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'For every generation' Gap banks on Ryan Adams gold for autumn push

NEW YORK - With youth and experience represented at its most talented, Gap launches its 'For every generation' advertising campaign featuring the singers Ryan Adams and Willie Nelson, as it seeks to shore up its declining sales for the autumn season.

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The campaign, created by the brand's New York-based creative agency Laird & Partners, aims to position Gap's clothing as suitable for all ages and will include television, press, posters, direct mail and internet activity.

One of the TV ads will feature Willie Nelson and Ryan Adams singing the Hank Williams song 'Move it on Over'. To highlight the difference in generations, Nelson, 69, plays acoustic guitar, while Adams, who is in his 20s, plays electric guitar.

Gap is pushing its new collection of jeans, as it hopes to reverse a sales decline. When it reported its monthly sales figures in July, they had fallen 6% on the same period the year before, on a comparable store basis.

The company had been criticised for moving away from its core offering of khakis, plain white shirts and T-shirts, in an attempt to win over younger customers.

For its summer range, Gap tapped famous directors such as Cameron Crowe and the Coen brothers. It featured celebrities such as Dennis Hopper and Kate Beckinsale.

The print campaign, shot by Mikael Jansson, features more than 50 personalities from the worlds of film, fashion, music, art and dance. Each person is wearing a pair of their favorite Gap jeans, along with a mix of other Gap Fall items and their own personal clothes and accessories. The portraits capture a wide range of ages including Sissy Spacek, Lauren Hutton and Kris Kristofferson, to current stars Salma Hayek, Christian Slater, Bill Paxton and Natalie Imbruglia.

"We selected a broad range of personalities who each have a highly defined individual style. We worked with each person to create their own look in Gap jeans -- keeping it personal, authentic and real," Trey Laird, president and executive creative director of Laird & Partners, said.

Also featured are several up-and-coming breakout performers such as dancer Will Kemp, actor Aaron Stanford and actor and singer Taryn Manning. Fashion personalities Kelly Klein and Polly Mellen, artist Ed Ruscha and three generations of Olympic gold medalists help round out the cast.

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