If you were to compile a list of items that are extremely removed from each other culturally, golf and hip-hop would likely be at the top. Who’s Your Caddy? aside, hip-hop’s foray into the golfing world has been pretty limited, and understandably so. Golf is a sport historically tied to segregated country clubs and stuffy old white guys. It’s no wonder, then, why the sport is having trouble connecting with the millennial demographic in an era where hip-hop permeates nearly every aspect of our cultural experience.
Companies using hip-hop to latch on to a younger demo isn't a new strategy. Almost every major brand has had at least one terribly-executed rap commercial, or at the very least a couple corny social media posts clumsily appropriating hip-hop idioms. However, it appears golf equipment company Callaway has struck a street-cred goldmine by linking up with legendary rapper Scarface for an upcoming 10-minute documentary to be produced by VICE Sports.
While Scarface, widely considered one of the greatest lyricists of all-time, is known for his past with the Geto Boys and a critically-acclaimed solo career, the Houston-bred legend is also apparently an avid golfer, claiming to play roughly 300 rounds per year. According to Harry Arnett, senior VP of Marketing and Brand Management for Callaway, “Scarface really shows that golf is really a sport that transcends demography and transcends what your normal expectations would be.”
In light of declining interest and participation in golf, thanks in part to a diminished middle class and the demise of the great Tiger Woods, a spokesman gig for Scarface could be huge for Callaway, and for golf in general. Nobody in their right mind would dare label Scarface as corny, and the man himself is an actual golfer, so it's unlikely this documentary will feel contrived if executed correctly. The question, though, remains: Is golf really ready for hip-hop?
The Callaway and Scarface documentary is slated for release in September, so only time will tell what effect, if any, this pairing will have on the younger generation’s interest in golf. In the meantime, though, am I allowed to install subs in my golf cart?
By Brent Bradley. Follow him on Twitter.
Photo Credit: Billboard