It’s time once again and no matter what you may think of MTV, their annual VMA’s are a part of our cultural music history. Yesterday morning they announced the nominations and it’s good to see that they take into consideration some of the smaller less mainstream artists but the channel still plays favorites. Also, there is the elephant in the room irony of the awards ceremony considering MTV barely plays music videos at all anymore. But still I find my 10-year old self getting excited and tuning in, no matter how weak I think most of the music is. I guess in a way it keeps the dream alive for me, whatever that dream may be.
Now I’m not gonna go all Justin Vernon and tear into MTV like he did so well in April 2011 (read here), but I will say that I think they have their priorities wrong. Given the fact that MTV has become an outlet for teen drama, we have seen a surge in music videos being produced for internet view. Thank you YouTube (VEVO? not so much) and vimeo for allowing fans of music videos the opportunity to view what they want when they want while also given artists exposure that they might have not gotten from MTV in it’s heyday, because I still think that it is a respectable art form. Sure anyone can lip sync over their track and pretend that they’re playing in front of the largest crowd ever. But take a video like “No Church In The Wild”, which is over the top but, beautifully shot or Feist’s 15-minute wonderfully narrative “The Water”, directed by Kevin Drew. These are examples of what can be accomplished by artists inspired by the music. So while the VMA’s may feature a majority of lame videos and convoluted nominations, it continues to remind us of an art form that should be celebrated, the music video.
You can head to MTV.com now to cast your vote and view the categories. This year we have the addition of an Electronic Dance Music category with Drake and Rihanna dominating most of the nominations. Below I’ve posted some of my favorite videos that will be up for a Moonman. Enjoy.
Easily, one of the coolest videos to come out lately.
After his collaboration with Hype Williams for “Love Interruption” I didn’t think it would get much better, but it did.
One of my favorite cuts off the Nostalgia, Ultra album. Love that orange stretch Lincoln Town Car.
Never a disappointment, Kanye West’s “Mercy” off the upcoming G.O.O.D. Music release Cruel Summer. Swerve.