Running: The New Rock’N’Roll

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Nike Promo. Are fitness images changing?
 

 

The image of the Rock’n’Roller is changing, from chaotic self-destructive, decadent, to a running junkie in search of their Personal Best. The standard conventions of the Pop Star documentary sees lonely, troubled musician on tour, contemplating life through a limo. Nike’s new promo features pop star Ellie Goulding on tour, training for a half-marathon. The times they are a-changin’

 

 

It’s often said among baby boomers that if you can remember the ‘60s you weren’t there. And reading Keith Richards autobiography it is remarkable, given his lifestyle, that he can remember enough to make it more than a few pages long.

 

However the culture of rock’n’roll is changing and if bands were once prone to throwing TV’s out of hotel windows, nowadays it seems they would be bench-pressing them. The Nike + iTunes collaboration has been pushing at this door for a while.

 

The new Nike ad features Ellie Goulding, who received the Royal seal of approval by providing the entertainment at Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding reception.  It shows Goulding running while she was on tour in LA, New York and London intercut with images of her gigs.

 

Street running through urban grafitti, underpasses, and at night lend a sense of danger, and by juxtaposing Goulding’s two loves, running and rock, the two-minute film highlights the relationship between the two.

 

The Nike promo is as usual essential viewing, and it raises the cultural question as to whether in 2011, exercise, running, trashing your body in search of a Personal Best is actually more about pushing boundaries than rock music? Is running the new rock’n’roll?

 

 

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