If there's one kind of branding opportunity that hasn't gone unfulfilled, it's the musical beverage. It seems any rock star worth their weight in fame has looked to expand their tour rider with a brand they can literally call their own. While the rap world seems to have taken 'launch energy drink' as part of their mission statement, slapping their name across all manner of bizarre cocktails. From the rich depths of a palate-tingling merlot, to the shallow depths of an empty pint tumbler - we take you through the weird and wonderful world of music-branded beverages.
KISS: Destroyer Beer & Zin Fire Wine Just in case anyone was unfamiliar with the classic rock elders, they now have personalised beer and wine to promote themselves. Their Destroyer Beer boasts to be made in the best German tradition, and their wine is described as, ‘a bold and fruity California Zinfandel’. Who would have thought KISS would extend their branding to beverages? Oh right... everyone.
AC/DC: Wine Range In 2011, AC/DC teamed with Australian winery Warburn Estate to begin their personalised wine range. Crowbarring their song titles into names such as Back in Black Shiraz, Highway to Hell Cabernet Sauvignon and You Shook Me All Night Long Moscato,. The band said, “for us it was a no-brainer…,” that’s not hard to believe.
Motörhead: Bastard Lager It goes hand in hand – become a successful musician, release a beer. This year, the heavy rock forefathers released their Bastard Lager in conjunction with Swedish brewery Krönleins. They decided to create their own lager after their Motörhead Shiraz was well received – selling 250, 000 bottles.
Bob Marley: Marley's Mellow Mood The reggae legend's family partnered with a beverage company in 2011, to create this line of 'drink relaxants' to be sold throughout the UK. They are said to be composed of 100% natural ingredients, designed to, "reduce stress and relieve tension, while calming the soul and easing the mind." There's no mention of spinning graves on the label though...
Dr. Dre: Aftermath Cognac Ironically, Dre launched his own Cognac, called Aftermath, around the same time as his record Detox. The iconic rapper/producer teamed with Drinks Americas [sic], and was said to be releasing sparkling vodka and spirits as well.
Elbow: Build A Rocket Boys! Beer The Mercury Music Award-winning quintet named their ale after their latest album. This limited edition beverage was launched at the Manchester Food and Drink festival in October 2011; with the band now directing it straight to the venues, to be sold at Robinsons pubs across Great Britain.
Tool: Caduceus Cellars The band's frontman, Maynard James Keenan thought ‘why buy wine when you can buy a winery!’ Keenan now owns Caduceus Cellars, in Arizona, US. But wait, there’s more… he had to put a Tool twist on his new hobby, naming the vineyard Merkin Vineyards.
Motley Crüe: Vince Vineyards The hair metal band's crooner, Vince Neil, established his own wine label after purchasing a vineyard in 2003, simply giving it the plain name of Vince Vineyards. Not exactly the kind of rock n' roll name we'd expect from one of the 80s foulest acts...
Insane Clown Posse: Spazmatic Energy Drink Need we say more? Described in the duo's own words as a "frothy, freaky, frosty, refreshing energy freshness can of shazam!" ICP's Spazmatic 'Energy Sauce' is the Juggalo drink of choice, with the hip-hop act known for spraying their adoring fans with cans of the stuff during concerts. Ewwww.
Craig Finn: Clear Heart Beer The Hold Steady frontman created Clear Heart beer in conjunction with his record Clear Heart Full Eyes. Complete with emblazoning the bottle with its cover artwork. Probably the most stylish, and sensible, beverage made by a musician.
Lil' Jon: Little Jonathan Wine & Crunk!!! It seems lots of musicians end up relaxing offstage with a bit of vino, and the self-styled 'King of Crunk' is no different. Little Jonathon Winery is the business of rapper Lil' Jon. He made it clear that this was an experimental venture, “I’m not no ‘drink wine every day’ kind of dude... I’m not like an expert, so don’t ask me no questions... I just like the taste.” The rapper also has his own line of energy drinks called, you guessed it, Crunk!!!
Marilyn Manson: Absinthe Mansinthe Probably the best name for a musician-endorsed alcohol, shlock jock rocker Manson first created his award-winning liquer Absinthe Mansinthe in 2007. Fun fact: it's made in Switzerland and is naturally coloured green.
Van Halen: Cabo Wabo Tequila In 1996, ex-Van Halen singer, Sammy Hagar went into business with a family of tequila producers. The official website boasts that Cabo Wabo has won numerous awards for its quality. The label consists of four different types of tequila. Maybe distilling was Hagar's calling all along?
Willie Nelson: Old Whiskey River Bourbon Fittingly named after the country veteran's regular concert-opener, Old Whiskey River Bourbon, is described as "smokey, smooth, sweet and mellow." There’s even a bonus guitar pick on every bottle.
Snoop Dogg: Colt .45 Blast What kind of self-respecting rap mogul would the Doggfather be without his own line of alcopops? The 'flavoured malt' line - available in four flavours - also came complete with a controversial ad featuring Snoop and a bevy of ladies. He's been happily endorsing the beverage in press and song (see "Boom") since.
Professor Green: Remedy Beer In another case of cheeky cross-promotion, the English MC labelled his beer Remedy after his single of the same name. Green teamed up with Signature Brew and spent two months in beer tastings to create the perfect drink (tough work!). The beer even has its own website, with a video of how they went about brewing it.
Nelly: Pimp Juice Nelly decided everyone needs a bit of pimpin’, so in 2003 he released Nelly’s Pimp Juice. Not just your usual energy drink, it claims healthy ingredients such as apple juice and numerous vitamins. The beverage was another one in a long list of the rapper entrepreneur's products; which include Vokal men's clothing line, the Apple Bottoms women's line, record label Derrty Entertainment and even part ownership of a NASCAR team.
Pharrell Williams: Qream With A 'Q' Liquer Pharrell's latest venture is catering just for the women, with a touch of indulgence. "When we looked at the market, there were all these alcohol brands that use women in their ads but nothing specifically for them… that's what we created Qream for. We're bringing indulgence back to the ladies," said the N*E*R*D* man. Available in two varieties, Strawberry Crème and Peach Crème.
Ice T: Liquid Ice Energy Drink Launched in partnership with his business brand, Multimedia Inc., the rapper eventually pulled backing from the drink; filled with guarana and "exotic energy additives." It's probably got the worst packaging of any on this list, with its awful 90s style colour-clash.
Hanson: MMMHop Beer Sorry Marilyn Manson, but this will be the new best-named musical beverage. This year, the pop sensations are rumoured to be launching an Indian Pale Ale named after their biggest teen hit. Trying to point out they are not about the profit, the Hanson bros. stated, “We have a board game and even a record player to play our last record on, but we will never make dolls, lunch boxes or toothbrushes that play our songs, for example. It's vital our fans have trust in everything Hanson do…” Hmmm, are you convinced?
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