Music Video of the Day: The Cooler with Ringo Starr (1982, dir. Godley & Creme)

I’m terrible with anniversaries or other things I should be aware of to make tie-in posts for. That’s why I missed the 50th anniversary of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. I’m sure everyone posted the music video for Strawberry Fields Forever yesterday. So let’s go with something else Beatles related.

Back in 1982–or 1981 according to mvdbase–a short film was made starring Ringo Starr that is an extended music video for the songs Private Property, Sure To Fall, and Attention. From what I’ve read, this earned Lol Creme and Kevin Godley a nomination for a Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival for Best Short Film. Also from what I’ve read, it not only has Ringo in it, but Paul, Linda, and Barbara Bach.

I know I’ve said on numerous occasions that when something crosses the into A Hard Day’s Night territory then I don’t include it in one of these posts, but I’m making an exception here. Besides, it’s only about 10 minutes long. It’s not like the ABC film Mantrap (1983). That is over 50 minutes long.

I’m guessing this is Barbara Bach. I’m not really sure. I have no idea where Linda is in this.

I do know that this is definitely Paul.

The gist is that the audience travels with Ringo as he goes through a bunch of references to prison movies like The Great Escape (1963). As we go along we see Ringo try to escape in different ways. He has to shine Ilsa: She-Wolf of the SS’ boots. He has a delusion that he is in the Old West where Paul may have also played the following cowboy:

I’m quite sure it’s him. I’m just not 100% sure.

Eventually Ringo McClane…

comes across what he thinks is going to be an exit, but it just takes him back to the cooler again.

Seeing as this came out in 1982, that would make this year the 35th anniversary of The Cooler. I found it to be enjoyable. It’s a nice little piece of post-Beatles work that I have to imagine has all but fallen into obscurity.

We can do one better than just that though. Since it is 2017, that means it’s also the 30th anniversary of when Ringo did commercials for Sun Country Classic Wine Cooler.

Ringo and a polar bear. I love it. I would have enjoyed it more if it were the polar bear played by Vincent Price, but I still enjoy these.


Music Video of the Day: A View To A Kill by Duran Duran (1985, dir. Godley & Creme)

That turned out to be longer and more of a rollercoaster for my mind and body than I expected. After all the side effects of the meds and the subsequent withdrawals, it didn’t help the chronic cough. On the plus side, I now own a second dog named Elke. Whether she’s named after Elke Sommer or not, we don’t know. Regardless, since Lisa was kind enough to cover for me, it means I need to watch Lisa And The Devil (1973) with Elke Sommer. On the downside, I watched 70 films since my last post, which means I will have more stuff to sift through at the end of the year. Oh, well.

Rest in peace, Roger Moore.

To my knowledge this is the only music video that has Roger Moore in it–even if it is only in footage from the film. Speaking of which, you will notice two things immediately when you start up this music video:

  1. It is silent for a little over a minute.
  2. The video quality isn’t very good.

At first I thought my iPhone was glitching on me. It’s not like the iOS YouTube app is perfect or anything. I scrubbed forward, and the song kicked in. I didn’t notice the video quality was low until now. I have a theory about why it is silent during the opening film footage and is of low quality throughout.

This isn’t like Romancing The Stone by Eddy Grant. Yes, they tried to integrate him into the footage from the movie, but it’s easy to edit that out, and they did just that for a separate version of it. This video heavily integrates the film footage into the music video. You really can’t separate them, and expect to be able to put this up. My best guess, is that behind-the-scenes, a deal was struck that so long as they muted the opening part and reduced the quality, then whoever currently holds the license to the film would let them post it. Also, seeing as directors Godley & Creme integrated Duran Duran into the movie footage, you also couldn’t treat them differently. Thus, the whole thing is the way it is. That’s my theory.

If you pay attention to the music video, then you might notice a little Easter Egg in it. That of course being the female model having pictures taken of her. You guessed it. Godley & Creme directed the music video for Girls On Film.

In addition, you can say that the use of iris shots is a nod to Rio, and visually makes Duran Duran perfect to have made a Bond theme song. Finally, the name Simon Le Bon not only lends itself to being a stand-in for the famous “Bond, James Bond” line, but Roger Moore played Simon Templar on The Saint before becoming James Bond.

Wikipedia has an interesting backstory on how the band and John Barry worked together to write the song. I suggest going over there and reading it.

Lexi Godfrey produced the video.

I’m sorry it took till your death, Roger. But I need to go see how you managed to be in a movie called Gold (1974), the same year as you were in The Man With The Golden Gun (1974)–if for no other reason, than it being my favorite Bond film

Wait a second, you also played both Sherlock Holmes in 1976 and Inspector Clouseau in 1983. You sneaky devil. I’ll miss you.

Music Video of the Day: Autodrive by Herbie Hancock (1983, dir. Godley & Creme)

I of course knew about Rockit. However, I had no idea that Hancock made any other music videos. I’m so glad he did. What’s even better is that he did this one with Godley & Creme like he did for Rockit. That’s a triple whammy that, at the very least, is guaranteed to make something interesting.

