The New Stuff

Album Launch Publicity Gimmicks of Famous Artists


Last week, we featured a band who launched their single by putting it in USB sticks, tying them to helium balloons, and setting them free. Someone from Twitter pointed out that the concept is not original, that it has been done by Jack White months back- but with flexi-discs. So I Googled it and yes, it’s true. I realized we so need updating with the latest musician publicity gimmicks. So I spent the whole afternoon looking up on the crazy things musician do to get attention for their album release. Here are some of them:

Radiohead’s Newspaper

Radiohead giving away copies of their newspaper, The Universal Sigh, in conjunction with their new album The King of Limb.

Ellie Goulding’s Digital Autograph
ellie goulding publicity

Now autograph signing sessions are entering the digital age thanks to Google+ Hangouts.  The idea, which came from the Creative Lab here in London, allowed Ellie Goulding to hold the world’s first digital album signing as part of a promotion for her second album. Using a Wacom tablet, Photoshop and a custom Google+ Hangout app Ellie Goulding talked face-to-face some of her fans from across the world, signed and dedicated an album cover for each them.

Flaming Lips Gummy Skull
flaming lips gimmick publicity skull

The Flaming Lips released four songs on a USB drive buried inside a life-sized gummy skull. As in, you have to lick or break the candy before you can listen to their music. They only made 500 of these at $150 each.

Ke$ha’s blood on Flaming Lips Album

Flaming Lips released their new record “The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends” with an album packaging blotched with blood of artists like Ke$ha, Erykah Badu, Nick Cave and Grammy’s Best New Artist Bon Iver.

Chris Brown’s “Beat Women” Stickers

Chris Brown’s new album, ‘Fortune’, have been defaced with advisory labels warning people not to buy the LP because he “beats women”. Brown separated from his ex-girlfriend Rihanna after he assaulted her in February 2009 before a pre-Grammys party. The stickers, which bear the message “WARNING: Do not buy this album! This man beats women!” are thought to have been placed on the albums by anti-domestic violence campaigners…or you know, maybe by Chris Brown’s PR team.

Taylor Swift’s Pizza Box

Taylor Swift Puts Her Face Everywhere, Including the Pizza Box. Though perhaps not the most inventive, Taylor’s no-surface-left-without-my-face-plastered-on-it Red promo run was a thing of nearly absurd proportions.

Jack White’s Helium Balloons

White released a limited-edition single by helium balloon from his Third Man Records label headquarters in Nashville. The track is “Freedom at 21”. White and colleagues at Third Man filled 1,000 blue balloons approximately two feet in diameter with helium, attached flexi-discs and released them into the sky.

Jon Black’s Nintendo Cartridges

Rocker Jon Black, who performs as Fort Atlantic, decided to offer his latest album on original Nintendo cartridges.

You know any kick-ass album launch publicity we can add to the list?
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USB sticks tied to balloons? Crazy way to LAUNCH a single!

When you were a kid, did you ever wonder where helium balloons go if you release them? I’m not a...

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