Good Quality Aloe Blacc Interview: Pop Star, Process Nerd, Watch Guy, Friend Of IWC Big Discount Replica Watches
Blacc’s association with IWC actually inspired his biggest hit to date, “Wake Me Up” – a worldwide #1 chart topper, both in the uplifting version made in collaboration with EDM superstar Avicii and the more acoustic, soulful take on Blacc’s latest solo album, 2014’s Lift Your Spirit. That triumph built on the success of Blacc’s breakthrough 2010 single, “I Need a Dollar,” which proved his first global smash.
Like “Wake Me Up,” “I Need a Dollar” scaled the pop charts in numerous countries, and became the theme song to the HBO show How to Make It in America. The song held universal appeal not only because it had infectiously catchy hooks, but because of its compelling message: it described a predicament that resonated with people and their everyday struggles – expressing something crucial and innate about life during recessionary times. A passionately soulful, bluesy economic lament, “I Need a Dollar” telegraphed the commitment and social consciousness that has come to define Blacc – both in his music and the wide range of philanthropic endeavors he’s currently involved with. Just this week, Blacc released a song, “Together,” to benefit global charities fighting AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis in conjunction with “SHARE THE SOUND OF AN AIDS FREE GENERATION” – a consciousness-and-fund-raising campaign created in partnership between beverage giant Coca-Cola and the socially responsible, Bono-founded, marketing/fund-raising juggernaut (Red) that also includes contributions from superstars like Avicii, Queen, and Wyclef.
In their nearly three-year association, Blacc and IWC have found numerous synergies in their mutually beneficial relationship. In fact, Blacc wrote his biggest hit “Wake Me Up” as a direct result of his association with IWC, inspired by a 2012 trip to Geneva as IWC’s guest to experience the annual Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie. Intriguingly, Blacc’s initial interest in IWC stemmed from the watch company’s commitment to socially and ecologically conscious altruism in its products and practices. In a candid exclusive conversation with aBlogToWatch – graciously hosted in the elegant confines of IWC’s Beverly Hills flagship boutique – Blacc details how he became a brand ambassador for one of watchdom’s most prestigious marques, and the effect it’s had on him – as not just a lover of elite watchmaking, but also as an artist, philanthropist, and global citizen. And oh yeah, we get to see his totally awesome collection of cream-of-the-crop IWC models… Read on, friends.
aBlogToWatch: So you made a pilgrimage to this tiny, isolated little town of Schaffhausen, Switzerland, in the middle of nowhere, where IWC is based and learned about these amazing things from them. But what did you teach them about your world – about music, about Hollywood?
Aloe Blacc: I did a festival in Schaffhausen, and there were many different energies – different artists and styles of music. For me, it was just an enjoyable experience to be able to share soul music amongst what everyone else was doing. And even beyond that, I found the watches to have soul, too. Working with the executives at IWC, and especially getting to know the CEO personally, I came to understand not just Georges’ love for quality in watches, but also in music and the arts. His son is a musician too – all of that really made the relationship even stronger. Having such a great relationship with the company and executives makes it that much more of a great experience. Since then, I’ve done events at film festivals that Iwc aquatimer iw3290 Replica works with throughout the world – Cannes, Beijing, Tribeca. For the launch of IWC’s flagship store in Rome, I performed at the top of a beautiful hotel right off the Spanish Steps.
aBlogToWatch: So are you going back to Geneva this coming January to represent Iwc aquatimer ref 816 Replica at the 25th anniversary of The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie?
Aloe Blacc: I’m still putting my calendar together for next year. I recently had a baby, and she really is the one who determines my schedule, so I’m not sure yet about SIHH. But Iwc aquatimer 18k Replica is a Grand Prix sponsor, so I’ll definitely be going to Monaco, along with some more film festivals; Dubai is probably next, and we may be going to Turkey. My wife is half Turkish, so we’ve made good friends with IWC’s Turkey office.
aBlogToWatch: I understand your biggest hit to date, “Wake Me Up,” was actually inspired by your relationship with IWC. What was the connection and inspiration?
