Music videos have the power to captivate, resonate and sometimes shock audiences. They can also define an artist’s career and pave the way for new visual and audio technology. Over the years, many music video clips have their mark on popular culture. Let’s take a nostalgic journey and explore the most unforgettable music video clips of all time and understand why they had such a profound impact.
Madonna – Vogue
In 1990, Madonna’s Vogue took the world by storm. The video celebrated voguing dance and showcased Madonna’s impressive moves. It became a symbol of artistic and social revolution, introducing voguing to a wider audience and inspiring self-expression.
Guns ‘n’ Roses – November Rain
Released in 1992, Guns ‘n’ Roses’ November Rain featured a captivating story of love mixed with explosive concert performances. Directed by Andy Morahan, the video included, well, pretty much everything! A wedding, a funeral, and a mesmerising guitar solo in the rain. For those who saw it, you’ll remember the emotions and intensity of it all, plus the coolest rock wedding dress of all time.
Beyoncé – Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)
Beyoncé’s 2008 hit Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It) became a global sensation at the time of its release. The video featured Beyoncé and her backup dancers performing intricate choreography and was filmed in a single high energy take. The simple yet powerful black and white visuals made it an iconic symbol of female empowerment and independence then and still to this day.
A-ha – Take on Me
A-ha’s 1984 hit Take on Me featured a groundbreaking music video directed by the talented Steve Barron. The video combined live-action and hand-drawn animation to tell a love story set in a comic book world. Its innovative visuals and storyline made it a pioneer of music videos at the time.
Britney Spears – …Baby One More Time
Britney Spears’ debut single in 1998, …Baby One More Time, came with a music video that became a cultural phenomenon. The video clip portrayed Spears as a schoolgirl, capturing both her innocence and confidence. The catchy choreography, memorable school setting, and Britney’s undeniable star quality solidified her as a pop princess and marked a defining moment in her career.
Michael Jackson – Thriller
Michael Jackson’s Thriller is an iconic music video that has stood the test of time. Released in 1983, this 14-minute masterpiece revolutionised the music video genre. The video fused storytelling, iconic dance moves, and horror elements to create an unforgettable cinematic experience. From the captivating choreography to the jaw-dropping zombie dance routine, Thriller had a groundbreaking impact on the music industry and popular culture.
MC Hammer’s – U Can’t Touch This
MC Hammer’s U Can’t Touch This music video, released in 1990, introduced the world to the catchy phrase “Stop! Hammer time!”. The video’s energetic choreography, colourful outfits, and Hammer’s signature ‘Hammer pants’ became iconic symbols of the era. The video’s catchy beat and memorable lyrics, combined with Hammer’s stage presence, made it an instant hit.
Miley Cyrus – Wrecking Ball (Honourable Mentions)
In 2013, Miley Cyrus made headlines with her emotionally charged music video for Wrecking Ball. The video featured Cyrus swinging on a wrecking ball and showed us a raw and vulnerable performance, sparking conversations and marking her transition from child star to a boundary-pushing artist.
These unforgettable music video clips have stood the test of time, leaving an ever-lasting impact on our memories and culture. These timeless visuals will continue to be remembered for years to come.
Love your music? Listen to your favourite artists on iHeart Radio.