MTV August 1, 1981


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It was August 1st, 1981, and young people were eagerly tuning in to watch the very first broadcast of MTV. The channel promised music videos 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and teenagers across the country were excited to see their favorite artists brought to life on television.

The first video ever played on MTV was “Video Killed the Radio Star” by the Buggles. The simple yet catchy tune accompanied by black and white images of singers Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes captured the attention of viewers immediately.

Within minutes, MTV was officially launched and viewers were bombarded with more music videos from popular artists like Duran Duran, Pat Benatar, and Rod Stewart. Hours flew by as young people across America glued themselves to their TVs, transfixed by the sights and sounds of this new revolution in entertainment.

As time went on, MTV would become synonymous with not just music videos but also cultural trends. It showcased some of the biggest bands from around the world, creating stars like Madonna and Michael Jackson who dominated pop culture for decades to come.

But in those first two hours, it was just pure excitement for a new form of entertainment that would change the landscape forever. The birth of MTV remains a defining moment in American pop culture history.


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