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Monday, November 28, 2011

Rappers Promoting Alcoholic Beverages Boosting Sales

Over the past decade musicians have taken a strong interest in endorsing alcoholic drinks, typically due to the popularity of a drink or because they have stakes in the company financially. There is nothing wrong with promoting a product that one has invested in; however, if promoting a product that encourages younger people such as teenagers to think that drinking a particular alcoholic beverage like Grey Goose is cool, then it can be dangerous.

The Los Angeles Times reports that rappers have been promoting their products in their songs to help boost sales, artists such as:
  • Pitbull
  • Sean “Diddy” Combs
  • Snoop Dogg
  • Ludacris

If you were to watch the video for Pitbull’s song “Give Me Everything,” he pours a glass of Voli vodka, and mentions the brand in his song “Rain Over Me.” In both songs you can see Voli Vodka bottles which the rapper owns a stake in, the newspaper reports. Combs promotes Ciroc vodka, a drink he has financial ties to, he has been featuring the drink in his videos as well as tweeting about the drink many times on Twitter. In April, Snoop Dogg began promoting the fruit-flavored alcoholic drink Blast by Colt 45.

One in five songs that are popular with teens have explicit references to alcohol, and one-quarter of these songs mention a specific brand, according to a new study published last month. Clearly, promotions like these can have far reaching effects that could be a factor that helps send teenagers down the wrong path.

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh analyzed 793 songs that were popular among youths between 2005 and 2007. Their findings showed that frequent exposure to alcohol brand names in songs could encourage substance abuse among teens.

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