Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Is Bob Mould or TIAA-CREF selling out?

MSNBC.com is jawing on this morning about the TIAA-CREF spot that's been out for a few weeks now featuring Bob Mould's "See a Little Light." The issue this time isn't artists selling out, but advertisers, I guess, selling in. The story asks, "Advertisers claim to revel in being creative and original. How does repackaging someone else’s artistic efforts for their own sales pitches accomplish either of those goals?" Not a bad question, except that advertisers aren't generally in the business of making music. If they were, they'd be in the music business. And although the story goes on at length about the potential silliness in positioning TIAA-CREF as a "dot-org" and therefore above the commercial fray, at least the Mould song isn't being used to bolster the profits of Citibank or Bank of America, which has its own storied history of repurposing meaningful rock songs.


Tommy Times said...

I just saw this ad. I think that the choice of artist and song is appropriate for the type of organization they are positioning themselves as. I don't think that Mould is selling out by letting this organization use his song, especially consider the rapidly plunging reputation of most other financial organizations. It's a good ad, a good use of music, and (maybe) an artist not selling his music to just anyone.

Anonymous said...

This doesn't delight me.

I saw this over the holidays and was surprised that Bob would let his music be used in an advertisement.

My hope is that he either has a relationship with the director or that he has some familial relationship with TIAA-CREF (a family member, perhaps, who uses this organization).

Regardless, he's one of those rare artists who I thought would resist this type of thing.