VFTL: Episode 6: Gerry Graf.

Gerry Graf:Pink Bubble
The best ads appear effortless.
As if created accidentally, the result of a chance corridor meeting by people letting off steam on their way to different, grown-up,  serious meetings, probably ones involving charts, numbers and mashed-up new words they get the gist of but aren’t 100% confident of their meaning.
The truth is that it’s hard to create work like that, it’s like catching lightning in a bottle.
A few creatives have been in the right place at the right time to grab a bolt, barely any catch it on demand.
Gerry has been doing it on a regular basis for the last twenty years.
Just as impressive; he’s a gooner.
We had a great chat, hope you enjoy it.

wavelogo-9-01BBDO/NY.

'Airplane Banner' Red Stripe, Gerry Graf, BBDO:NY.jpg

RedStripe-1.jpgPicture-17.jpg4158531+_87434d0cb4a06c72b69b0db878e57056.jpg300_graphic-1.jpg

GOODBY SILVERSTEIN & PARTNERS.'If Your Broker's' E-Trade, Gerry Graf, Goodby Silverstien-01.jpg'Someone's Going' E-Trade, Gerry Graf, Goodby Silverstien-01.jpg'The Tooth Fairy' E-Trade, Gerry Graf, Goodby Silverstien-01.jpg'The Seepstakes Van' E-Trade, Gerry Graf, Goodby Silverstien-01.jpg

BBDO/NY.

TBWA/NY.

'Hungerectomy' Snickers, Gerry Graf, TBWA:NY.jpg'Nougatocity' Snickers, Gerry Graf, TBWA:NY..jpg'Substantialiscious' Snickers, Gerry Graf, TBWA:NY..jpg

miller_decrossifier.jpgpinky.jpgmiller_collar_clips.jpg

SAATCHI & SAATCHI NY.


BARTON F. GRAF.
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(Barton).

bfg-horse-ass-ep.jpgcosmetics-beauty-protection-1024-45547.jpg

159546_8fd92341b4a34e2383ebc5b5e02c8e1e.jpgclimate1.jpgscreen_shot_20131219_at_11.35.47_0.jpg479654959_1280x720.jpg142286_77fa2920738d4ec688bb52af39d9b7b9.jpg

obie-awards-6.jpgDenver-Water-WoodPuzzle-Street.jpgobie-awards-7.jpg

Sandwich_Grubhub_68x47.25_SF_BusShelter_2000.jpgf3d4188df876fb416a8b53d1d397ad51.jpgThai_Grubhub_69x47__Chi_BusShelter_3_Safety_1692.jpg

Gerry working.barton-f-graf-kiddie-pool-ep.jpg
Gerry eating.26-gerry-graf-founder-and-chief-creative-officer-of-barton-f-graf-9000.jpgGerry chillin’.
CwHfxcRWgAETokp.jpg

VFTL. Episode 1: Tom McElligott

After years of being amazed at what was on the net, I’m now increasingly surprised at what’s not.
Three years ago I was trawling for a particular ad of Tom’s, not only couldn’t I find it I could barely find any of his work.
Outraged, I gathered together as much of his work as I could lay my hands on and put out a post called ‘Hands Up Who’s Heard Of Tom McElligott’.
I was trying to be snarky and ironic, like you may write ‘Hands Up Who’s Heard Of John Lennon?’.

Two things happened:

1. An enormous amount of people checked it out, 65k.
Most had never heard of him, he was being shared and referred to on Twitter and Facebook a ‘really cool pre-internet guy’.

2. A few members of his department got in touch to point out that some of the ads featured were not under Tom’s watch, they were overseen by Pat Burnham.
Then Pat Burnham emailed me; I opened it cautiously.
‘Just wanted to get in touch to say thank you, I really enjoyed your blog post, best, Pat.’

It made me feel bad.
What can I do to make amends? Interview him, I’d never done it before but it seemed like a good thing to do.

I’ve now posted about 50 interviews.

