20. Eminem and Jay-Z announced albums via commercials.
Major rap stars are constantly pushing the genre to larger audiences, and Em and Hov did just that this past year. First, Jigga wisely announced the premiere of his new album Magna Carta Holy Grail with a high-quality video of Jay and his team (Pharrell, Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, Rick Rubin) in the studio as they paved a new way to sell a million copies of an album before it even hit shelves.
Fast forward two months, and Marshall grabbed a page out of Jay’s book for a commercial during the MTV Video Music Awards to announce The Marshall Mathers LP 2, complete with a teaser for the “Berzerk” video. Em grabbed Rick Rubin form Hova’s couch too, only this time he actually produced on the record, but the bigger picture was apparent – rappers announcing their blockbuster event albums on national TV with corporate backing. That kind of mainstream cultural pull can’t be overemphasized.
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