Pabst Blue Ribbon
After drinking the James Belgian Brown from 2 brothers, I now understand the awesome power of funk and beer. With that in mind I present to you a Pabst Blue Ribbon (which is a American commercial beer, and thus I assume terrible) advertisement from what looks to me to be the very late 70’s.
Pabst seems to identified black men as being cool, also musicians are cool, so black musicians = Super cool. But this is the 70’s so they have to be approachable, so rather than finding a Gil Scott Heron they instead have found the whitest black band in America. Who entertain us with their Sax solos.
They understand that you have to sing in beer ads so they go with the singing narrative route. In a very white sounding voice they tell me that they have been working hard (just like those Aussies chopping a tree) and now they need a beer (just like the VB ad) so it’s time to take you giant Afro and huge moustache along with your wife/girlfriend/extra from The Cosby show down to the bar for a beer.
At said bar you will be greeted by a strange man in a linen suit who may or may not have walked off the set of the local cop show where he was investigating the case of who stole his collar. You will also be served a drink that looks kind of like beer, but not really. It’ll have a huge head of very very white foam on it, you will look happy, but because it’s an American ad you won’t actually drink the beer, just look at it.
A little research tells me the peak of Pabst sales were in 1977 (18 million barrels a year). By 2001 they were only selling 1 million barrels. You know what that tells me? – Afros, Waistcoats and Mo’s sell beer. So ad makers of the world take heed.
Even further research tells me that Pabst is loved (in a wholly ironic way) by hipsters, of course they call it PBR now. I’m sure this would be great for sales if hipsters could actually drink, the problem of course being that skinny jeans and the physique that only a beer can bring don’t mix.