1982 Supertramp – It’s Raining Again
While Video Killed The Radio Star may have been the first video played on MTV in 1981, they did not create it for the new channel. Russell Mulcahy actually directed the video for the Buggles in 1979 (the same year he directed Paul McCartney’s video for Wonderful Christmastime). Their single reached #1 in at least 16 countries but stalled at #40 in the US. MTV pulled the video out of storage when the channel began in August 1981.
Russell, an Australian, began making short films with his friends using his own 8 mm camera when he was only fourteen years old. He briefly pursued acting while working as a film editor before concentrating on directing music videos.
After a slow start in the late seventies, he began working with some prominent musical acts. His innovations quickly led to increased demand for his services. He directed at least 38 videos in 1980 and another 18 in 1981.
A Dutch millionaire had been funding the musical group called The Joint in the early seventies but became disenchanted with the results. He singled out their keyboard player, Rick Davies, and offered to back him financially if he would form a new group. Rick ran an ad in Melody Maker, a weekly music newspaper in the UK, seeking additional musicians. Roger Hodgson joined the group on bass, keyboards, and vocals, and the two wrote most of the music for the new group. Richard Palmer played guitar and Keith Baker joined as their drummer. Rick and Roger remained with the group through most of their successful recordings, while other members came and went often.
Supertramp first entered the UK charts in 1974 and reached #35 on the US Hot 100 the next year with the jazzy single Bloody Well Right.
The group found more success when they recorded music that was more pop-oriented. The peak of their sales came from their 1979 album Breakfast In America, which generated two top ten singles in both the US and the UK.
Their next album included the song It’s Raining Again. Russell directed the video for the single, which reached #11 on the Hot 100 in 1980.
Roger had become increasingly unhappy with the management of the band and the direction of its music, and left the group after that album.
While the group continued releasing music and touring for several decades, they never again reached the level of success they had found in the late seventies and early eighties.
Russell moved on to directing films and television shows. His most recent work included directing a pair of episodes for the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why.
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