Music Video of the Day: Total Eclipse Of The Heart by Bonnie Tyler (1983, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


I wanted to hold off on this video till later, but the sun and the moon made other plans. So, let’s go through it.

Why is Bonnie here in the first place?

Is the bird practicing to be thrown later?

Swinging lamps…

on loan from Harden My Heart by Quarterflash.

Harden My Heart (1981)

It’s safe to look at Total Eclipse Of The Heart…

but don’t look at the total eclipse of the sun today with the naked eye, or you could end up like this guy.

Doors also on loan from Harden My Heart.

Harden My Heart (1981)

It’s a Russell Mulcahy video. You can usually be assured that his videos will contain metaphoric liquids and/or homoerotic imagery.

Is this the same bird from earlier?

The Reflex!

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

It was nice of Godfrey Ho to let Mulcahy borrow some ninjas.

Gentlemen, welcome to The Skulls.

Another thing from Harden My Heart.

Harden My Heart (1981)

Since both videos were filmed in Holloway Sanitarium, I like to think that while Bonnie was upstairs, Ozzy Osbourne was being chased around the basement by a werewolf for Bark At The Moon.

The Judas Priest dancers reaching for Bonnie.

And Bonnie’s reaction…to the entire video.

There’s more Harden My Heart in here, but I choose to show this person upside-down instead.

Definitely Mulcahy.

Pressure.

The Thin Wall by Ultravox (1981)

I love that they almost missed Bonnie with the altar boy.

Exactly how many birds is he supposed to have? We could see some others earlier, and there are a few behind him. Does he just wait around to throw them at people who pass by?

Wild Boys cameo

The Wild Boys by Duran Duran (1984)

Then Bonnie is rescued by an angel from the clutches of Mulcahy.

Or is she?

In reality, it was a bit of both.

Here’s what Mulcahy had to say about this video in the book, I Want My MTV:

I collaborated on the storyboard for Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” with Jim Steinman, who wrote and produced the song. Jim is fabulously, fabulously crazy. We would banter ideas over a bottle of red wine. I’d say, “Let’s set it in a school and have ninjas in one scene,” and he’d say “Let’s have a choirboy with glowing eyeballs.” We shot it in an old abandoned insane asylum in London. We had one sequence, which was Steinman’s idea, where a shirtless young boy is holding a dove and he throws it at the camera in slow motion. Bonnie came around the corner and screamed, in her Welsh accent, “You’re nothing but a fucking pre-vert!” And she stormed off.

There was nothing perverse intended. The imagery was meant to be sort of pure. Maybe slightly erotic and gothic and creepy, but pure. Anyway, the video went to number one, and a year later Bonnie’s people rang up and asked if I would direct her new video. And I told them to fuck off, because I was insulted about being called a fucking pervert. And I was a little mad because pervert wasn’t pronounced correctly.

So the bird throwing kid was Steinman’s idea. Interesting. Perhaps her comment is why he isn’t shirtless in the video.

I wonder what video Bonnie’s people wanted him to come back to direct a year later. I ask because the video for Faster Than The Speed Of Night, which came out the same year, puts a kid throwing a dove to shame.

Faster Than The Speed Of Night (1983)

Needless to say, regardless of their falling out, this kind of video became Bonnie Tyler’s thing for awhile.

Holding Out For A Hero (1984)

If mvdbase is to believed, she even got Jim Steinman back to co-direct If You Were A Woman (And I Was A Man). It’s something you’d hardly notice if you watch the video.

If You Were A Woman (And I Was A Man) (1986)

If You Were A Woman (And I Was A Man) (1986)

If You Were A Woman (And I Was A Man) (1986)

I’m glad she followed up Total Eclipse Of The Heart with similar videos. The songs are great, and the videos make them unforgettable.

Enjoy the eclipse!

