5: Love? No WAYLOVE is to political for 42nd Street
On Sunday I meet with the agent and my friend who organized the sponsors. Instead of using logos on the Billboard, we just used names and url’s divided by hearts. That was the last step to get the artwork ready for the printer.
Unfortunately the money wire didn’t go through before the weekend, so they denied the printing on Sunday. If the money would arrive on Monday morning, they would get the billboard ready for monday afternoon.
After Meeting with my Agent and the Sponsors we found a nice way of integrating them.
That Evening I also met with a very good friend of mine the singer songwriter Larry Edoff to compose a song. I had the idea to make some “We are the World“ like song that would go along with the project. We wanted to get famous musicians to support us. Many of them live in News York, just a phone call away, why not give it a try. We didn’t get it ready that night, there was just not enough time, but Larry took his time later on and composed and recorded this beautiful song.
Don’t walk away from Love
On Monday I was waiting for my agent to get news about the arrival of the money and from the printer. At noon my agent called me with bad news: the Billboard was denied by the billboard rental company. The policy of the billboard owners didn’t allow to post a political statement. The “World” and “Love” were too political for 42nd Street. Wow.
This was unexpected and a shock for me. After all this work and effort, so close to the finish line, it was denied. LOVE was to political. This made me very angry. I wanted to go to the press and sue the billboard company for freedom of speach. But then my friends convinced me to calm down, sleep over it and decide the next day. And thats what I did. I also learned that there is no freedom of speach on billboards, because they are owned privatly.
That evening George W. Bush had his speech and announced his last ultimatum. The timing would have been right, but there were forces beyond my control blocking the billboard.
The new Location
The next day I keept looking for other spaces and skiped the Idea of going to the press. We decided that it would be better to try to make it happen, and then go to the press. I got new quotes from other rental billboard companies. They were all surprised what happened and tried to help out to find a new spot, but all the spots where taken. We then found a nice location on 47th Street, but only available on May 1st. The location was really nice and I decided to postpone, in the hope that also a month later, this would get publicity.
The new location on 47th Street and 7th Avenue