Hello everyone out there in Music Video Land! It’s your old friends here at IMVDb, ready to take you through the 100 greatest music videos of the decade! And since we’ve already proven that 2010 through 2019 is the official golden era of music videos, it also means that by some measurements this list is actually the 100 greatest music videos of all time. Can you believe it?
We launched IMVDb in late 2010 (at the time called FilmedInsert), so this also serves as a 10 year anniversary celebration for the site. Back in 2010, we were dumb idiots who didn’t know anything about music videos. But in the 10 years since, we’ve literally watched more music videos than anyone on earth, so now we’re dumb idiots who know everything about music videos. In that time we’ve hand-added over 85,000 official music videos and over 250,000 credits to our database. At some point over the past 10 years, one of the humans behind IMVDb watched all 85,000 of those videos to make sure they are actually music videos and not some random visualizer or vertical video bullshit that labels started making this decade.
We’ve decided to present these videos chronologically as a way to track how the music video artform developed and changed through the years. We know most people are just going to scroll through to see what’s on there, but we really recommend setting 7+ hours aside to watch this full 100 video playlist from start to finish and to take notes on all of the shifts in equipment, themes, and techniques through the years. Make it your family holiday tradition and take a photo of it and use the hashtag #imvdbmusicvideomarathon when you post it.
But of course, a list of the 100 greatest music videos of all time needs more than just written words. It also needs spoken words. So we got the gang together and the microphones together to record a podcast with legendary music video producer Jason Baum to chat about the last 10 years in music video. As is IMVDb tradition, Jason has shared his own list of favorite videos from throughout the decade, so after you’ve fully digested our 100 music videos, please make sure you’ve saved some music video appetite for Jason’s post. And since it’s technically still 2019 for a few more hours, we’ve also shared a playlist of the 20 best music videos of 2019 because we can't fucking stop listing music videos.
We also want to take a moment before we dive into this list to remember our great friend and IMVDb contributor, Chris Black, who passed away in 2019. Chris was a music video director and producer who worked on several videos on this best of the decade list, and his work and voice had an immeasurable impact on the music video industry as a whole, and on IMVDb specifically. Chris wrote several blog posts for IMVDb, co-hosted multiple podcasts, recorded commentaries, and contributed to the site’s curatorial voice. We’ve shared links to all of Chris’s contributions to IMVDb below. The music video artform lost one of its most important figures when Chris passed, and we dedicate this list and anything we do going forward at IMVDb to his memory.
So as Chris Black said, "I don’t trust you if you don't put a whole bunch of black pepper in your kraft mac and cheese." And we also don’t trust you if you don’t watch 7 hours straight of music videos starting right now. So unless you want to betray our trust, you better get to watching before the decade is over and this list turns back into a pumpkin.
The List (In Chronological Order)
Starry night background from: https://codepen.io/Glucio/pen/BoLWPo