Now Reading
Happy birthday, MTV. Wish you still played music

From the archive: This story is more than 10 years old.

Happy birthday, MTV. Wish you still played music

Reality killed the music channel

It's been 30 years since MTV changed the music business, bringing us the Buggles' "Video Killed The Radio Star," along with a second British Invasion, Michael Jackson, Madonna, and making it okay for white suburban kids to listen to rap.

Say what you will about the cultural weight of Duran Duran, Sheila E or Bon Jovi, early MTV had more impact on music and style greater than the channel's had in years.

Even prior to the rise of the Internet as the medium for discovering new music, MTV abandoned its first letter for a steady diet of "reality"—the (dis)likes of "The Real World," "The Hills" and "Jersey Shore" have now dominated the channel for longer than it's music-video heyday.

So here's a tip of the cap to the former music channel on it's 30th birthday. And a Bronx cheer for having lost its mojo.

Put another dime in the jukebox

What's your favorite MTV memory? What heavy-rotation video drove you crazy in the '80s?

— 30 —

Top headlines

Best in Internet Exploder