Case welcomes country music superstars Brooks & Dunn to town

W.R Case & Sons Cutlery Co. became “Cowboy Town” for a day with the arrival of music stars Brooks & Dunn to announce the “Making a Case for America” campaign.

The country duo toured the knife factory on Owens Way and made a couple knives of their own Wednesday afternoon as well as addressed the Case employees.

Photo courtesy The Bradford Era

“You guys make absolutely the best knives in the world,” Brooks said. “But it’s bigger than that. This is so America, so real, so down to earth, so much quality. It’s bigger than what you hold in your hand. You are doing something special.”

Brooks likened his Case experience to the Gibson Custom Shop that makes custom guitars.

“All are very special,” he said. “They take amazing pride in their work … generations … I got that same feeling when I came in here.”

“Case knives speak for themselves.”

Dunn said one knife he made was going to his son, the other in a lockbox for safe keeping.

“We get to do a lot of unique things, but this is about as fun as it gets.”

Part of the day was to announce a new partnership between Case and Brooks & Dunn under the headline “Making a Case for America.”

“‘Making a Case for America’” is about people. It’s about a small town. It’s about Brooks & Dunn music,” Eddie Jessup, Case vice president of sales, said, adding part of the campaign is bringing focus to small-town retailers.

“That’s what it’s all about.”

Jessup explained that it isn’t often that they come out of a meeting with campaign ideas and put those words into action. That wasn’t the case with “Making a Case for America.”

Case officials looked at country music and noticed that Brooks & Dunn’s demographics fit in perfectly with Case.

“The stories they both can tell,” he said. “It’s more than just a brand, it’s a mission to make sure everybody knows the value of the Case brand.”

Jessup also said this is not the “basic license” with Brooks & Dunn.

“This time we are seeking the music to go with telling the story of who were are, who Brooks & Dunn are.”

The major campaign doesn’t start until Labor Day, but it will be unveiled at trade shows starting Jan. 6.

Until then, Brooks & Dunn had plenty to say about Case knives.

“Case is one of the greatest American staples,” Brooks said. “Pocket knives are what real, working people have in their pocket … it represents middle America.”

Dunn continued those sentiments.

“It’s truly an American icon,” he said, listing others such as cowgirls and tequila. “This falls right in line.”

Dunn also relayed a story on when he was at the Country Music Awards a couple years ago. He and his wife were backstage when she needed a string cut. As she asked the room at large if anyone had a knife, the one who came forward was George Strait, saying, “I have one right here.”

“Ever since then I have looked for the perfect knife.”
He believes he found that in Case.

But the admiration was mutual.

“I don’t know how many Brooks & Dunn fans we had here before today, but now there’s 367,” said Case President and Chief Executive Officer Tom Arrowsmith. “They are really great guys. Our associates had a ball. We are still in shock, still in awe of what happened. I have never seen so many smiles.”

Arrowsmith added that there’s plenty to smile about these days at Case. In the past year, the company has hired 73 people and expect to hire at least that many in the coming year.

One of the things that sets Case apart is how it’s made.

“So many things have machines throw them out,” Brooks said. “Human beings hold every part” of a Case.

After making their own knives — 54 Trapper, and suffering minor cuts — Brooks added his appreciation for how the knives are made.

“I am going to look at my knives. It will mean a lot to hold them in my hand.”

Arrowsmith also spoke how Case is a part of the community.

“There is only one place to make a Case and that’s here in Bradford.”

“We are ‘Proud of this House,” Jessup said, quoting a Brooks & Dunn song.

“We have the greatest country musicians in the world with the greatest knife in the world making a great Case for America,” Zippo Manufacturing Co. President and CEO Greg Booth. Case is a subsidiary of Zippo.

Article courtesy The Bradford Era

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