British rapper chats on the set of new Lucozade commercial...
Holly Frith

10:29 4th April 2011

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Gigwise flew out to LA last month to get a behind the scenes look at the new Lucozade sport advert featuring Tinie Tempah, Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker and Amateur World Boxing Champion Katie Taylor.

The trio filmed over two days to perform a special Lucozade remix of Tempah's 'Simply Unstoppable'.

All this week we'll be bringing you features from the shoot, starting with a chat with Tinie Tempah, who opened up about his work on the remix, recent BRIT Awards triumph and forthcoming second album.

How are you finding the US?

“Great man, it’s my third time here so I’m loving it. I’m just here doing the Lucozade advert then flying straight back to the UK.  I was in Dubin two days ago, so I flew from Dublin to Heathrow then Heathrow to LA. I was still smelling of Guiness from the night before.”

When did you do the recording of the track?

“I literally got of the plane and went straight into the studio to record the new version of the track. Travis Barker wasn’t there but he had already previously recorded his drums for the song. All I’ve been hearing are these amazing drums, so I sampled it with them and bobs your uncle. “

How did the advert come together?

“Basically they approached me and explained to me the concept of the whole advert and video. I’ve been a big fan of the Lucozade adverts from when I was young, I’ve always found them really iconic and eye grabbing. I was up for it and then I heard Travis Barker and Katie were doing it and it doesn’t get any better than that.”

How did they pick which track of yours to use?

“That was another thing that really enticed me in was there choice of song for the advert. They picked ‘Simply Unstoppable’ which is track two on my album and it’s a bit more of a harder track. It was kind of cool that that was their choice. It seemed they had their ear to the ground and I kind of like that.”

What are your future plans for the US?

“Well we’ve released a single here, ‘Written In The Stars’, which is doing really really well. We’ve been doing bits and bobs of promotion but to really do promotion over here you have to be here for a while. America is huge. LA is massive let alone the rest of America, you can do a six hour flight from one side to the other. I find that so weird because you can do that from the UK to America.

“I’ve recently been doing a lot of radio stuff over here. I’ve been supporting Usher over in the UK which has been absolutely amazing. After I left they mentioned about me doing the same in the US; I’ve got SXSW, Coachella and the ultra music festival in Miami.”

How have the past twelve months been?

“It’s been crazy. The past twelve months have been a right roller coaster, so many twists and turns it’s unreal. It’s the ultimate dream so there is no way you can ever complain about doing it. As a young kid I dreamed about this and I hoped for this, so for it to be actually happening is so out of this world. I’m meeting all these amazing people. Everybody from Kate Hudson, Chris Martin and Jay-Z was a pretty huge one for me.”

How did you find the reception to the album back home in the UK?

“Absolutely incredible man; we’re living in such a single driven era where it’s more like go to iTunes and pick the single you want than go out and buy an album. So when it comes to releasing an album it’s almost like crunch time for an artist. You could have an amazing line of single success and then your album will come out and totally bomb. That was always something I was aware of, I wouldn’t say I was scared of it more anxious than anything.

“I was getting told that my singles had done so well, ‘Pass Out’ was the biggest selling single, I just kept thinking what if the album doesn’t live up to the expectations that everyone has. We’re on about 500,000 copies sold at the moment and I’m so happy. I’m so happy that people are loving the album and more so that people who I didn’t think would connect with it have.”

When did your love for music start then?

“It was in my teenage years really when it all got sorted. I first wanted to get into it when I was about twelve but when I was fourteen I started doing my own recordings and stuff like that. I had loads of influences when I was growing up so that always helped. So Solid Crew for me was a major influence, Dizzee Rascal, Eminem with the ‘Marshal Mathers LP’, ‘Slim Shady LP' and DMX a bit earlier on my teenage years. For me those were the influences that made me want to do this.

“Aside from that listen to everything. My mum was always into country music; Dolly Parton and Kenny Rodgers.

Do you still see the same people you did before you got successful?

“I do best. I kind of multi task. My life is so busy at the moment; hotels, business, waiting around so I don’t want friends that will think I’m going to look after them all the time. My cousin is my manager and my other cousin works for the label so everybody is contributing and happy.”

Chipmunk is over here at the moment – did you get to see him?

“Yeah he is over here shooting his new video with Keri Hilson. I think it’s amazing, you think back three or four years ago and we were both trying to fit into a little flat to do pirate radio and now we’re both flying over to America. It’s crazy that was more or less the conversation we both had for the ten hour flight.”

Being back and forth from the UK how do you find the current music scene at the moment?

“I think it’s amazing, British music is undoubtedly the best and it has been for a very long time. Adele, Jessie J, James Blake, Plan B and Mumford & Sons all have gone from playing tiny venues last year to having a massive fan base now. For me the UK music scene is always fresh; you’ve always got something new happening.”

Any highlights of 2011 so far?

“For me it has to be the BRIT Awards; that was such an amazing night. It was my first nominated but my second year there. I definitely felt like I had been consolidated; my position in British music had been consolidated after that night. I’ve become a household name which is amazing.”
Any plans for the second album?

“Yeah I’ve started it already so I’m hoping to get it out by October/November time. I always like to work with different people on each project I do, just so you get a different sound and angle. I will be working with some of the same people I did for the first album, you know what they say ‘if it ain't broke then don’t try and fix it’.”

Any truth in the Cheryl Cole collaboration?

“None what so ever, that’s funny that’s the first time I’ve heard about that. She’s a lovely girl but no I don’t think so.”

Tinie Tempah, Travis Barker, Katie Taylor: Lucozade Sport Behind The Scenes (Gigwise Exclusive)

  • Tinie Tempah, Travis Barker, Katie Taylor

  • Tinie Tempah

  • Lucozade advert

  • Travis Barker

  • Tinie Tempah

  • Tinie Tempah

  • Lucozade advert

  • Tinie Tempah

  • Lucozade advert

  • Tinie Tempah

  • Travis Barker

  • Lucozade advert

  • Travis Barker

  • Katie Taylor

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