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YouTube rouses creatives to produce music videos for Elton John’s pre-MTV hits

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By John McCarthy | Media editor

January 11, 2017 | 3 min read

Once upon a time, believe it or not, songs were released without music videos... it was only after the advent of Music Television (MTV) in 1981 that artists had to adapt to the visual medium following the launch of the aptly-named Buggles' hit ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’.

Elton John

Elton John at the Musikhalle Hamburg, in March 1972

Fast forward to 2017 and YouTube is now looking to tackle the problem that many pre-MTV classics have no official visual companion. It has launched a competition called ‘The Cut’ commissioning creatives to develop music videos for Elton John hits ‘Bennie and the Jets,’ ‘Rocket Man,’ or ‘Tiny Dancer’ reports Engadget.

Judging entries will be Dreamworks Animation chief executive Jeffrey Katzenberg, Grammy Award-winning video director Melina Matsoukas and Barry Jenkins, writer-director of Golden Globe Best Picture (Drama) ‘Moonlight’.

There are three categories represented by each song: submissions for ‘Rocket Man’ should feature animation, ‘Tiny Dancer’ should be live-action and ‘Bennie and the Jets’ should feature choreography.

Entries opened to the public earlier this week and will close 23 January.

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