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MTV Ruled the World: The Early Years of Music Video Paperback – January 25, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 476 pages
  • Publisher: Greg Prato (January 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0578071975
  • ISBN-13: 978-0578071978
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #523,860 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"It's fun to read the first-person accounts of the people who were actually there and made it all happen. I thought it was an accurate and entertaining narrative of a singularly important era in pop culture history." --Weird Al Yankovic 

"'MTV Ruled the World: The Early Years of Music Video' takes us on a trip back to the time when the ‘M’ in MTV actually stood for music. Our tour guides are the performers, industry professionals, and creators of the phenomenon that had everyone clamoring, 'You'll never look at music the same way again'." --Nina Blackwood, MTV VJ

"MTV Ruled the World covers the channel's formative years, when music videos evolved from something only a handful of companies even considered into a hugely profitable arm of the industry." --Ron Wynn, Option Magazine

"MTV Ruled The World brought back some great memories. It's also a very interesting, entertaining and informative book that captures an important part of music history." --Chad Bowar, about.com

"Amazingly comprehensive oral history featuring over 70 interviews with both the talent from that era of MTV and a plethora of the A-list artists featured on the channel during the time period." --Matt Wardlaw, popdose.com

"The book not only pulls the curtains back on the upstart video channel but reveals what was happening industrywide in the 1980s."  --Steven Rosen, curledup.com

"Greg has complied a wondrous microscopic view into MTV’s formation and it’s earliest and what some would deem as its most essential years." --Arasia Magnetc, thewellversed.com

MTV Ruled the World details the halcyon days of a television channel and its VJs that impacted pop culture in ways its creators couldn’t possibly have ever imagined." --Peter Lindblad, Backstage Auctions Inc.

MTV Ruled the World covers a variety of subjects from the channel’s humble beginnings to the controversy over their decision early on to avoid playing black artists. There is even one hilarious chapter dedicated to music videos that served as career killers. --David Medsker, bullz-eye.com

"Similar to Prato's other books, MTV Ruled The World is written in the oral history format, as the story of the station is told from the interviewees' point of view." --Shon Troelstrup, Rockstar Weekly

"MTV Ruled the World' will make you miss the original MTV, and make you say, 'I want my MTV!'" --Stone & Double T, WXRX, Rockford, IL

About the Author

Greg Prato is a Long Island, New York-–based journalist, whose writing has appeared in such renowned publications as Rolling Stone, All Music Guide, and Classic Rock Magazine. He is the author of several popular books, 'A Devil on One Shoulder and an Angel on the Other: The Story of Shannon Hoon and Blind Melon,' 'Touched by Magic: The Tommy Bolin Story,' 'Grunge Is Dead: The Oral History of Seattle Rock Music, 'No Schlock . . . Just Rock!,' 'The Eric Carr Story,' 'MTV Ruled the World: The Early Years of Music Video,' and 'Sack Exchange: The Definitive Oral History of the 1980s New York Jets.'

Customer Reviews

A nice job done by the author.
James Caron
It's not just a trip down Memory Lane, indeed, it felt like I was reliving the early 80s and the genesis of MTV as I read this book.
mrbluesman
The way that the words are pieced together of the people (who really lived it at the start) is so well done.
Tara Parsons

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ernie-D on April 5, 2012
Format: Paperback
I bought this at the same time I bought the MTV oral history, which is a much better book. By comparison, "MTV Ruled the World" is a cursory and thin survey of the era.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By XERO on January 30, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading Greg Prato's book MTV Ruled the World has giving a lot of insight of the start and final demise of MTV. It was interesting to learn the facts behind the record companies, the artists themselves, the VJs, the video producers, management/producers, and all the creative work in building MTV. Greg describes the rise and fall of MTV (music television) and how it imploded on itself. MTV will never be the same again. Young people will never understand that true concept on which MTV was based on, music. The MTV of the 80's is a lost generation. Despite the fact that those videos were low budget and chessy ... it was none the less the staple of life back in the 80's as compared to the present.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By mrbluesman on January 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
In some ways, it's hard to remember just how huge MTV was in the early to mid 80s. Today, you can find virtually any song or video with the click of a computer mouse. But, 30 years ago, it wasn't that easy. I turned 16 in 1981 and, in our town, we didn't get MTV on our cable system until 1982. I had spent most of the mid 70s to 1982 listening to FM radio. I can't even estimate how many days and nights I'd listen to the radio, singing along with the better known tunes and grinning from ear to ear when some deep track was played. In my mind, it seems almost like a magical time. The first time I saw MTV, I was hooked. It was the same feeling that I had with radio, heck, even more so. I remember all the hours watching MTV, it seemed to always be on. I, like a lot of people, would wait and wait for a certain video to be played and keep my eyes glued to the TV during the 3 or 4 minutes that song aired. To this day, when I hear certain songs, I think of the images from the video as the song plays (for example, just heard "Don't Answer Me" by Alan Parsons and all I could think of was the cartoon video of that song).

