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Neil Young’s Banned Video, 25 Years Later

Neil Young This Note's for YouThe LA Weekly Blog has a write-up about the 25th anniversary of Neil Young’s once banned video: “This Note’s for You.”

Those were the days…..

The city is preparing for Young’s upcoming Dolby Shows.

Chaz Kangas writes: “This Saturday night, Neil Young plays the first of four shows at the Dolby Theatre. Over a half-century into his career, Young still packs ’em in. But while his contemporaries have mellowed with age, Young’s never lost his grit. He even had a video banned by MTV at the height of the channel’s popularity.

“It’s been 25 years since Young’s This Note’s For You album reintroduced him to an entire generation. While the album’s known for its bluesy horns section, it’s Young’s potent shot at corporate-sponsored pop music that landed him in MTV’s crosshairs.”

Here’s the video:

The¬†article continues: “Opening with a send-up of Eric Clapton’s then-current Michelob commercial, the song begins by blatantly name-dropping “Ain’t singing for Pepsi / Ain’t singing for Coke,” while the Julien Temple-directed clip mocks spokemusicians Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston as well as Budweiser and Calvin Klein Obsession commercials. It holds up as a funny satire, except back at MTV, nobody was laughing.

“According to a Los Angeles Times article from when the ban first happened, MTV had two major objections with the clip. First, the video’s “use of likenesses of Michael Jackson and Spuds MacKenzie could leave [MTV] open to trademark infringement charges”; second, “the channel refuses to air clips that depict – or contain lyrics – that refer to specific commercial products.” This is why mid-’90s rap videos blurred Fubu and Karl Kani logos just as much as they blurred sex and violence.”

Read more at: http://www.laweekly.com/westcoastsound/2014/03/27/neil-youngs-banned-video-25-years-later

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Rock & roll has still got a lot of legs. But I consider rock & roll and rap to be the same. It\'s popular music with an edge. If the edge doesn\'t have a guitar, that doesn\'t mean it\'s not rock & roll.
by -- n young, rolling stone, 4 sept 03.

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