Sunday, January 22, 2017

New Year's Reflections: George Michael with Aretha Franklin - I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)

George Michael and Aretha Franklin teamed up for a great duet with the 1986 hit "I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)." The single hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, #2 on the Adult Contemporary Chart, and #12 on the Hot Dance Club Songs, and #1 on the UK Singles Chart.

A rather simple music video that is stuck in average. George Michael and Aretha Franklin spend most of the music video singing to each other via video screen. Eventually, the two meet in front of a very large video screen showing clips of their past hits. The big screen they sing in front of has a very haunting look to it which eerily contrasts their positive energy. Okay video overall.

** Stars out of ****

New Year's Reflections: George Michael - Monkey

The final major 80's icon we lost this year was George Michael. A hit maker first with Wham!, George Michael had an even more successful solo career. One of his biggest 80's hits was the song "Monkey." The song hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, #1 on the Dance Club Songs, #8 on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs, and #13 on the UK Singles charts.

The music video is a standard affair. Mostly black & white close ups mixed in with some concert stage dancing; the music video is an average one that receives any accolades because of Michael's energetic dance moves. I was also a bit disappointed that not one monkey made a cameo!

** Stars out of ****

New Year's Reflections: Prince with Sheena Easton - U Got the Look

Prince scored an excellent duet with Sheena Easton on "U Got the Look." This 1987 single was a solid success - hitting #2 on the Billboard Hot 100, #11 on the R&B Charts, and #11 on the UK Singles Chart.

The music video begins with Prince dozing off in his dressing room into an extended dream sequence. He dreams of France and dancing on the stage with Sheena Easton. This stage performance music video is definitely more entertaining than the bland "Controversy" one, but it is still just your standard stage performance music video. Not a bad one per se, but not a music video worth a second look.

** Stars out ****

Saturday, January 21, 2017

New Year's Reflections: Prince - Controversy

One of the biggest talents of the 80's was undoubtedly Prince. With a slew of hits and a virtuosity that few could compete with, we sadly lost him in 2016. He is another musician who's music videos are hard to find. One video we did find was "Controversy." This single hit #70 on the Billboard Hot 100, #3 on the R&B Charts, and #1 on the Dance Charts in 1981.

A song that touches upon so many controversies, should have been more well - controversial. The video is a stage performance in front of a stained glass window (signifying religion obviously), but the lighting is just terrible here. Prince just seems to be going through the motions. The song has tremendous potential for a better video effort.
* Star out of ****

Sunday, January 15, 2017

New Year's Reflections: Glenn Frey - The One You Love

Glenn Frey had a nice hit in 1982 with the soft song "The One You Love." The song hit #15 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #2 on the Adult Contemporary Charts.

A song with such emotion and sense of loneliness was effectively laid out in its music video. The video is simple, the budget is meager - but it still strikes a powerful chord with the viewer. From Glenn playing on his piano alone, to standing in the corner of a room in sadness watching his love, to standing out in the cold with his powerful sad eyes looking at the viewer as his love is with another man; the pain and uncertainty he is feeling comes across so well. While watching him dance with his beautiful love on a smoky bridge might come across cheesy and some of the effects don't stand the test of time; somehow and someway the music video and song match up to display the struggle that Glenn is going through.

*** Stars out of ****

Sunday, January 8, 2017

New Year's Reflections: Glenn Frey - True Love

Glenn Frey was another talent we lost in 2016. We will highlight two of his music videos as well. The first will be "True Love." Glenn's videos are hard to find online, but luckily our research found us some. "True Love" hit #13 on the Billboard Hot 100, #2 on the Adult Contemporary Charts, and #15 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks.

This black and white music video is a very simple one. It features a group of friends hitting up a cool club to see Glenn Frey and his band perform the title song. Though not much happens within the music video (besides dancing, singing, smoking, drinking) it isn't all too bad. Though the narrative of a girl being hypnotized by Glenn Frey is okay, the video is provides enough atmosphere to give it a passing grade.
** Stars out of **** 

Friday, January 6, 2017

New Year's Reflections: David Bowie - Let's Dance

David Bowie scored a massive hit with "Let's Dance" in 1983. The single hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, #1 on the UK Singles Charts, and #8 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks.

The music video focuses on an Aboriginal couple doing menial labor, getting involved in the city life, and trying to get those "red shoes" so they could dance. Though Bowie does a great job contrasting the life of the Aborigines to the city-life Australians and in making not so subtle anti-racism remarks, the video for the most part is not that engaging. Though I appreciate the philosophical effort, the video is somewhat average in terms of pacing. Though not bad per se, it nowhere near compares to his best 80's video "China Girl."

** Stars out of ****