While we were developing the musical score for the JBL “Listen In Color” brand film, we quickly realized that Dame D.O.L.L.A.’s lyrics and the campaign theme were bigger than a commercial.
So, we decided to build on Dame’s bars (i.e., rap lyrics) and create a full-length song and music video. This decision not only furthered the impact of the campaign but also served as the launch of the first single from our record label, Amusement Park Music.
Hall of Fame director Joe Pytka shot some beautiful footage, and we shot some footage ourselves. Then we scoured Getty Images, CNN’s archives and Vice’s video reel for clips of America’s racial landscape.
Unfortunately, the problem wasn’t that there wasn’t enough of that racial tension to be found on video. Quite the contrary. Too much of it was easy to find.
But thank God, we eventually found joyful and prideful moments, too.
It took months for our team to piece together the footage into one story and to get the clips we didn’t shoot cleared. But the end result was something that made JBL’s social voice bigger.
On Martin Luther King Jr. Day we revealed the “Bigger Than Us” music video on NBA on TNT for the world to see. Ernie Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley provided the lead-in as they explained how important it is for athletes of color to speak up about social issues. When the music video finished airing, the Internet met it with open arms. Bleacher Report posted the video and within 48 hours racked up nearly a million views. ESPN, NBC, CBS Sports, along with many others, followed suit. In fact, USA Today even made room in its Martin Luther King Jr. Day section of the front page to speak about Dame’s video and interview him.