Human scored the Sprite commercial "Pool" created by Ogilvy Hong Kong for the Asian market with an indie rockish track sung by vocalist Hugh Wilson dubbed "Falling Away." Originally just an ad tune, the music recently has found expanded life as a standalone song. "It translated really well in places like England, Brazil, Germany, everywhere, and (Coke) received over 30,000 emails about the song," explains Human EP/partner Marc Altshuler. "So the company got excited and wanted to get behind it." Human returned to the studio to compose a full-length track whose proceeds they will share with Coke. "Instead of paying us the traditional fee for a 30-second spot, which doesn't really apply, they wanted to figure out a way to use their network—POP, packaging—to drive people to get this music, and split everything 50-50," Altshuler says. "It's a pretty unbelievable deal and it was a lot of work."
Altshuler credits the music video style of the spot for its ability to translate across multiple markets. Featuring no dialog or copy, the commercial starred a bunch of sweaty guys shooting hoops on an outdoor court, and as one of them takes a gulp of Sprite the blacktop transforms into a pool.
The plan now is to have Sprite's point-of-sale and packaging in 220 countries drive people to a website where the song will be available in what Human calls "the first original music online initiative ever." Right now the program is being negotiated and worked out between Coke and its international marketing teams, but Altshuler says the process is about setting up a framework for subsequent music initiatives and the company hopes to have the program fully underway by the end of the year. The project in a way gives commercials music talents some well-deserved validation. "If there is ever a possibility of an endgame like this again," says Altshuler, "we should be recording the three minute song first."