30 Days Of Surrealism:

  1. Street Of Dreams by Rainbow (1983, dir. Storm Thorgerson)
  2. Rock ‘n’ Roll Children by Dio (1985, dir. Daniel Kleinman)
  3. The Thin Wall by Ultravox (1981, dir. Russell Mulcahy)
  4. Take Me Away by Blue Öyster Cult (1983, dir. Richard Casey)
  5. Here She Comes by Bonnie Tyler (1984, dir. ???)
  6. Do It Again by Wall Of Voodoo (1987, dir. ???)
  7. The Look Of Love by ABC (1982, dir. Brian Grant)
  8. Eyes Without A Face by Billy Idol (1984, dir. David Mallet)
  9. Somebody New by Joywave (2015, dir. Keith Schofield)
  10. Twilight Zone by Golden Earring (1982, dir. Dick Maas)
  11. Schism by Tool (2001, dir. Adam Jones)
  12. Freaks by Live (1997, dir. Paul Cunningham)
  13. Loverboy by Billy Ocean (1984, dir. Maurice Phillips)
  14. Talking In Your Sleep by The Romantics (1983, dir. ???)
  15. Talking In Your Sleep by Bucks Fizz (1984, dir. Dieter Trattmann)
  16. Sour Girl by Stone Temple Pilots (2000, dir. David Slade)
  17. The Ink In The Well by David Sylvian (1984, dir. Anton Corbijn)
  18. Red Guitar by David Sylvian (1984, dir. Anton Corbijn)
  19. Don’t Come Around Here No More by Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers (1985, dir. Jeff Stein)
  20. Sweating Bullets by Megadeth (1993, dir. Wayne Isham)
  21. Clear Nite, Moonlight or Clear Night, Moonlight by Golden Earring (1984, dir. Dick Maas)
  22. Clowny Clown Clown by Crispin Glover (1989, dir. Crispin Glover)
  23. Black Hole Sun by Soundgarden (1994, dir. Howard Greenhalgh)
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Music Video of the Day: Tonight I’m Yours (Don’t Hurt Me) by Rod Stewart (1981, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


If you want something dark and serious, then I point you to yesterday’s A Movie A Day post that Jedadiah wrote. I’m not doing that today.


Yesterday, I did the apparently famous, but still obscure version of The Tide Is High by Blondie, where Debbie Harry rolls around on a circular pink bed. Since I brought that to people’s attention, then I might as well do the batshit Rod Stewart video that is Tonight I’m Yours (Don’t Hurt Me).

The video starts normally enough. It’s a song for a night on the town, so we’re getting some shots of the city.

Oh, that’s clever. It’s a much better way to introduce the song and artist than superimposed text.

I guess we’re going down to this pool. That looks like Stewart down there.

Ah, it is Stewart.

Some women in the pool. Makes sense. The video needs some sex appeal for people who aren’t attracted to Stewart.

What’s going on here? Is she head-banging to Rod Stewart?

Why is she getting out of the pool in a scuba outfit?

Do I even want to know what is happening here?

I’m beginning to think that they hired a bunch of women, brought out racks and boxes of stock outfits, and told them to just pick whatever feels right–then ad-libbed a lot of the video. This lady seems to have really gotten into the dominating teacher role. Back into the pool for you!

I think this guy fell in the pool during filming.

Did a fight actually break out on set during filming? Did they think that would be funny? Was this planned?

These two picked out the slumber party outfits. I’m really glad they came with pillows. Otherwise you could try to explain this as two lesbians having a night out who happened to hear the party going on outside. With the pillows there, we are assured that this is yet another thing that makes no sense.

I see nothing odd about this though.

A little Old Hollywood musical bit.

The lady with the piano leg looks like the most planned out part of this video.

And this looks like the least planned part of the video to me. I’m pretty sure she had no direction, so she just started shaking a tree.

Is this some kind of an orgy?

This lady is the one who has me convinced the outfits were picked out at random. Why would there be a detective here? She shows up in several shots as if she’s spying on them.

I could probably list drugs as a co-director on this video, couldn’t I?

Speaking of drugs, here’s what Songfacts says:

The video did well on MTV, which was new at the time and had no choice but to play lots of Rod Stewart videos, since he made so many. It was directed by Russell Mulcahy and shot at the Sunset Marquis in Los Angeles, where scores of beautiful women are scene larking about in and around the pool and on the balconies as the band performs.

According to Mulcahy, Stewart had a little too much fun the night before and didn’t want to do the video. Mulcahy told him he was going to shoot the video with or without him, so he found the strength to do it.