Just enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Don’t Give Up by Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush (1986, dir. Godley & Creme)

I don’t care that the YouTube video says “ft. Kate Bush”. It’s a duet–plain and simple.

Peter Gabriel sings the depressing parts and Kate Bush sings the uplifting parts. The music video reflects that beautifully. When it’s his turn, then they spin to reveal Gabriel. When it’s her turn, then they spin to reveal Bush. This goes on while the moon crosses the sun to reach eclipse at the mid-point of the song. It was done in a single take. Nice and simple for what is a no-frills song.

That’s it! I am not sure why they felt the need to film another music video for this song, but they did. Maybe they felt people wouldn’t listen to the lyrics and just focus on Gabriel and Bush in a six-and-a-half minute embrace.


Music Video of the Day: Rockit by Herbie Hancock (1983, dir. Godley & Creme)

I don’t have much to say about this music video that I assume everyone has seen at this point. MTV & VH1 used to bring it up all the time whenever they would look at their early history and for good reason. Not only is it amazing, but it also won five VMAs at the first Video Music Awards in 1984. That’s particularly notable since it was the year people generally agree is when the color barrier at MTV basically disappeared.

In the time since I wrote about Rapture by Blondie, I went and read the article on Wikipedia about the color barrier at MTV. There seems to be only three things that people agree on.

  1. MTV started off deciding to go with the radio format known as Album-oriented Rock, or AOR for short, before moving to a Top 40 model in 1984.
  2. They had really bad research about their audience that they ran with to one degree or another.
  3. Billie Jean broke the color barrier.

Even that third one is in dispute and isn’t entirely accurate. Some people believe that Pass The Dutchie by Musical Youth broke the color barrier. Also, while Billie Jean certainly put a big crack in the barrier, it really didn’t fully come down till the summer of 1983 with other music videos by black artists, which I imagine included this one.

The fact that there was even a barrier in the sense that people think of when they hear the word “barrier” is disputable. Rapture by Blondie aired as the 48th music video on the very first day of MTV, and it is basically Debbie Harry advertising rap music along with numerous black artists featured in the music video and some names included in the song. It seems like there was an almost day to day set of decisions about which videos would fly with their audience. I really would love to know the details about when Eddy Grant’s music video Electric Avenue aired. It must have been a confusing time for all the parties involved at MTV, the record companies, and the artists because they all had to know they were leaving a bunch of money on the table.

I put up that this music video came out in 1983 because while IMVDb says 1984, both mvdbase and the music video itself say 1983. I would love to know for sure if we got such an experimental music video with minimal insertions of Hancock because of the color barrier. An article on How We Get To Next seems to indicate so with a link to the book I Want My MTV (the pages were locked so I couldn’t view them). The other thing that hints that he was relegated to the TV is because it is smashed at the end. Regardless, I love that Hancock only shows up on short shots of the TV. It’s as if he isn’t just performing the song, but is a person behind the scenes controlling both the robots and the video itself through his song. In the process, it also places a heavy emphasis on the music and its visual representation.

It is a great example of an early MTV music video that really showcased the potential for the medium. The song itself helped to popularize scratching and turntablism, which was done by Grand Mixer DXT.

Roo Aiken was the Editor.

Jim Whiting and Roger Deacon were art directors.

Lexi Godfrey and John Gayden/Gaydon were producers.

Hancock still gets around today. He is slated to appear in an upcoming Luc Besson sci-fi movie and even made a cameo appearance on Girl Meets World.


Music Video of the Day: Two Tribes by Frankie Goes To Hollywood (1984, dir. Godley & Creme)

Well, you probably all knew this was coming. It was a no-brainer. I had this picked out many months ago. It has nothing to do with Twitter going down last night amidst that Wikileaks dump or anything like that. I’m young enough to have only taken part in five US presidential elections, but have been around for numerous other ones. I can’t remember a more vicious one than the one currently coming to what may or may not be its’ end.

What can I say about this music video that it doesn’t already do an excellent job of getting across to the viewer? The version below is even more graphic than the one above. From what I understand, it is closer to the way the song was originally released. Neither of them pull any punches, so be forewarned.

The directors of the music video are Godley & Creme AKA Kevin Godley and Lol Creme. I knew of them as musicians, but didn’t know they directed music videos. They are probably best known for their song Cry, and the great music video that goes with it. What you might not know is that because of them, this music video has ties to Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). Godley & Creme were once part of a group called 10cc. One of their big hit songs was I’m Not In Love. That’s the song Peter Quill is listening to in the hospital at the beginning of the film. That also means Disney is just a couple of degrees of separation from a music video where Ronald Reagan bites Konstantin Chernenko’s ear in a wrestling match. I love connections. I also love that after tomorrow’s really obvious song for Election Day, I can return to writing about some lighter music videos for awhile.

There’s nothing more I want to say. Enjoy!