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The History Of Music Videos
Transcript of The History Of Music Videos
Music videos are short films which integrate song
and imagery and are usually created for
promotional or artistic purposes however, modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device. The History Of Music Videos It is believed that Bessie Smith, a blues singer, appeared in a two- reel short film called 'Saint Louis Blues' in 1929, thus becoming the first artist with a music video.
The 'music video' was a dramatized performance of the hit song and was in theaters until 1932. How do audiences access music videos and where can they be seen?
The earliest music videos or music promos were filmed in the mid 1950’s,
however, before then, as early as the 1920's, films by animators
which were accompanied by musical scores were labeled ‘visual music’. In today's world, music videos are accessed mostly through the use of YouTube, a video sharing website. Music videos are uploaded daily onto YouTube and can be viewed on demand, often in exceptional definition which makes it an obvious choice for consumers.
Vevo, another video sharing website, however it only shows official music videos or covers/remixes. It is now working with YouTube and is another way to view music videos in very high quality, on demand. Another extremely popular means of accessing music videos is through T.V. channels such as MTV and Chart Show TV. They provide people with a chance to see the latest music videos and new artists. Social Networking is also a growing means to be able to see or be made aware of the latest music videos as people share links with their 'friends' or 'followers' when they like a video or want to share their opinion with it with the people they actually know. The main aim of a music video for the artist or record company is usually to make profit, however, they can also be used to establish new artists or create publicity for the artist. What is the purpose of a music video for the companies/artist? The conventions of a music video depend on the genre of the music at hand. Conventions of music videos For example, some of the conventions of a rock video would be:
narrative and/or performance based
dark locations used
band logo reinforced
black costume and piercings
extreme long shots and long shots are popular or some of the conventions found in pop videos may include:
• Bright colors
• Close ups which emphasize the cheerful and upbeat emotions of the artist or dancers/actors
• Extreme close ups – these tend to show the purity and innocence in the personality of the artists
• Aims at the teenage audience
Usually upbeat and fast paced Different types of music videos:
Performance-where the band or the music artist is playing the song throughout the video.
Narrative-where the song involves a narrative and so, the words and meaning of the song is acted out in some way.
Mixture-Where there is the musician playing as well as a narrative storyline occurring and the camera cross cuts to each scene.
Cameo-where the musician features in the narrative but is not actually part of the storyline and does not perform in it.
Animation-Some music videos have a mixture involving animation that is edited in, this creates creativity and entertainment to the video. Camera angles commonly
found in music videos Crane shots- this type of shot is usually used in performance based music videos where the artist or actor is on a stage. The crane shots are able to move around the stage from many different angles to capture everything that is happening to try and recreate that 'concert' feeling through the camera.
Pans/tilts- this type of shot is used to show each performer and can also be used to show the location as the camera/tripod pans to create a smooth shot.
Close ups- these help the audience focus on the musicians as their mouths move to the lyrics as well as when there is a narrative. Close up show the characters emotions, which reflect what the song is about. There are also close ups shown on instruments and significant props.
Tracking shots/ low angle shot- these are shot from a high location to give the effect of a brid’s eye view As editing a professional music video or any music video at that is particularly time consuming, the shots need to be carefully constructed to ensure that nothing looks out of place. For example, if the artist is lip synching, the person editing the video needs to use parallel editing to ensure that the musician's lips are moving exactly in time with the words being sung.
In higher budget music videos, impossible scenarios are often created through CGI, therefore the editor needs to make it look as realistic or professional as possible.
In regards to sound, there is often diagetic sound used in parts of music videos to add to the narrative or at the beginning/end of the song.
Also, when the volume or tempo of the music changes, music videos often reflect this and the speed of the dancers for example increases. Editing/Sound Mise-en-scene This is arguably the most important aspect of a music video as it includes:
Props- these obviously depend on the genre and type of song at hand, for example, if it is a performance style video, there will be lighting equipment, instruments, stages etc.
Costume- this also depends on the lyrics of the song as well as the genre. Certain performers will have different outfits suiting what they are representing in the video.
