Music Articles

Rick Ross Sells Nike By Making Regular People Feel Like A Boss

Saw this Nike Boom ad starring Rick Ross last night while watching football:


What? Ross is the only musician (other than the drumline) to appear in any of the ads in this series.

All Ross does is walk into a store and pick up a piece of jewelry. A piece of jewelry made in his own image. A piece of jewelry made in his own image that's wearing a piece of jewelry made in his own image. That talks. They both talk. They both say, "Boom."

The rest of the shots in Ross' ad are super athletic, explosive moves on a lacrosse field in a downpour; a volleyball court, etc. Some of the athletes are "regular people," some of them are LeBron.

What is it about Ross — or his music — that makes him suitable for this ad? Sure, he looks like an offensive lineman, but I can't imagine him taking off his shades pretty much ever. He's a funny guy. Though occasionally his lyrics are extremely offensive/boring to me as a woman, I laugh every time I hear this part of "Maybach Music:"

They pinching pennies, while I'm muscling for meals
And the muscle be that muzzle, when I stuff it in your grill
Stuffed shells — thanks to crack, I crack
Crab and lobsters

So why would Nike choose him – and only him – for this ad? He's got jokes? He's enormous? He's not especially complicated? His appearance is iconic enough that he doesn't need to rap at all to come across as dominant, victorious and too fly to have ever doubted his own performance for a second? The same beat-boxing track is laid underneath all of the other ads in the series, and all other musical cues are hip-hop-related. What is it about rappers and rap music that fit in with the ads' theme of winning — and feeling like a boss?



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