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Thursday, September 27, 2012
Drew Brees talks new commercial, music

By Jared Zwerling
Special to ESPN.com

Drew Brees
Drew Brees will star in an upcoming Pepsi commercial that brings him back to his '80s musical roots.
It's been five years since Drew Brees experienced an 0-3 start, and that year the New Orleans Saints finished with their worst record in the Brees era (7-9) and missed the postseason.

Brees tells ESPN Playbook this year is different, as he's confident the Saints are soon "going to catch fire."

If the Pro Bowl quarterback can't make that happen on the field, he can still impress television audiences across the country in a few weeks.

Brees will be jammin' with one of the country's hottest bands in a TV spot developed between Pepsi and "The X Factor" starting Oct. 25. The identity of the musical group won't be revealed until the day the spot airs.

We caught up with Brees to talk about the Saints, the upcoming commercial, his musical interests, Bon Jovi and reality TV.

ESPN Playbook: Although it's been a rough beginning, there's a long season ahead. What do you think are the keys to turning it around?

Drew Brees: A lot of it is just toughening the process and staying the course, and knowing that if you do things the right way, good things can happen. We've got good guys and we've got good coaches and great schemes. We've just to continue to play our way and know that at some point, things are going to go our way and we're going to catch some breaks, get a hot streak and try to ride it as long as we can.

ESPN Playbook: When you guys are about to enter the Superdome, is there a collective motivation that you're playing for something more than football?

Yeah, there's no doubt. We always find little bits of motivation and inspiration throughout every season. Each year, it's a little different. Back in 2006 would be the year after the storm. That's when the bond was really strong between us and our fans, and it strengthened from there. We're just continuing to fight through and stay together and battle, and we just know our best is yet to come.

ESPN Playbook: By the way, I know you're one game away from tying Johnny Unitas' consecutive game streak with a TD. What are your thoughts on that?

It's a big deal, but I'm going to be trying to just focus on each game one at a time. The most important thing is to find a way to win those games, and if the record's falling at the same time, then that's great. To even be in the same realm, to be even close, is awesome.

Drew Brees
Drew Brees admits he doesn't have much musical ability, but he jams in an upcoming commercial.
ESPN Playbook: Let's talk about your latest Pepsi commercial. How did the opportunity come about?

I've been partnered with Pepsi for a long time. They've obviously been a great supporter of my foundation, so that means a lot to me. I'm also a huge fan of Pepsi. It's always worked out that way. I think the opportunity to work with the band in a commercial shoot just a few weeks ago was really, really cool. I know the craze for the group and kind of how they came together, and how they're kind of taking over America by storm now. It's kind of like the Beatles 40 or 50 years ago. They've got such a huge following. I can't say I listen to a bunch of their songs or anything prior to meeting them, but honestly after meeting them and getting a chance to just kind of hang out for a few hours during the shoot, it was awesome. Actually, technically, I was part of the band for a short period of time. I actually got to hear their new hit single and actually sing it with them. They're a lot of fun to be around and obviously they're extremely popular. It was just a lot of fun to do.

ESPN Playbook: Part of the band, huh? Can you play a little bit?

I've always been, for some reason, an 80s fan. I love the 80s genre. It's funny because I come in the weight room every morning during the season and we've got Sirius Satellite Radio on, and I immediately turn on 80s. So anybody who walks in the weight room knows it's me because they hear 80s playing. It's pretty funny. I always tell people I was kind of brought up in the wrong decade. I was a decade too late. I was born in '79, so really my high school years, my rebellious years, were in the 90s. But I was always an 80s guy.

ESPN Playbook: Who are your favorite artists from the 80s?

Oh, man. Just crazy stuff. A lot of the one-hit wonders, but if Billy Idol comes on or Bon Jovi, I know those songs. But there's a ton. Honestly, that's why I like listening to 80s. I'll honest with you, most of the songs I've probably heard a thousand times, but I would still struggle about which group it is and the year. I just know the sound and I can certainly pick it out whenever it plays.

ESPN Playbook: So I gotta ask: Let's say you're with some of the fellas at a karaoke bar. Are you singing?

I can get up there and rock out a little bit, for sure. Probably a Bon Jovi song.

ESPN Playbook: Ever dressed as Bon Jovi for Halloween?

I actually went as a punk rocker on probably about five different occasions.

ESPN Playbook: Do you have a favorite pregame song for superstition or getting you amped up?

I'm really a fan of all kinds of music, so I feel like depending on my mood, I'll listen to whatever. In our pregame locker room, there are guys playing stuff, but I don't really have anything in particular that I listen to, or that's a superstition or tradition. Whatever is rocking in the stadium, I've got my thought process and kind of the stuff I'm thinking about. It just kind of gets me in the zone.

ESPN Playbook: So are you a fan of "The X Factor"?

You know what, I'll be honest: I don't have a chance to watch a lot of TV. But I know that's a huge craze, like "The Voice," of course "Idol," "America's Got Talent." I have flipped through those shows because there are so many people that are talented in that way. For me, somebody who's got very little musical ability, you admire what people are able to do.

ESPN Playbook: Do you think you have an off-the-field talent that would fare well on a reality show?

Well, I won a spelling bee when I was in fourth grade. Maybe if I studied really hard, I could compete in the spelling bee.

ESPN Playbook: I know ESPN airs the Scripps National Spelling Bee, so maybe we'll make that happen sometime.

Those 13-year-old kids would crush me. I won the fourth-grade spelling bee by spelling rhinoceros. I remember the word and everything.