Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Conventions of hip hop music videos.

Or, Sarah watches all the Eminem videos on YouTube.

These are just points I'm going to make and stuff and videos I'm going to use. I will perform a magic trick over the next few days/weeks in which I will make this magically expand.

Songs/videos used:
Stan - Eminem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOMhN-hfMtY (this is the censored one, I thought maybe it was inappropriate to post the one I actually watched when considering this...)
Just Lose It - Eminem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dcVOmEQzKA&feature=relmfu
Real Slim Shady - Eminem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGk2qmDmvT8
My Name Is - Eminem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNPnbI1arSE
A** Like That - Eminem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=um4-d7VzZiE
(He makes good videos, leave me alone).
Ms. Jackson - OutKast: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYxAiK6VnXw
In Da Club - 50 Cent: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qm8PH4xAss&feature=related
It Wasn't Me - Shaggy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2g5Hz17C4is&feature=fvwrel
Ignition - R Kelly: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6y_4_b6RS8
(which also reminded me of Trapped In The Closet, which is the greatest song ever).
Run This Town - Jay-Z, Rihanna and Kanye West.
Superbass - Nicki Minaj: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JipHEz53sU

Applying Goodwin's theories:
1) Fits conventions of genre.
2) Lyrics fit visuals.
3) Music fits visuals.
4) Close ups/recurring motifs.
5) Looking/voyeurism.
6) Intertextuality.

Cinematography: lots of close ups (to fulfil the demands of the record company, as established in the fourth point) and low angled shots giving the artist "power" or "dominance" over the audience. They are also there to make the audience feel part of the music video, as they often place them in the crowd which are looking up at the artist.
Editing: the dancing is edited to fit the beat,
Mise-en-scene: lots of images of money, cars, jewellery.

2) Hip hop music videos generally have a link between lyrics. Stan and It Wasn't Me have a clear story to them, because Stan is a narrative song, so a narrative music video would make sense. It Wasn't Me also has quite a narrative theme to it, so a narrative music video fits. In Da Club tries to have a narrative music video, but it doesn't make any sense because neither does 50 Cent or his fame. Ms. Jackson has a narrative aspect to it, with the two guys fixing up their house and trying to catch rain from getting through their roof and encountering a storm, possibly to symbolise the 'stormy relationship'. Superbass and Ignition don't have a narrative to fit the song, but they do have links, such as in Superbass when a plane appears when she says 'plane', and in Ignition, a car appears when he says 'toot toot'. Although, in Ignition, he says 'running my hand through my 'fro', and mimes the action but HE HAS NO FRO. ARGH.

3) The only real link between music and lyrics is that in some of them (eg. In Da Club), the bouncing is edited in time to the beat, and in Nicki Minaj's video, the dancing is edited to fit the beat of the song. 

4) There are lots of close ups in all of the videos. In Eminem's videos, there is also the recurring motif of Dr. Dre. He's not credited on the song as featuring in it, so I'm going to class him as a motif because he has like one line in each, yet he appears in nearly all of them.

5) In hip hop videos, there are many references to looking, especially in Eminem videos. In My Name Is..., the entire concept is a family watching Eminem on their TV; in Stan, Stanley watched Eminem in the TV, in A** Like That, he's watching a film,in In Da Club by 50 Cent, Eminem is watching Fiddy in 'da club' through a window; in It Wasn't Me by Shaggy, Shaggy is looking at 'Rik' (does anybody even know who this man is?) through a telescope or something, but there's cameras and looking.

Voyeurism: VOYEURISM EVERYWHERE. The voyeurism in Eminem's video is mostly to parody the hip hop genre, something Eminem tries to do through lyrics as well as video (well, he used to, before he started hating everyone). There's none in Ms. Jackson, because that suits the theme of the song about being respectful and being sorry for hurting a woman. In Da Club has plent of it when they are cruising 'da club', It Wasn't Me has tons of it, which isn't surprising seeing as the song is about sleeping with loads of women and getting away with it, Ignition has it, Run This Town has it subtly, Superbass has it (see my rant on Nicki Minaj).

6) Eminem uses lots of intertexuality to basically mock everyone and everything. Just Lose It parodies Michael Jackson (Billie Jean), My Name Is parodies The Brady Bunch, Marilyn Manson and other old-style TV programmes. 

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