Thursday, April 21, 2011

RIP: TV On The Radio's Gerard Smith

TV On The Radio bassist Gerard Smith died Wednesday, April 20, at age 35 after a brief battle with lung cancer. The band announced on its website, "We are very sad to announce the death of our beloved friend and bandmate, Gerard Smith, following a courageous fight against lung cancer. Gerard passed away the morning of April 20th, 2011. We will miss him terribly."

Listen to Princeton's Daphne A. Brooks fascinating talk "Staring at the Sun: Remixing the Diasporic Drone on TV on the Radio’s Return to Cookie Mountain" from a 2008 USC Annenberg Research Seminar presented by the Popular Music Project.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Re: EMP Roundtable - Branding, Music & Money in the Digital Age

Adding to the list of brands teaming up with artists, Maroon 5 and Coca Cola recently worked together on the "24 Hours Session", where the band was tasked with writing and recording a song based off fan tweets, all in 24 hours (free download link via Coca Cola below). Apparently Coca Cola is on a mission to bring fans closer to the music they love, considering that they are also working with Taio Cruz and American Idol on the "Perfect Harmony Collaboration," a project that gives one lucky fan a chance to co-write a song with Cruz. Whether or not you like the result of the "24 Hours Session," it's interesting to see how both Maroon 5 and Coca Cola are attempting to connect with fans by giving them an inside view into what goes into making a record (also, Coca Cola will be donating money to The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation's Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN) for the first 100,000 downloads of the song).

A penny for your thoughts: One thing discussed at the EMP Pop Conference Roundtable with Josh Kun and Raymond Roker was how artists and corporations need to be careful when choosing the right partner. What do you think of the above types of musical collaboration, where an artist/band is not only representing a brand to help connect with fans, but the brand is actually playing a role in the music that is created?

To view videos documenting the 24 Hours Session and/or download "Is Anybody Out There":

For more information on the Perfect Harmony Collaboration with Taio Cruz: