So many briefs involving original composition start out with the word, "authentic" that you can begin to take that concept for granted. But with AT&T's latest installment for their "Just Ok" campaign, they absolutely needed the "real thing" to make the joke land. And in this instance, the "real thing" was a legitimate boy-band-style pop song so convincing, you'd assume BBDO and AT&T went out and hired a real band and used a song from their actual record. Lofty expectations, for sure, but fortunately for us, we were up to the challenge. In tapping pop producer/songwriter/vocalist, Nathan Walters, with whom SOUTH has a long history of collaboration, we managed to capture all the magic of creating pop gold, in just a few short days. The end result, an absolute banger, aptly titled "Summertime Lover" not only fit the spot like a glove, but also grew into a viral sensation all its own. The hashtag #dropsummertimelover trended on twitter for weeks, until finally AT&T buckled to the pressure and added the full-length version (oh yes it's a full track!) to their youtube channel. We look forward to many more spots featuring everyone's favorite "just ok" boy-band, 300 Likes. And rest assured, there are many more hits ready to drop.
When DDB Chicago approached us with an idea to create a minimal, beautiful song to soundtrack their new Blue Moon campaign “Reach for the Moon,” we jumped at the opportunity. This is the kind of brief that allows us to collaborate with some of our best songwriters, giving them the creative freedom to do what they do best. Each came back with something fresh, stamped with their own POV, but in the end, it was LLMK’s track “Extraordinary” that best served the spot. With a mixture of minimal folk and lightly textured pop, “Extraordinary” not only helps drive the spot with it’s rhythmic pace, but helps tell the story of a day on repeat. We couldn’t be happier with how this turned out!
And to show our appreciation, we’ve decided to release a full length version of the song on all streaming platforms worldwide — click here to listen!
When the creative team from Fallon called up and said, “we’re thinking Kraftwerk,” we were sold. The brief for the newest SToK campaign was one of the more creative and fresh directions we’ve seen in a long time! And when tasked to sync our music up with the incredibly talented Mike Maguire’s picture, we knew we had something worth mentioning over and over again. The final spot is filled with Sequential Circuits synthesizers, Casiotone rhythm hits and a stoned out vocal performance that leaves just enough room for a man, an eagle, and a band in the sky. We present you with SToK’s very own Taste Your Dreams Come True.
When W+K called us to work on the score for an upcoming Nike spot, we wholeheartedly agreed. And when that spot happened to focus on the journey of one of the greatest tennis players of all time, Rafael Nadal, we jumped in head first. The spot not only highlighted Nadal as a career player, but as a triumphant force in the sporting world. We knew the score needed to match the visual’s intensity, delicately straddling the line of rhythm and beauty, while not taking the focus away from the visual storyline. It needed a pulse, one that could soundtrack an entire career in just under sixty seconds. After some intense explorations, we found the pulse. And the cherry on top? Nadal had to win the 2019 French Open. So, we set our alarms (remember we’re on French time), became the world’s biggest tennis fans, and cheered Rafa on to another finals victory. Hats (and headbands) off to Nadal for another epic French Open run. It was a thrill and an honor to have partnered with W+K and Nike on such a great piece of work.
As Levi's continues to raise the bar with their content, it truly becomes an honor to be their music partner on films like this one from FCB. A simple concept, showcasing the difference ordinary people can make by showing the courage to use their voice, this spot required an inspiring and moving song to tell such an important story of empowerment. This ended up being one of the deeper dives we've been asked to do, but it was well worth it, as we managed to find what ended up feeling like the only song that could have worked for this film. 'Battlecry' comes to us from up-and-coming artist, Jordan Mackampa, a native of the Congo, who grew up on the streets of London. His soulful and poetic vocal paired with a relentless and raw backbeat, provides the exact sentiment we were searching for. And, of course, we couldn't be happier to help expose this incredible artist's work to more people throughout the world.
