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Andrew Goodwins

Music Video theory

By Jessica Peaty

Who is Andrew Goodwin?
Andrew Goodwin music video theory
1. Relationship between the song and visuals with
2. Thought through beat with examples
3. Genre-related style and iconography present
with examples
4. Close-ups of the main artist or vocalist with
5. Voyeurism with examples
6. Intertextual References with examples

Andrew Goodwin says?

Music videos ignore common narrative as they
are essentially advertisements. As consumers, we
make up our own meaning of a song in our minds:
a music video can anchor meaning and gives the
record company/artist a method of anchoring
Andrew Goodwin states that music videos are
used as advertisements, to sell products or ideas
to their target audience, and how as the
demographic we encode polysemic views from the
dominant reading the music video is signifying.

Andrew Goodwins Music Video

Andrew Goodwin identifies 6 conventions
within music videos that we the audience
should look out for, they include;
1. Relationship between the song and visuals
2. Thought through beat
3. Genre-related style and iconography
4. Close-ups of the main artist or vocalist
5. Voyeurism
6. Intertextual References

1. Relationship between the

song and visuals
The first convention explains how Goodwin noticed a music
videos visuals are used to promote the lyrics in three
different ways:
Music videos use certain images and shots to explain the
dominant reading of their song .
When the images and camera shots are manipulated and
shown repeatedly through the music video- drumming the
images into the audiences vision
The meaning of the song is completely different to the
visuals seen on screen also known as contrapuntal.

Examples: Relationship between

the song and visuals
Adele: Illustrate
An example of this convention is in Adeles, Someone
Like You where as the lyrics say, for men, it isnt
over Adele is looking very emotional and saddened.
This allows the target audience to sympathise (uses
and gratification theory)- which the directors intended.
Kanye West: Amplify
In Kanye Wests, homecoming music video the
demographic are able to denote Kanye walking around
the City for the duration of the song, the repeated
images of the city embed into the audiences mind.
Jessie J: Contradict
Price tag by Jessie J is a contradictory music video
where the lyrics state how, its not all about the
money, while the images show money growing on
trees, subverting the lyrical meaning.

2. Thought through beat

Goodwin also identified that the visuals
within a music video may be edited to be
asynchronchous or synchronchous to the
lyrics, to either, illustrate, amplify or
contradict the song.
Illustrating beats can be shown in many
music videos when a character does exactly
what the song says. An example is when the
song lyrics say, jump jump jump and the
visual denote characters/actors jumping.

Examples: Thought through

Calvin Harris Feat. Kelis: Illustrate
Calvin Harris music video, Bounce is an example of
a illustrated music video, where the fast pace of the
male and the quick jump cuts are synchrounous to the
lyrics. It is also a illustrated music video as when the
lyrics say bounce the tennis ball is bounce.
Bruno Mars: Amplify:
Bruno Mars, music video for, Lazy song demostrates
an amplified music video as everytime when the
lyrics say, I dont feel like Bruno points to himself
and shakes his head. The repeated use of this allows
the audience to understand the connection between
the artist and the lyrics.
Mark Ronson: Contradict:
In Mark Ronson ft Daniel Merriweathers music video
for, stop me the lyrics signify a domestic violence
awareness however they are aschryonous to the
images as animated features bring a sense of comedy
to the music video.

3. Genre-related style and

iconography present
Goodwin recognised that most artists
have a trend repeating certain actions
within their music videos in order to
establish their trademark and
therefore marketing themselves as a
Genre is also detected through
repeatedly conventions (e.g. location)
making it iconography of a certain

Examples: Genre-related style

and iconography present
Genre: Rock
Kiss and many other rock bands music videos
are denoted on a stage conveying a
atmosphere of a gig, this convention along side
many others becomes a convention of the
genre, Rock.
Iconography: Justin Bieber
An example of an artist producing a trademark
that comes iconography of that artist is Justin
Biebers hand sign denoted in many images of
Justin and even people copying the pose.
Another example of iconography of artists is
Adeles eyeliner where her eyeliner is an
common makeup style that is signified to Adele.

4. Close-ups of the main artist

or vocalist
A common feature Goodwin identified
(for record labels) to use close ups of
the artist or vocalist in order to
promote the sales of that song or
single. This convention is used in
order to show the artist throughout the

Examples: Close-ups of the main

artist or vocalist
Britney spears:
In Britney Spears music video for,
My Prerogative she is denote in
multiple close up in a productive
way, conforming to the Laura
Mulveys Male Gaze theory.
Adeles, Hello music video is also
made up of lots of quick close up
and extreme close ups of her face,
conforming to this convention.

5. Voyeurism
Voyeurism: When the audience can
pleasure (voyeruistic pleasure) in the
appearance of watching actors or
Andrew also believes that many music
videos include voyeuristic angles of
women in order to entice their male

Examples: Voyeurism
Robin Thicke:
In Robin Thicke, Blurred Lines music
video, the women are signified as
wearing less near to no clothing while
the males are fully dressed. This
allows the male audience a voyeuristic
Miley Cyrus:
In, Wrecking Ball Miley Cyrus is
swinging naked on the ball, allowing
her audiences voyeuristic pleasure,
and linking to the female glaze theory.

6. Intertextual
It is not uncommon in music videos for
the target audience to recognise either
links to the visuals or lyrics of the song
to another media text. This is used to
engage the audiences and provide
them gratification if they are able to
recognise the link.

Examples: Intertextual
Becky G:
In Becky Gs music video for, cant
stop Dancin the advertisement of
a joint company is clear, the
audience gain gratification through
understanding the link.
In tygas Music video for,
Stimulated it stars Kylie Jenner
allowing gratification for the
audience whom understand that
its his girlfriend in real life.