Remember Victoria Beckham's stint as a print model for Jay-Z's Roc-A-Wear women's line? Think hard. Think back to 2003. Remember now? I know. I can't remember the ads either. But none of this matters because Mrs. David Beckham aka Posh Spice did, and her Spice Girls sisters owe her big time.
Have you seen their hip hop comeback video "Headlines (Friendship Never Ends)"? It's hip hop in the sense that it is a 3 minute commerical for a product line. I've watched the video a dozen times and can't recite one lyric. I'm too focused on checking out Eddie Murphy's babymama Mel B. and the girls in their Victoria's Secret lingerie. Wait a minute. Victoria's Secret? Isn't this the underwear chain exclusively selling the Spice Girl's new CD? Not bad Spice Ladies.
Man, I wonder if Jay-Z gets a cut. Apparently, Beckham took note from the mogul in a genre where product merchandising and promotion of music video go hand in hand.
I can't be mad at the girls for doing it right. Rappers have been giving away free product placements to companies for years. Don't get Run-D.M.C. started on all the Adidas they sold before the still-popular sneaker company started cutting them checks. What about Snoop Dogg's "Gin And Juice," Busta Rhymes' "Pass The Courvoisier" or Nelly's "Air Force Ones"?
Well, it's okay. Jay-Z is on to a new hustle. Rumor has it that there is no coincidence that his new album American Gangster has the same title as the Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe film. Jay-Z's album was released just days after the movie opened. They say Jay wanted to star in the movie but was turned down. So he asked to do the soundtrack, but they said, "No." Not one to accept no for an answer, Jay figured out a way to tap into the hype. He just recorded his own album, titled it American Gangster and capitalized on the free marketing for the film.
Huh. I guess that's one for hip hop. Try and top that, Spice Girls.