Tanning of America

In part one of the VH1 docu-series, The Tanning of America, the book is brought to life. The episode begins with Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential victory. From there it dives into a summary of historic “tanning” moments from 1970-1986.

“[Angelo Anastacia of adidas] saw hip hop culture drive sales of a shoe with no commercial endorsement, just contagious consumer behavior through culture.” – Steve Stoute

The show tells the story of how hip hop music and culture became a viable marketing tool. Blaxploitation films show up as an early influence on hip hop. Television shows such as “Good Times” and “The Jeffersons” are mentioned. They proved that story lines about black families could bring in big ratings numbers. Hip hop is compared to punk rock as a sub-culture. Def Jam records, MTV and Video Music Box all make appearances. Fresh Fest, the first national hip hop tour played a key role in Run-DMC’s endorsement deal with Adidas.

Watch the story unfold for yourself below.

Do you think this video summed up tanning from 1970-86?


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