Though Nico & Vinz's "Am I Wrong" has become an out-of-nowhere smash in the U.S. this summer, topping Billboard's Radio Songs chart and spending the last three weeks at No. 4 on the Hot 100, the song hasn't had an updated music video to accompany its Stateside breakthrough.
Debuting Monday (August 10) at Pepsi.com as well as Pepsi's YouTube channel, the new U.S. video of "Am I Wrong" is culled from footage from the Afro-Norwegian duo's eventful trip to New York City this past June. The clip follows the pair as they make the rounds of the radio-promo circuit and explore a city they'd only visited one or two other times prior to that trip, all culminating in a packed showcase performance at West Chelsea's McKittrick Hotel. It's a more documentary-style approach to the song, whose international music video was filmed cinematically in Botswana and has already racked up nearly 50 million YouTube views since its June 2013 premiere.
"The clips in there are following us on the journey to the dream," says Nico. "I think it's a great opportunity for the fans to get to know us. It's cool that we've got this collaboration with Pepsi, and we're excited to see what happens in the future."
"It's sort of a preview of what we've been doing overseas too in Norway and those types of places," adds Vinz. "It sort of felt natural that we'd move over to the States and really start working and meeting the American people and spreading our music over here."
The video is the first in a series of Pepsi-sponsored projects with emerging artists, dubbed the Pepsi Pulse Artist Spotlight and created in partnership with Complex Media. In addition to Nico & Vinz, Universal recording artist Sebastian Mikael and Roc Nation artist Mayaeni will be featured as part of the program later this fall. The "Am I Wrong" clip also briefly features Pepsi Made With Real Sugar, the focus of Pepsi's summer 2014 campaign.
"We started having conversations with Warner Bros., Universal and Roc Nation, looked at where our brand is going for the rest of the year and if they had artists with that same sentiment," says Javier Farfan, Pepsi's head of music, entertainment and culture marketing. "We saw these guys definitely had a buzz gong on within their community and they had some killer songs we felt really strongly about. We even had Sebastian Mikael come and perform for some Pepsi folks to get the organization feeling them and build more positive momentum."
The program is a U.S. version of the global initiative Pepsi introduced earlier this year that saw the brand create its own label to release an exclusive compilation of soccer-inspired anthems, with music-video "filmtracks" helmed by emerging directors to bring each song to life. Dubbed "Beats of the Beautiful Game," the campaign featured new and exclusive songs from artists like Kelly Rowland, Don Omar, Timbaland, Santigold and Jetta.