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Music Videos Why do you like the Music Video? Favorite Music Video?
Music Videos C1900 Edison invents gramophone – Live music is recorded on discs. 1927 First sound film “The Jazz Singer” 1930s Creation of Musicals 1939 Introduction of Panarom 1940s Golden Age of Hollywood Musicals 1950s & 1960s Several artists and performers did live gigs on TV programs – Top of The Pops, The Monkees’ TV show, The Beatles released movie. History
Music Videos 1975 Queen: Bohemian Rhapsody 1977 Saturday Night Fever 1980 David Bowie: Ashes to Ashes 1981 Pop Clips on Nickelodeon MTV begins broadcast via Warner satelite 1983 Michael Jackson: Thriller 1984 Music Box begins in Europe MTV Video Music Awards launched 1985 VH1 begins MTV taken over by Viacom 1987 MTV-Europe begins History
Music Videos The close relationship of music tracks & visual material can be traced back to 1920s (Germany) & 1930s (USA) in Oscar Fischinger’s abstract symchronizations & visual interpretations. At the end of his works, “Get it at your local record store” was displayed suggesting advertising for the music track just heard by audience History
Music Videos Short films (8-10min) were made to shocase the musical talents of artists such as Billie Holiday & Bing Crosby at cinema screenings as part of newsreels and main features The invention of Panarom – a video jukebox placed at bars and juke joints. Weighed about 2 tons, contains 20-inch screen with back projection, each machine played a reel of 8 16mm shorts. Popular from 1939 – 1946. History
Music Videos 1960s Scopitone was created in France. Each machine showed 36 “play & rewind” short films in color and allowed consumer choice by selection. These films comprised of song & dance performances with high level of female display. Machine was very successful and by 1965, 1000 machines were installed in USA. Lots of close ups of covered female parts dominated these films. Frequently bordering into pornography, these films prefigured the overt sexual display of contemporary music videos currently on TV. History
Music Videos As times changed, Scopitone was unable to cope with the changing tastes of youth. By late 1960s, Scopitone produced short films mainly of pop artists, and reached a different audience. Competition of TV also proved too great and the Scopitone died out. Music Television came about as an idea to create promo-based program for Nickelodeon (Pop Clips). British groups had frequent airplay due to the lack of material from the American acts. History
Music Videos Growth of MTV was rapid when American artists realised the marketing potential of music videos. Run DMC & Aerosmith’s Walk This Way & humour of works by MC Hammer & Coolio marked significance to the acceptance of rap and became eligible for bigger budgets. Hype Williams made high budget videos for successful acts such as TLC, R Kelly & Missy Elliot, generating record sales and led hip hop to replace rock as the dominant music form. Madonna set the route for future female acts with her high profile & innovative music videos that emphasized on image, performance, choreography and use of close ups. History
VH1 began in 1985, targeting older audience. MTV-Europe began in 1987, bringing in bigger demography and eventually opening up the rock video market to include other music genres. MTV diversified and included lifestyle programming such as Unplugged & The Real World. Increased sales generated via Unplugged and popular culture and diversified entertainment also made way for non-white music videos. The success of MTV as the leading innovative TV programming for youths made image as the key factor in artist promotion and by late 1980s, music promo video was a prerequisite in the promotion of music singles.
Key aesthetic features of music video
Relationship between lyrics & visuals
Relationship between music & visuals
Particular music video style & iconography for specific music genres – live performance for rock videos
Close ups of main artist or vocalists
Artist’s star iconography becomes the star image
Reference to voyeurism usually for women and in terms of system of looking (binoculars, cameras, screens with screens)
Intertextual references of other music videos, films or TV text.
Relationship between narrative & performance can also
be considered as an aesthetic feature.
Forms & Conventions
Music Videos Key elements of music video Lyrics – suggests general mood or feeling or sense of subject matter. Key lines play a part in the visuals but music video, rarely, illustrates the lyrics as a whole. Music – gives the tempo that drives the editing or editing may emphasize particular sounds from track, i.e., guitar, keyboard or drums. Genre – following the mise-en-scene, themes, performance, camera and editing styles of present music videos, i.e., live performance on rock videos Forms & Conventions
Music Videos Key elements of music video Camerawork – mise-en-shot is crucial to establish the sense of space and feeling. Camera works to follow artists or talents. CU and lighting are crucial for music video (due to its advertising quality) Editing – most common editing is fast-cut montage. Others use slow-paced editing to establish mood, usually for solo artists with a broad audience appeal (e.g. Dido & Celine Dion). Digital effects are also common, i.e., split screens, colorisation and CGI. Intertextuality – drawing references from other texts sparks audiences’ recognition to encourage greater pleasure and flatter. Cinema, fashion & art are key reference points. Video games are fast becoming references. Forms & Conventions
Key elements of music video
Narrative & performance
Narrative in songs are often fragmented, thus storylines or linear complex fragments are usually found in music promos, giving audiences the desire to watch the videos again.
Representations are often found in music videos such as
Voyeurism – enjoying looking at subjects
Exhibitionism – subject wants to be looked at
– Image, vehicle (promo) & power (economical/artistic)