K. J. Donnelly
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Experimental music video and television
in Experimental British television
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This chapter focuses on the presentation of pop music on television, specifically the pop promo, rather than the dedicated music television programme. It provides experimentation with a 'televisual unit', whose migratory malleability has led to the development of specialist channels (MTV). The chapter also focuses on appearance on VHS and DVD compilations, as well as increasingly important 'content' on the internet and mobile technologies. The chapter describes a range of music television programmes on British television: from the populist Top of the Pops to the more 'serious' The Old Grey Whistle Test; from the mixed appeal of The Chart Show to the more specialist, lo-fi aesthetic of Snub TV. It traces the development of the pop promo and focuses on some of its more experimental moments. In particular, it focuses on its links with the avant-garde and the implications of translating avant-gardist strategies into such a format.

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