It took many people by surprise, to say the least, when both Nick Cave and Christopher Walken participated in Jack & Jones’ ‘Made from Cool’ campaign. At SPOT+, the man behind the music, Jesper Gadeberg, related the story of how he made it happen.
One Danish reviewer went so far as to say, that he wasn’t sure he would ever listen to any of his many Nick Cave albums ever again. That he was personally disappointed in Nick Cave – an artist he had seen as a personal idol due to his uncompromising artistic nature – for having done just that. Compromised. Put money above art. Debased himself. But the man behind licensing the music, Music Stylist Jesper Gadeberg, told a different story, at the SPOT+ seminar this Friday.
A starry night in Cannes..
Gadeberg was in Cannes, at the international advertising festival Cannes Lions in 2013, when he received a very hush-hush call from the Bestseller advertising director. ‘Meet me at the Martinez’, was the message, like a page from a Cold War novel. And when he did, he was shown something which made him go ‘wow.’ Five commercials, with Christopher Walken at the center, promoting Jack & Jones’ clothes. In Gadebergs words, the ads were ‘fucking outstanding’. Visually, conceptually, cinematographically. How do you set music to something like that?
A long shot – but what do you have to lose?
For Gadebjerg, the answer was straight forward. The tagline was ‘Made from Cool’. Christopher Walken was (and, arguably, still is) one of the coolest people on the planet. And so you had to find a musical match to Walken. Someone who matched his level of coolness. The only problem, of course, was that the music budget did not match the film budget. Without going into details.
Money is not interesting
– To me, money is not interesting. My mission as a music stylist is to find the best music for my client, the best there is. In that sense, I don’t really care about money, states Gadeberg. Still, licensing the music of an artist like Nick Cave, for a campaign running in 65 countries, on all sorts of channels. That’s gonna be expensive, surely? Well, not according to Gadeberg. You see, Gadeberg sees himself as a creator, and it is his passion for his (commercial) art, and his creative drive, which makes the unlikely possible.
Something to believe in
– An artist like Cave doesn’t need money. But, if you turn that fact around in your head, you can turn that into a strength. Nick Cave doesn’t need money, he needs something he believes in, Gadeberg told us. But he knew, that going the formal way was doomed. People would assume Cave was not interested, and shut the project down. The right way was to go through Cave’s management directly – and so they did. And 48 hours later, it was a sealed deal. Nick Cave’s song ‘We real cool’ track was to be a part of the campaign. Because the campaign has creative vision and artistic merit.
The ‘Made from Cool’ campaign ended up being one of the 3 most awarded commercials in 2013-1014. Because, as Gadeberg says, it’s not about money – it’s about art and creativity.