The History of music videos

Music videos first came about in the 1920’s when song performances where filmed and appeared in theatres. An example of and early music video is Bessie Smith’s “St Louis Blue’s” which appeared in a two-reel short film of the same name.

However, as film technology became more accessible and less expensive, the music video industry began to grow, alongside pop culture in the 60s/70s, and so it was a time to explore more ways of promoting music and becoming a stand-out artist. The Beatles where one of the first bands to promote their music via music videos, their first music video was for the song “we can work it out”. This video was the first music video to be broadcast on television. They used the video as a way to promote their music without making in-person appearances, and so its a video of what a normal live performance would look like.


The first music video aired on MTV was ” Video Killed the Radio Star” by The Buggles. The song was about the impact music videos will have in the music industry.

It was at this time that music videos became more popular as they now had their own place to be showcased. Music videos became large productions with huge budgets, the 80’s transformed into an era where music videos cost more than films.

Music videos today

Today, almost all popular artists accompany their hit songs with a music video. The platform used most today to view music videos is YouTube, since YouTube began in 2005 there hasn’t really been much change to the music video industry.

Image result for youtube
The History of Music Videos Infographic

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