Updated: Jun 5, 2020
Companies looking for a boost in their sales often solicit celebrities to endorse their product, giving it a stamp of approval for their adoring fans. Rappers are no stranger to the world of endorsements, which can range from clothes that the rapper wears to food that the rapper likes to eat. Whether it works or not? Well, it must, because time and time again companies return to the same practice of having a celebrity star in their commercial.
Some may be hard to believe and some make sense, but either way, I thought I should show some of the noted rapper endorsements so you can decide for yourself if a certain product is worth it. Here are some of my favorite rap endorsements featuring rappers in commercials.
1. Method Man x Sour Patch Kids
If you’ve never seen Method Man’s rap about Sour Patch Kids, you’re really missing out. Somehow, his humorous song about the sweet-and-sour candy sounds better than some mumble rap that comes out today. It’s unexpected, and strange, yet somehow enjoyable to watch the famed rapper make a commercial while still showing the world that he’s talented.
To keep in tune with the brand’s “Sour. Sweet. Gone,” mantra, some of the lyrics of the song, dubbed World Gone Sour, are as follows: “They fight back, in fact rolling like the army. Throw bleach in laundry, unfold your origami.”
2. Lil’ Kim x Old Navy
This commercial with Old Navy SCREAMS early 2000’s, which it should, since it was released in 2003. It takes place in the winter alongside actress Fran Drescher as Lil’ Kim raps about a $19.50 hoodie sale (remember when premium brand hoodies were just 20 dollars?) The most notable part is at the end of the commercial, when Lil’ Kim states, “You in the hood now, baby.”
3. Snoop Dogg x Hot Pockets
Taking a rap classic and remixing it for a commercial = an instant internet hit. This is exactly what happened in 2012 when Snoop Dogg remixed Drop it Like It’s Hot to its new form, Pocket Like It’s Hot to represent Hot Pockets. Alongside rappers DeStorm and Andy Milonakis, this song goes on for the entire duration of the original.
The remix features these lyrics: “Pepperoni pizza much better than some fish eggs. Interior too hot, let’s cool it off for a few secs. I’m running for the taste, that could be my phys ed. Jumpin’ hot pockets, that’s how you get ahizzead.” As silly as commercials like this sound, the image and thought of a hot pocket when you’re already a fan can entice you to buy some.
4. Run-D.M.C. x Gap
The Gap and Run-D.M.C. commercial is simplistic and old school, featuring the group walking through a blank background while rapping about the brand they’re representing. They are bouncing back and forth with the lyrics while Jam Master Jay mixes up the beat, providing the classic sound the group is known for.
The song starts with “Now Peter Piper wore khakis, but Jay rocked chains, and DMC bought a pair from a Gap in Queens.” The entirety of the rap is upbeat and funky, just like one would expect from Run-D.M.C.
5. Nelly x Honey Nut Cheerios
Nelly collaborated with the Honey Nut Cheerios brand on a series of 5 commercials. Some notable moments from the link up include when Nelly helped the famed bee mascot out with his swag by offering him an outfit replacement, or when he remixed the song Must Be The Money, changing the words to Must Be The Honey. The ad even saw Nelly sport an M.B.T.H. jacket to represent the new song lyrics.
6. Eminem x Brisk
This 2011 collaboration with Eminem came shortly after his hit Not Afraid was released. It aired at the super bowl, but the uncut version was much more graphic. This commercial features a cartoon version of Eminem laying out his requirements for doing a commercial, admitting that he usually hates the products and “bounces.” After trying Brisk Tea, he decides he actually likes this one.
It pokes a little bit of playful fun at the rapper, who is known for his profanity, by bleeping out numerous words when a man, who we assume is a CEO of some sort, tells Eminem he can’t change the name of the product. It shows that Eminem has a playful side and doesn’t mind some spirited banter.
7. Kanye West x Adidas
Have you heard of Yeezy’s? Chances are, you have. This collaboration between Adidas and Kanye West began in 2015 when his previous deal with Nike fell through. Today, the partnership specializes in high-end footwear, though it once sold clothing as well. Different lines are released often, and a variety of colorways are available for those with the money to purchase.
8. Chance the Rapper x Doritos
Chance first teamed up with Doritos on a commercial for their new Flamin’ Hot Nachos with The Backstreet Boys. In this commercial, he remixed the 1999 hit I Want It That Way. The collaboration didn’t stop there. Shortly after the first commercial, Chance remixed Lionel Richie’s song Hello.
The latter features these lyrics: “Ooh, hot stuff all over my nachos. Walkin’ like a taco. Drivin’ over potholes. Hotter than a pot roast.” The new song lyrics were strange to say the least, but they were widely talked about after the commercial aired at the super bowl.
It’s apparent that brand promoters like when rappers do what they do best while sponsoring a product, which is of course, to rap. In a world where celebrities get paid to endorse companies, it’s hard to tell when someone genuinely likes a product or when they were just paid a lot of money to say they do. Typically, though, I’ve found that people won’t endorse products that they absolutely hate, so you know these rappers must like what they sponsor in some way or another.
You can find other rapper endorsements from over the years on the internet. If you have a favorite, drop it in the comments.
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