The old ones.

The old ones.

November 30th, 2010 // 5:17 pm @ // 5 Comments

Hello there. Yes it’s another post on thatandywhiteblog and guess what? It’s late again isn’t it? Some things just never change do they? Well yes, actually they do. And they do right here, right now. There’s a great big change this week and it’s this. This week, this isn’t going to be a particularly advertising-based blog, oh no. The reason being that I haven’t really done much particularly advertising-based stuff this week. This week I have been concentrating chiefly on my mid-life crisis, which has consisted primarily of throwing myself back into the world of Rock and Roll and performance. Sadly there’s been no sex and drugs to speak of as yet but the Rock and, indeed Roll has proceeded at a fair old pace. The Saturday just past saw the first public appearance of the new line-up of popular beat combo The Weimaraners. When I say ‘new line-up’ I basically mean the old line-up but with the addition of me, standing at the front and shouting into a microphone a bit. I was going to say ‘singing’ but, as we are a kind of old-school, ( I would have said ‘old skool’ but that’s a bit new-skool ), ‘punk’ popular beat combo, the ‘singing’ part is open to question and debate.

Weimaraners. Grim, isn't it?

Now I realise that this is probably of very little interest to any of you, dear readers but it’s been a revelation to me. Well, actually not that much of a revelation if, like me, you’ve just clipped the hump of mid-forties and are lumbering headlong towards fifty- but a revelation nonetheless. And it’s this. There’s loads of us out there. Loads and loads of mid-forties people who lack the almost unbearably hep status of the check shirts, artful beards, avant-garde haircuts, macbooks and NHS specs that mill about the urban landscape, pinballing off each other to land in the respective high-score, extra ball, replay, bars of the Northern Quarter and beyond, yet have actually lived pretty interesting lives and probably played an active role in some pretty interesting times. A fair bit happened in the late ’70’s you know, not least in advertising and stuff. ( Oops. I said this wasn’t going to be an advertising-based blog. I lied. Sue me. )

Look around you at the iconography that’s colouring all those Northern Quarter bars. Listen to the jukeboxes, count the Clash and Ramones Tshirts then ask the wearers to name you three tracks and tell you the venues where they saw the bands play. You probably won’t get that far. You see, while this may sound like the sour grapes and flat snakebite of the elderly, past-it punk, there’s many a fine tune played on an old fiddle. Or to put it another way, there’s a load of great designers, art-directors, ( and copywriters ), out there who sometimes get overlooked in the pursuit of modernity, yoof and the next new thing. Yes, yes, I know it sounds bitter again but bear with me. The fact is, quite a few of those, ( us ), people were banging out ideas and concepts with marker pens on layout pads before it was possible to make the weakest thought look like the latest masterpiece with the aid of an apple mac and bit of photoshopping.

Don’t get me wrong, all the possibilities that these ‘new’ tools have opened up are doubtlessly fabulous and I’m not suggesting for a moment that we all adopt rose-coloured bi-focals to gaze longingly at the past. What I am saying though, is that all us creatives of a certain age stop moping around and moaning that the future’s too digital and hi-tech for our old bones and think about what got us into the business in the first place. Ideas. And, more than that, the skills that enabled us to make those ideas work without the aid of a gazillion megabytes of  technology nailed to our frontal lobes. There’s also the vague possiblity that in the years we’ve been in the game, we may have learnt some fairly worthwhile stuff too. Just a  thought.

In fact, here’s another thought. We may not fit into the skinny jeans anymore but we do still fit into the Creative Department.

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5 Comments → “The old ones.”

  1. jacqueS

    13 years ago

    I’m 45 after Christmas. I embrace new technology wholeheartedly, but it does irk me when recruitment ads or prospective employers ask for a ‘digital’ copywriter or ‘web copy’ specialist. When did this differentiation creep in?
    When I was a lad(ette) copywriters were expected to be able to turn their pen to anything — radio and TV scripts, sharp 8-word poster headlines, long copy for press ads, short copy for small ads, letters, sales pitches, copy in all shapes and sizes and guises to all different audiences – as well as provide a vast raft of concepts and ideas in the first place.
    Just saying.

  2. andy

    13 years ago

    How about this then Ms.S? On a Linkedin forum recently, someone asked, ‘As a copywriter is it necessary to be able to write headlines and ‘punchlines’?

    ‘Well duh’ wasn’t he answer. Apparently it isn’t.

  3. Ann

    13 years ago

    (((Layout Pads))) (((Letraset)))

  4. jacqueS

    13 years ago

    Don’t get me started on what copywriters need to be able to do. I had a heart-stoppingly infuriating argument with a junior copywriter (oooh, about 15 years ago, I think, just when people first started to say “No-one reads the copy”) who absolutely INSISTED that it was not necessary for a copywriter to be able to ‘write’. Anything. Perhaps the odd one-word on a poster.
    When I see certain entries for long copy awards I get the feeling that he wasn’t in the minority. 🙁

  5. andy

    13 years ago

    Ann ( Ms. FWB ), a Letraset catalogue and tracing paper. Times were hard…

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