So it feels appropriate that Tom is my first podcast interview. 
He hasn’t given an interview for 25 years and said he doesn’t plan on giving one on the next 25.
I Hope you enjoy listening to him as much as I did.
(VFTL? It stands for ‘Voices From The Loft’, it’s a podcast.)

wavelogo-7-01PRE-FALLON McELLIGOTT:fishing-is-like-elmers-minnows-tom-mcelligottron-andersonmy-minnows-will-catch-elmers-minnows-tom-mcelligottron-andersonmy-minnows-are-elmers-minnows-tom-mcelligottron-andersongulp-omaha-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01zzz-omaha-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01gulp-omaha-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01yum-omaha-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01ho-hum-omaha-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01'Do You Live' Omaha, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpgspoiler-alert-the-episcopal-church-tom-mcelligotthe-didnt-die-the-episcopal-church-tom-mcelligottron-andersonwhich-one-rose-the-episcopal-church-tom-mcelligott-bozell

if-you-still-united-way-tom-mcelligott-bozell-ron-andersonevery-night-before-united-way-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01theyre-the-same-surdyks-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01do-you-want-inuit-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01finally-a-doll-country-cottage-tom-mcelligotttom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-01help-the-red-twin-cities-red-cross-tom-mcelligottwill-those-people-twin-cities-red-cross-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01you-dont-get-twin-cities-red-cross-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01we-cant-stop-twin-cities-red-cross-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01
in-1966-the-merchants-nationaltom-mcelligott-bozellit-took-a-the-merchants-national-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01

LUNCH HOUR Ltd.pontillos-pizzeria-is-pontillos-tom-mcelligott-lunch-hour-ltdsims-explains-the-sims-tom-mcelligott-bozellit-may-be-sims-ltd-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01wendell-anderson-says-rudy-boschwitz-tom-mcelligott-ron-andersonbefore-you-try-ki-clayton-tom-mcelligott-lunch-hour-ltdgood-executive-material-ki-clayton-tom-mcelligott-lunch-hour-ltdmo-lebowitz-1-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01'Mo Lebowitz 2' Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'Come See 40'  Clio, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpgwe-survived-our-mpls-magazine-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01our-food-critics-mpls-magazine-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01golf-cover-mpls-magazine-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01fridge-cover-mpls-magazine-tom-mcelligott-bozell-01'My Boss Cover' MPLS Magazine, Tom McElligott, Bozell-01.jpg

minnesotans-for-gun-control

in-1941-you-waited-northwestern-bell-tom-mcelligott-ron-anderson-bozell-01'Unfortunately If You' Northwestern Bell, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'If Your Child' Northwestern Bell, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'It Takes Two*' Northwestern Bell, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg

'It's Halftime At' Mini Mart, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'Standing In Line' Mini Mart, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'This Ad Is' Carousel, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg'Up Until Now' Carousel, Tom McElligott, Ron Anderson, Bozell-01.jpg


FALLON McELLLIGOTT:Fallon McElligott, House ad-01Fallon McElligott, 7th South 'Nixon'-01Fallon McElligott, 7th South 'Medussa'-01Fallon McElligott 'Einstein'-01Fallon McElligott 'Coin'-01Fallon McElligott 'Bride Of Frankenstein' -01Fallon McElligott '£ Stooges'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Son of'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'TV'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopal 'Carson'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopal, 'Taped'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Lions'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Bomb' -01Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian 'Cake'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian, 'Strong Men'-01if-you-want-successful-farming-tom-mcelligott-fallon-mcelligott-01only-two-things-successful-farming-tom-mcelligott-fallon-mcelligott-01Come The End' Successful Farming, Tom McElligott, Fallon McElligott-01.jpgeven-the-pigs-successful-farming-tom-mcelligott-fallon-mcelligott-01Fallon McElligott, AMF 'add 2lbs'-01Fallon McElligott, AMF 'Handles'-01

There is more of Tom’s Fallon McElligott and post-Fallon McElligott at a previous post here: https://davedye.com/tag/tom-mcelligott/

Hands up who’s heard of Tom McElligott?

1991_main_mcelligott
He should be better known.
He ushered in a new, sassier way of talking.

