Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Duck's Music Video Par-tay

I've finally discovered the addicting properties of YouTube. Andrew Sullian has been posting nominees on his website for best & worst music videos from the '80s. After a late night's reverie reliving memories of video favorites, I decided to compile my own top ten music video list. I've thrown out any temporal qualifications, but I did narrow it to one very personal category. These are the top ten music videos by female artists on whom I have a crush.

Notable for their absence from my list will be Madames Madonna, Cher, Britney, Christine and the other Sisters of Excess. Unfortunately, though, neither Uma Thurman or Peggy Fleming have ever made a music video, so they will be sadly missed.

Number 10: Eurythmics - Here comes the rain again OK, so Annie Lennox is a little too androgynous to be truly crush-worthy, but she does have a beautiful, lilting but powerful voice, and piercing eyes. The video is imaginative - dark, haunting, mysterious. And the Eurythmics had one of the most unique sounds in the 1980s.

Number 9: Edie Brickell (with Barry White) - Good Times This is probably the only video I remember seeing of Edie Brickell, and the only reason I saw it is because it was loaded in the media folder of my first PC with Windows 95. I love the slow, dreamy cadence of this song, and Edie posesses a wholesome, friendly cuteness that is easy on the eyes. Barry White adds nothing to the song.

Number 8: Bananarama - Venus Probably the cutest of the '80s girl bands, Bananarama always seemed to live up to Cindi Lauper's anthem "girs just want to have fun".

Number 7: Belinda Carlisle - Mad About You Former lead singer for the Go-Go's, Belinda had a successful solo career. She had a fun, bouncy sound, and being a tall, voluptuous Marilyn Monroe lookalike didn't hurt either.

Number 6: Janet Jackson - When I Think of You This is an amazing video, probably one of the best from the '80s, with a large cast of dancers. It is a throwback to some of the big Hollywood movie musicals of the past, sort of a Busby Berkeley version of Guys and Dolls. Janet's terrible hairdo is the only drawback.

Number 5: Sarah Brightman - It's a Beautiful Day Beautiful voice, beautiful scenery, beautiful woman - a beautiful day indeed!

Number 4: Sheryl Crow - All I Wanna Do Sheryl Crow burst onto the music scene with this very addicting and eclectic song, mixing twangy country, jazz and her own funky brand of rap-poetry whatever. She also projects a tomboyish charm that is very appealing.

Number 3: Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac - Gypsy I've always loved Stevie Nicks. She has a sultry, raspy, sexy voice and a great stage presence, especially in this rich, dreamy, seductive production number.

Number 2: Mary Ramsey/10000 Maniacs - More Than This This might seem like an odd pick, but Bryan Ferry's More Than This is one of my favorite songs of all time. Mary Ramsey, who replaced Natalie Merchant as the lead singer for 10,000 Maniacs, has a beautiful voice, and she uses it to great effect with this song. Their remake of Ferry's song in their 1997 CD "Love Among the Ruins" was a hit, and the only remake of his song that I know of. The version from the CD is better than in the video, where they added an annoying disco percussion track. The video is very dreamlike and a little busy, but it captures Ramsey's waifish beauty and charm marvelously.

Number 1: Shania Twain - Forever and For Always If you haven't figured it out yet, I'm a sucker for brunettes. This pick doesn't disappoint. This is one of the sexiest, most romantic videos I've ever seen. Shania can teach Madonna a few things about doing "sexy". Hint: you hold back. Enjoy!


Blogger Brit said...

Something of a change of direction for the Daily Duck this - you old roué, you.

All a bit smooth, or should I say maudlin, for my tastes, these, though I do like some Eurythmics and Fleetwood Mac.

But generally I prefer my divas to be as rough as a badger's.

November 22, 2006 3:46 AM  
Blogger Duck said...

OK, so what are you calling me now?

One entry found for roué.

Main Entry: roué
Pronunciation: rü-'A
Function: noun
Etymology: French, literally, broken on the wheel, from past participle of rouer to break on the wheel, from Medieval Latin rotare, from Latin, to rotate; from the feeling that such a person deserves this punishment
: a man devoted to a life of sensual pleasure : RAKE

Would that it were true. That "broken on a wheel" part is accurate, though.

Just call me the maudlin roue'.

November 22, 2006 7:25 AM  
Blogger Brit said...

What strange dictionary are you using now?

I merely meant this.

November 22, 2006 7:55 AM  
Blogger Duck said...

Oh, that's much better. Thanks!

November 22, 2006 8:16 AM  
Blogger Brit said...

Seriously though, Youtube is great. It’s becoming like Wikipedia whereby pretty much anything you search for is on there.

It’s hard to predict what will take off on the web, but it generally turns out to be something really simple.

November 22, 2006 8:55 AM  
Blogger David said...

And men make music, too.

November 23, 2006 7:43 PM  
Blogger Brit said...

Nice song, risible stage performance - did you notice the chap prematurely peep from behind the pillar at the start?

I admire your namesake Leonard for successfully making a career in singing without so much as what would normally be considered even the barest, Dylan-esque minimum of vocal talent.

November 24, 2006 8:00 AM  
Blogger Duck said...

"rough as a badger's"

After reading this, I couldn't help thinking of this quote from "LOTR: The Two Towers"

"Gives it to us rrrraw, and wrrrrigling!!"

Yes, I'm a smoothie when it comes to divas and music. I'm like the Johnathan Pryce character Sam Lowry in "Brazil", dreaming about soaring through some wispy, Maxfield Parrish cloudscape with saffron clad maidens. I guess you'd rather hang with the maiden's alter ego, the ass-kicking, bomb-throwing resistance leader. There's no accounting for tastes, as they say.

November 24, 2006 11:18 AM  
Blogger David said...

Brit: Two words: German Television.

I also love how the guy who peeks is late coming out from behind the pillar.

November 24, 2006 12:20 PM  
Blogger Brit said...

It's funny (I mean laugh aloud funny), but continental Europe still does television really, really badly.

I'm thinking in particular of their love of eveything-and-the-kitchen-sink variety shows, where there will be a quiz, then a bit of chat, then some heavy metal rock band, then a trapeze artist, then a 'comedy' sketch, then a buxom lady jiggling around in a leotard, then Leonard Cohen.

That's entertainment!

November 24, 2006 1:26 PM  
Blogger Hey Skipper said...

Since this seems like an invite for top ten lists, here are some of mine:

Oingo Boingo - Dead Man's Party. Atonishing musicians. Dan Elfman, the front man, went on to become an amazingly prolific composer.

Mexican Radio. Quirky and funny. Also, I went to school with the lead singer.

The Bangles - Manic Monday. Not particularly distinguished musically, but I'm a sucker for humorous lyrics.

Ultravox - Oh Vienna. Great vocals, musically unique. Also, I saw this when I first set foot in Old Blighty. Being as I was both jet lagged and in the into the midst of an apocalyptic exercise at RAF Upper Heyford, it was bound to leave an impression.

a-Ha - Take on Me. Everything about this reeks of the 80s. But who knew a male voice could convincingly span five-ish octaves?

Dexy's Midnight Runners - Come on Eileen. Proves that rock, unlike rap, has no formula.

The Chemical Brothers - The Golden Path Unique song, great video.

The Cardigans - Love Fool. Light music in counterpoint to dark lyrics.

Duck -- you really shouldn't have brought this up; my already deficient editorial output is bound to plummet even further.

November 28, 2006 12:54 AM  

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