The Tip Post

Hold Steady honcho heads to Tip


The first Toast of the Tip of 2009 is going to be, as the kids say, a doozie, featuring none other than Craig Finn, lead singer, lyricist and New Yorker-certified sex symbol of the Hold Steady, one of the most acclaimed bands of the last decade. Craig will be both talking and singing at the invitation-only event on February 20 in Duncan/Channon’s quasi-legendary private penthouse lounge.

And just in case you’re so L7 you’ve never heard of Craig or his band, here are some clues:

Rolling Stone on the Hold Steady’s recent album, Stay Positive: “Right now, no band displays the ranting soul, haunted heart or diseased liver of the American rock myth with more truth and empathy than the Hold Steady.”

The New Yorker, in a 2005 profile: “Finn, a short, bespectacled fellow, exerted himself even when nothing much was going on, smacking his head with his hand, and pointing at everything — the lights, himself, the air, the crowd. After listening to three taut, vehement songs, a woman in the audience turned to a friend and said, ‘He’s the sexiest man alive.'” (link)

The indie tastemaking website Pitchfork, where the Hold Steady rules as perennial faves, on the second album Separation Sunday: “Craig Finn isn’t a singer… He sounds more like the sketchy drunk guy yelling in your ear at a show, asking if you know where to buy drugs… He’s the poet laureate of the loading dock behind the mall where the runaway kids get together to sniff cheap coke at 5 am.”


Craig and the guys have been on Letterman and Conan and MTV, opened for the Rolling Stones, co-starred at Lollapalooza, been voted Band of the Year by Blender, while also placing at or near the top in polls at the Village Voice, Spin and Rolling Stone, been pictured in People (impressing Craig’s mom) and graciously appeared on two Serve CDs — the WhyHunger benefit series, conceived by D/C and sponsored by Hard Rock. A lifelong Twins fan, the native Minnesotan, and current Brooklynite, was even a guest commentator on ESPN last year. And along with a new Hold Steady record, he’s working on a novel.

“It’s no stretch to class Finn, as postmodern storytellers go, among the best wordsmiths of his generation,” said the Band of the Year citation in Blender.

And some envious D/C writers couldn’t agree more.


Work + News

SweeTARTS' Be Both is back

After the sweet success of last year’s 'Be Both' launch, SweeTARTS is doubling down on the campaign to Gen Z with brand new work in market now — and more to come in 2021.

Nicotine = Brain Poison = Clio

Our work for CTCP has awakened parents to the teen vaping epidemic and won a slew of awards in the process (not nearly as important, but nice). The latest is that most venerable of ad accolades: the Clio.

SGX NYC | #hairgoals

SGX NYC wanted to increase awareness around winning two Allure Best of Beauty Awards and reinforce the brand’s positioning with cost-conscious consumers looking for premium products. We hit the bullseye with three well-known #hairgoals influencers.

Citi | “Citigrammers”

Citi wanted to increase awareness and favorability on social media, particularly within the music and dining categories. We assembled a team of influential visual artists to create the sort of shareable content the brand couldn't.

Million-dollar talent from Upwork

To support COVID-19 projects, Upwork is donating a million dollars of time from their network of independent professionals. And who better to tell us about it than the pros themselves?

e.l.f. Cosmetics | Coachella

e.l.f. wanted to launch Beauty Shield, an all-new skincare line powered with antioxidants and SPF to help protect your skin against environmental aggressors. DCLA provided the perfect testing ground.

Cotteleer in Campaign US

DC’s chief experience officer speaks with Campaign about the virtual world and how COVID-19 has actually brought DC’s SF and LA offices closer.

Empowering the pandemic parent

Amy, along with our CEO Andy, talking to MediaPost about the agency’s support plan for working parents suddenly at home with kids.


Loyalty or discount program advertising often dwells in the downscale world of the coupon clipper — a turnoff to savvier online shoppers. Our strategy was to present Rakuten as every bit as premium as the brands it offered rebates on.


While the competition focused on transaction and technology, Grubhub really understood the near magical moment that occurs when the “food’s here.”

California Tobacco Control Program | Social Smoking

Daily smoking has been on the decline for decades and yet casual smoking is actually on the rise. How do we get at-risk groups to see social smoking for what it is: plain old dangerous, unhealthy smoking.

Cotteleer talks COVID-19 in Adweek

As we seek to chart our way through the uncharted, DC’s Amy Cotteleer shares her thoughts on brands’ best course of action during the pandemic.