His work felt like it was written by a very smart lawyer with a wicked sense of humour.
He influenced a generation.
But there’s almost no evidence of his existence on the internet.
In a Stalinesque style purge, Lurzer’s Archive have retouched the Fallon McElligott work to read Fallon. 
Even the publishers of Luke Sullivan’s great book “Hey Whipple” seem not to know him:
Screen shot 2014-02-14 at 15.20.08
I can’t find a lot of information on him out there, so it’s difficult to offer up too much, and I certainly can’t vouch for the chronology of the work below, but I’ll have a first stab and update it if complaints come in. (If anyone does know more, has higher res images or can spot errors please get in touch or leave a comment.)

So here’s what I know:
Minneapolis legend Ron Anderson hired Tom to work with him at Bozell’s.
They did some very good, very Fallon McElligott style work together:
Tom McElligott %22United Way. Bozell
(http://ampersandvertising.com/2013/10/17/we-pulled-an-all-nighter-perhaps-the-only-time-our-wives-didnt-mind/)

Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.56.45 Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.58.51 Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.56.17 Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.54.52lhl-symsScreen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.55.55Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.57.16 Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.57.08 Tom McElligott, 'Crowded' - Minnesota.Nancy Rice-01 Tom McElligott, 'Graffiti' - Minnesota.Nancy Rice-01 Tom McElligott, 'Running Water' - Minnesota.Nancy Rice-01Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.57.28Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.58.16 Screen shot 2014-03-06 at 15.58.26

Whilst at Bozell, Tom started taking on freelance projects with the young, Head of Media Research at another Minneapolis agency, Martin/Williams.
They called it Lunch Hour Ltd.
Tom McElligott, Pontillo's - 'Cut It'-01 Tom McElligott, Ki Clayton - 'Material'-01 Tom McElligott, Ki Clayton, 'Material',-01

They got so busy, they took it to the next level, setting up an agency in 1981, along with Art Director Nancy Rice.

This is their first ad.
It ran on August 3, 1981, in the Minneapolis Star and Minneapolis Tribune.

Fallon McElligott, House ad-01
Bob MacDonald spotted it.

Fortunately for the new agency Bob MacDonald was the Marketing Director of ITT Insurance. 
Even more fortunately, Bob couldn’t find an agency who would ‘make the big insurance companies look like shit’.
They were awarded the account and Tom started making the big insurance companies look like shit. Fallon McElligott, ITT 'Fat'-01 Fallon McElligott, ITT 'Waists'-01 Fallon McElligott,ITT 'Cartoon'-01Fallon McElligott, ITT 'Rice'-01
F Mc; 300-01
They start picking up local accounts, very local;  hair salons, lumber yards, no account appears to be too small.
Or another way to look at it, and my guess is it’s nearer the truth; no opportunity to create, however small the budget, was turned away.

4.8621c_l 4.8627d_lFallon McElligott, Vander 'Two Times'-01Fallon McElligott, KSJN 'Brains'-01
Fallon McElligott 'Einstein'-01Fallon McElligott 'Bride Of Frankenstein' -01Fallon McElligott 'Coin'-01
Fallon McElligott '£ Stooges'-01Fallon McElligott, 7th South 'Medussa'-01

Fallon McElligott, 7th South 'Nixon'-01Fallon McElligott, Transtop 'How much'-01Fallon McElligott, 'Stop A Bus'-01
3.8801b_l
3.8801c_lTom McElligott, PR Project 'Why?'-01 Tom McElligott, PR Project 'Money'-01 Tom McElligott, PR Project 'Indicates'-01 Fallon McElligott, Hockey 'USA v USSR'-01Fallon McElligott 'Chiropractor' 1-01 Fallon McElligott,, First Tennessee 'Oils'-01Fallon McElligott, MAX 'Letter'-01 Fallon McElligott, Allnet 'Record'-01Tom McElligott,  'Obscene'-01Tom McElligott, PR Project 'Skeleton'-01 Tom McElligott, PR Project 'Naked'-01 Tom McElligott, PR Project 'Mary'-01Adler3 Adler2 Adler1