Aloe Blacc: In 2013, I was invited as a guest of IWC to come to Geneva for the SIHH. And when you’re a guest of IWC, you’re treated like… rose gold. [laughs] So my wife and I stayed in a beautiful hotel, with drivers everywhere available to take us anywhere we wanted to go, anytime. And IWC flew us everywhere first class. You don’t know it until you fly first class, but there’s an entirely different process of checking in, going through security, an entirely different lounge. You don’t walk to the airplane: they drive you on the tarmac, straight to the door that leads to your seat. We really felt like we were being treated like royalty. Flying home, I sat in my seat and just thought, “This has to be a dream” – and immediately I wrote the words “wake me up when it’s all over.” That’s when I really began writing the song.
aBlogToWatch: It’s funny where inspiration comes from, isn’t it?
Aloe Blacc: I take inspiration from a lot of life experiences. Because I’m a singer, I want to connect to the human experience. With “Wake Me Up,” I wanted to communicate this first-class treatment in a completely relatable way that everybody could feel, without being overt and gaudy about it. It wasn’t taken for granted. I wrote it because, being there, I felt like I was living in a dream. This was a brand new experience – but one that comes from years of hard work and struggling as an artist.
aBlogToWatch: Life as a celebrity inherently involves discovering things that just aren’t within the reach of most people.
Aloe Blacc: There are hidden worlds in celebrity, and in the luxury world as well. Of course, they come with the barrier of entry, which is money. But it’s interesting: you find there are cultural differences even within the world of luxury. But living a life where you can enjoy the spoils and reap the rewards of your labors, that comes from finding the things that have the quality you think you deserve.
aBlogToWatch: So what was the first IWC model to make it to your wrist?
Aloe Blacc: The Laureus Ingenieur. I chose it because of its connection to charity: I was really excited that Iwc aquatimer price singapore Replica has a charity, and actually donates proceeds from the sale of the watches to it. They hold a competition where young kids submit drawings, and the winner has their design engraved on the back of the watch – I thought that made it really special.
aBlogToWatch: You’ve since acquired other IWC timepieces. Is there a particular focus to your collection?
Aloe Blacc: I just happen to love the Portuguese watches more than anything! [laughs] I’m trying to collect as many of them as possible. There’s the Perpetual Calendar, which I believe is white gold. I fell in love with the face, and I also wanted to have a watch that felt really big. And this is the Portuguese Tourbillon. [holds up his wrist] Again, I loved the visual interest of the face. I like just the right amount of gadgetry on the dial: the open face really drew me to it, and shows the craftsmanship that goes into making the watch.
aBlogToWatch: It’s amazingly intricate. It’s funny: tourbillons used to be hidden, and then around twenty years ago, they started exposing the mechanism on the dial. It was a really controversial thing to do at first, but then it became the standard. People wanted to see the tourbillon and what it does.
Aloe Blacc: I just enjoy seeing the intricate design of the inside movement as it keeps time. It’s just such a beautiful piece. I had an emotive response to it – from the way it looks, to how it’s never going to fall out of time. I find I just wear the Portuguese Tourbillon all the time. My Perpetual Calendar Dual Moonphase is still stuck in 2013 because haven’t been wearing it enough ever since I got the Tourbillon!
aBlogToWatch: It seems like a sport watch might be a natural place for your collection to go to next.
Aloe Blacc: I don’t have a sport watch yet. The Ingenieur is as sporty as I get; everything else is a dress watch. I thought about the racing watch, but I wasn’t sure. I don’t know if I have the right outfit for it! [laughs] And when I start yachting, I’ll think about getting a Yacht Club. Actually, I think the sportiest I’ll go is a pilot watch. In honor of my dad’s birthday, which is November 30th, I want to find a great way to surprise him. Therefore, I’ll probably gift him the Pilot Watches for Father and Son double edition – they’re really nice. Hopefully, one day I’ll have a son that I can leave my watches to. My Perpetual Calendar will be his one day; my wife has a few IWCs – a men’s Da Vinci and a Portuguese – that are definitely going to be heirlooms for my daughter! We’re quite nascent in our celebrity status, so my wife was completely awestruck by the price of these watches. But once we started to learn more about IWC’s production, development, and history, she completely understood it.