Nas Keeps 'Pushing the Limits' With Hennessy, Narrating New Ad Campaign

Nas Hennessy 2016
Courtesy Photo

Nas gives a toast during the announcement for his partnership with Hennessy for their “Wild Rabbit” campaign.

Nas and Hennessy V.S. have reunited again. The rapper narrates the fourth installment of the brand’s Wild Rabbit ad campaign The Piccards.

In keeping with the boundary-pushing spirit embodied by Hennessy’s “Never stop. Never settle” motto, Nas tells the story of the Piccard family, whose real-life pursuits personify that mantra. Patriarch Auguste Piccard was the first man to reach the stratosphere. Nearly 30 years later, his son Jacques became the first man to reach the deepest depths of the ocean. Directed by Daniel Wolfe, the film will debut Tuesday on Hennessy’s digital channels as part of the company’s cross-platform rollout across television, mobile and desktop. The broadcast spots begin airing on April 16.

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Nas, marking his fourth consecutive year of working with Hennessy, describes their partnership as an “organic fit.” He cites his jazz musician father’s drive and passion as an influential legacy on his own musical and entrepreneurial pursuits. “The Piccards represent the same shared family legacy,” explains Nas. “It’s the idea of the chase, passed on to me by my father that has helped shape my musical path. Chasing and pushing the limits is in my blood.”

Beyond organic synergy and shared values, Nas notes that consistency and quality are equally important components of launching and sustaining a fruitful brand sponsorship. As is keeping an eye on the future. “No one remembers the person/brand that keeps doing the same old, same old,” he says. The Emmy-winning rapper’s liaison with Hennessy dates back to being the face for Wild Rabbit’s second-year campaign in 2013. He also provided the voiceover for the 2014 television spot and appeared in the 2015 campaign “The Ride.".

In addition to the new campaign, Nas is also busy working on the earlier announced posthumous J Dilla album The Diary and additional projects coming through his Mass Appeal Records. Describing Mass Appeal as a "movement more than anything else," he declined to reveal any further details about the Dilla album, Lost Tapes 2 or his own next album for Def Jam beyond "I can’t say too much yet."

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Nas and Hennessy set the stage for The Piccards campaign several weeks earlier, hosting a private preview dinner for media folks and tastemakers at Ivory on Sunset at The Mondrian in Hollywood. Among the Hennessy-centric offerings: a chocolate-Hennessy olive oil cake with Hennessy-raspberry sauce and three specially mixed drinks including the Big Apple. Inspired by New York native Nas, the drink includes  apple brandy, herbal liqueur, agave nectar and fresh lime juice. Among the evening's informational tidbits: Hennessy V.S. accounts for 51% of the company’s sales.