For years, people have complained -- rightfully so -- about the lack of music found on MTV. Well, the folks over at Viacom want you to stop bitching. So in an attempt to re-brand the network, MTV will, according to the L.A. Times, drop the "music television" tag from its logo. For anyone old enough to remember a time when the network actually played videos, this is a move that seems to come a laughable 10 or 15 years too late. First MTV was ruled by Michael Jackson, then by Madonna, then Aerosmith, then Nirvana, then Limp Bizkit, then NSYNC ... and now it's ruled by Snooki. Viacom is simply owning up to a tired truth we've all known for a long time: that the M in MTV stands for media. Way to stop false advertising, Viacom! Now that the network admittedly has nothing to do with music, can we finally abolish the annual Satanic worship ritual that is the Video Music Awards?
Of course, music fans need not rely on television to get exposure to music. Or maybe they do. The fact that the decline of music on music television ran concurrent to the proliferation of file sharing certainly couldn't have helped prevent the death of record sales. Now we've got YouTube and BitTorrent, and those more unfortunate souls who nevertheless want to give their idiot box the Beavis and Butthead treatment still have Fuse -- the 24-hour Warped Tour commercial -- CMT and public access, right? I still opt for VH1 Classic, which is essentially just a perennial version of VH1 circa 1990, before it degenerated into the network of "celebreality." Come to think of it, I'd like to know how often authorities find television sets tuned to VH1 when arriving at the scenes of apparent suicides. I bet the numbers are staggering.
To honor the slow death of music television, I present to you my favorite music videos of days past. Feel free to add links to your favorites in the comments. This is not a history lesson or a "best ever" list, just a few favorites. So don't bitch about the omission of "Thriller." I'm over that one.