Fallon McElligott, Murray's 'Knife'-01Fallon McElligott, Murray's 'Excuse'-01Fallon McElligott, Murray's 'Match books'-01Fallon McElligott, Murray's 'Fixtures'-01Fallon McElligott, Murray's, 'Institution', -01-01Fallon McElligott, Murray's, 'Vietnam'-01Tom McElligott, Murray's 'Juicy', -01F Mc; ll256-01Fallon McElligott, Continental 'Plastic'-01Fallon McElligott, Continental Illinois 'Note'-01Fallon McElligott, MedCentres 'Which 20%' -01Fallon McElligott, First Tennesee-01
Fallon McElligott, Minnesota Hockey 'Defense-01

Fallon McElligott - Country Cottage 'Poo' -01Fallon McElligott 'Icecream' -01Fallon McElligott, AMF 'Handles'-01Fallon McElligott, AMF 'add 2lbs'-01Fallon McElligott, Mr Coffee 'Tea'-01
Fallon McElligott 'Pytka'-01
Fallon McElligott, Dublin 'Lion'-01F Mc; 288-01
Fallon McElligott, Minnesota Zoo 'Monkeys'-01Fallon McElligott,Minnesota Zoo 'Emissions'-01Fallon McElligott, Gym 'Mountains'-01

  Fallon McElligott, Casting 'Huggies'-01 Fallon McElligott, Casting 'Snow'-01Fallon McElligott, Casting 'Weights'-01
Fallon McElligott, Wimbledon It Ain't'-01Fallon McElligott 'Da Moon' -01Fallon McElligott, W32, 'Young Clint'-01Fallon McElligott 'See What The Networks'' -01Fallon McElligott 'Underground'-01
Fallon McElligott, KRON 'Birds'-01Fallon McElligott,W32, 'Grant'-01Fallon McElligott, W32 'Cut'-01Fallon McElligott,W32 'Plot'-01Fallon McElligott,W32 'Train Robbery'-01

Fallon McElligott, %22Jane Fonda%22-01 Fallon McElligott, W32 'Hitchcock Cast'-01Fallon McElligott, W33, 'Dallas'-01 Fallon McElligott, W32, 'Assembled'-01 Fallon McElligott, W32, 'Woody Allen'-01 Fallon McElligott, W32, 'Jet'-01Fallon McElligott 'White Sox'-01 WFLD3
Fallon McElligott, Starkey 'More than'-01
The first time I saw the name Fallon McElligott was underneath these ads, in The One Show.

They’d be bold for a beer, but for a religion?
Also, who knew The Episcopal Church guys were such a fun bunch, maybe I should sign up?
Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian, 'Singles Bar'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Son of'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Bomb' -01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'TV'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian, 'Strong Men'-01   Fallon McElligott, Episcopal 'Carson'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopal 'TV'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Lions'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopal, 'Taped'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian, 'Contrary'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopal, 'Tablets'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian, 'Lions'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopal, 'Pastures'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian %22Santa'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian 'Doubts'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian '1500 Years'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian, 'Sustain'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian, 'Garden Variety'-01 Fallon McElliigott, Episcopalian, 'Vicious'-01 Fallon McElligott, Loaves & Fishes'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian, 'Henry 8th'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian 'Desciples'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopelian 'Cake'-01 Fallon McElligott, Episcopal 'How many'-01Fallon McElligott, Episcopalian, 'Easter'-01 Fallon McElligott, 'Speech'-01 Fallon McElligott, 'Mercedes'-01

Fallon McElligott, 'Gold Speech'-01Fallon McElligott, God The Client-01
The name Fallon McElligott started to turn up more and more, especially in books like the One Show.
4.8624a_lFallon McElligott, U.S. West 'Backwards'-01Fallon McElligott, U.S. West 'Carry'-01


Fallon McElligott, U.S. West 'Growth'-01 4.8613a_lFallon McElligott, Bob Lambert 'Hitler'-01Fallon McElligott, Bob Lambert 'Viet Cong'-01Fallon McElligott, Bob Lambert 'Schnozzle Durante'-01
People were taking notice of this agency in an odd location beginning with ‘M’.

