Bill Backer | Adweek Bill Backer | Adweek
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Bill Backer

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Bill Backer

Bill Backer has come a long way since the 1950s when he scuttled around the McCann-Erickson mailroom. He's a gentleman farmer now, raising thoroughbred horses and "blooded" Angus cattle on Smitten Farm, a 700-acre spread in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley. His filly, Crabgrass, won the Mid-Atlanta Thoroughbred Championship last year. A founding partner of New York's Backer & Spielvogel, Backer is remembered for redefining soda-pop culture with his "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing" jingle for Coca-Cola, not to mention dozens of other frothy lines that still rattle around in people's heads. ("Let it be Lowenbrau"…"If you've got the time, we've got the beer...") Backer, 74, maintains residences in Vermont and New York. He's written a book, The Care and Feeding of Ideas, and now is polishing a musical comedy, Forever Green, based on Kenneth Grahame's classic The Wind In the Willows. "I figured instead of 16-bar jingles, I'd do 32-bar songs," he says.MagnumMatrixMagnumMagnumMatrix