Sunday, August 05, 2012

"We are finally living out our creed": "natural orator" Jay-Z shills for Budweiser, while wearing Nets cap

In a December 2010 New York Observer profile of Jay-Z, Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah observed that "Jay-Z is a natural orator; he can say much or nothing, and it not only sounds good, it also sounds heartfelt."

Indeed. Check out this "Jay-Z Budweiser 2012 London Olympics Commercial," which at one point shows him wearing a Brooklyn Nets cap. Synergy!

"Through all the lines and things that are put in place to divide us, all likeminded people gather together," Jay-Z orates. "When the world relates, that's a beautiful thing."

"We're all trading off each other's culture," he muses. "We're all somehow going to to find a way to come together... to put that on display for the world is just being honest... that's it, that's what it's all about. We are finally living out our creed."

To sell Budweiser.

("Ain't singin' for Miller/Don't sing for Bud," Neil Young once pledged, though that's certainly not keeping him from a Barclays Center gig in December, well after Jay-Z inaugurates the building.)






Budweiser is the sponsor of the "Made in America" festival in Philadelphia produced by Jay-Z, scheduled for Labor Day weekend, so I suspect Mr. Carter is getting good value out of this relationship, not merely cash. Budweiser also is a legacy partner of the arena.

Learning values

There's another advertising video out there, for Rocawear, in which the "natural orator" declares that, growing up in Brooklyn's Marcy Projects "taught you these values, and taught you integrity, and taught you honesty."

As Eric McClure put it, "the result of which, apparently, led him to lend his celebrity and street cred to a crooked boondoggle named for the bank that brought you the LIBOR rate-fixing scandal."

And, well, there's a little bit more about integrity lingering. I'd cite Sam Anderson's review:
Which brings us to the ethical pickle at the core of the Jay-Z myth. He moves very quickly, in Decoded, from lamenting the tragedy of the crack epidemic to profiting from it as a dealer—and he never quite makes clear the moral steps that justify that transition. When pushed about his contradictory image, he falls back on “I’m complex.”



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