Music Videos• Music videos are short films which integrate songs and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Nowadays, music videos are predominantly made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of the song/ artist.• Music videos use a wide range of styles of film making techniques, including animation, live action filming, documentaries, and non-narrative approaches such as abstract film. Some music videos blend different styles, such as animation and live action. Other music videos may be without a set concept, being merely a filmed version of the songs live performance.
What is the purpose of a music video?• In modern day, the main purpose of a music video is to promote the song (and sometimes to give a moral or political message.) Other purposes and ways they promote the songs they feature include:- To make the song more memorable; and therefore encourage people to remember it, making them more likely to buy it.- To give the reader a better understanding of the song (Ed Sheeran’s ‘A Team’ is a good example of this – the video tells the story of a girl addicted to heroin.)- To entertain or show off other talents/ arts such as dance.- To show on music channels (such as Kerrang! And MTV) when they play the artist’s song.• However, although there are many purposes of music videos, many people still argue that the main (and some say only) purpose is promotional, and for the artist/ label to make more money.
What are the conventions of a music video?• Usually, the codes and conventions of a music video depend upon the genre of music; however, there are some more general conventions that apply to most music videos.- Lip syncing to the song- Visual representations of the lyrics with shots of the band/ artist- Editing/ mise en scene that resembles the video
Lip syncing• Lip syncing is the one thing found in basically all music videos.• It’s usually edited between clips of representations of the lyrics.• Lip syncing is vital as it is what connects the video to the song.
Visual representations of the lyrics• The lyrics in the song usually influence what is presented in the music video, for example: (This often includes a story or characters)
Editing• As all songs contain a beat, almost always the pace of the editing will replicate this.• For example if a song was very slow paced and sad it would look ridiculous is it had fast paced editing and vice -versa.• The pace of the editing helps to reflect the mood of the video/ song.• For example:
Camera angles• Shots: Music videos tend to consist of many long shots, and establishing shots, as well as close ups and mid shots of the artists. Close ups are generally used to show - in more detail – the emotions of the artist or the characters involved. Close ups are also used just to present the importance/ fame of the artist. Mid shots are often used on female artists or ones with more sex appeal if they are in revealing outfits.• Movement: Camera movement almost constantly tracks the artists or characters throughout the video.
Mise en Scene• The mise en scene within the video, like the editing, always reflects the lyrics and meaning of the song.• For example if Katy Perry’s ‘I kissed a girl’ music video showed shots of a funeral directors, with coffins and people clothed in black, it would look completely outrageous.• Instead it consists of pink bedding and props (representing femininity,) flowers and feminine costumes.
Types of music video• There are three main types of music video:- Performance based: These are videos that consist mostly – if not entirely – of the artist or band lip syncing. These videos are the cheapest and easiest to make as they involve no actors, and less set, editing and mise en scene than the other two types.- Narrative based: These usually involve a story or series of events that the lyrics could be based on. These usually involve actors/ characters and the narrative is usually edited between shots of the artist lip syncing.- Concept based: These are music videos based wholly on a single concept or idea. The are usually quite weird or ‘artistic.’ Sometimes they have no obvious connection to the lyrics and can be quite random.