Recently, I shared a blog I wrote while watching MTV footage from March if 1984 in honor of the channel’s forty years of music. During the broadcast, I saw a commercial for an MTV book called Who’s Who In Rock Video – A Guide To Video Music Artists and I knew I needed to get it. Published in October 1983, the book provides a brief history of 100 of MTV’s most influential artists at that time. This was before “Thriller” and “The Reflex” and many of the artists (Steve Miller, Greg Kihn) are treated as highly influential MTV artists which may have been true ever so briefly. It’s a fascinating book that captures the channel right before it explodes into popular culture.
In addition to capsules on an eclectic mix of artists from the second British Invasion (Adam Ant, The Fixx, A Flock of Seagulls, etc.) to older rock acts who populated the early years of the channel (Fleetwood Mac, Chris De Burgh, and (oddly) The Doors), the book provides little bio’s on each of the original VJ’s. Glancing at the credits, future CEO of MTV Judith A. McGrath was the editorial director of the book as well. It’s a fascinating time-capsule from the early MTV years and I highly recommend it to any 80s music fan. Here’s the original commercial. I’ll see you after the ad to discuss a rather provocative piece of Duran Duran history….
If you’re like me, you just went on eBay and ordered a copy! So, what was I saying about a provocative piece of Duran Duran history? Well, the original video for “Girls On Film” was shot before MTV became popular but a heavily edited version of the video did eventually find its way to the music channel. There really isn’t anything new I can add about the video that the fantastic writer Morgan Richter hasn’t already covered in this article which goes into each “sleazy vignette” brilliantly. I’ve been following Duran Duran for forty years myself so I really don’t get surprised by them very often. Until I opened this book and came across this photo….
What in the name of Neptune is going on here?! Are there sleazy vignettes that Godley & Creme left on the cutting room floor? Why have I never seen this before? Please, please tell me that Duran Duran is sitting on an expanded version of the video! Dear Duranies, have you seen this before? Maybe I just missed this over the years. Do let me know.
Of course, this kickstarted my mind and how fun it would be for the band to “update” this video in the style of “Girl Panic”. Have CHAI on stage playing “MORE JOY!” while the the lads find themselves in their own sleazy vignettes. We could watch a fashion designer chase Nick around the boxing ring trying to get him to wear denim until he runs out of breath and has to drink really cheap champagne. Or maybe have Simon in a cowboy hat ride around the ring on Warren who is dressed like a rainbow colored unicorn. Use your imagination. OK, enough of the silliness. Someone explain the picture to me and tell me the video for it exists somewhere.
I loved your sleazy, fun ideas! Really! Like you, my mind is reeling at what we didn’t see. And I’d love to see it. What do you want to bet the footage is tucked away somewhere-just awaiting someone brave, or foolhardy to release In our current culture, with everyone wanting to be offended, can you imagine the controversy?