Location-The setting for music videos basically sets the scene immediately and many settings used are simple settings which people can relate to or recognize. Hype Williams Who are some of the most famous video directors and why are their videos so well known and successful? David Fincher Jonas Akerlund Akerlund, first burst into the music industry's public eye by creating a highly controversial video for The Prodigy’s “Smack My Bitch Up” The music video showed drug use, violence and nudity, which have almost because iconic elements of his work which make it distinguishable. He also worked with Madonna on her song “Ray of Light”, and then went on to work with other artists such as Lady Gaga, Maroon 5, U2, Blink 182, Rammstein, and Britney Spears which shows how versatile his abilities are when it comes to creating music videos for different personalities and genre's of music.
Jonas' controversial video to 'Smack my bitch up' was initially banned from television channels worldwide however a massive demand from the public forced MTV to show it, even though they only ever did after midnight and with a warning. Despite this, the music video won the 'Best Dance Video' award as well as the 'Breakthrough Video' award at MTV's VMA's. In addition to this, the song was even voted the most controversial song of all time in a survey. Have any been made very cheaply or are there some that have had huge budgets? How much money is usually spent on the average music video? Thank You For Watching Here is a screenshot
of a part of the music video... Director X Fincher is renowned for his perfectionist style of work in his cult films such as 'Se7en' and 'The social network' however, before making it big in Hollywood, David Fincher worked with artists , creating music videos for the likes of Madonna, Aerosmith and Michael Jackson, who are some of the most iconic artists of all time. Some typical 'Fincher features' are the use of black and white, shadows, leisurely camera movement, extreme high angles, and some slow motion. There are often black and white settings being shown dissolving between shots, creating a sense of fluidity between scenes and images. Here is an example. Finchers video for Don Henley's "The End of the Innocence" won Henley the MTV Video Music Award for Best Male Video in 1990. He also earned back-to-back MTV Video Music Awards for Best Direction in 1989 for "Madonna - Express Yourself" and in 1990 for "Vogue". In 1990, he earned three of the four available nominations in the Best Direction category. His creativity and distinguishable style as a music director has made him one of the most renowned music directors of all time. Williams has created a number of music videos for many artists, including 2Pac ("California Love"), The Notorious B.I.G. ("Warning"), LL Cool J ("Doin It") and more recently Kanye West ("Gold Digger"). Williams tends not to have one signature style which has been consistent throughout his music video career but in fact has several. One of his signature styles is using a Fisheye lens which distorted the camera view around the central focus. Another "signature style" involves placing shots in regular widescreen ratio, while a second shot is split and placed in the upper and lower bars.
His more recent signature style is combining a center camera focus on the artist or actor's body from the torso upward and a solid color background with a soft different-color light being shown in the center of the background, which gives a sense of illumination of the background by the artist or subject. Here is an example of one of his signature styles being used in the 'Gold Digger' music video. Some of the awards Williams has received for his music videos are the Billboard Music Video Award for Best Director of the Year (1996), the Jackson Limo Award for Best Rap Video of the Year (1996) for Busta Rhymes' "Woo Hah!! Got You All in Check", and also the BET Award for Best Director (2006) for Kanye West's "Gold Digger". Hype Williams has worked with a range of artists and doesn't have one particular style but is said to 'move with the times' and refresh his style of work ever so often. Julien Christian Lutz (born 1975), better known as Little X, X or Director X, is a Canadian music video director. He is well known for his high-budget, visually distinctive music videos for popular music singles, including music videos for artists such as R. Kelly, Usher, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Katy Perry and Jessie J.
His trademark is tweaking the letterbox format; instead of just using black bars on the top and bottom of the frame to frame the image, many videos by X actually feature the bars opening vertically to reveal the video and closing vertically at the end, like a letter box.[ His music video for 'Drake ft. Lil Wayne - HYFR' recently won him an MTV VMA award for the best hip hop video 2012. Video's can be seen as an extension to a music video to support and emphasize the meanings of the lyrics as well as allow an artist or record company access to cross-platform marketing for the purposes of exposure and expansion of the artist's profile. After conducting some research, I found that most people said that the 'average' cost of a music video was £50,000, however with specialist editing software and professional camera's being available to people for cheaper as the years go by, videos that cost £50,000 ten years ago could cost less than half of that today. One of the most expensive music videos to ever be created is Michael Jacksons' 'Scream' (featuring Janet Jackson) which cost roughly $7 million to create. 'The Cure - In between days' is an example of an
extremely cheap video as it was shot using a shopping trolley and a camera.