Analysis of Rolling Stone’s ‘The 100 Greatest Music Videos’ of All Time List

In honor of MTV’s 40th anniversary, Rolling Stone magazine just published a brand new list of ‘The 100 Greatest Music Videos’ of all time. This is an update to the list they did sometime back, and fans have already spotted some “unusual” changes to the list.

Rolling Stone’s criteria for picking out and ranking these music videos from all over the history of music is;

“perfect examples of how pairing sound and vision created an entire artistic vocabulary, gave us a handful of miniature-movie masterpieces, and changed how we heard (and saw) music.”

However, we cannot understand or justify how Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” did not make this updates list (Yes, it was included in the original list). But, they perceived that Lil Nas X’s latest controversy “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” was a worthy inclusion. It might deserve a spot, but over “Thriller”? Cardi B’s “WAP” over “Thriller”?

The list is not without some classic music videos that in fact did change how we experience and enjoy music. The list includes artists such as Madonna, Michael Jackson, Johnny Cash, Beyoncé, Prince, David Bowie, and more.

Beyoncé’s “Formation” music video tops the list for showcasing “a striking commentary on significant moments in black American history,” says Rolling Stone magazine. We can get behind this pick, as Queen Bey made some powerful moves with this song and video and shed a light on a timely social issue.

Madonna leads the list with 4 music videos listed from “Vogue,” “Ray of Light,” “Material Girl,” and “Justify My Love.”

Rolling Stone’s 2021 List of ‘The 100 Greatest Music Videos’ of All Time

  1. Beyoncé – “Formation
  2. Johnny Cash – “Hurt”
  3. Madonna – “Vogue”
  4. Childish Gambino – “This Is America
  5. New Order – “The Perfect Kiss”
  6. Beastie Boys – “Sabotage”
  7. D’Angelo – “Untitled (How Does It Feel?)”
  8. Peter Gabriel – “Sledgehammer”
  9. Guns N’ Roses – “November Rain
  10. Michael Jackson – “Billie Jean
  11. George Michael – “Freedom ’90”
  12. Beyoncé – “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)”
  13. Nirvana – “Smells Like Teen Spirit
  14. A-ha – “Take on Me”
  15. The White Stripes – “Fell in Love With a Girl”
  16. Missy Elliott – “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”
  17. Duran Duran – “Hungry Like the Wolf”
  18. Prince – “Kiss”
  19. Radiohead – “Paranoid Android”
  20. DJ Shadow feat. Run the Jewels – “Nobody Speak”
  21. Fatboy Slim – “Weapon of Choice”
  22. Young Thug – “Wyclef Jean”
  23. Jay-Z – “99 Problems”
  24. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – “Maps”
  25. U2 – “One”
  26. Massive Attack – “Teardrop”