A powerful film such as this latest work for Blue Shield of CA needed a truly powerful score to match it. Thankfully, our friends at BSSP had us brainstorming early. The idea was to find a well-known piece of music that felt almost ubiquitous to California, as well as one that could be reimagined as an instrumental and still carry the weight of such a moving film. While we engaged on a deep and exhaustive exploration, we kept coming back to The Mamas and the Papas, 'California Dreamin'. Its recognizability and unrivaled association to the Golden State provided the perfect platform from which to create. And its haunting melody lost nothing when re-interpreted in the context of a solo piano piece. In fact, it only managed to make the film feel more poignant. Once again, the perfect collaboration between our Supervision and Original Production teams led to one of the projects we're most proud of so far in 2019.
Gatorade is consistently responsible for some of the most exciting, fun, and watchable content out there, and this latest film, “Make Them Sweat” produced through TBWA/Chiat is no exception. We’d even go so far as to call it the most re-watchable spot we’ve seen in a long time. There are so many fun and funny moments to soak in (pun intended), as we follow along with this extended action montage, featuring international football stars, Lionel Messi and Gabriel Jesus as they reduce the competition to cowering puddles of sweat. It was this mixture of adrenaline and humor that ultimately called for the kind of colorful and turbo-charged score we had the pleasure to create. Mixing classic soul and funk instrumentation with modern production styles to really highlight a film stuffed to the gills with fun and humor, while never sacrificing the intensity we’ve grown to expect from Gatorade. It was a wild ride, perfect to enjoy again and again. Bring your towel.
This latest campaign from MONO, features two beautifully quirky spots that have the brand really leaning into its Italian roots. Fortunately for us, that created an opportunity to get involved very early on. The idea was to find the perfect classic piece of music and then reimagine it as if it had been covered by a 1960’s Italian artist. Although we explored quite a few songs for this, “Iko Iko” kept sticking in our heads, especially after we worked with our Italian artist friends to create completely original Italian lyrics that were both authentic but still perfect for the stories we were telling. Any project where we get to flex our supervision muscles and also tap our vast international resources to create something new and unique is a win/win. And we think the music and spots really speak for themselves. “Bella!”
Droga5 and Covergirl needed a track that would match the high intensity of a workout with the incredible Massy Arias, who is a force of nature. We started with a minimal drum-line piece and added layers of gym sounds; weights dropping, machines clinking, even getting Massy to come in and record some breathing and movements in studio to make it feel really authentic. What resulted is a powerful combination of heavy hitting percussion mixed with the raw sounds of a fierce workout with Massy to create an epic track that helps bring this piece to life!
As always, thank you to the Droga5 team for bringing this our way and we are thrilled to be showcased as part of SHOOTS final Top Ten line up of the year!
We are THRILLED to welcome Matt Drenik to the team as our new Creative Director! Bringing an A&R-style approach to the role, Drenik’s music-making background spans virtually all areas:
As an artist, Drenik’s music has been critically acclaimed by Rolling Stone, Billboard, Magnet Magazine, Classic Rock Magazine, Metal Hammer, Paste Magazine, Consequence of Sound and many others. He’s toured the world, having shared stages with the likes of Metric, Arctic Monkeys, Veruca Salt, The Toadies, Blue Cheer, DMBQ, Monster Magnet and many others. He also runs the Portland-based collective and label Get Loud. His music has been featured in films, television and commercials, most notably FX’s Sons of Anarchy (where he was a contributing composer) as well as an appearance (Metal Heavy Lady) on Guitar Hero 3. Not to mention, his version of Neil Young’s “Hey Hey, My My” for SOA has over 30 million YouTube hits!!
We’re excited to have him on board and can’t wait to see what 2019 will bring!
Because women are more than half of the world’s population, and half of the creative voices, we can’t afford to miss out on HALF of the creative pool. Women are the number one consumer group and make for 85% of product purchase decisions. We need more nuanced work that speaks to them. Cultural misrepresentations of women are perpetuated by an overabundance of male storytelling. Women directors, editors, colorists, composers, will organically change the way women are represented in advertising, to the benefit of our mothers, our sisters and our daughters.
