Bing Originals – Wiz Khalifa

Microsoft’s Bing search engine has a new series of commercials called “Bing Originals” that feature different alternative/creative types including Kreayshawn, Foster The People, Theophilus London and Wiz Khalifa. Wiz’s commercial is my favorite of the bunch, and was chosen to air during the Grammys earlier this month.

Commercial: “Bing Originals: Wiz Khalifa” // Song: Wiz Khalifa — “When I’m Gone”

I particularly like the way the song was arranged for the commercial, because it retains the carefree build-up effect that the full song has while still cutting it down to the 60 second format. The track, produced by E. Dan and Big Jerm, has the ID Labs sound that Wiz has become known for, and fits the mood of the commercial perfectly. My favorite part is still Juicy J, who makes the most of his .2 seconds of screen time at 0:48.

Khalifa, who recently boasted that he expects to earn 9 figures in 2012, could potentially be entering dangerous territory by becoming too mainstream and alienating his famously die hard fanbase. He seemed to sense this, and last week wrote an open letter to his Taylor Gang fans apologizing for what he saw as a creative failure in Rolling Papers, and making a clear effort to re-connect with his fans, saying his next project “is for us,” and will not be “widely accepted.” For someone in damage control mode after becoming a little too commercial, endorsing a Microsoft product wouldn’t be my next order of business, but I think they pull it off quite well, as it doesn’t carry a strong scent of “selling out,” and paints Wiz as eternally grounded (which I don’t think is an act).

It will be interesting to see if he makes it anywhere near 9 figures this year, and if he does, how grounded he will seem then.