Friday, September 19, 2008

Talkin' 'bout my generation...

When MTV first aired on August 1, 1981, I was about three and a half years old. It was probably some time later that winter that I first saw it. Its one of the earliest memories I have.

Back in those days, I had only one brother (not three) and my Mom worked nights at a restaurant. Al and I stayed at home with Dad, and there was another guy who lived upstairs in our apartment building in a similar situation. I don't remember his wife at all, but I remember playing with his two boys (Duane and Derek).

We'd go upstairs to their apartment at night and would be told to go play in the bedroom. The four of us would toddle off to play Matchbox cars and whatever else, only to wander out later into a cloud of funny smelling smoke and a blaring stereo.

One night, the TV was on. Usually Dad and the neighbor played cards and drank beer, often with other friends, and this was unusual. I remember walking up to the TV and sitting down in front it it, super close the way kids did back when the TV sets were huge and were set on the floor.

This is the video I remember seeing. I asked my Dad why that guy was dressed like a woman and he and his friends laughed like it was the funniest thing they'd ever heard. (Mick Jagger was the guy I meant. Looking at this now I just think its the lamest video ever made.)


Later, MTV became a huge part of my life. We never had enough money to have cable at our house, but it was easy enough to get to friends' houses after school to watch my fill. The videos were cool, but it was their other shows that really defined my youth.

First it was Remote Control. Then Beavis and Butthead, the Real World and Daria. My friends and I spent hours watching videos like this one:

GOD I loved Whitfield Crane!

and this one:


Now MTV is just a bunch of crap reality TV. So sad...(or am I just old?)

Tell me...were YOU part of the MTV Generation?

21 comments:

Jess said...

I was of the MTV Generation - along the Daria & Real World timeline! I agree - MTV now is just not the same :(

Melisa said...

OMG: Start Me Up was the first video I saw on MTV too! :)

And I loved Remote Control. Especially Adam Sandler. :)

So I guess my answer is: YES!

lynn said...

I was! I was 11 when it started and I begged my parents for months to get cable so we could watch. We finally did and during junior high/high school that is probably all my friends and I watched when we'd get together. Those were the days.....when MTV actually played music!

Suzie said...

I remember the first broadcast i think I was in middles school

Rachel said...

I used to love Daria and Remote Control was soooo the coolest thing evah :-) LOL.

MTV has gone to crap, just like damn near every other station. Bah.

:-) Thanks for the stroll down memory lane! It rocked!!!

Tammy said...

Love me some "start me up"! Lame video though.

MTV has turned into trash TV! I watched the first Real World which was racially controversial. I caught a glimpse of a recent show and it was who was sleeping with whom with night time video!!! It is horrible and if I need to I will block it from my kids viewing!

I loved Remote Control too.

Tismee2 said...

Oh thanks Colleen! How old do I feel now? I had just joined the navy in 1981. I don't remember what I saw on MTV first, but I think we got it later than you anyway. However we did have a programme called 'top of the pops' and came into the room to see my dad horrified as he watched Culture Club. He wouldn't accept that Boy George was a bloke. He kept saying "I've seen it all now" LOL. Thanks for the memory.

Zip n Tizzy said...

Yes, MTV was my middle school introduction to pop culture. I didn't have cable either, but would stay up all night at friends houses watching Madonna, Boy George, and Michael Jackson videos.
It's funny, because it was the real world etc. that got us complaining in college about what crap MTV was turning out to be. We wanted our MTV and it had to be videos dammit!
I don't even know what gets played on MTV anymore, but I'm sure it's not videos.
That Start me Up video is hilarious. It looks like a parody of itself.
Fun.
Thanks for taking me back.

THopgood said...

Oh man was I ever! That's all I did all day long. Watch MTV! I remember loving Pat Benetar (I'm sure that's spelled wrong) and Stevie Nicks (probably also spelled wrong =)

maggie said...

I definitely remember life before MTV, but I'm a little older than you. I have more memories of Friday Night Videos back in the day, which makes sense because we probably didn't have cable when MTV was brand spankin' new. I still don't, though. ;)

Miss said...

I used to love MTV. It sucks now though.

Gabriella Moonlight said...

I was a part of the M t.v generation, I loved watching it and was lucky enough to see the first video..."video killed the radio star!" And of course love me some Stones. I also loved and here's my age..."USA Night Flight" omg, I'm old... just sad! Thanks for the great memories!
Gabi

Amydeanne said...

I was 6 or 7 when MTV came out.. I remember watching "twisted sister" I wanna rock!

and ya, i couldn't watch it now.. what happened to the real artistry? LOL

Vodka Mom said...

I feel pretty damn old right now DAMN old. thanks.

Kila said...

I was born in 1970, so MTV was pretty cool for us teenagers in the 80's. We didn't have cable out in the country, though. I think I saw it for the first time when I was 17.

I recall watching videos on it when I was 18-21 or so, living on my own, and being so cool as to have cable! I haven't watched MTV in a looonngg time.

The 80's RULE! ;)

Laski Gal said...

I remember this stuff and I MISS it. I can't lie. I'd take lame videos over the junk they have now any day.

Plus, I have a very unhealthy obsession with the 80s . . .

HeatherY said...

Talk about some flashbacks! I was 12 when we first got cable and I was mesmerized by MTV. I'd watch it for hours! Remember Downtown Julie Brown and the dance show she had. Or Adam Curry and his super big hair!

Anglophile Football Fanatic said...

I loved Remote Control. And, I think we're pretty much the same age. I didn't have cable until about 86 or 87, but I remember quite a bit of the MTV rage as my brother was a teen of the 80s. You totally brought back memories. And, no! Dammit! We aren't old. MTV does suck - and I actually thought it was off the air....

Earthmommy said...

This sure did bring back emories for me. AND it made me feel old, lol....since I was eleven years old when MTV came out. I remember having these cool little MTV buttons that the cable company as giving out and I had a whole collection. I remember being in my Duran Duran craze then, and "Save A Prayer" was my favorite video. I still love it today! I remember the video for INXS's "The One Thing" too.

I agree MTV now is total crap, but I recall great shows like Liner Notes, which came on late on Saturday night and had interviews and performances with my favorite bands.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I LOVED Remote Control. But now? I use the channel blocker because it's more annoying and offensive than QVC (also blocked). This generation doesn't even know what was ruined for them!

Colleen said...

I totally was. One of the first videos I remember was "Hungry Like the Wolf" from Duran Duran. While mom got cable sometime around 1983 or so, we either didn't have MTV or weren't allowed to watch it (I can't recall) so anything we saw was at my dad's when we'd visit him on weekends: Peter Gabriel's "Sledgehammer" and "Every Breath You Take" from the Police were taped and we watched over and over.

And I loooooooved Daria, and especially Beevis and Butthead...even saw the movie. On a date.