One of them was Ed McCabe.
%22I wish I'd done That%22 Ed McCabe, McElligott-01Fallon McElligott, D'AMICA 1-01Fallon McElligott, D'AMICA 2-01Fallon McElligott, D'AMICA 3-01
They did this ad for the Art Centre.

But all their work seemed to be infused with this attitude.Fallon McElligott %22adcentre%22-01Fallon McElligott, Rick Dublin, 'Dull'-01Fallon McElligott, 'Squeezed Type'-01Fallon McElligott, News Centre 11 'Monuments'-01Fallon McElligott, Minnesota Federal 'Toasters'-01

Love this.Fallon McElligott 'No Penis'-01
It looks horrific, sad and disturbing.
It’s an announcement card for the birth of someones daughter.Fallon McElligott Vander 'Dog'1-01

Fallon McElligott, Vander, 'Tomato'-01Fallon McElligott, Vander, 'Where', -01Fallon McElligott, Vander, 'Where Speakers', -01
Fallon McElligott, Anti Smoking 'Exhale'-01Fallon McElligott, Anti Smoking 'First Sign'-01
The Hush Puppies campaign.
Very influential at the time.
Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies, 'Casual'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies, 'Corporate'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies, 'Classic'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies, 'Sophisticated'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies 'Sporting'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies, 'Ventilated'-01Fallon McElligott, Hush Puppies %22Baby'-01glasnost_ad_smtbimage_4212

3.8715a_l 3.9117a_l
But they didn’t just do humour, they tackled difficult subjects head on.

 Fallon McElligott, The Children's Defense 'Pimple'-01 Fallon McElligott, The Children's Defense 'Period'-01 teenpreg1Screen shot 2014-03-02 at 08.59.28Fallon McElligott, 'Warranty'-03
2.8710b_lUl7GU

Fallon McElligott, Child Defense 'Sleep Around'-013.9118b_l3.9118c_lScreen shot 2014-03-04 at 08.54.20Screen shot 2014-03-04 at 08.54.47Fallon McElligott, The Children's Defense'Grounded For'-01Fallon McElligott, 'Defense Fund 'One On The Left'-01Fallon McElligott, 'Defense Fund '125, 000'-01Fallon McElligott, 'Defense Fund 'Subtract'-01

The Penn campaign.

(I remember drooling over the croissant execution at the time.)
Fallon McElligott, Penn 'Croisant'-01Fallon McElligott, Penn 'Snake'-01
Fallon McElligott,Penn 'Canadian Open'-01

3.9005b_l

They made a convincing case for Advertising itself.
Fallon McElligott, Advertising, 'Shaving'-01Fallon McElligott, Advertising, 'Icecubes'-01F Mc; 2ood6-01Fallon McElligott 'Newspaper'-01Fallon McElligott, Advertising, 'Machine'-01Fallon McElligott, Advertising, '5c'-01

There were also a lot of these Wall Street Journal ads, unfortunately this is the only one I can find.
I’m sure they influenced The Economist campaign.
At the moment, this is the only one I can lay my hands on.
Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'Translate'-01Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'Get It'-01Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'Fast Track'-01Fallon McElligott, Wall Street Journal, 'On The Way'-01 Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'Diary'-01Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'Trains'-01Tom McElligott, Wall Street Journal 'Title'-01Fallon McElligott, Wall St Journal, 'Weekly'-01Fallon McElligott,Wall Street Journal 'Country'-01Fallon McElligott, Wall Street Journal 'Fabric' -01Fallon McElligott, WSJ 'President' -01
Fallon McElligott, Time-01
Then the Rolling Stone campaign.

The Rolling Stone’s problem was that it struggled to sell its ad space, advertisers thought it’s readers were hippies.
The solution was so simple.
So smart.
So unlike any other ads at the time.
Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Hippe'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Coins'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Shoes'-01Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'CamperVan'-01Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Pill'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Bra'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Barbers' -01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stones 'Tyre'-02Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Soap'-01

A cool scratch and sniff version. (I’m guessing smelly & fresh?)
Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Sniff'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone, 'Brownies'-01 Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Racquet'-01 2.8707b_lFallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Post It'-01
Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Symbols'-01Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Keg'-01
Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Map'-01

   Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Mousse'-01Fallon McElligott- Rolling Stone %22Mouse%22-01Fallon McElligott- Rolling Stone %22Surf%22 Fallon McElligott- Rolling Stone %22Wolfe%22-01Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stones 'Naked'-01Fallon McElligott, Rolling Stone 'Grape Nuts'-01
It felt new, neither headline or visual lead, it had its own structure.

