Music Television

Music videos were created long before MTV started playing them in the 1980’s. Originally they were made to show meaning to a song. To give a clear meaning on what the artist was trying to compose and not leave it up to the listener for their interpretation. The artist would have a clear cut message as to what the songs and lyrics where about and they wanted to make sure their listener understood that. The idea of Music Television was not a hit right away. MTV is considered the first series of music television stations. It released on August 1st 1981 at 1201 AM with the words Ladies and Gentlemen lets rock and roll which was followed by the MTV theme song being played over the apollo 11 montage which is where MTV got its signature moon man. This was suppose to signify a revolution in American history a very important time for music. The first song ever played was the ” Video Killed the Radio Star ” by the Buggles. The station consisted of hours upon hours of music videos hosted by VJ (Video Jockeys). This theme soared as MTV became extremely popular through the younger generation and revolutionized pop culture. Many producers noticed this right away cashed in on it. Every mega star with any hit song made a video. Videos became evolved into short movies as in the Michael Jackson thriller videos, they were parody tributes and montages. They all told a story and helped explain the artist. The point was promotion for the producer and the label to promote the artist and the song to get it out there for more people to hear to make more money. Lets face it no matter what it comes down to it is a business. Due to the many different styles of music VH1 BET and down south television had country music channels playing their videos all the time. Many shows that showed music videos such as TRL, 106 and Park and Start UP became extremely popular and made VJs celebrities. Although times have changed and these stations have switched over to the new fad reality TV music videos are still being made and used for promotion. There still in music television. Direct Tv and Verizon Fios have music channels that cater to different genres and generations of music. You see more and more households and business this use these stations for events because it is music 24/7. Music television evolved and has and changed many times since the beginning in the early 80s

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43 Responses to “Music Television”

  1. karina Says:

    Lovely read. Isn’t it interesting how entrepreneurs find a business in almost anything? Goodman explains that pop was a visual performance. This indeed helped in promoting the artist’s persona in contrast to earlier era’s that relied on live performances to frame them.

    I remember when I was 12 or so, being a huge fan of TRL, and 106 & Park. However I no longer dedicate the time to watching the visual narrative of songs. TV music videos may still be used for promoting the artist, but how effective do you think this is (in terms of 106 & Park)?

    I guess when one considers the popularity of sites like YouTube, and the multimedia sharing involved in social network sites like Facebook, the onus is placed on visual performance/creativity for success. In these cases, music videos are effective, but I think shows dedicated to music videos are dead.

    You mentioned reality TV music videos- I’ve never heard of this. The concept sounds great, since its all about reality on TV. Tell me more!

    Great Post! =)

  2. Ryan Says:

    I enjoyed reading this blog. I however did not watch TRL,never cared for it since all they did was air the same videos repetitively. I grew up watching Mtv,VH1, and Headbangers ball which was a seperate music video program that aired on Mtv Saturday nights in the early to mid 90’s. It’s really all about marketing to a different range of audiences. In this case, t.v. people who didn’t go to record stores to check out new material on a regular basis. This target audience relied on music videos to come on to inform them that a new track or album is hitting stores. Nowadays I really see no need for Mtv anymore, since it is flooded with reality shows. Although I love youtube, and other sites where I can find music videos, its a real shame that Mtv has degraded itself to something truly unwatchable. This used to be a channel I couldn’t wait to zone into.

  3. plcest89 Says:

    I honestly don’t blame MTV for switching to reality television. In my history of broadcasting class this semester, I learned that MTV used to get videos for free from record companies and they played them by being advertiser supported. They would have music videos being played all day long counting down to the most popular videos. Once YouTube and other music channels emerged, MTV lost their audience. If I am in the mood of hearing a Linkin Park song, why would I watch MTV all day to hopefully see if its on? Why wouldnt I just type in Linkin Park into YouTube or any other music site? Once the audience was gone, MTV needed to move towards reality shows which are the cheapest shows to make. Not that I am a fan of reality tv, but I completely understand the need for MTV to turn towards reality tv in order to stay afloat.

  4. theblog Says:

    I’m honestly kind of disappointed in MTV i grew up watching MTV and music videos and now all of a sudden its all reality shows. I mean dont get me wrong the reality shows are entertaining and all but where is the MUSIC part of Music Television. They need to get back to how they started.

  5. williamdabney Says:

    MTV is the epic music channel. Its kind of funny that people don’t think that MTV doesn’t show music videos but they do its during the day early in the morning around 6am. With reality tv shows I think it was a great idea to do it because their ratings sky rocket because they stay with a new hot show.

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