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July 27th, 2005

MTV Video Music Awards: So?

Yesterday, MTV announced the nominees for their Video Music Awards. They’re about what you might expect. I guess my question is, does it matter?

I want to preface this by saying that I know I really, really run the risk of sounding like Jaded Old Man again. But that’s fine.

The thing is, MTV is in a really strange spot. Music is a part of their programming, but it’s no longer the thrust. They show, perhaps, an hour of videos a day. When videos are on at other times, they’re just snippets. So it’s kind of hard to determine what these awards are for. Are they for airplay on the network? No, not really. What about radio popularity? Eh, somewhat – it’s undeniable that some of the nominees (Gwen “I Sing Like Crap” Stefani) wouldn’t be anywhere without crazy, repetitive, mindless radio play.

More to the point, I think the VMAs, as they’re abbreviated, are more about keeping the MTV brand out in the public eye. Listen… it’s not about music anymore. A number of years ago, MTV watched their VMAs en masse and collectively thought, “There’s a lot of spectacle going on here!” You had Howard Stern as Buttman… stuff like that. That was when it was (allegedly) unexpected and unplanned.

Now, the “unplanned spectacle” is basically scheduled into the VMAs. Britney & Madonna kissing? Come on, like that wasn’t planned. MTV needs to keep the VMAs out there to keep up the now-largely drained reputation that they’re innovative and on the edge. Even the article I linked above claims they’re “irreverent”. Uh, sure.

So, ultimately I don’t think the VMAs really matter anymore. They give the audience some music to listen to, and some circus-like spectacles. But that’s about it. Let’s not kid ourselves into thinking this is a big music event; it’s really a big pop culture event, and pretty much sums up where MTV is nowadays.

Posted in Television, Movies, and Music

FROM: Aanen
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 12:02:08 pm
I remember when my neighbors first got cable back in the late 80s early 90s watching the videos on MTV. I clearly remeber my friend hooking up the tv to the stero while we were watching the "pour some sugar on me" video. He turned it up soo loud that the lights dimmed.



FROM: dave
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 2:29:53 pm
Wait, you think Gwen Stefani sings like crap? I'm shocked, I tell you! :)



FROM: jk
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 2:36:38 pm
I wonder if her husband is embarrassed by her current music. We have had some of it on our CD at work and I reeeeeally don't like it. I've never been a fan though; for her to call herself "ska" was such a misnomer.

VH1 Classic makes me yearn for a decade with good music and great videos....



FROM: COD [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 2:51:08 pm
If I stop on a music channel these days it is almost always VH1 classic or CMT.

I'm getting old.



FROM: snaily
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 3:49:35 pm
gwen was much better in "no doubt" but her new music sucks!!! what is "I ain't no holloback girl" supposed to mean, anyway?



FROM: Deeporg [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday July 27, 2005 -- 4:14:32 pm
Yeah. No Doubt is the bomb. Gwen Stefani, howerever, sucks.



FROM: GR
DATE: Thursday September 1, 2005 -- 12:18:46 pm
You guys need to get a life, or at least learn to appreciate it! You all sound like you expected Gwen Stefani to sound just like No Doubt. If you want No Doubt, listen to them. Gwen has opened a creative vault and is coming up with some cutting edge stuff. Not everyone will like it, that's what makes us individuals. Try opening your minds a little and take it for what it is, a brand new music style by a new solo artist. Besides you should cut her some slack, as if you could do better!



FROM: Paul
DATE: Thursday September 1, 2005 -- 12:47:15 pm
...a brand new music style by a new solo artist.

A brand new music style? Let's think about that for a minute. Brand new. That means that what Gwen Stefani is doing is something that has never been done before. Arguing that Gwen Stefani isn't immediately derivative of at least a dozen other artists is like saying the MTV Video Music Awards mean something. Both are meaningless and, outside of footnotes, will be long forgotten in the history books.



FROM: snaily
DATE: Thursday September 1, 2005 -- 3:46:38 pm
i am probably going to sound like i live in a hole in the middle of nowhere and dont know anything about anything. but i just dont understand rap and how people can call it music. 70's rock beats it anyday. especially the band queen:-)



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