Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Relevancy of Irrelevancy

by Drew Martin
Don Cornelius' death last week sparked remembrances of his Soul Train. Not only was it a great and groundbreaking show, but when it started in 1971 there were only a handful of television stations per any region and this was before MTV. I am reading Where the Suckers Moon: An Advertising Story, which is a very thorough 460+ page book about a campaign for Subaru. Even more obscure, it was published in 1994. So what does my reading a dated, 18 year old book about a car with an image problem have to do with Soul Train? I read a section yesterday about the founders of the Just Do It! agency Wieden + Kennedy. An introduction to David Kennedy covered his time at Leo Burnett in Chicago:
David seethed inwardly over artistic slights and the pettiness of agency politics. Although he found some respite working with a few politically charged creative boutiques that opened with the Creative Revolution, hung out with a contingent of radical Irish admen and helped produce the first six months of the black television program "Soul Train." David had no respect, let alone love, for what he did.