Mudcat Café message #2666112 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #121876   Message #2666112
Posted By: Azizi
27-Jun-09 - 05:45 PM
Thread Name: Michael Jackson's Impact On Music Videos
Subject: RE: Michael Jackson's Impact On Music Videos
Thanks to all who have posted to this thread thus far.


Here's another excerpt of an online article that I found on the subject of music videos:

Wednesday, August 1,2007

Official History of Music Video
Making the personal official at 'Scanners'
By Armond White

..."When a music video strikes a nerve, it gives pop listeners a rare chance to interpret a song visually. And these ready-made mental pictures that came across on the TV screen could powerfully influence our own imaginings. Viewers learned how to dance, dress, flirt and dream. Music videos created a large audience responding to the same visual ideas the way moviegoers do, but now as a supplement to the special meanings and rhythms that the different styles of popular music offered to its various tribes. The videos helped people articulate their own tentative feelings...

The popularity of music video derived from the new thrill of putting imagery to music, the surprise of making graphics out of the beat. Because this form of entertainment can be so intense and so personal, its appeal has lasted beyond the dictates of TV-programmers. The form thrives even through periods when the record labels are uninspired or simply following formula...

By looking at personal reactions to music video, it becomes possible to understand how music videos gain significance in spite of the mainstream media's indifference.

The past decades of music video, whether seen on TV, in clubs or on the Internet, have presented numerous art works expressing the street life and fantasy lives of modern sub-cultures. The experiences and enticements vary, whether one responds to urban drama (Suzanne Vega's "Luka," Naughty By Nature's "Everything's Gonna Be Alright"), girl power (Salt-N-Pepa's "Whatta Man," Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun"), money (Mase's "Feel So Good," Jay-Z's "Big Pimpin"), patriotism (Kenny Chesney's "Who You'd Be Today," John Mellancamp's "Pink Houses"), dancing (Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal," Fatboy Slim's "Weapon of Choice"), adolescent nostalgia (Smashing Pumpkins' "1969," Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher"), flamboyant narcissism (Beyonce's "Check On It," Right Said Fred's "I'm Too Sexy") or just plain astonishing graphic ingenuity (The White Stripes' "Fell in Love with a Girl," REM's "Imitation of Life," U2's "Mysterious Ways")...

A Hollywood story also validates music videos as an important pop form. The clips designed to simply provide ecstatic entertainment were the unique product of mini-moviemakers who may not have had talent for the long-form established by the great directors of Hollywood-movie musicals but who ushered that same ecstasy into a new, condensed medium.

Inspired by Michael Jackson, Madonna, David Bowie and Bjork, recording artists who connected to movie-musicals and contemporary pop graphics, such directors as Jean-Baptiste Mondino, Michel Gondry, Jean-Paul Goude, Mark Romanek, Marcus Nispel, Spike Jonze and Ben Stokes created music videos that highlighted the beauty of dance and heartfelt singing. It's a gift that today's film directors are inured to. Recent movie-musicals—from the hellish Moulin Rouge and Chicago to the inept Dreamgirls and The Producers—merely borrow the banal frenzy of TV-commercial editing and off-balance compositions; these are insipid attempts at making movie-musicals seem modern.

But the auteurs of music video (whose names deserve to hyphenate the performers credited above) have demonstrated the talent to preserve the Vincente Minnelli, Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen, George Sidney virtues and connect them to the innovations of Kenneth Anger's Scorpio Rising, that Richard Lester devised in A Hard Day's Night and that Ken Russell heightened in the great, delirious Tommy. These new music-video directors have sensibilities that connect to pop-star iconography and use it to feature the outward expression of pop stars' personal fantasies, and these fantasies, in turn, connect with the public's individual desires.

Music videos prove that despite the proliferation of polls and lists and award shows (namely, MTV's laughable VMAs), the official history of any art form must be a private one."