That explains why Stewart looks worn out. It also explains a fair amount of the craziness. It’s not hard to imagine taking Stewart and the band out of the video, and still having something that works.

Paul Flattery produced the video, and while I’m sure he has some stories to tell, I want hear from Peter Lippman. He was the production manager.

There’s rarely anything useful in the comments section on a music video. The following is an exception:

Kind of geeky comment, but this video would be a hell of a lot easier to film today with the new drone technology!

I haven’t come across a wilder Rod Stewart video…yet.

Enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Talk To Ya Later by The Tubes (1981, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


By the time you read this, I will probably be having a tube put down my throat to measure pressure caused by my esophagus. I might also have another that I have to wear for 24 hours as I try to stress test my body’s acid reflux. This should be an interesting couple of days. I probably won’t get back to these posts for a little while. Since there are tubes involved, I might as well do another music video by The Tubes.

I already mentioned it back when I did She’s A Beauty, but The Tubes helped get MTV on their feet. This video was in heavy rotation on MTV. It wasn’t on the radio. Yet, they found out that in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where they had a high concentration of cable subscribers, The Tubes were selling in record stores. This gave MTV evidence that their network could sell records.

Since last time I didn’t quote the section about this from the book, I Want My MTV, here it is:

Bob Pittman [one of the founders of MTV]: We needed to be very scientific about the impact MTV was having on the record industry. So I sent John Sykes and Tom Freston to Tulsa, Oklahoma. And one night, Sykes and Freston called me very excited. They’d been to a record store, and the store had suddenly sold out of the Tubes, and we were the only people playing the Tubes, so it had to be because of us. We had our first evidence that MTV was selling records.

Songfacts also tells this story:

This was the song that proved the power of MTV to sell records. The network launched on August 1, 1981, and “Talk To Ya Later” was in hot rotation. Very few radio stations played the song (or anything by The Tubes) in America, but a few months after MTV went on the air, Tubes records were selling out in Tulsa, Oklahoma. At the time, you couldn’t get MTV in New York or Los Angeles, but lots of people had cable in Tulsa and the cable system carried it. Local radio wasn’t playing The Tubes, so MTV was the only explanation for the sales surge. The network used this information to convince record companies that they had to make music videos (delivered to MTV free of charge, of course) to promote their artists, and many did.

When you go to listen to the video, then you’ll hear something weird. For some reason, the volume is low for awhile, and then goes up for no reason that I could figure out. I have no idea if that was intentional, or a mistake made when they put this video up.

I don’t want to talk about Russell Mulcahy for the umpteenth time. The song speaks for itself, and the video sets the story in a chaotic TMZ-like fashion. My favorite part of the video is the insertion of stills that are cut into the video–a moment that people will see, but without context.

Hopefully, this whole thing won’t be too hard, and I can get back to these posts sooner rather than later.

Enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: The Thin Wall by Ultravox (1981, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


It was practically unavoidable to do at least one, if not more Russell Mulcahy videos on here during this run of surreal/weird music videos. I could probably fill all 30 days by just doing Russell Mulcahy, Anton Corbijn, Steve Barron, and Richard Casey videos.

I have no idea what to say about this one. I knew the name Ultravox, but this is probably my first song of there’s that I’ve listened to. This video seems to have just about everything Mulcahy could of thrown into it.

Hands reaching out to grab you through the walls.

A giant fan.

A disorienting floor.

Frightened bisected swimmers in sand.

Playing with gravity.

Seeing as it is Russell Mulcahy, there’s liquids.

Lots of liquid.

Just watch it. There’s other stuff in it as well.

Lexi Godfrey produced the video. Godfrey seems to have only produced about 15 videos. The ones we’ve done so far are pretty good. She also produced A View To A Kill by Duran Duran, Rockit by Herbie Hancock, this one, Video Killed The Radio Star by The Buggles, and one of the versions of Bohemian Rhapsody.

Enjoy!

