Google Play Creates U.K.'s First Ad Break To Feature A Live Music Performance

Chart Topper Sam Smith Will Perform Live For Three-And-A-Half-Minutes On Friday Night

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Google is staging a live performance across a full three-and-a-half minute ad break to promote Google Play, its music store and streaming service.

Sam Smith
Sam Smith

British Singer Sam Smith, whose single "Stay With Me" is currently number one in the U.K. charts, will be singing the song live from one of London's most famous music venues, The Roundhouse, this Friday night. It will be the U.K.'s first ad break to air a live music performance.

The performance will be broadcast at 10.45 pm on Channel 4 -- a free-to-air terrestrial station, and Britain's second biggest commercial channel – during a chat show called "Alan Carr: Chatty Man."

Announcing the live ad during a Google Hangout, Mr. Smith said, "I'm really scared because we have to time this really well and get it perfect, but if this works out this is going to be a magical moment. It's never been done before and you're going to witness one of my dreams coming true."

Mr. Smith, who won the Critic's Choice Award at The Brits -- the U.K.'s top popular music awards -- has put a live, track-by-track explanation of his new album on his Google+ page. His Roundhouse performance will be recorded live and will be made exclusively available as a stream on Google Play U.K. soon afterwards. Google Play will also offer two exclusive bonus tracks on the album, "In The Lonely Hour," which is released in the U.K. this week and in the U.S. next month.

The deal came out of a collaboration between Channel 4, Google Play, MediaCom and Universal Music label Capitol.

Stephen Rosenthal, Google U.K.'s communications manager, said in a statement, "Through Google Play Music, we're looking to shake up the way music lovers connect with the bands and tracks they love. What better way to show our ambition than lay on this U.K. first with Sam Smith, one of the hottest acts on the planet today."

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