Putting a Musical Bed Under Ford’s Living Roof

Wednesday July 14th 9:03pm: Hey Nick it’s Wendell, think you can turn around a spot overnight? Need it by the morning.

Wednesday July 14th 9:04pm: Sure Wendell, I’ll give it a shot…

As a professional musician, you’re always meeting (and sometimes stretching) deadlines, often working til the 11th hour, so when I started downloading the rough video track from Wendell Hanes I didn’t know what to expect. Wendell, who owns the audio house Volition Sound Branding, has been responsible for some great spots over his many years in the business, including Garnier Fructis’s Fructis Flow spots featuring Memphis Bleek, Kia’s recent Hamster Commercials featuring Black Sheep, and Boost Mobile’s “Where You At?” Anthem featuring Jermaine Dupri and Young Jeezy.

Well the file Wendell sent me ended up being this two minute long spot for Ford Motor Company promoting their sustainability initiatives in Michigan. NFL on FOX personality James “I’m not that James” Brown interviews John Viera, Director of Sustainable Business Strategies at Ford. I jumped at the chance to write music for Ford, so I spent all night writing the music, finishing at 6:12am the next day.

Let me tell you I could talk more about the content of the video than my music. They have the largest living roof in North America on their production facility. Not only does their living roof keep insulation costs down, they also have a team of PhD’s creating foam from Soy! A rough copy of the spot is below, as well as just the music bed. Let me know what you think, and make sure you check out Volition Sound Branding, and Ford.

The typical commercial is either :30 seconds or :60 seconds long, this is a two minute internet video. The bed without VO is alone is below, with the video underneath it.

If you need any kind of music for your commercial or web video needs, just contact me.


Planting Seeds of Success at Eric Mower and Associates

I was asked by the Dr. James Tsao, Chair of the Advertising program at the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, to write a short article for the school’s newsletter on my time spent interning at Eric Mower and Associates. As a recent grad of the master’s program, I was more than happy to oblige. Hopefully I can capture the energy of each minute in the agency. Thanks Mr. Mower for all the kind words and the advice, I’ve already started work on getting my name on the door.

Planting Seeds of Success at Eric Mower and Associates

Spending a semester as the creative intern at Eric Mower and Associates has been a key to my success at Newhouse. Through the internship experience I have been able to gain a deeper understanding of my course work, and the advertising industry in general. Their unique status and business structure gives you the “big-agency” experience, but they have the mindset of a small business, so your ideas as an intern really make an impact on the daily decisions.

I was the only intern in the creative department, which was much more of a gift than curse. It forced me to work on a lot of different projects in disciplines outside of my comfort zone. The CD’s and ACD’s I worked under were some of the funniest people I’ve ever worked with, yet they would always take time to answer the simplest of questions I had—in fact they prefer you ask than sit around looking dumb not knowing what’s going on.

At Mower, I wasn’t just a copywriter or an art director—I did it all. One day I would be brainstorming headlines for GE, another day would be pro bono radio spot for the March of Dimes, and still other days I’d be asked to write copy, design and then layout a poster to show a client that afternoon (draft mockup below).

The people at EMA taught me not only technical duties of the creative department, but the culture of what goes into making an entire agency run. In addition to my creative projects, I was also given the chance to sit in and learn how new business is won and how to handle clients. Being one of the most respected (and largest) independently run agencies in the company, they value the culture of their work environment, putting it second to none. Things feel good at EMA, from the moment you’re greeted by the secretary to the moment you’re asked to present to a client. Employees are a family, the kind of personal treatment that makes every day more meaningful. Everyone’s a student in there, with the industry changing as fast as it does I know I taught my superiors a lesson or two while I learned millions.

Honestly, I loved every minute spent with Eric Mower and Associates and would advise any student to take on an internship during their time here at Newhouse. As an alumnus of this program I’ll say up front that the course load definitely is intensive, and you will hit a breaking point, however for me the internship made school easier.

The real-world experience brought a new dimension to course assignments and lectures, and added value to my portfolio as a prospective job seeker.

I also DJ’ed their holiday party…that was really fun.

Nick Cicero

S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, M.A. Advertising ‘10

Nazareth College of Rochester, B.A. Music ‘09