As did the Jim Beam campaign.
I’d not seen a campaign  like this; A list of dates and ephemera.
As much social commentary as advertising.
But it was great advertising, positioning Jim Beam as a classic.
Not only was it incredibly distinctive, it engaged and made you think.
It’s the kind of work that could give advertising a good name.
It wasn’t done by hucksters, it was done by smart guys having fun.
I presume this was the first one. It’s neat…
Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Drink DPS'-01JIM BEAM 'Drinks' adFallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Haircut'-01Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Trousers*'-01
…but who’d have thought it would’ve lead to all these?

Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Stadiums'-01 Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Hands'-01 Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Signs'-01 Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Badges'-01Fallon McElligott- Jim Beam %22Balls%22 Fallon McElligott- Jim Beam %22Barbeque%22   JimBeam_Lures JimBeam_Pets Fallon McElligott- Jim Beam %22Pants%22 -01JimBeam_Sandwiches Fallon McElligott- Jim Beam %22Playbills%22 -01tumblr_mzil336MWq1rpgpe2o5_r1_1280
Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Salt & Pepper'-01Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Graffitti'-01Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Lipstick'-01Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Made In...'-01
Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Balls'-01Jim Beam _Golf_
Fallon McElligott- Jim Beam %22Games%22
Fallon McElligott-Jim Beam %22Xmas%22
They did a Christmas version.Screen shot 2014-02-15 at 12.17.37Fallon McElligott, Jim Beam 'Name Tags' -01
They subverted the whole campaign idea with this responsible drinking ad.Screen shot 2014-02-15 at 12.20.05

They tackled a different aspect of drinking with the campaign for Windsor Canadian,
perfectly capturing the emotion of that first drink of the evening.
Fallon McElligott, Windsor Canadian 'Trolley'-01 Fallon McElligott, Windsor Canadian 'Tube'-01 Fallon McElligott, Windsor Canadian 'Tyres'-01Fallon McElligott- Windsor Canadian %22Boxes%22 Fallon McElligott-Windsor Canadian %22Cement%22$_3 $_58

As well as coming up with distinctive, own-able, visual devices for campaigns, they also did the same with words.
The way this Lee campaign is written looks familiar now, it wasn’t at the time.
6.8850b_l
Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Nails'-01 Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Places To Go'-01 Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Police'-016.8849b_l Fallon McElligott, Lee '36'-01Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Separate'-01Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Private'-01

Fallon McElligott, Lee 'Moving Out'-01
Fallon McElligott, Lee, 'Better Jeans'-01Fallon McElligott, Lee, '10000000'-01Fallon McElligott, Lee, 'How Jeans Companies'-01Lee1

Tom McElligott, Lee 'Blue, Blue'-01Fallon McElligott, ACA JOE 'Shrink' -01

They enlisted Stevie Wonder in the war against Drink Driving.
Very ballsy.
Fallon McElligott, 'Stevie Wonder'-01

They went visual with Power Pack.

Their work started to get National attention.
The clients they attracted got bigger, but the way they treated them stayed the same; ‘We don’t research creative  work.’
They won Penn tennis balls and produced this:

http://youtu.be/ZU375bFUHHg

They won Porsche, and with a few black letters and a pack shot, gave it attitude.
(If you’ve never tried writing three word headlines, try it, it’s really hard.)
Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'It beats'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Unclogs'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Fire'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Decals'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Corvettes'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Children'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Nothing'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Porsches'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Weld'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Maybe not'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Rocket Scientists'-01 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Compromise'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche  'Compete'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Ivery Tower'-01porsche-010Fallon McElligott- Porsche %22Tabasco%22Fallon McElligott- Porsche %22Patents%22Screen shot 2014-03-04 at 08.58.15Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Crazy'-01
Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Leg'-01

