Next time you hear the ice cream truck coming, think of the Wu-Tang Clan.
Wu-Tang mastermind RZA teamed up with Good Humor to create a brand new jingle to replace “Turkey in the Straw,” the song long associated with the ice cream truck.
“We wanted to make a melody that includes all communities, that’s good for every driver, that’s good for every kid,” RZA said in a video discussing the making of the song.
“I’m proud to say, for the first time in a long time, a new ice cream jingle will be made available to trucks all across the country, in perpetuity. That means forever — like Wu-Tang’s forever. And I can assure you, this one is made with love.”
“Turkey in the Straw” is a folk song that dates back to the early 19th century. The song was often performed during American minstrel shows, which would feature white actors performing in blackface.
Amidst ongoing discussion over systemic and institutionalized racism in America and because of the song's racist roots, Good Humor made the decision to retire the track and commission RZA to create a new one.
RZA’s new jingle will be available to ice cream trucks starting this month. Additionally, “Turkey in the Straw” will be removed from ice cream truck music boxes.
A press release stated RZA’s tune “drew inspiration from his childhood memories of chasing after ice cream trucks on Staten Island — blending traditional ice cream truck sounds with jazz and hip-hop elements.”