Tim McGraw's first car was a Jeep. Years later, when McGraw and Faith Hill decided they wanted to take their relationship to the next level, a red 1976 CJ6 Jeep provided the wheels for the date. That was in 1996, the year they married. And now in 2007, their love for each other—and for Jeep—is unwavering.
Jeep is sponsoring the couple's 35-city North American Soul2Soul 2007 summer trek, which kicks off June 6 in Omaha, Neb. (billboard.biz, March 7). What began as a straight-up tour sponsorship, Billboard has learned, is evolving into a multitiered partnership among Jeep, Soul2Soul and its stars.
RPM Management's Scott Siman, who oversees McGraw's career, calls it one of the biggest tour endorsement deals ever in country music—both on the financial and programming sides. "It comes at a challenging time for the automotive and music industries," Siman says. "But the entertainment and touring industries are doing great."
Click here to read more on Jeep's branding goals with the partnership, why the McGraw/Hill pact made sense for their audience, details of the deal's first phase and more.