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Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

You can’t get this column

Out of your mind

It’s been more than 20 years ago since Carly Reign was called to TM Studios in Dallas to sing a jingle. It wasn’t original; it was a new recording of a jingle that had been around for a while.

Reign, I should add, has a gorgeous voice. Trained in theater and opera, her voice has just the right amount of pop/rock clarity to be both pleasant and to cut through the clutter.

With this recording, she did just that. She was recording the Dalworth Clean jingle – “Call 267-8433, because the next best thing to new is Dalworth Clean.” The spot has been running – and generating business – for Dalworth ever since.

“I was 21,” said Reign, “and it snowballed into me being a regular singer.” I spoke to her at the HEB (Hurst Euless Bedford) Chamber of Commerce meeting on Oct. 13.

Also appearing at that meeting were three respected, insightful and handsome media professionals: KDFW/Fox4 senior reporter Brandon Todd, Fort Worth Star-Telegram Deputy Managing Editor for Business Steve Kaskovich, and, hey, me.

I was there to speak, but I also wanted to meet the voice that had been an ear worm in my head for more than 20 years. She was as delightful and bubbly as the jingle that helped make her famous. Where does a voice begin and a charming personality end? Hard to tell.

After the Dalworth gig, Reign became one of the core group of jingle singers for TM Studios. She now does jingles, voice-over work, most of it regional or national.

“Just watch Channel 8 or Channel 11, that’s where I tend to hear myself,” she said. Many of the jingles she forgets just as soon as she records them.

“Then I hear them at dinner or somewhere where they have the TV or radio on and I’ll go, ‘Oh wow, that’s me!’”

She does remember doing the jingle for Southwest KIA a few years back. “For some reason, I used to hear it when I was getting my toes done at the salon,” she says. “I always thought that was funny for some reason.”

She and her husband have a band that plays at some small venues, Reigning Nickels, a play on their names – he’s Nick – and she sings with a big band that plays weddings, corporate events and parties. “You name it, we cover it,” she says, though she admits the classic rock songs she sings with Reigning Nickels are particular favorites.

Since Dalworth was the sponsor for the chamber event, Reign gave the sponsor’s pitch and she was, in fact, on pitch, singing her famous jingle. I mean, who wants to talk about cleaning up toxic waste when you can hear a professional belt it out with a voice as clear as a church bell? It would be like asking Julie Andrews to discuss quadratic equations instead of singing The Sound of Music.

Reign then offered three rooms of free carpet cleaning to the first five people to stand up and sing the Dalworth jingle themselves. No problem. Among the five potential future The Voice contestants were Euless Mayor Linda Martin, which was appropriate since Dalworth is located in the Euless city limits.

The HEB Chamber streamed the sponsor presentation live on Facebook, which was only fitting since the day’s program was “How to make your business newsworthy to the media.”

Dalworth is celebrating its 40th anniversary and it’s been a good week for the company. Dalworth officials learned earlier in the week the company will receive the Texas Family Business of the Year Award on Nov. 4. The honor is presented by the Institute for Family Business at Baylor University.

Who knows, the judges probably just couldn’t get that dang jingle out of their heads.

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