In 2019 we will continue building our female talent pool and we’re grateful to Alma and the rest of the Free The Bid team for encouraging and promoting that creative women have their voices heard!
This beautiful, authentic campaign for Teleflora instantly pulls at the heartstrings. We loved working with The Wonderful Company to create a music bed that left enough space for these real life stories of strong women to shine. We are so thrilled with how the campaign turned out and we’re over the moon that “Cara” was included in SHOOTS TOP TEN line up for Fall 2018 alongside a lot of amazing music!
It is safe to say that Saatchi & Saatchi blew everyone away with their powerful and moving “Start Your Impossible” campaign for Toyota, so it was no surprise when the campaign won 3 Clios and 5 Cannes Lions – Including a Gold Lion!!
We feel honored to have been a part of it and as always we appreciate the amazing team at Saatchi for bringing this extraordinary project our way.
We love what we do at SOUTH but it is always an added bonus when we receive outside recognition for the music that we make. The killer hip-hop track we wrote for Reebok was nominated for “Best Original Music” at AICP this year and we couldn’t be more proud! A huge congrats to all of the other nominees and thank you to the team at Venables Bell + Partners giving us the chance to be a part of such an awesome project.
It's not every day that you get to collaborate with the uber-talented and quite frankly hilarious Melissa McCarthy on her Directorial debut for the 90th Academy Awards ceremony, so we jumped at the opportunity with open arms! Drawing inspiration from the empowering and uplifting track "Bird Set Free" by Sia, this music driven spot starred the out of this world Keala Settle from the Award Winning "The Greatest Showman" and pop star in the making Dylan Conrique. In keeping with the theme of the Oscars ceremony this year and the Times Up movement, the spot tells a story of perseverance, self-confidence and belief in ones self against all odds.
Getting to work so closely with the Director and the talent in pre-production recording sessions, on set, and in post, really gave us the opportunity to support and nurture Melissa's vision for the spot featuring a killer arrangement of Sia's track along with the perfect dose of magical sound design to really help this inspiring film come to life. We are really proud of how it turned out!
One of a handful of important and inspiring films that Saatchi & Saatchi produced for Toyota and the 2018 Winter Olympics, this spot was desperate for a special and unique score to help tell Ashley Wagner’s powerful story. We honestly cannot imagine a more perfect accompaniment, than this gorgeous re-imagining of the Metallica classic, “Nothing Else Matters,” which we had the absolute pleasure of creating. The opportunity to get into the studio and reinterpret this Heavy Metal staple with such talented musicians was an experience we will not soon forget.
And of course we couldn’t be prouder of SHOOT’s recognition of our achievement in their initial 'Top Ten of 2018.'
For this project, Reebok teamed up with Luis Badillo Junior, the man with the 'fastest feet in the world' for their newest "Fastest Flexweaves" campaign. Luis is a top ranked trainer who's client list includes a number of NFL, NBA and soccer players, including Marshawn Lynch and Cristiano Ronaldo just to name a few.
In keeping with the pace of the campaign, SOUTH created this totally original and absolutely relentless track, featuring the rebellious vocals of Young Hoffa. Shoutout to Venables Bell for continually being a part some of the coolest work we get to do here. This one was no exception!
Helping to bring a beautiful piece of poetry to life through music is no small task, and that’s just what we set out to do in our Super Bowl collaboration with W+K and Coca-Cola. It takes the right balance of emotion and restraint to score a film like this, and we couldn’t be more proud with how it turned out.
Click on the image below to check it out:
We were thrilled to partner with Highdive to create a score for their first Super Bowl spot. Getting involved at the animatic stage, allowed us to create music that let Dr. King’s speech take center stage while still giving it the gravitas it deserved.
Click on the image below to check it out: