Kanye West’s “The Life of Pablo”: Art, Fashion, and the Record Album

Friday, February 12th, 2016

The release of Kanye West's new album, The Life of Pablo, is a testament to the enduring relevance of record albums even as people buy fewer of them year after year. Albums no longer possess any of the commercial power they once had. But they can create tent pole moments ...

Why Kanye West Should Be Twitter’s CEO

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

Twitter should ask Kanye West to be its CEO -- or at least a member of its board. In 72 hours, Kanye has done more to make Twitter relevant and compelling than anything its beleaguered executive team has done during the past year. First came the #SWISH moment on January 24, when ...

#Kanye2020: Brilliant Branding, Bro

Friday, September 11th, 2015

The Kanye West brand is like a Ferrari careening down a highway. Sometimes you want to watch the spectacle. Other times you want to get out of the way. And then there are times when you wish you were in the front seat. Kanye's recent presidential election announcement makes me ...

How Kiss Created a Great Brand with Rock Theater

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

They finally made the hall. After selling 100 million albums, reinventing the rock concert as theater, launching their own comic book series, and scaring the bejesus out of parents everywhere, Kiss was finally admitted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014. But the band really belongs in a ...

How Louis Vuitton Appeals to Upscale Baby Boomers with Music

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

Louis Vuitton knows how to target an audience with rock celebrities. The iconic luxury brand is working with another iconic brand, David Bowie, to produce the second television spot ever aired in the company's 160-year history. The ad, an installment in Louis Vuitton's "L'Invitation au Voyage" series, will feature the ...

Rapper Mike Lo: “Those Beats Talk to Me”

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

He's Mike Lo if you didn't know. Underground rapper Mike Lo sings with the swagger of Eminem and smirks like one of the Beastie Boys. He lives in two worlds -- the one he needs to make ends meet and the one he creates for himself. His day job consists of ...

5 Marketing Lessons from the 121212 Concert for Sandy Relief

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

Rock concerts for causes have come a long way since George Harrison and Ravi Shankar organized the Concert for Bangladesh in 1971 and raised $250,000 to help refugees in war-torn Bangladesh. The Concert for Bangladesh was an untelevised rock show (actually two of them) witnessed by 40,000 people in Madison ...