Friday 28 September 2012

Top 10 Hype Williams Hip-hop Videos - 5-1

Onto the second part of Hype William's Top 10 Best Hip-Hop Videos now and we're counting down from 5-1. Here's the first part if you missed it; Click here.

We've already watched Kelis arguing with a corpse and seen Nas hanging from a cross. Aaliyah's rocked the boat and Puff Daddy has tasted asphalt so what the hell has Hype got in store for our five remaining stars? Let's take a look at some of Hype's classic and clearly drug-induced videos that helped to define a genre of music.
(And no, this Beyonce video didn't make the cut but I just like the picture).

5. 2Pac - California Love ft Dr Dre
This song was one of 2Pac's biggest hits and this Mad Max inspired video definitely played a part in its success. The promo was nominated for numerous awards at the time of its release and its easy to see why. I love the vibe of the set and everyone's costumes which helps California Love stand apart from many of its more generic contemporaries. The inventive approach and attention to detail are huge reasons why Hype quickly became one of the most successful video directors of all time after just a few short years. Also check out the remix video which carries on from where this promo left off. 
4. Busta Rhymes - What's It Gonna Be? ft Janet Jackson
It was so hard to pick only one Busta Rhymes video directed by Hype but if I hadn't limited myself to just one then the entire top 10 could have just been Busta, Busta and Busta! Many of Hype's early videos starred the crazy rapper and it's impossible to discuss the career of one without mentioning the other. While I was tempted to choose Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See and Gimme Some Mo', ultimately I had to go with this classic duet with Ms Jackson. The visuals are so striking and I love how the sexuality of the lyrics is made so explicit as hundreds of mini Busta's rain down on Janet as she naughtily seduces the viewer. No one else could have made this video; from Janet's long pointy fingernails and Busta's silver marching band outfit to the surreal futuristic set design, this is just classic Hype. 
3. Kanye West - Stronger
If you thought the last two videos were futuristic, they look positively dated when compared to Hype's more recent offering for Kanye's Stronger. Drawing inspiration from the classic anime Akira and featuring the singer Cassie in the role of 'pretty lady', Stronger is just incredible to look at. The colours and lighting are so striking and perfectly capture the energy of Daft Punk's sample. And the video featured THOSE glasses, which briefly made Kanye seem like the coolest guy on the planet! Who didn't want those in 2007?
 2. TLC - No Scrubs

I was SO tempted to place No Scrubs at number one because to me, it's just the perfect video. The set design is simple and yet odd, the costumes are futuristic and yet completely of the era and the whole thing doesn't really make any sense. I mean, what's up with that swing??? But it just works. It's impossible to pick a favourite moment from this classic TLC video but if I had to choose then I'm torn between the Left Eye rap, the main dance sequence or the bit at the end when they start play fighting like robots. If you haven't seen this video then either you weren't born until the year 2000 or you just didn't own a TV back in the day. Either way, shame on you!  
1. Missy Elliott - The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)
Forget Nicki Minaj. Missy Elliott is the true queen of hip-hop and is renowned for being one of the most innovative artists in the game since her debut in the mid 90s. Missy's earliest videos were mostly directed by Hype and together, the two of them became a huge influence on hip-hop, encouraging more extreme styles and innovation. All 'N' My Grill and Sock It To Me are classics of course but for me, nothing beats their first collaboration on The Rain. Both artists seem to just bring something out of each other, creating these bizarre visions which are more like art than just any old music video. Favourite bits include a Missy with attitude driving in those red glasses, a zoned-out Missy sitting on top of a hill and just a straight-up odd Missy rocking that giant bin bag look that became one of the signature looks of both of their careers.  
So there we have it. I hope you've enjoyed looking back at the legend that is Hype Williams videos. It was tough to boil his entire career down to just ten promos so if you think I've missed out a classic then please feel free to comment below. Laters!

1 comment:

  1. It has to be No Scrubs for me, it's everything a Hype Williams video should be, it's so of the time and as much as i love missy it should be at number one. love it!