On August 1st,
1981, a new network launched that changed the way the music industry would do
business for the next few decades. That network was MTV. While music videos had
existed before the network, this was the first time a network had been
dedicated largely exclusively to their airing. And being the first, stations
were naturally hesitant to pick it up. But, once they did and it got going, it
became a hit with the teenage and young adult market. Notably, the network
provided exposure for many artists that didn’t receive a lot of radio airplay,
turning them into successes they wouldn’t be otherwise. As its popularity grew,
videos became an essential marketing tool resulting in more and more money
being pumped into their production.
As with any
successful concept, imitators were quick to follow and try and attract those
same audiences. To commemorate the 40th anniversary of MTV and the
place in pop culture it once held, this month we’ll be looking at some of the shows
influenced by it directly, or at least of a similar vein.