Visual image for sound

What does sound look like? That is a question that record companies actually ask. You might wonder why. Well, ever since 'pop' music became big business in the 1950s, image has been important.

To start with, it was what the singer or the group looked like, and this is certainly still important, and then the 'image' of the band and the way they behaved. Bands like the Rolling Stones used their 'bad boy' image to help sell records.

With a greater number of bands and a 'market' of young people wanting to buy records, the companies started paying more attention to what the product looked like. Although they couldn't do much with the records themselves (coloured vinyl was still quite expensive), they could at least make beautifully designed record covers and sleeves, so that's what they did.

The next innovation was video. The first 'big' music video was made by Queen in 1975 for their mini-opera 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. With video came video TV, or more to  Point music TV. The most successful channel has been MTV, which started in 1981 and a worldwide phenomenon.