Remember the first time you saw Michael Jackson dance with zombies in "Thriller"? Diamond Dave karate kick with Van Halen in "Jump"? Tawny Kitaen turning cartwheels on a Jaguar to Whitesnake's "Here I Go Again"? The Beastie Boys spray beer in "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (To Party)"? Axl Rose step off the bus in "Welcome to the Jungle"?
Remember when all you wanted was your MTV?
It was a pretty radical idea - a channel for teenagers, showing nothing but music videos. It was such a radical idea that almost no one thought it would actually succeed, much less become a force in the worlds of music, television, film, fashion, sports, and even politics. But it did work. MTV became more than anyone had ever imagined.
I Want My MTV tells the story of the first decade of MTV, the golden era when MTV's programming was all videos, all the time, and kids watched religiously to see their favorite bands, learn about new music, and have something to talk about at parties. From its start in 1981 with a small cache of videos by mostly unknown British new wave acts to the launch of the reality-television craze with The Real World in 1992, MTV grew into a tastemaker, a career maker, and a mammoth business.
Featuring interviews with nearly 400 artists, directors, VJs, and television and music executives, I Want My MTV is a testament to the channel that changed popular culture forever.
©2012 Craig Marks and Rob Tannenbaum (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
"This colorful oral history of MTV’s early years doesn’t pull punches or waste time. A relentlessly entertaining book, an endlessly quotable volume." (The Onion)
"Wildly entertaining. Music and culture fans of a certain age - you will want this book." (The Washington Post)
"Here’s all the dirt on MTV’s early days, in one of the funniest books ever written about pop music." (Rolling Stone)
Purveyor of Fine Books
This book is a fascinating and profane account of MTV (definitely not for children). If you had any illusions about the people and bands who made MTV what it is today they will be shattered.
It is a fascinating account of the birth and slow aging of MTV. I was a freshman in college and remember the earliest days of MTV well. It was the most incredible media creation of its time. I met Mark Goodman at a fan event with Peter Wolf and thought I was meeting two stars, that is how big the on-air talent was.
For me its golden age ended when the first of the original veejays left. The nail in the coffin came when "shows" became the majority of the programming, not the videos. The MTV of today bears no resemblance to the MTV of yesteryear!
My only criticism of the book is the fact that it is one long series of quotes, some short and some long, by the various people interviewed by the authors. Instead of being a narrative interspersed with quotes, it is just the quotes strung together, quite well I may say. Nonetheless, I would have liked more story and less quotes. There are several artists who contribute a sentence and that is it. I would have liked hearing more from those individuals.
Overall, the book will be of most interest to those who remember MTV from the beginning. I doubt someone who has watched MTV for less than five years would enjoy most of it. I could be wrong.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
Let's stipulate that if you've reached this review after clicking through on this title, you must be interested in its subject (MTV) and the treatment promised in its subtitle (uncensored). If that's not true, stop right here, this book is not for you. But if your interest has been piqued, you are in for a treat. One great treat. A 20-hour treat.
Do not fret -- this is not 20 hours about how a bunch of executives started a cable network, no matter how influential that may have been throughout all facets of pop culture. That would most decidedly be unfun (though that story is well- and amply-told in a balanced manner).
No, the vast majority of I Want My MTV is about how many of the best known (and worst) videos of the 1980s and early 90s were made. Thriller, Smells Like Teen Spirit, Bohemian Rhapsody, Addicted to Love, Sledgehammer, Rio, We're Not Gonna Take It, Rock Me Tonite -- and on and on and on. The videos -- that's what brought you here, right? That's why you're considering this book. Well the good news is, that's what you're going to get.
What makes it even more fun is that the authors, having interviewed hundreds of insiders -- artists, directors, veejays, TV execs, music execs, managers, crew, et.al. -- stand back and let them tell their own stories. This is what you'd call an oral history, with short 1-2 page intros to each chapter followed by a series of interview excerpts. At its best, multiple sides of a story (often controversial) are presented back to back, in the participants' own words.
I loved parts of the 80s music scene, hated other parts, totally missed some of it. No matter, whether I liked a particular video or genre or not, the way the story is presented here -- no other word for it: Fun. Do yourself a favor -- take the 20 hours and enjoy yourself.
What a bummer so many young people didn't have the actual experience of MTV. Now they have an experience, but it is just a reality show. There was once a time when going to your TV was great entertainment with musical flare.
Now it's just different, now it's just Internet. We are connected more artificially now. Before we were connected by some kind of invisible yearning to be connected.
I want my m tv was an enjoyable trip down memory lane... liked hearing all the behind the scenes stories.
I love this book. Read it. I mean, listen to it. Or both like I have. If you know anything about music before 1995, you will love this book. If you know anything or watched MTV during its music video days, you'll REALLY love this book. Truly one of my top 5 books ever. It's too much fun and it's full of flavor, attitude, irreverence, and a comprehensive look at MTV through just about everyone who lived it or worked it.
Maybe in a few years. It was a walk down my own musical memory lane. I grew up with a lot of the music (and MTV) so I liked it.
The guys from Duran Duran had the best stories and insights. Nick Rhodes sounds very intelligent and honest.
Narrator didn't really embellish the voices & it was sometimes hard to tell who was being referred to. I had to do a lot of rewinding for that.
Same as the title
I was really disappointed that there was no mention at all of some acts (especially INXS). I heard one quote from, I think, Tim Farris. How could they have left out the most brilliant act to come out of Australia in years?!
Mainly a sci-fi, and fantasy junkie who also enjoys horror, whodunnits, and books about animals and sports. I'm also an amateur filmmaker.
I was in high school in the 80's, so naturally this time period is of great interest and I love reminiscing about all the great artists and fun back then. The book is awesome because it is really well researched and written. The narrative is actually really thin, it's nominally the history of MTV, or at least the first 10 years or so, but what it REALLY is, is a ton of fun little anecdotes about all the popular artists, and business people in the industry, and yes, Mtv themselves, during that time.
Having Luke Daniels read this is an interesting choice. I know him from the excellent Scott Meyers books. He actually doesn't quite fit in this role, but I don't care, I dug his reading anyway. He handles irony really well.
This is a sublime examination of how one creative spark lit a cultural inferno, tearing down music as it was known, changing it -- and culture -- irrevocably.
this was a great book. Luke Daniels did an awesome job in their writing it the story content is wonderful especially if you're a fan of MTV this is definitely worth a read and or listen I want to listen to it again it's fantastic!
I loved listening to this book. It was an awesome journey from beginning to (what I would call) the end of MTV. I was the midwest kid watching House of Style, Beavis and Butthead, Headbangers Ball, 120 minutes, and YO! MTV Raps. And looking at MTV now makes me sad but times they are a'changin'. This book, to me, was my nostalgic look back at a station that changed the music industrial and me. I loved it and I will also miss the old MTV, but as I listened to the final words this book was not only a nostalgic look back but a loving goodbye, a kick-ass, fist-pumping, headbanging goodbye. Thanks for the good times.
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