The Shins get a bite from McDonald's
Seattle Times staff reporter
If you were heartbroken over the likes of the Dandy Warhols and Badly Drawn Boy music in Gap commercials and Nick Drake and Groove Armada over car ads, don't read on.
The Shins, the New Mexico indie-pop band that leads a new wave of Sub Pop bands, has its catchy "New Slang" tune being used in some McDonald's spots during the Olympics.
That's right, McDonald's. (As a poster on a pitchforkmedia.com message board put it: "I was watching the Olympics, and I just heard "New Slang" by the Shins in a @#%$ McDonald's commercial!")
Shawn Rogers, creative director of film and television for Sub Pop, says that when the burger giant's ad agency contacted the Seattle label, "initially, it kind of freaked everyone out. ... Why the hell have they heard of the Shins?"
When Sub Pop contacted the band about the offer, it wasn't a hard sell, according to Rogers. "They were like, well we don't really think this is compromising, someone wants to pay us to do what we do."
Rogers chose not to disclose how much the band was paid, but said such deals can earn anywhere from $10,000 to $150,000. That's quite a chunk of change for below-radar acts that barely make the rent and live on fast food. "It's a way for a band that doesn't get signed for huge advances to be able to quit their day jobs for a while," said Rogers, "and concentrate on making music."
The Shins' music has also been heard on NBC's "Scrubs" and a few other TV shows. And labelmate Looper can be heard on Xerox ads playing during the Olympics.