Anomaly, Lou Bega and New York Life All Know That You’re Way Too Old For This

By Erik Oster 

Remember Lou Bega? His re-write of Dámaso Pérez Prado‘s “Mambo Number 5” was one of the more obnoxious ear worms of 1999. It was also an international hit on such a scale that Bega is still receiving substantial royalty checks for it.

That’s the basis for Bega’s appearance in “Lou Bega Sings The Praises of Annuities,” the latest in the “Be Good at Life” campaign Anomaly launched for New York Life Insurance last September, with another odd celebrity appearance, after winning creative duties back in November of 2015.

Bega appears on a sunny beach somewhere, sipping a cocktail and extolling the virtues of “getting checks on a regular basis” after retirement. While Bega can’t go anywhere without receiving checks because he wrote a “masterpiece” (insert pause for laughter), New York Life also offers an income annuity that results in monthly checks post-retirement. You can be just like Lou Bega! (Minus the legal battles with Prado’s estate.)

“We were thinking about the consistency of paying the checks month after month, and this was similar in our minds to royalty checks,” New York Life’s head of marketing, Kari Axberg, explained to Adweek. “Musicians receive [them] over the years, and consumers could understand that.”


Anomaly global chief operating officer Karina Wilsher added that Bega was the right fit because he exemplifies “what being good at life means. It’s having things in perspective and being able to focus on the important things.” She then cited the “positivity and optimism he has, naturally.”

Bega, the brand’s first choice, was impressed enough by the script he received that he opted in.

“I was approached by New York Life, [which] sent over the script—and I’ve read a lot of scripts—but that script was so funny and on-point,” he told Adweek via phone from his native Germany.

“I don’t know how long my body will hold up for 60 gigs a year and traveling and jet lag and all of that,” he added. “Getting an annuity check provides the peace of mind—so I do recognize the value of it.”