INTERLUDE: Fallon were absolutely dominating the creative awards at this time,
One Show annuals of the period look like house brochures.
Here’s a mailer for a talk Tom gave around this time:
Tom McElligott Speaks ad-01

784f3e08f4eb32f48b0c034e98a21fb6 porsche_rs-america_ad_93 Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Scream'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Dead'-0112aaf6ce93e26db117b1f3941394bf18Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Pavlov'-01Screen shot 2014-03-04 at 08.58.32 tumblr_m7nq9vnT1f1r2nad3o1_500 tumblr_mw2p5mMWzK1sxs2gto1_500

Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Airline'-01Fallon McElligott-Porsche %22Joneses%22-01Porsche3 Porsche5Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Lid'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Solar'-01Fallon McElligott, Porsche 'Knuckles'-01
Pat Burnham, Carl Cedergren 'Stud fees'-01

They needed to hire to deal with all their new business.
Having exhausted the local supply of talented ad folk they’d have to attract talented people from the East and West Coast too. But why would they go to Minneapolis ?
Screen shot 2014-02-07 at 10.32.27Fallon McElligott, 'Liquor Account'-01
Fallon McElligott, House Ad-01

It’s possible Tom had just left by the time these ads ran, but they seem very Fallon McElligott.
Fallon McElligott- Horst %22Bow%22Fallon McElligott- Horst %22Ex%22 %22Fallon McElligott- Horst %22Hate%22

An awards show ran this ad when it was announced that Tom was leaving Fallon McElligott.
Fallon McElligott- House ad 2jpg
In 1987, this ad ran. Cheeky, but relatively harmless right?Fallon McElligott 'Bitch, Bitch...' -01
WRONG.
It was shown at a lecture on P.R. given by Fallon McElligott’s design arm; Duffy & Partners.
A member of the audience was offended, Dr. Neala Schleuning, so she sent Duffy & Partners a letter expressing her outrage.
In return she received the letter and photo below.
It’s signed by Duffy & Partners’ Charles S. Anderson, but its widely believed to be the work of Tom McElligott.
 dinkaletter dinka
Dr. Schleuning started showing the letter around to friends, then to the women’s consortium and they had contacts.
US WEST, a Fallon McElligott client, had a big active women’s union.

It snowballed, getting more and more exposure.
It became known as the “Dinka incident.”
First US WEST pulled its account.
Then Wall Street Journal, then FedEx.
It was a very expensive mistake, colleagues say it affected Tom very deeply.
He started to spend more time away from the agency and miss meetings.
Within a couple of years he quit.

I’d love to update this post, to show more work, make the chronology or information  more accurate, and simply to write more about Tom and Fallon McElligott.
So come on, get in touch, send me scans or leave comments, let’s make sure the next time someone searches ‘Tom McElligott’ on the internet, Google know where to find his work.

n.b. A bit more reading:

1. Tom & Ron Anderson get quizzed by Communication Arts.McElligott_Anderson article-page-001 McElligott_Anderson article-page-002 McElligott_Anderson article-page-003 McElligott_Anderson article-page-004 McElligott_Anderson article-page-005 McElligott_Anderson article-page-006 McElligott_Anderson article-page-007 McElligott_Anderson article-page-008 McElligott_Anderson article-page-009 McElligott_Anderson article-page-010

2. An interview with Inc. magazine from 1986: http://www.inc.com/magazine/19860701/1527.htmlA couple of articles

3. Introducing Tom and his gang to us Brits. (Direction magazine.)

Tom McEllgott. USATom McEllgott. Direction, 2

4. Catching up after he left Fallon McElligott. (Also Direction magazine.)
Tom McEllgott. Direction 3 Tom McEllgott. DirectonTom McEllgott. Directon 2

5.  A profile of Dean Hanson.
Dean worked very closely with Tom in the early years and created a lot of the great work in this post.
Fallon McElligott 'Dean Hanson Profile'-01Fallon McElligott, Readers Digest, Stevie Wonder-01