Today, August 1st marks the 30th anniversary of Music Television. .
And though they probably didn’t know it at the time, Dire Straits, perhaps made the best case for the enduring art form of the music video, albeit in an ironic way! The timeless and award-winning video for “Money For Nothing,” a tongue-and-cheek anti-anthem featuring an overheard conversation between two appliance delivery dudes complaining about the looks over substance of video pop stars of the day, showed what imagination and technology can do with a song’s lyrics. Literal, in this case, but sometimes abstract, music videos told stories and brought out emotions that words and music couldn’t alone do (Sinead O’Connor’s “Nothing Compares to You”).
Of coure, a lot of MTV’s groundbreaking spirit (introducing U.S. listeners to Brit artists like Duran Duran, Squeeze, Madness, and Graham Parker, marrying music to cinematic masterpieces- Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”) eventually devolved into today’s lineup of nothing but reality shows.
But, for what it’s worth, today, we pay homage to Martha Quinn, the late J.J Jackson, Alan Hunter, Nina Blackwood, and Mark Goodman and the almost innocent era they helped usher in.