Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

"Ladies and Gentlemen...Rock and Roll."

At the time, I didn't really notice especially. I mean, I had a job, a semi-large family and could still actually run: too much to do. However, when MTV finally launched following the words of John Lack, one of the creators, the social fabric of America (and probably the world) was forever altered. August 1st, 1981 marked the beginning of what was to be a music revolution. Long before iTunes, MP3 players and Napster, the evolution of popular culture began with a simple video of The Buggles' song, Video Killed the Radio Star. Who knew? Who suspected?
It's somewhat sad to see that 31 years later, music videos have all but disappeared from the MTV scene. Of course, YouTube has had a lot to do with it, making accessibility to music videos instantaneous in the same way that has made access to all things sports available 24/7 and has done the same for news. In my opinion, this evolution has also made us terribly impatient: if something takes more than a nanosecond to load on our computer, we get furious...just my take on it.
MTV undoubtedly brought us some amazing "firsts," though, you'll have to admit.
Remember waiting anxiously for the Thriller video in December of 1983? And remember thinking that Michael Jackson was the most talented guy on the planet as a result? I mean, who else could demand time for a 14-minute video and get it?
Beavis and Butthead predated South Park (now in its 15th season) by only a couple of years and changed adolescent guys' inexorably. How many people do you remember trying to emulate that laugh or speaking like Cornholio? I had a large number of students who never missed an episode between 1993-1998; and those (now adult) guys will be gratified to know that B & B will be back this October! Get out the underwear to put over your head!
Perhaps the most famous of reality shows premiered in 1992 when The Real World hit MTV...and continues to this day, leading us inevitably to Jackass, 16 and Pregnant/Teen Mom, and, of course, Jersey Shore which introduced us to things like "hair bump" and better-looking abs.
Naturally, there are detractors who long for the days of simple music videos, but that demographic is probably at least 30 years old by now, and that group has no affiliation with popular culture as it now exists.
They might say that reality television killed the video star, but they'd be wrong...I can watch any video I want any time on YouTube.
Of course, I now need an iPad to take it with me wherever I go. Laptops? Ha! Dinosaurs.
Feeling older...
Check out The Buggles' video (on YouTube, of course):


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