DJ and song writer Jax Jones and Universal Group’s global head of new business, Olivier Robert-Murphy took to the stage on day four of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity to discuss how brands and music can collaborate.
He started off with an example of how National Geographic used an association with Zedd (a Russian-German song producer) for the launch of a series called ‘One Strange Rock’.
“National Geographic wanted to reveal One Strange Rock through the perspective of astronauts. We got Zedd to meet with astronauts and on the basis of that music was created. It was a collaborative process.”
He then introduced English DJ Jax Jones. Jones has a diverse heritage with a Turkish father, Malaysian mother and a Nigerian step father. Murphy asked him whether that has had an influence on him in his choice of music.
Jones responded, “No matter what you listen to, but you don’t shed music you heard in your teens. My step dad introduced me to R&B and it stayed with me.”
Jones then spoke about his hit ‘You don’t know me’.
With advertisers facing the problem of catching the attention of viewers post the first five seconds, Jones believes the same goes with music.
“I met Raye and we got together to write a song. I put my chorus right in the beginning because you have to attract the attention of the listener in the first 10 seconds. The other thing was keeping it simple and use only three instruments at a time,” said Jones.
About brand associations, he added, “You can only do what’s natural to you. When you’re creating content, it’s about putting all your all to authenticity. It’s all about collaboration and combining our brand together. I need to know the value of the brand and then create something together.”
One such association was with Coca-Cola.
Jones then informed the audience about why he doesn’t ask his fans for response to his music.
“The first time I played ‘You don’t know me’ in Cardiff, I didn’t get a great reaction. So, had I listened to them I would’ve never released the song. So, I don’t ask for opinions.”
He was also of the opinion that collaboration isn’t a necessity for creativity. He explained, “Ed Sheeran and Calvin Harris didn’t need it. But, the speed at which music comes up with, it’s fun to do with a few people. If they are all in their a-game, we’ll do it better.”
He surmised with this, "Don’t be romantic about Creativity. It’s a muscle. Train it every day.”