  27. 2Pac feat. Dr. Dre – “California Love”
  28. Unkle feat. Thom Yorke – “Rabbit in Your Headlights”
  29. The Carters – “Apesh*t”
  30. Britney Spears – “…Baby One More Time”
  31. Madonna – “Ray of Light”
  32. Drake – “Hotline Bling
  33. Lady Gaga – “Bad Romance”
  34. Kanye West – “Bound 2”
  35. ZZ Top – “Gimme All Your Lovin'”
  36. Smashing Pumpkins – “Tonight, Tonight”
  37. The Roots – “What They Do”
  38. OK Go – “Here It Goes Again”
  39. Tierra Whack – “Whack World”
  40. The Prodigy – “Smack My B*tch Up”
  41. Björk – “It’s Oh So Quiet”
  42. Metallica – “One”
  43. Fiona Apple – “Criminal”
  44. David Bowie – “Ashes to Ashes”
  45. Adele – “Hello”
  46. Jay-Z – “Moonlight”
  47. Aphex Twin – “Come to Daddy”
  48. Devo – “Beautiful World”
  49. Aerosmith – “Janie’s Got a Gun”
  50. Fatboy Slim – “Praise You”
  51. Run the Jewels – “Close Your Eyes (and Count to F*ck)”
  52. Herbie Hancock – “Rockit”
  53. Janet Jackson – “Rhythm Nation”
  54. Madonna – “Material Girl”
  55. LL Cool J – “Going Back to Cali”
  56. Backstreet Boys – “I Want It That Way”
  57. Nine Inch Nails – “Closer”
  58. Van Halen – “Jump”
  59. Kylie Minogue – “Come Into My World”
  60. Janet Jackson feat. Q-Tip and Joni Mitchell – “Got ‘Til It’s Gone”
  61. The Go-Go’s – “Our Lips Are Sealed”
  62. Radiohead – “Just”
  63. R.E.M. – “Losing My Religion”
  64. Queen – “Bohemian Rhapsody
  65. The Verve – “Bittersweet Symphony”
  66. Lady Gaga feat. Beyoncé – “Telephone”
  67. Taylor Swift – “Blank Space
  68. Sonic Youth – “Bull in the Heather”
  69. The Replacements – “Bastards of Young”
  70. Hole – “Violet”
  71. Lil Nas X – “Montero (Call Me by Your Name)
  72. Mötley Crüe – “Home Sweet Home”
  73. Kendrick Lamar – “Humble
  74. Beck – “Loser”
  75. Run-DMC – “King of Rock”
  76. Weezer – “Buddy Holly”
  77. Twisted Sister – “We’re Not Gonna Take It”
  78. Haim – “Valentine”
  79. Björk – “All Is Full of Love”
  80. Rick Astley – “Never Gonna Give You Up”
  81. Talking Heads – “Once in a Lifetime”
  82. Nicki Minaj – “Anaconda”
  83. Blind Melon – “No Rain”
  84. Azealia Banks – “212”
  85. “Weird Al” Yankovic – “Eat It”
  86. Neil Young – “This Note’s for You”
  87. Soundgarden – “Blow Up the Outside World”
  88. The Notorious B.I.G. – “Hypnotize”
  89. Psy – “Gangnam Style”
  90. Madonna – “Justify My Love”
  91. Blur – “Coffee & TV”
  92. Adam Ant – “Stand and Deliver”
  93. Cardi B feat. Megan Thee Stallion – “WAP
  94. Sinéad O’Connor – “Nothing Compares 2 U”
  95. The Chicks – “Goodbye Earl”
  96. A Tribe Called Quest feat. Leaders of the New School – “Scenario”
  97. The Blow Monkeys – “Digging Your Scene”
  98. Harry Styles – “Watermelon Sugar
  99. The New Pornographers – “Moves”
  100. The Buggles – “Video Killed the Radio Star”