30 Days Of Surrealism:

  1. Street Of Dreams by Rainbow (1983, dir. Storm Thorgerson)
  2. Rock ‘n’ Roll Children by Dio (1985, dir. Daniel Kleinman)

Music Video of the Day: Only The Lonely by The Motels (1982, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


I don’t know how long, or how I did it, but for a long time I thought this song, and Only The Lonely by Roy Orbison were the same song. If that isn’t dumb enough for you, my parents also used to watch the movie Only The Lonely (1991) when I was a kid, which prominently featured the Orbison song. Also, my mom is a big Orbison fan, so I grew up listening to his music. I guess that means it shouldn’t come as any surprise that it took till high school before I realized that when people were saying “ultimatum”, they weren’t saying “old tomato”.

Still, I am surprised it took me this many Mulcahy videos before I started noticing things he likes using. We get several of them in Only The Lonely. First, the use of tables.

Hungry Like The Wolf by Duran Duran (1982)

Second, liquids used as metaphors.

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

The Reflex by Duran Duran (1984)

Total Eclipse Of The Heart by Bonnie Tyler (1983)

She Loved Like Diamond by Spandau Ballet (1982)

She Loved Like Diamond by Spandau Ballet (1982)

The Thin Wall by Ultravox (1981)

He really seems to like liquids and tables. Finally, we get the most obvious–isolation. In Only The Lonely, it’s the person wandering around a place that may or may not be filled with people, but the person is alone regardless.

Total Eclipse Of The Heart by Bonnie Tyler (1983)

We also get a repeat of the ending of Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes.

Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes (1981)

Lead-singer Martha Davis won a Best Performance in a Music Video for this at the American Music Awards. The song also did well, but it looks like their biggest hit was Suddenly Last Summer, which also has its own music video. The band is still around today under the name of Martha Davis and The Motels.

The video was shot by Andrew Dintenfass, edited by Doug Dowdle, and produced by Jackie Adams. In other words, the usual crew you would expect on a Mulcahy video.

Enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Young Turks by Rod Stewart (1981, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


There is a little bit of a complex story leading up to why I chose to do this music video, so let me try and walk you through it. I wanted to do Oh Sherrie by Steve Perry. I went to my trusty source of background on the first ten years of MTV–I Want My MTV by Craig Marks and Rob Tannenbaum. I figured there might be some background as to why Oh Sherrie is such a great early example of the early anti-video. I certainly found that information in the form of “discussion” about the music video for Separate Ways (Worlds Apart). In particular, Adam Rubin–after going on a rant involving calling for the execution of the director of the video and the band’s manager–said, “But this is my point, there really wasn’t a music-video aesthetic yet.” Really? I read that, and I wanted to started laughing. That’s right up there with people saying The Jazz Singer (1927) was the first sound film. Maybe if he had said there wasn’t an established way to make videos for any artist, rather than the select few who were onboard with making them prior to 1983 like ABBA; Bee Gees; Earth, Wind & Fire; Funkadelic; Van Halen; Rainbow; Judas Priest; and many more, then I could buy it. However, let’s have some fun at his expense by doing as many music videos prior to 1983 that I can find to continue to break up the ABBA retrospective so that it is not everyday.

Up to this video, we have already covered 75 pre-1983 music videos. These are videos such as the many beautifully constructed ABBA music videos of all types (which you’ll find a lot of Separate Ways comprised of), the stage performances of Meat Loaf and Van Halen, the special effects laden video for Let’s Groove by Earth, Wind & Fire, the video filled with visual tie-ins to the the title for Goody Two Shoes by Adam Ant, Run To Hills by Iron Maiden that broke un otherwise static stage performance video with relevant stock footage, the metaphor-laden Pressure by Billy Joel, and many more. Oh, and that little video for Rio by Duran Duran that went under everyone’s radar, which is why even early Def Leppard was shot like they were Duran Duran. I would include Michael Anthony as a samurai in Oh, Pretty Woman, but I haven’t done that video yet.

With that in mind, here is Young Turks by Rod Stewart, brought to us by the infamous Russell Mulcahy. As far as MTV goes, Rod Stewart was an early darling of there’s. He came prepackaged with so many music videos that he dominated the first day of MTV. The stories about him in I Want My MTV range from crazy dinners to stumbling upon jars of cocaine in his home. It’s interesting, but would you expect anything less from Rod Stewart. It’s not exactly shocking as it is, “That’s my Stewart!”

