Russell Simmons-owned hip-hop culture studio AllDefDigital (ADD) has locked a co-production deal with music-video streaming service Spotify for “Traffic Jams” — a new reality series that pairs an artist with a producer for the shared mission of producing a song while stuck in traffic.
Comedian, DoBoy, aka Fat Drake, hosts the series as the driver of the SUV and emcee of the conversation while the artists dive into the intimacies of life and hone creative inspiration for a new original track. The eight-episode series will premiere on April 4th with weekly episodes aiting on Tuesdays on Spotify.
“‘Traffic Jams’ is an exciting new premium series that shows off true talent — recording artists and producers — and their ingenuity, creativity and personalities. It has improvisation, it has performances, and I’m pretty sure it will spawn a few new hits too — it’s amazing and Spotify is the perfect platform for it,” said ADD co-founder Russell Simmons.
Starring well-known hip hop artists like T-Pain, D.R.A.M, Joey Bada$$, and E-40, the series fits well with Spotify’s programming agenda — finding music-driven formats that inspire viewers to “watch”, not just “listen” to Spotify.
“Our audience loves hip hop and with “Traffic Jams” we want to give them a deeper understanding of the artists and the creative process behind the music,” said Tom Calderone, Spotify Studios global head, who will also take an Executive Producer credit alongside Jim Fraenkel for Spotify and Sydney Kim and Amir Abbassy for ADD.
And, drive-time based formats have certainly been on trend. From Jerry Seinfeld’s “Comedians in Cars” to James Corden’s “Carpool Karaoke” and Lyft’s “Undercover Lyft”, the candid-camera-style reality series pay homage to television including 90’s HBO original and breakout hit “Taxicab Confessions.”
“We are so excited about the artists and producers featured, from big acts to breaking talent,” added Sanjay Sharma, President and Chief Executive Officer, All Def Digital. “Our collective audience of millions of hip hop fans — who are mobile-first, millennial and multi-racial — will love the show.”