"a fish, a barrel, and a smoking gun"
for 10 October 1996. Updated every WEEKDAY.

Hit & Run LV



Rock 'n' roll was selling

T-shirts long before it became

the lifestyle marketing hook of

choice for everything from beer

to cars (some of which sound

more like punk rock than others,

we guess), but Staten Island's

Wu-Tang Clan has broken new

ground by actually recording a

song specifically to promote

branded products. The song "Wu

Wear: The Garment Renaissance"

on the High School High movie

soundtrack pushes the Clan's

surprisingly extensive clothing

line (it even includes socks!)

partly by telling the story of a

young man who forever swears off

such brands as Benetton and

Tommy Hilfiger. We suppose it

promotes the movie too.



"Brand Champions" was the theme

of the 87th Annual Association

of National Advertisers

conference, and who better to

address its final session than

"living brand" (her words, not

ours) Martha Stewart? Though

Stewart shared with the

no-doubt-dumbstruck audience how

"Martha Stewart the person built

Martha Stewart the brand," she

also strengthened everything her

name stands for in front of a

key audience. When the slide

projector became stuck during

her presentation, Stewart told

the A/V squad the problem could

be fixed with a hairpin or

knife-point, according to The

New York Times. Now that's

living brand-building.



We knew the cable channel crunch

had reached really ridiculous

proportions when we saw as an ad

in The New York Times "an open

letter to Mayor Giuliani from

Joe Mannix." The letter -

cosigned by fellow faux-New

Yorkers Felix Unger, Arnold

Horshack, and Lucy and Ricky

Ricardo - urges Giuliani to

forgo adding another cable news

channel in favor of Viacom's

Nick at Nite's TV Land, a

channel "that lets you get away

from the news... [where] every

problem can be solved in half an

hour." Reluctant as we are to

take our public policy stances

from the Ricardos, we agree that

escapism needs a larger role in

our 500-channel future.



How would you feel if you were

told that in 1995 alone,

would-be Rockefellers coughed up

almost $145 billion in charity

for the muddled masses? If you

were Capital Publishing, you

might feel like getting in on

the wide-pocketed action and

giving back a little to the

community (of billionaires) with

a new magazine: The American

Benefactor. With a theme

revolving loosely around giving

your money away - while slashing

your taxes - and sporting the

slightly-vague tagline of

"Making Wealth Work for You and

Society," one might forget that

this is a year when Medicaid and

welfare cuts failed to ignite

substantive outcry from the

electorate. But then again,

American Benefactor needs only

rattle its tin cup at the

Old-Money One Percent. Even if

they forego $1000/year

subscription conceits, they'll

still be able to offer potential

advertisers the Golden Ark of

demographics: pornographically

wealthy trust-funders who've run

out of ideas for spending their


courtesy of the Sucksters