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Mark Mallman has sung about monster movies, white leather, Minneapolis and now Potato Oles. / Photo by Wilson Webb

Mark Mallman has sung about monster movies, white leather, Minneapolis and now Potato Olés. / Photo by Wilson Webb

He has been composing music for commercials, trailers and scores on the side of his always-irregular regular music gigs for 15 years, but there’s one bit of TV work that Twin Cities piano man Mark Mallman hasn’t pulled off until now.

“I finally got to write a real, honest-to-goodness, Barry Manilow-type jingle,” Mallman cheerily declared, referring to a new Taco John’s commercial that debuted on TV and online over the past week.

In the highly excited 30-second ad (posted below), Mallman pitches the regionally beloved Mexican fast-food chain’s new three-taco combo deal. “Get full for $6,” he sings, plunking at the piano and turning on the falsetto for the “Taco! Taco! Taco!” refrain, all unmistakably Mallman-esque to those who know him.

No, the gig didn’t get the 44-year-old rocker a lifetime supply of Potato Olés at any Taco John’s restaurant or anything like that, but of course it’ll help toward his upcoming projects, which include a book and new album. And since many fans heard it during last week’s NFL playoff games, there’s a good chance the Vikings won’t be the only hard-to-pin-down local heroes on Fox TV this Sunday afternoon.