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How Brands Become Icons: The Principles of Cultural Branding by D. B. Holt

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Preface and Acknowledgments

I grew up in Rockford, Illinois, a small industrial city that boasted one of the nation’s highest unemployment rates in the late 1970s, right up there with Flint, Michigan. While Rockford always seemed to end up around 297 on lists of the top 300 livable cities, for teens who didn’t yet have to hustle up a job, the city could still be a good time.

Like most guys I knew, I was a rock-and-roll kid. I bought albums, played air guitar, attended dozens of concerts, made my own cassettes, and took hundreds of concert photos. When famous Chicago radio deejay Steve Dahl blew up a dumpster full of disco records at Comiskey Park before a baseball game, I cheered. As a high-schooler, I loved many bands—at first Boston and Kiss, ...

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