Back in the 90s music videos were a tool for promoting lead singles with artists hopes of getting their clips in rotation on shows like MTVs Total Request Live and BETs 106 & Park. Nowadays, music videos take a life of their own! In today’s era of technology, music videos take promotion to a new height shedding light on music, artistry, cultural impact and much more. In 2015, some of today’s biggest artists used their videos for just that! Whether it was teaming up with their buddy for some fun or warning others not to mess with them, there’s no denying the new heights that music videos have reached this year. Check out my list of 2015’s hottest videos below!
10. Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea – “Pretty Girls”
As a song, this track could be called a flop that lead to a short-lived, twitter-beef between two pop divas. As a video, “Pretty Girls” took a total life of it’s own! Back in May, Britney Spears and Iggy Azalea teamed up for their highly anticipated collaborative single. The video, directed by Azalea and Cameron Duddy, followed the movie-inspired themes of Iggy’s previous videos with the 80s cult-classic Earth Girls Are Easy. The video, released on May 13th, met positive reviews from critics for it’s 1980s fashion and technology, the duo’s chemistry and the overall concept.
9. Chris Brown & Tyga – “AYO”
Another duo that make the list is Chris Brown and Tyga with the video to their hit “AYO”. In the video, the duo showcase their lavish lifestyle! As Chris Brown chills in a pool full of money, Tyga orders a golden toilet for his bathroom. After hitting up the party and customizing their own Lamborghinis, the duo hit the streets where we meet a bad-cop played by Mike Epps. Overall, the video is dope delivering that 90’s feeling, channeling Ma$e and Puffy Daddy’s “Mo Money Mo Problems”, while keeping it new school all once!
8. Nicki Minaj – “Feeling Myself” featuring Beyonce
Back in May, Nicki Minaj enlisted her good ol’ friend Beyonce for The Pinkprint track “Feeling Myself”. In the video, the duo showcased their chemistry before and after this years famous Coachella Festival. The colorful video is complete with a star-studded house party, Nicki Minaj firing shots at Tyga and Kylie Jenner’s then inappropriate relationship and Beyonce pouring a $20,000 bottle of wine into a pool! There is no doubt that these BFFs are anything but flawless!
7. Missy Elliot – “WTF (Where They From)” featuring Pharrell
After eleven years, Missy Elliot returned to the scene with a brand new single titled “WTF (Where They From)” featuring Pharrell. In true, Misdemeanor fashion, the single premiered along with a hyped up video with futuristic visuals, high-energy dancing and life-like puppets! The video received 11 million + views in it’s first 24 hours proving Missy isn’t a force to reckon with.
6. Justin Bieber – “Sorry”
Justin Bieber also made his return to the scene with his highly anticipated album Purpose. Along with the album came the music video to “Sorry” which kicked off Purpose: The Movement. In the video, the dancers of ReQuest Dance Crew and The Royal Family dance crew set the pace to one of the biggest hits of 2015. The simplicity of the video, sexy dance moves and highly-fashionable retro wardrobe deliver the energy necessary to make this video one of the best of 2015.
5. Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”
Taking an appropriate turn from the fun and games comes one of the greatest voices and visionaries of this generation. This year Kendrick Lamar released, To Pimp A Butterfly, one of 2015’s most compelling albums. Along with the project came multiple music videos but one that stood out was “Alright”. In the video, directed by Colin Tilley, KDot delivers a powerful message as he symbolically floats above everyone in his city. Perhaps, we gone be alright!
4. M.I.A. – “Borders”
Another artist who used her voice as a platform to raise awareness for our culture was M.I.A. A few weeks ago the femcee released the first single off her forthcoming album Matahdatah. “Borders” explores the political and social injustices of our society. In the video, M.I.A. sheds light on the life of refugees with an artistic visual that captures them climbing fences, building pyramids and riding boats. The video is the truth and light that we need(ed) in 2015.
3. Drake – “Hotline Bling”
Drake met major success with his music video to 2015 hit “Hotline Bling”. The video, complete with soft yet electrifying colors delivered a mood directly related to the smooth track. The direction, by Director X, made the video simplistic and easy to meme, making the project one of the biggest of 2015. Although the video may seem like a joke, there’s no joke about Drizzy’s influence and impact on our culture. All hail the king!
2. Taylor Swift – “Bad Blood” featuring Kendrick Lamar
Taylor Swift defined 2015! The pop singer met all types of success with her on-going 1989 project. This year T Swift teamed up with Kendrick Lamar for the remix of her hit single “Bad Blood”. The video, directed by Joseph Kahn, featured an amazing cast including Selena Gomez, Gigi Hadid, Ellie Goulding amongst many others, a wild story line and amazing futuristic graphics. Although the hype overshadowed the actual beauty of the video, there’s no denying the magnificent production of this mini-movie.
1. Rihanna – “Bitch Better Have My Money”
Earlier this year Rihanna released ANTI single “Bitch Better Have My Money”. Back in April, Jimmy Kimmel asked, “What happened with the bitch? Why does she owe you money? Was there a time period in which she was suppose to pay it back?” to which she responded, “you’ll find out in the video”. Indeed we did! The “Bitch Better Have My Money” video, directed by Rihanna herself, includes a complex story line that builds off of her real-life 2009 bankruptcy controversy. Rihanna kidnaps and tortures the pampered blond wife of the accountant who cheated her and at the end, a blood-curling conclusion that shocked everyone! The video will leave anyone owing not only the pop singer, but anyone else money paying it up ASAP.