The music video is type of art all its own; it has to stand out and stand alone, while perfectly complimenting the song it accompanies. These bite sized bits of cinema can, and often are, more famous than their partner track; the can catapult an otherwise entirely average song into the public’s eyes, not to mention their ears and their hearts.
In the first of a new series, The Edge’s writers got together to decide which female pop legends have crafted the best music videos of all time. Read on and see if you’re feeling it, too.
‘So What’ – P!nk
P!nk is a pop princess with attitude. So naturally, her music videos are pretty hardcore too, and none more so than the visual for her 2008 single, ‘So What’ – a gutsy, no-holding-back track about getting over your “tool” of an ex by simply not giving a f*ck.
Directed by Dave Meyers, the colourful video sees P!nk go on a rockstar rampage, doing everything from riding down Sunset Boulevard on a lawnmower to gleefully taking a chainsaw to a heart-carved tree. During the near-four minute visual, we also see P!nk smash a guitar, get a tattoo, trash a wedding car, do the ‘Thriller’ dance naked on a red carpet, set fire to her own hair, trick two guys into drinking wee AND have a massive pillow fight. Talk about punk-rock!
The video also features a cameo by P!nk’s real-life husband, Carey Hart – who, somewhat ironically, hadn’t heard the song before filming his part. The visual was also nominated for Best Female Music Video at the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards and was named the third best music video of 2008 according to a poll by VH1.
Words by Anneka Honeyball
‘The Wire’ – HAIM
It’s always a pleasure to see a video that alligns perfectly and clearly with the lyrics of asong, without it being boring. ‘The Wire’ is about a woman breaking up with her partner when the relationship becomes more intense than she wanted, and that cutting it off was the best solution. What the video does brilliantly is to show the breakup and the aftermath from the men’s side (shocker, a video from a male perspective). And how do they react? By crying a lot and wallowing in theirs and each others sadness. Boys cry too yo, girls are the tough mothers. The Haim sisters’ reactions and rather brutal breakups aren’t being condemned either. Simply by reversing the clichés of mass media, they make some really good and subtle points about hetero relationships and our reactions to break-ups, as well as. When the guys make their last-minute rush to win back the awesome rock trio, they’re turned down. Thus ends a funny and totally rocking video.
Words by George Seabrook
‘Feeling Myself’ – Nicki Minaj feat. Beyonce
From Nicki’s third studio album The Pinkprint came ‘Feeling Myself,’ the extra glossy, bubblegum-pink collaboration with Beyonce that was too good of a music video opportunity to miss.
Set against the dusky desert skies and sprawling sparkling interiors of California’s Indio Valley, Nicki and Bey look perfectly at home together as they chill by a garden pool in furs and bright flirty leotards. As Beyonce lays down the repeated hook ‘I’m feeling myself’ into the camera and Nicki stands tall and fierce beside her, the listener has no choice but to accept their confidence and style.
Born of a true friendship between Queen B and the Queen of rap, this giddy gossipy video shows the pair playing off of each other as they sit on their metaphorical thrones at the top of the pop industry. Filmed with that ‘self-shot aesthetic,’ we get a glimpse of this playful friendship as the girls giddily shoot water pistols and launch french fries into each other’s mouths, giggling all the while.
Bey and Nicki are without a doubt ‘feeling themselves’ right now, and in a world where women of colour have everything from their hairstyles to their dancing appropriated, watching the girls stroke their beautiful egos in front of the camera on their own terms is a joy to behold, and certainly something to remember.
Words by Becca James
‘Gonna Get Over You’ – Sara Bareilles
From her debut single – the Number One ‘Love Song’, bearing the lyrics ‘I’m not gonna write you a love song, ’cause you asked for it’ as an insult to record producers who said she’d never make it big without doing just that – Sara Bareilles is a girl who has shown some serious guts, in a chronic case of Not Caring What Anyone Thinks.
This is exactly what she brings to the table in the video for her track ‘Gonna Get Over You’; stepping out of a vintage cherry red muscle car and styled like a 50s greaser in a leather jacket and a smooth pompadour, Bareilles dances her way through a latin grocery store. Tapping other shoppers on the shoulder, they change their get-up to match hers and join in as back up dancers, do-wopping their way through the aisles, singing away potential heartbreak as they go.
Tonnes of energy and bags of fun; dance on, girl, we’ll join in.
Words by Camilla Cassidy
‘(You Drive Me) Crazy’ – Britney Spears
The year was 1999 and everything was Britney Spears. Spears released her debut album ‘…Baby One More Time’, and instantly became a pop culture icon of the late 90s and early 00s. Just in time for nearly four year old me to become completely infatuated with her, especially with her seminal music video for the classic hit, ‘(You Drive Me) Crazy’.
Back when MTV actually played music videos, the highly choreographed dance routine filled party was an instant hit and constantly played on the airwaves. This was also back when we got the informative ‘MTV’s Making the Video’, in which Spears gave us a behind-the-scenes look at her involvement with the storyline of herself and others as waitresses in a dance club, and the learning of the memorable dance routine.
The video also features nostalgic appearances from Melissa Joan Hart heralding from Sabrina the Teenage Witch fame, and Adrian Grenier. Both appear together in conjunction with the song featuring on the soundtrack to the 1999 teen romantic film, Drive Me Crazy, starring the two. The film was originally entitled Next To You, then changed to Drive Me Crazy due to the song being on the soundtrack.
Words by Sophie McEvoy