As Pepsi brilliantly reminded us with Lady Gaga's Zero Sugar Super Bowl LI Halftime Show earlier this year, the iconic brand is one of the biggest supporters a musician can have and that includes those acts just making their way into mainstream consciousness.
Today, Pepsi introduces the second wave in its emerging artist platform The Sound Drop. Fuse is happy to exclusively reveal that Bebe Rexha is the first of several talents to be recognized throughout 2017, following Alessia Cara, Jidenna and Lukas Graham who kicked off the program when it launched last August.
The timing is perfect for an artist like Rexha—whose new EP All Your Fault: Pt. 1 drops on Friday and includes "I Got You" that recently hit Top 20 on pop radio—as it gives her supporters, and loads of potential new fans, the opportunity to connect with her and the singer's story via platforms on iHeartRadio, Shazam, Viacom and beyond.
Fuse spoke with Bebe ahead of the announcement. Read below for what she had to say about teaming up with Pepsi, who would co-star in her dream soda commercial, what's coming next in her career and more.
Fuse: Congratulations on being named Pepsi's latest artist
for The Sound Drop! How are you
feeling about this news?
Bebe Rexha: It's a great honor. They're so powerful and the fact that Pepsi does these things is so cool. I know Alessia Cara was their Sound Drop artist last year, and they've had a couple of my friends, it's just cool to be aligned with them.
Pepsi's had a lot of iconic music moments, what are your favorites?
I remember the commercials—Beyoncé, Britney—and doing my own Pepsi commercial is the goal! [Laughs] Or the Super Bowl! But it's one step at a time, you know? It's a cool start and you need to start somewhere so I think this is awesome.
Speaking of Beyoncé and Britney, if you could recreate their famous gladiator commercial with Pink, who would be in it?
Ooh! Kanye! And let's think about this. Maybe Kehlani? Another up-and-coming female artist.
“It gets tough in the entertainment business where a lot of things are based off stunts, and ‘Who’s the most naked?’”
A big part of the platform is about the artists getting a chance to share their stories. Is it still tough to cut through the clutter?
Yeah, absolutely. Adding to that, they're putting you on such a massive platform and they're giving you the best form of a stage for an introduction to the world. They have such a big following and I do think it's incredible. I think it gets tough in the entertainment business where a lot of things are based off stunts, and "Who's the most naked?" and "Who's dating who?"—it's hard to break through all that noise. It's an amazing opportunity to really tell people who you are. I think if people feel that you're being real and honest, they connect to you. That's why I'm so excited for this and hopefully people connect my story.
The Sound Drop is all about highlighting new artists so I'm curious what acts have caught your eye.
I'm loving LP's "Lost on You." She's been around for awhile, but I love LP. The person I've been the most excited about is this DJ, his name is NEIKED, I'm obsessed. I had a trip to Europe and I heard this song called "Sexual" and I was like, "Oh my gosh." I think it's going to be massive in the U.S. too, it's too incredible. I'm too obsessed with his work. I love DVBBS and think they're really great. I also think Noah Cyrus is killing it too, I'm loving her new single. I think Noah Cyrus is really something to look forward and I can't wait to see what she does next.
This timing aligns nicely with the All Your Fault: Pt. 1 EP dropping on Feb. 17 and the tour kicking off at the top of next month. What can we expect?
I think people will be pleasantly surprised by the EP because it's so much more rhythmic. There's soul and R&B in it, I think that will be unexpected. I can't wait to perform and see how that vibe goes on the stage. I'm working with Adam Blackstone and Omar Edwards, they do a lot of Rihanna's stuff; they're just musical geniuses when they put the music together.
I'm working with Mike Carson, who directed Big Sean's performances and artwork, and we're doing our best to create a world and a vibe that can translate to any room. But I want it to be a show, I want it to feel big and I want it to feel special. This concert will be the first concert for a lot of kids so I want it to be something they won't forget. It'll be dope. I want it to be rhythmic and urban and hip-hop—everything New York and everything that's kind of made me who I am. That's my love for hip-hop, my love for dance and my love for my culture.
You've been killing it on the collaboration side too, "In the Name of Love" with Martin Garrix was huge, anything big you're workin on?
I've been working with David Guetta on his new album—he has some sick shit coming out, the new single is unbelievable. I'm not on the first single, but someone else really big is on it. It's amazing. His new shit is some next level, I don't know how he does it, it's so fucking good...other than that, collaboration-wise, I think it's going to be who's on my songs nowadays. I think "Fuck Fake Friends" with G-Eazy is going to be a pretty big one. People are freaking out over the video, I've been showing people in the industry and they're freaking out. I hope fans love it.
Don't miss Bebe on The Sound Drop and use #thesounddrop to join the conversation. Next, watch a revealing interview where Rexha explains to Fuse how she found her sound: