TV commercials can be quite powerful in helping pop songs become major hits through exposure to potential audiences. The Ting Tings and Feist both experienced mainstream pop breakthroughs after Apple used their songs in TV commercials. More recently a Chevy Sonic commercial helped boost the band fun. on their path to #1 with "We Are Young." Now UK singer-songwriter Alex Clare is one of the latest beneficiaries of musical exposure through a TV commercial. His song "Too Close" is the featured music in an extensive new advertising campaign for Microsoft's Internet Explorer 9. So far it has brought "Too Close" into the top 30 of the iTunes digital songs sales chart.
Prior to his commercial success, Alex Clare was also known for dating the late Amy Winehouse for a year. His debut album The Lateness Of the Hour was released last July and was produced by Diplo and Switch. His music often welds a spirit of classic R&B with more contemporary dubstep and other electronic sounds. Microsoft says, "It was the emotional intensity of Clare's song coupled with the depth and richness of sound" that led them to include "Too Close" in their advertising. Keith Rivers, director of the commercial, credits former American Idol contestant Blake Lewis with introducing him to the music of Alex Clare. He says, "For weeks, I had Alex's album on repeat in my car. I couldn't get the soul-filled vocals, poetic lyrics and dubstep fusion off my palette, so I wrote him and asked if he'd want to work with us." Check out the original video for "Too Close" below and the Internet Explorer ad featuring the song.
Photo courtesy Island Records