Rolling Stone’s Original ‘The 100 Greatest Music Videos’ of All Time

  1. “Sledgehammer” – Peter Gabriel (1986)
  2. “Smells Like Teen Spirit” – Nirvana (1991)
  3. “Losing My Religion” – R.E.M. (1991)
  4. “This Note’s For You” – Neil Young (1989)
  5. “Nothing Compares 2 U” – Sinéad O’Connor (1990)
  6. “Right Now” – Van Halen (1992)
  7. “Subterranean Homesick Blues” – Bob Dylan (1967)
  8. “Leave Me Alone” – Michael Jackson (1989)
  9. “Take On Me” – a-ha (1985)
  10. “Express Youself” – Madonna (1989)
  11. “Walk This Way” – Run-D.M.C. & Aerosmith (1986)
  12. “Beat It” – Michael Jackson (1983)
  13. “Love Will Never Do (Without You)” – Janet Jackson (1991)
  14. “Don’t Come Around Here No More” – Tom Petty & Heartbreakers (1985)
  15. Once In A Lifetime” – Talking Heads (1980)
  16. “Thriller” – Michael Jackson (1983)
  17. “Been Caught Stealing” – Jane’s Addiction (1990)
  18. “Kiss” – Prince (1986)
  19. “Bastards Of Young” – The Replacements (1985)
  20. “Like A Prayer” – Madonna (1989)
  21. “Gett Off” – Prince (1991)
  22. “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” – Cyndi Lauper (1983)
  23. “The Boys Of Summer” – Don Henley (1984)
  24. “Borderline” – Madonna (1983)
  25. “Give it Away” – Red Hot Chili Peppers (1991)
  26. “Hot For Teacher” – Van Halen (1984)
  27. “Billie Jean” – Michael Jackson (1983)
  28. “Vogue” – Madonna (1990)
  29. “Close (To The Edit)” – Art Of Noise (1984)
  30. “You Might Think” – The Cars (1984)
  31. “Kool Thing” – Sonic Youth (1990)
  32. “Burning Down The House” – Talking Heads (1983)
  33. “Mind Playing Tricks On Me” – The Geto Boys (1991)
  34. “Slave To The Rhythm” – Grace Jones (1985)
  35. “Love Shack” – The B-52’s (1989)
  36. “Jeremy” – Pearl Jam (1993)
  37. “Atlantic City” – Bruce Springsteen (1982)
  38. “Ashes To Ashes” – David Bowie (1980)
  39. “In Bloom” – Nirvana (1992)
  40. “Baby Got Back” – Sir Mix-A-Lott (1992)
  41. “Man On The Moon” – R.E.M. (1993)
  42. “Series Of Dreams” – Bob Dylan (1991)
  43. “Justify My Love” – Madonna (1990)
  44. “Night Of The Living Baseheads” – Public Enemy (1988)
  45. “Whip It” – Devo (1980)
  46. “Goin’ Back To Cali” – LL Cool J (1988)
  47. “Undercover Of The Night” – Rolling Stones (1983)
  48. “China Girl” – David Bowie (1983)
  49. “By The Time I Get To Arizona” – Public Enemy (1992)
  50. “When I Think Of You” – Janet Jackson (1986)
  51. “Back To My Roots” – RuPaul (1993)
  52. “Black Or White” – Michael Jackson (1991)
  53. “Shock The Monkey” – Peter Gabriel (1982)
  54. “And She Was” – Talking Heads (1985)
  55. “Wild Thing” – Tone Loc (1988)
  56. “Faith” – George Michael (1987)
  57. “Fish Heads” – Barnes & Barnes (1980)
  58. “Manchild” – Neneh Cherry (1989)
  59. “Justified & Ancient” – The KLF (1992)
  60. “Epic” – Faith No More (1990)
  61. “Every Breath You Take” – The Police (1983)
  62. “It’s My Life” – Talk Talk (1984)
  63. “Rockit” – Herbie Hancock (1983)
  64. “Brilliant Disguise” – Bruce Springsteen (1987)
  65. “Blue Jean” – David Bowie (1984)
  66. “Oh Father” – Madonna (1989)
  67. “Money For Nothing” – Dire Straits (1985)
  68. “Smells Like Nirvana” – Weird Al Yankovic (1992)
  69. “Tennessee” – Arrested Development (1992)
  70. “I Want Your (Hands On Me)” – Sinéad O’Connor (1988)
  71. “Rosalita” – Bruce Springsteen (1978)
  72. “Shadrach” – Beastie Boys (1989)
  73. “Wicked Game” – Chris Isaak (1991)
  74. “Psycho Therapy” – Ramones (1983)
  75. “One” – Metallica (1989)
  76. “Mysterious Ways” – U2 (1991)
  77. “White Wedding” – Billy Idol (1982)
  78. “Dirty Boots” – Sonic Youth (1991)
  79. “Voices Carry” – ’til tuesday (1984)
  80. “Straight Up” – Paula Abdul (1989)
  81. “Free Your Mind” – En Vogue (1992)
  82. “Rapture” – Blondie (1981)
  83. “It Was A Good Day” – Ice Cube (1993)
  84. “Alive” – Pearl Jam (1992)
  85. “Little Red Corvette” – Prince (1982)
  86. “Sweet Dreams” – Eurythmics (1983)
  87. “The Thunder Rolls” – Garth Brooks (1991)
  88. “She Blinded Me With Science” – Thomas Dolby (1983)
  89. “Thunderstuck” – AC/DC (1990)
  90. “The Perfect Kiss” – New Order (1985)
  91. “Freedom 90” – George Michael (1990)
  92. “Back On The Chain Gang” – The Pretenders (1982)
  93. “Orange Crush” – R.E.M. (1988)
  94. “Beethoven (I Love To Listen To)” – Eurythmics (1987)
  95. “Janie’s Got A Gun” – Aerosmith (1989)
  96. “Human Behaviour” – Björk (1993)
  97. “Groove Is In The Heart” – Deee-Lite (1990)
  98. “Silent All These Years” – Tori Amos (1992)
  99. “One” – U2 (1992)
  100. “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” – Devo (1977)

Source: RockOnTheNet.com

Let us hear what you think about this list in the comments below. Do you agree with the list?

Adam McDonald

Hi! I am the founder and lead author and editor of Justrandomthings music community. A vast range of personal interests from Hip-Hop to Country to Hard Rock and Punk music will keep you entertained.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Deprecated: Directive 'allow_url_include' is deprecated in Unknown on line 0