Brooklyn, NEW YORK — The idea of a track made by The Clash and Diplo may be difficult, especially when you layer in the voice of Frank Ocean. But for Converse’s Three Artists, One Song campaign, that’s exactly the point.
The song “Hero,” out Monday (March 10), brings together these three seemingly unrelated artists, for an equal parts doo-wop, punk and garage track, anchored by Ocean’s soulful voice.
The Converse sneaker brand has been iconic in the music industry for decades, but Converse wanted to make even more of an impact with this campaign. “We value as a company to be a contributor,” Converse Chief Marketing Officer Geoff Cottrill explained to MTV News. “We want to contribute something to youth culture, and not just sponsor it.”
Any song that can bring British punk pioneers Mick Jones and Paul Simonon and electronic/hip-hop producer Diplo to the same recording studio in 2014 is unquestionably a contribution to the culture. On the surface, it might be hard to see what two members of the Clash and the head of Mad Decent have in common, but all three agreed that punk and dance music have more similarities than meets the eye.
“Dance music is pretty basic: It’s the voice of the kids that are making it,” Diplo told MTV News during the Three Artists, One Song campaign launch in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, on Thursday. “It’s cool that we have something happening. Our generation has created something out of nothing with dance music. Kids are making music and going straight to SoundCloud or YouTube; they’re 17 years old and becoming stars.”
Mick and Paul agreed, explaining that it’s the attitude behind dance music that parallels the punk movement they were such an integral part of. “Kids are making [music] in their bedrooms,” Mick added. “Which I think is really similar to the punk idea of Do It Yourself — it is possible. The punk thing wasn’t just about music, it was more about attitude and the way you handled yourself.”
What do you think of the track? Tell us in the comments!