This led to quite the controversy back in the mid-2000s, when we didn’t have other things to worry about.

“The new video will have the Crazy Frog like he was originally meant – with a penis”, says Boss. “But we will have to do a censored version again because US media will not show the original version”.

Anyway, yeah, 10 Dec. That’s the date. Start digging a hole to go and live in.