Andrew Goodwin's Theory
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  • 1. Andrew Goodwin’s Theory Andrew Goodwin identifies key features that distinguish music as a form: - Links between lyrics and visuals Voyeurism Voyeurism and the objectification of women Demands of the record label Intertextual references Visual is performance-based, narrative-based or concept-based
  • 2. Links between lyrics and visuals - The lyrics of the song are often represented through the images on the screen. - The images within the music video will usually do one of three things; illustrate, amplify or contradict the lyrics. - Often the visuals will illustrate or amplify the lyrics but sometimes they will directly contrast with the lyrics in order to reinforce the message of the song.
  • 3. Links between lyrics and visuals - Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris “We Found Love”: - The lyrics show a couple in an intense relationship with a background of urban deprivation, including estates, supermarkets and take away restaurants.
  • 4. Links between lyrics and visuals - The theory states that there is not only a link between the lyrics and the visuals, but also the music and the visuals. - This means the images and visuals on screen may be edited in time to the beat, the pace and the emotion of the song. - Again, the visuals do one of three things; illustrate, amplify or contradict the music. - For example, in Iggy Azalea “Bounce” sometimes, the editing is fast-paced and it’s almost flashing and this reflects the sound we hear.
  • 5. Voyeurism - Voyeurism is concerned with notions of looking. - In music videos there are often direct references to the idea of looking. - This is often shown with representations of mirrors, screens within screens, telescopes etc. - Handheld cameras are also a technique that can be used that gives the idea of looking.
  • 6. Voyeurism and the objectification of women - Women are particularly subjected to voyeuristic objectification in music videos. This helps increase the appeal of the video to men.
  • 7. Demand of the record label - The record label has a lot of control over the artist they sign and they can shape the representation of the star into what they think will sell the most music. - The record labels who sign up, produce, promote and market (i.e. spend a lot of money on) the artist and their music demand certain things to be included or to happen in the music video for that artist’s song. - The most common thing that the labels demand is that there has to be lots of close-ups of the artist. The reasoning behind this is it helps the audience know who the artist is and what they look like. It also help the audience notice and understand the singer’s star image and persona. - Female stars are commonly sexualised in the videos. Men are also portrayed in ways that will appeal to a female audience. For example, One Direction are always portrayed as fun-loving clean cut young men. I.e. they are not represented as “bad boys” because they are trying to appeal to quite a young female audience and the record label wants parents to approve of them so they will buy their female children One Direction merchandising.
  • 8. Intertextual References - Intertextual references are common now within music videos and the media in general. - Intertextuality means when a media text references another media text. - Katy Perry’s “Last Friday Night” video uses a lot of intertextual references to films including opening and closing credits, outtakes at the end, and teen movie characters and narrative.