Timbaland Scores NBA Playoff Ad With Original Music

Timbaland 2016
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File

Timbaland poses for photographers at the 2015 ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Awards on June 25, 2015 in Beverly Hills, Calif. 

Timbaland is juggling a slew of projects at the moment: he's been in the studio with Justin Timberlake and Diddy, hinted at collaborations with Missy Elliott and Drake and is helming the 20-track Empire: Original Soundtrack, Season 2 Volume 2 album due out April 29 -- not to mention his own Opera Noir project that's still in the works. But don't expect him to share many details about everything that's on the way; these days, the super-producer is more about showing rather than telling. Today (April 12) he unveils his new collaboration with the NBA, an original song called "Every Second Counts" that will appear in an ad debuting tonight on TNT and airing throughout the NBA Playoffs and Finals.

The 30-second spot is part of the NBA's This Is Why We Play advertising campaign, which launched at the beginning of the season, and will premiere at some point during tonight's double-header featuring the Memphis Grizzlies vs. Los Angeles Clippers and the Oklahoma City Thunder vs. the San Antonio Spurs before the regular season comes to an end Wednesday. "I thought it was a brilliant idea," Timbaland told Billboard on Monday about the opportunity, which was presented to him by business partner Steve Stoute and executed through his partnership with Jingle Punks. "He just thought the music that I create would be perfect for what they're looking for."

The NBA Playoffs officially kick off Saturday, April 16, while the Finals are set to begin June 2. "They just said they wanted energy, so that's why they came to me," Timbaland said. "The NBA is great, but it's about contributing my music to a part of rhythm, and basketball is a rhythm. That's what made it stick out to me."

The collaboration, which Timbaland described as "the beginning" of what could lead to more spots, is the latest in a string of news regarding the Virginia native's out-of-the-box musical exploits. In January, he announced a new partnership with licensing company Jingle Punks to create original music for film, television, ad campaigns, video games and sponsorships, which seems to be bearing fruit with the announcement yesterday that he was nearing an agreement to executive produce music for the upcoming Jamie Foxx animated feature Groove Tails. And in addition to Empire, Timbo has teamed with LaLa Anthony and Leftfield Entertainment for a new hip-hop-inspired docuseries that will exist in the same realm as the Fox hit show, though that project is still in development. But you didn't hear it from him.

"I don't like talking about what I [have coming up]," he said. "You just gotta see."