I have wanted, forever, to read an in-depth book about the early days of MTV. Thankfully, Greg Prato wrote this fantastic book. Every single angle of MTV is covered here. From it's start up, to the VJs, to discussions about the making of and look of countless classic videos, to the genesis of the "I Want My MTV" slogan and on and on. No area is left uncovered. MTV's story is told, in this book, through the eyes of the people that were there and made MTV what it was (Nina Blackwood, Alan Hunter, Fee Waybill from the Tubes, Mike Reno from Loverboy, Joe Elliot from Def Leppard - you name a person and they've probably been interviewed for this book).
Read more ›
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By V. Ruiz Cabarga on August 4, 2011
Format: Paperback
All of these years I've detested when MTV paraded Thriller out as the greatest video of all time. Heck, nothing is better than Thriller after all of these years? Ah yes, till I discovered in this book how MTV paid for the video! Now it all makes sense. The book is very insightful, and gives you various sides of the story. You hear from the suits, musicians, journalists, etc. The way the book is put together it is difficult to put it down. This isn't Greg Prato doing like so many other big name authors that just tell what they think happened. Greg actually tracked down a lot of important players, and got their take on the various subjects discussed in the book. Highly recommended for any music lover, or anyone that is interested in reading about what happened when MTV truly did rule the world.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Christensen on December 15, 2011
Format: Paperback
As a 34 year old, I fondly remember getting cable in my house for the first time, and MTV was one of the first things I remember seeing when clicking through the channels on the wired box with the faux wood grain. This book really brought me back. The Oral History format makes for an interesting read. You are getting the words straight from the horses mouth, and there are a lot of interesting and influential interviewees in the book, from Rob Halford to Daryl Hall, as well as several of the original VJ's. I particularly enjoyed reading about how the musicians themselves felt about seeing their videos on TV, the paradigm shift that occurred when Mtv became a hit.
I highly recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
As a young youth watching the teley, I remember the first time I viewed MTV - Taco's classic, "Putting on the Ritz" was on. It inspired me to put on a top hat, locate a cane, and dance the night away - much to the objection of my father, who told me my life was going nowhere. Although this song was not analyzed in 'MTV Ruled the World,' the book was like a tsunami of nostalgia.
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By Kevin Caffrey on April 7, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
"I Want My MTV" that came out around 2012 is better and features a wider array of musicians and insiders, but this book is very good as well. Not sure if we need 2 1/2 page commentaries from Oran "Juice" Jones (!), but it's an enjoyable quick read.
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More About the Author

Greg Prato is a Long Island, New York-based journalist, whose writing has appeared in such renowned publications as Rolling Stone, All Music Guide, and Classic Rock Magazine. He is the author of several popular books:

MUSIC:
'A Devil on One Shoulder and an Angel on the Other: The Story of Shannon Hoon and Blind Melon'
'Touched by Magic: The Tommy Bolin Story'
'Grunge Is Dead: The Oral History of Seattle Rock Music'
'No Schlock . . . Just Rock!'
'The Eric Carr Story'
'MTV Ruled the World: The Early Years of Music Video'
'Too High to Die: Meet the Meat Puppets'
'The Faith No More & Mr. Bungle Companion'
'Overlooked/Underappreciated: 354 Recordings That Demand Your Attention'
'Primus, Over the Electric Grapevine: Insight into Primus and the World of Les Claypool'
'Punk! Hardcore! Reggae! PMA! Bad Brains!'

SPORTS:
'Sack Exchange: The Definitive Oral History of the 1980s New York Jets'
'Dynasty: The Oral History of the New York Islanders, 1972-1984'
'Just Out of Reach: The 1980s New York Yankees'

Also, Greg has been interviewed on such radio shows as 'Eddie Trunk Live,' 'The Ron and Fez Show,' 'Kick Out the Jams,' and 'The Electric Ballroom,' and has had his books heralded on such TV or radio programs as 'That Metal Show' and 'The Howard Stern Wrap Up Show.'

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