I didn’t grow up in the era of Paul Harvey, but as one of the most listened-to people in the history of the radio, there’s still a decent chance I could identify something he said simply by his voice.
There are many times I’ve heard snippets of Paul Harvey’s voice, most of which I probably couldn’t put a specific date or time on. But one of the specific examples I can point to with a bit more certainty was when his famous “God Made a Farmer Speech” (apparently first given to an FFA gather in November 1978) was cleverly used as the narration for a Ram trucks Superbowl commercial.
This clip alone tells you quite a bit about Paul Harvey. At the top of that list, hopefully, is that this guy was a pretty incredible storyteller. Yes, his voice helped, but that skill with words was much deeper than simply how his vocal chords developed as a kid. Paul used this skill to paint a powerful, emotional, memborable story of a group of often overlooked people. People who also happened to be the target audience for Ram’s marketing.
Closer to home, there’s another group of people that get up before dawn, that do often thankless work, that make the season possible in many parts of the world. That a ski resort GM couldn’t do without.
So Buck Hill, settled neatly on the Eastern side of thousands of square miles of farm country, turned to Mr Harvey for inspiration to tell this team’s story.
This video is so incredibly clever and really well done.
Parodies are powerful in that they’re great at getting people to ignore their perception – good or bad – of the original while also borrowing the flow and timing and power of the original. My mother would never listen to Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise but even should couldn’t help but smile at Weird Al’s Amish Paradise.
The same is true here.
Even if someone’s political positions had them rolling their eyes at Paul Harvey’s beliefs or Ram truck’s leanings (or both), those feelings could easily be set aside to enjoy a few minutes of snowmaking storytelling around a brand they love. It’s great storytelling built on the shoulders of a style and format that has worked once, now worked twice, and will surely work again.
Awesome job, Buck Hill.
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