Three Music Videos to Watch Today

We can thank the internet for reviving the video star and keeping music videos as relevant as ever, even though they have lost the TV screen-time that birthed them in the first place. Today, because they are far more likely to be viewed, passed on, and talked about online than anywhere else, music videos have managed to both evolve beyond what they once were and maintain their relevance in entertainment and youth culture. Robin Thicke’s recent uncensored “Blurred Lines” video was both a YouTube ban controversy and the vehicle for a rising modeling star. Today, a music video can be a declaration of an artist’s point of view, a star vehicle, an inside joke, and much more. Here are three of the most talked about music videos of the moment:

 

  

1. Mumford & Sons “Hopeless Wanderer”

Chart-topping English folk band Mumford & Sons is known for their beards, their banjos, and their mastering of twee indie style—but today they’re being lauded for their sense of humor. In a perfectly self-aware and self-effacing move, the quartet stayed behind-the-scenes for the music video of the single “Hopeless Wanderer,” instead casting comedians Ed Helms, Will Forte, Jason Bateman, and Jason Sudeikis to play over-the-top versions of themselves. No doubt in a humorous nod and wink to the many Mumford haters who think the band’s fist-clenching earnest act is too much, the video parodies all things Mumford—from intense in-each-others’-faces singing to sun-dappled fields and prominently-featured rustic barns. The move has even critics laughing with them, not at them, and proves that self-awareness can get you far if done in the right way.

 

 

2. Jay Z “Picasso Baby”

In the last month, Jay Z has gotten rid of his hyphen, gotten his sports agency off the ground, and apparently merged the…

 
 
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Quote of the Day: “My dream car has always been a Chevy Silverado. After I have paid off all of my debt including student loans I will save to pay cash for the truck I want. I have a 3 1/2 year plan to pay off my debt and if I then take the money I am paying towards my debts and keep saving I should be able to buy my truck 1 year after that.” –Female, 22, OR

The mall doesn’t hold the same place in American culture it did twenty years ago, but it may still play a role in teen shopping tastes. A Teen Vogue survey reports that teen girls still like shopping in malls, with 65% of 16-26-year-old females saying they will do the majority of their holiday shopping in store. The top reasons they preferred mall shopping to online were seeing products in person, hanging out with friends, and bonding with their moms. (Awww.) 61% say they create their own wishlists by walking through the mall as well. (Chain Store Age)

Start hoarding bourbon. In 2015, the smooth spirit will be more expensive, thanks in large part to its popularity with Millennial consumers. Domestic bourbon sales have increased 36% in five years, and some distilleries are rationing their bottles for the first time since Prohibition. How’s that for the power of the craft cocktail trend? Bacon, that perennially trendy meat, will also continue rise in price. (Deal News)

McDonald’s sales continue to fall, and their problems attracting young consumers have been well documented this year. The number of 19-21-year-olds visiting the chain every month has dropped by 13% since 2011. “Desperate to change its image,” the brand’s latest turnaround plan (is this plan E?) includes self-service kiosks, a trimmed down menu, and a search for a “big idea” that will appeal to young consumers’ interest in social good. (Business Insider)

What did Millennials read online this year? A lot of BuzzFeed. Digiday’s look at 2014 in Millennial media consumption found that 39 million 18-34-year-olds visited BuzzFeed at least once, but traditional publications online are also attracting these younger readers. Over 20 million visited The New York Times, and almost 8 million visited The Wall Street Journal. Meanwhile, some “self-proclaimed” Millennial sites like Ozy and Vocativ reportedly “actually attract an older crowd.” (Digiday)

A generation delaying getting married and having children is creating interesting cultural shifts, and some hilariously awkward family moments. When one twenty-something found herself as the only single sibling and was deemed too old to be on her parent’s holiday card, she began to make her own tongue-in-cheek cards “celebrating” her solo, childless status. These hilarious missives, featuring booze and uncomfortable scenes, have gone viral, and she has become a holiday hero of the unmarried. (Mashable)

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