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Groove Armada sign 'record deal' with Bacardi

LONDON - Groove Armada have become the latest pop act to break out of the record company mould by signing a one-year music deal with alcoholic drinks firm Bacardi-Martini.

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The British dance music duo, who recently parted ways with Sony BMG's Jive Records label, will release music via the Bacardi brand and play live at Barcardi-branded events. As part of the recording contract, the first involving a band and a drinks brand, Bacardi will fund the production of a four-track EP, which will be released digitally and in hard-copy format.

The agreement also allows Bacardi to commission tracks for use in advertising and other promotional campaigns.

For Bacardi, the deal is a close fit with its two-year old B-Live project, a series of live streamed dance music events that the drinks brand has hosted in more than 25 countries across the globe. Groove Armada are due to play at a number of these over the coming year.

Andy Cato, one half of Groove Armada, said: "After Groove Armada's 10th anniversary year of huge gigs, we were looking for ways to take things to another level. Working alongside Bacardi we have the chance to take the GA travelling show to new people and places, find innovative ways of getting our music out there and keep the stories flowing for the GA Road Movie with Bacardi B-Live."

Groove Armada are no strangers to licensing their music for use in marketing -- their track 'I See You Baby' was used to promote the Renault Megane in a long-running TV campaign.

The ad was been banned from being shown when children were watching TV after complaints that some were copying the language and the ad's bum wiggling.

Bacardi's marketing strategy is particularly focused on attracting young consumers through its involvement in music. For example, it has a heavy presence at UK music festivals, hosting a B-Live Arena at the V Festival and T in The Park.

Groove Armada's deal with Bacardi is the latest in a growing trend in which bands are eschewing traditional ways of releasing music.

Most famously last October, Radiohead let punters pay as little or as much as they wanted for the release of studio album 'In Rainbows'. Just days before the Radiohead news broke, The Charlatans announced that they were to give away their forthcoming album 'You Cross My Path' as a free download in a deal with Xfm; and, in July, Prince sparked a major row with retailer HMV when he gave away his latest album 'Planet Earth' with The Mail on Sunday.

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