This song is probably burned into the memories of most people around my age (33). It was included on the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas soundtrack. For whatever reason, this song would play again and again every time I had to repeat a mission that involved flying a plane. I don’t recall why I kept failing or what it kept playing this song instead of another; I just remember this song playing on an endless loop. However, it is a good song. Hearing it as many times as I did, didn’t change that fact.

Young Turks is a slang term referring to rebellious youth. According to the description on the YouTube video, this was the first video to feature break dancing.

I know I say it a lot, but it is a simple video. Two young lovers encounter dancers choreographed by Kenny Ortega and they are lead to Rod Stewart who is having a concert on a slab of concrete. In between, we get cuts to the young lovers trying to make it on their own. The restaurant that Billy emerges from is the Licha’s Santa Fe Girll at the northeast corner of 7th and Santa Fe streets in Los Angeles. The Hotel Hayward also shows up in the video. One of the things that sticks out at me the most in the video is the use of the split screen.

You may or may not recognize Patti who was played by Elizabeth Dailey. She has down mostly voice-work, but has appeared in numerous films over the years. She’s probably best-known for playing Dottie in Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1985). But that’s only one of 185 acting credits.

Dale Pauley played by Billy. I couldn’t find any information about him except a shot of him kissing Holly Penfield. That’s it.

There is a second music video for this that is bland stage performance that Wikipedia says was aired one-third of the way through Dick Clark’s three-hour American Bandstand 30th Anniversary Special Episode on October 30th, 1981.

I’ll probably do that one in a couple of days, just so you can contrast the two.

Paul Flattery produced the video who we’ve already talked about.

Peter Lippman was the production manager who we’ve also already talked about.

They are prolific as both directors and producers.

Enjoy!

Music Video of the Day: Pour Some Sugar On Me by Def Leppard (1987, dir. Russell Mulcahy)


Since I did the concert video version of this yesterday, I thought I would do the original version directed by Russell Mulcahy. Or as I like to call it, Mulcahy for some reason shooting the music video like it’s Madhouse by Anthrax after watching Balls To The Wall by Accept. Also, it looks to me like Mulcahy introduces them at the start of the music video the way I would expect Depeche Mode to be. I don’t know what made him think of the first one, but the second makes some sense. The song is already filled with sexual metaphors.

According to mvdbase, they did this music video a year before they must have decided that a concert video would go over better in the United States. With this music video, they could have also just been trying to break from the image of early metal videos looking like new wave bands. In fact, the book I Want My MTV actually says:

“If you watched MTV with the sound off, you might not have been able to tell the difference between Duran Duran and Def Leppard except that women in Duran Duran videos weren’t in cages”

I can see that when I watch the music video for Photograph. I don’t see that with this music video, but you have to remember that MTV was like the mainstream movie industry. Only a few years after this video was made, you had the rise of directors like Kevin Kerslake who took the medium in an entirely different direction. This meant that as a side effect, bands moved with the year-to-year changes to appear relevant. They probably looked at the video, then looked at Bon Jovi concert videos, remembered their early new-wave-looking music videos, and decided to get with the new-style for bands of their kind in order to get the most positive reception at MTV.

In general, Def Leppard seems to have had a rough history when it comes to music videos. They started off with David Mallet who was coming off of making many music videos for Blondie in the late-1970s. They did a few music videos with the team of Jean Pellerin & Doug Freel. They did this music video with character and storyline director Russell Mulcahy. Then they did some videos with Wayne Isham who had been working with Ozzy Osbourne, Mötley Crüe, Judas Priest, and Bon Jovi for years. He would also go on to work with Megadeth, Metallica, Van Halen, and KISS. However, by that time, Smells Like Teen Spirit and grunge were just around the corner. They never seemed to have had a chance to settle on a particular image like Bon Jovi did. Bon Jovi became so associated with their concert videos that they even made a concert video making fun of the fact that they made endless concert videos.

I think we are seeing a failed attempt with a director they shouldn’t have been working with at this point in their career, and that they realized it and quickly had a more appropriate video made in 1988-plain and simple.

Enjoy!