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GOODBY, SILVERSTEIN WIN TOP RADIO MERCURY AWARD

Grand Prize Includes $100,000 Check

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- The Radio Mercury Awards ceremony yesterday showed that great campaigns need not come from deep pockets. This year's winners, from players big and small, highlighted radio’s versatility and creative that was touching and humorous.
The Radio Mercury Awards trophy.

$100,000 cash prize
The Grand Prize winner at the luncheon ceremony in Manhattan's Cipriani 42nd Street was Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners' "Abbreviated" radio ads for online auction giant eBay. The top winner takes home a $100,000 cash prize.

The awards program is an annual event of the national Radio Creative Fund that honors the year's best radio commercials in all markets.

Jason Skaggs a writer and producer at Zimmer Radio Group in the small market of Joplin, Mo., prevailed over industry heavies such as Publicis Groupe's Bartle Bogle Hegarty, New York, and Interpublic Group of Cos.' Hill Holiday Connors Cosmopulos, Boston, winning the 30-second ad category with a spot he wrote and produced for Alert One Pest Control.

'Good Mercury'
That category, new this year as major radio groups step up their push to convert 60-second ads to 30-seconds, accepted submissions from both agencies and radio groups. Mr. Skaggs said he was so excited about the award that all week “people have been saying, ‘Hey Jason, good morning!’” he said. “And I’m like ‘Hey there, good Mercury!’”

A few minutes later, while accepting a general excellence award for General Motors Corp.’s Hummer work, Shane Hutton of independent Modernista, Boston, praised the medium for its simplicity and efficiency: “There are less layers in radio, it gives you a certain amount of latitude. And it doesn’t take a million and a half bucks. We just saw ads for pest control and aluminum siding go head to head against what I’m sure are some from Anheuser-Busch in here. ... Radio

Holding a giant copy of their Grand Prize $100,000 check are, from left, Goodby Silverstein's Robert Riccardi, director of account management and partner; Tanin Blumberg, account manager; and Brian Coate, assistant producer.
is more important than TV in many ways. When the power goes out nobody puts batteries in their TV.”

Poking fun at FCC
Another highlight came from World Wide Wadio, a Hollywood-based radio ad production firm, which won a spot that poked fun at the Federal Communication Commission with a “Heavy Fines” ad for Time Warner’s TBS, promoting Sex and the City.

The firm was hired, recalled Paul Fey, in 2003 to create spots to promote the series, scheduled to go on the air in 2004. Then, “in January 2004 something happened at the Super Bowl that changed everything,” he said. “Suddenly months before the show premiered everything about how we were going to promote [it] was up in the air.” But the firm spun the controversy on its head, poking fun at the federal agency, bleeping out such phrases as Sex and the City “coming onto” TBS. At the end of his acceptance speech, Mr. Fey thanked the FCC, without which he “can’t imagine another scenario where I’ll ever get a chance [to win] again.”

The full list of winners include:

Grand Prize Winner
"Abbreviated"
EBay
Goodby, Silverstein & Partners
Writer: Tyler McKellar
Producer: Brian Coate
Creative Director: Jaime Barrett
Production Co.: GSP Post
Engineer: Eben Carr

General Prize Winners
"Kills More"
American Legacy Foundation
Arnold Worldwide and Crispin Porter & Bogusky
Writer: Mike Howard
Producer: Caron Pedonti
Creative Directors: Ron Lawner, Alex Bogusky, Roger Baldacci, Tom Adams
Production Co.: Bartradio
Engineer: Marcelo Gandola

"Practice"
Molson
Crispin Porter & Bogusky
Writer: Evan Fry
Producer: Eric Rasco
Creative Directors: Alex Bogusky, Bill Wright, Bob Cianfrone
Production Co.: Nutmeg
Engineer: Rob Fielack

"Genius/Mr. Pro Sports Heckler"
Anheuser-Busch
DDB, Chicago
Writers: Bob Winter, Chris Roe
Producer: Marianne Newton
Creative Directors: John Immesoete, Mark Gross
Production Co.: Chicago Recording Company
Engineer: Dave Gerbosi

"Yoga"
National Thoroughbred Racing Association
DeVito/Verdi
Writers: Daniel Giachetti, John Clement, Brad Emmett
Producer: Barbara Michelson
Creative Director: Sal Devito
Production Co.: McHale Barone

"Jalapeno"
Virgin Mobile USA
Fallon, New York
Writers: Adam Alshin, Marcus Woolcott
Producer: Zarina Mak
Creative Director: Ari Merkin
Production Co.: Kamen Entertainment Group
Engineer: Roy Kamen

"Boyfriend"
General Motors Corp., Hummer Division
Modernista
Writer: Chris Beresford-Hill
Producers: Charles Wolford, Joyce Chen
Creative Directors: Lance Jensen, Gary Koepke, Shane Hutton
Production Co.: Soundtrack
Engineer: Bill Bookheim

"Cell Phone"
Motel 6
The Richards Group
Writer: Chris Smith
Producer: Sheri Cartwright
Creative Director: Mike Malone
Production Co.: Post-Op

"Heavy Fines"
TBS
World Wide Wadio
Writers: Eric Head, Ken Langridge, Greg Roy
Producers: Paul Fey, Michael Niles
Engineers: Lukas Bower, Stewart Sloke

"Introductions"
Miller Brewing
Y&R Chicago
Writers: Pete Figel, Dave Loew
Producers: Monica Wilkins, Lee Goldberg, Matt Bijarchi
Creative Directors: Dave Loew, Mark Figliulo
Production Co.: Chicago Recording Co.
Engineer: Dave Gerbosi

Public Service Announcement Winner
"It's Like They're Smoking"
Michigan Dept. of Community Health
Brogan & Partners Convergence Marketing
Writer: Melissa Weber
Producer: Amy Weber
Creative Directors: Bonnie Folster, Melissa Weber
Production Co.: Kinetic Post
Engineers: Greg Meloche, Beau Williams

Spanish-language Winner
"Answering Machine"
Citibank
La Comunidad
Writers: Jose Molla, Joaquin Molla, Hugo Zogbi
Producers: Frida Sellar
Creative Directors: Jose Molla, Joaquin Molla, Ricky Vior Production Co.: Outpost Audio

Station-produced Winner
"Three Little Houses"
James Hardie Siding Co.
Entercom Seattle KIRO/KTTH Radio
Writer, Producer, Creative Director: Russ Cimber

30-second Winner
"Ants"
Alert One Pest Control
Zimmer Radio Group
Writer, Producer, Creative Director: Jason T. Skaggs

Student Winner
"Quick History"
Portfolio Center
Writer: Howard Hill
Instructor: Bob Barrineau
Production Co.: Riot Studios
Engineer: Chris Basta

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