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On Bruce Springsteen and Advertising

Trends and Insight 518 Add to collection

barrettSF founder and ECD Jamie Barrett ponders the messages we all have the opportunity to deliver

On Bruce Springsteen and Advertising

I just finished reading Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography. It’s good. 

Two things blew me away about it. One, he’s a stunningly beautiful writer. This is a guy who was a high school loner/fuck up and went to college for about ten minutes. I’d bet a solid amount of money he didn’t score over 550 on his English SATs. And yet...

The other thing that blew me away was how self-aware and profound he is. Bruce Springsteen can carry a tune and play some guitar, but that’s really not his gift. His gift flows from his head and his heart, not his hands. His gift is his message.

I’ve always believed that with highly successful individuals, there’s something deeper going on. 

Take away Bruce Springsteen’s words and ideas, and he might’ve had the cultural impact of Bruce Hornsby or Rick Springfield. But you can’t take those things away. And you can’t leave them behind, either. They stick with you.

As every year goes by, I think more about the messages we all have the opportunity to deliver. We’re advertising people, yes, but we’re also messengers. We don’t have to be messengers of disposable crap. With the amount of talent and soul in this industry, there’s no limit to what our heads and hearts can put out in the world.

No disrespect to Bruce Hornsby, by the way. 'Mandolin Rain' is a melodic, well-crafted song. Ditto on 'The Way It Is'. And it would be sacrilegious to criticise Rick Springfield or 'Jessie’s Girl' in print. The man had outstanding hair and the chorus of that song is infectious.

But advertising, and advertising agencies, and advertising people, can aim higher.

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Sapka Communications, Fri, 22 Dec 2017 12:44:32 GMT