History of Music Videos

  • Bohemian Rhapsody

    Bohemian Rhapsody
    Some consider this Queen song as being the first 'proper' music video. Placed in the progressive rock genre, this video includes the iconic image of the 4 band members with shadowed faces. It is all performance based with lots of fades and fast jump cuts.
  • Thriller

    At 14 minutes long, this music video is narrative based with a group dance. John Landis (director) was inspired by 1950's horror films. The film co-stars playboy centre fold Ola Ray and has accidental music composed by Elmer Burnstein. It was MTV's first premiere video and was shown in the UK on channel 4. It made a profound affect on pop culture and was named 'a watershed for the music industry' and became the Guiness World Records most influential music video of all time (2006).
  • Radio Ga Ga

    Radio Ga Ga
    In contrast to Bohemian Rhapsody, this video uses lots of high key lighting and has a sci-fi narrative, including clips from the film Metropolis.
  • Take On Me

    There were originally 2 videos made for this song, the first was solely performance based. The second, directed by Steve Barron had a narrative and included pencil sketch animations and live action, with cutaways to performance clips. This video won 6 MTV video music awards (1986) including most experimental video. It was also one of the first videos to use any for of 'animation'. This video has influenced lots of newer videos, and was recreated on the TV programme Glee.
  • Sledge Hammer

    Sledge Hammer
    This Peter Gabriel video includes pixilation, claymation and stop motion animation, and comprises of a closeup of the singers face. The etras dancing at the end included his own daughters, the animators and the backup singers to the song. The video is ranked number 4 on the '100 greatest music videos ever' (1999). It has also been declared MTV's number one animated video of all time.
  • Firestarter

    This Prodigy music video (directed by Walter Stern) saw a different genre of music being bought into the music video industry, being electronic, rather than pop music. With a mixture of performance and narrative, the music video, which was filmed in an abandoned Underground tunnel, earned a lot of controversy. Filmed in black and white, the video is edgy and uses simple angles and editing but erratic movements. Some TV channels wouldn't allow it to be shown until after the watershed.
  • ...Baby One More Time

    ...Baby One More Time
    In the late 90's, more female artists started making music videos. Filmed in a school, this video features Britney wearing a risque school uniform. The original video was intended to attract a younger audience, but Britney wanted it to reflect the lives of her current audience. The video receved some backlash from secondary audience members (such as parents) for showing a 16 year olds midriff, and for it not being appropriate for her audience. It is performance based, featuring dance routines.
  • All About You (Charity videos)

    For comic relief, Mcfly released 2 music videos, one shot in Uganda, the other, featuring celebrities, set in a recording studio, the performance being interjected by comic moments of narrative. The song is the bands best selling single and has a gold status selling certification. Other songs, such as Amarillo, have had a charity music video made, as a light hearted way of showing which celebrities are involved in the campaigns, to raise awareness, as well as being an extra way to raise money.
  • Applause

    The pan shots and random jump cuts in this video, as well as the effects, and odd editing, show the advancement in technology since music videos first became part of main stream media. Supposedly, Gaga, like Michael Jackson, took inspiration from classic horror films, and silent movies. A dance number is included, showing Gaga wearing a black leather bra that looks like hands, whilst the dance routine kept the video high energy, she did receive less controversy than previous female artists did.
  • Wrecking Ball

    Using performance close-ups, Miley conveys the emotion in the lyric, but the video has cutaways to her naked, swinging on a wrecking ball. Like many videos involving provocative shots, this video had a lot of backlash, with people saying it was inappropriate for the artists previous image, and that it cast a negative view on women. Subsequent to this, the director, Terry Richardson released a directors cut on YouTube, which was just a long take of the close-up of Miley singing the song.
  • Elastic Heart

    Elastic Heart
    To create an air of mystery around her, Sia does not appear in her videos. Instead, reality TV star, Maddie Zeigler (Dance Moms) has done a dance routine in her videos. Co-directed by the artist herself this video (wearing a skin coloured leotard) she does a duet with Shia LaBeouf. The dancers are in a warehouse, but restricted to a giant bird cage. The video received critisism due to the implications of and adult and child dancing together however the video has got 641,382,516 views.