Back in 1983 and early 1984, after moving to our first house, we used to watch television on this old Zenith tv set that sat on a wheeled cart, and displayed a whole thirteen channels. In 1984, there were two major events:
- We took a road trip to Florida. In Florida, I saw my first MTV music video — Michael Jackson’s Thriller.
- My parents subscribed to Cablevison;s cable tv. With that, we got a a whole bunch of channels (and HBO.)
It was the 80’s, so lots of people were getting into cable television. It was interesting. HBO, MTV, Nickelodeon, CNN –all the classic pioneering networks. Do you remember how MTV evolved over the course of the 80’s? The veejays, the fun and cool music videos, the performances, and the award shows. There was nothing for me like coming home after school and watching kids shows on Nickelodeon and music videos on MTV. Music videos rose in the 1980’s, and they were so huge. I still remember getting an A for writing a term paper in 1993 on the history and influence of MTV.
Nothing lasts forever. Nowadays, MTV rarely shows music videos. Turns out, it’s the same with VH1 and BET. Heck, MTV announced they removed the words “Music Television” from their iconic logo. I was reading this article on CNN, Who killed the music video star? Times have changed, and the music video is no longer “it”. You can still watch them on Youtube, but artists don’t have to make on.
Music videos were the soundtrack of popular culture, but over time, a younger generation demanded us to evolve.
I haven’t watched MTV in a long time, nor do I have time to watch music videos. I think what surprises me the most is that an art form as monumental as the music video came and passed into near obsolesence during my lifetime. I’m 34 later this month. I grew up on MTV. I’m a child of the 80’s. I’ve grown up and the music video is nearly dead. How strange.