When Travie McCoy first started writing songs for his solo album, it was shaping up to be a decidedly dark affair. Deflated by his “sh–ty breakup” with Katy Perry , he penned a host of brokenhearted, mad-at-the-world songs, all of which he intended to put on the album.
But then, almost out of nowhere, he had an epiphany: In the grand scheme of things, he didn’t have it all that rough, so why should he be writing feel-bad songs? (Or, as he told MTV News, “Why dampen the mood with sad, sh–ty records?”) And so, his album changed, becoming a full-blown, unapologetically good-time affair — the soundtrack to the slathering of suntan lotion and not the shedding of tears.
We got the first taste of Lazarus in March, with the premiere of the first single, “Billionaire.” And now, with temperatures rising and summer just around the corner, we get the video. The timing couldn’t have been better.
The track — which features suddenly sizzling songwriter/producer Bruno Mars on the hook — is sunny, shiny, breezy and blissed-out, a sort of updated take on “Brewster’s Millions” (that’s how McCoy put it, at least), with Travie doling out the dollars and fulfilling wishes. And the video is in the same vein: a fantasy ride in which McCoy helps out the downtrodden (or, at least, skateboarders, graffiti artists and those annoying dudes who try to sell you their rap demos) while Mars strums an acoustic in the sunshine. Oh, and Pete Wentz shows up to ride around on a Vespa.
If McCoy was looking to raise spirits and score a summertime smash, well, then it’s pretty much mission accomplished: The song is perfect for the sunshine, Mars is currently the hottest name in the biz (thanks to B.o.B’s hit “Nothin’ on You” ), and the video is a lighthearted romp. And he still manages to get in a dig at his ex in one of the verses — which is sort of like having his cake and eating it too.
What do you think of the “Billionaire” video? Let us know in the comments!