PopClips is a music video television program, the direct predecessor of MTV.

GenreMusic television
Created byMichael Nesmith
Developed byMichael Nesmith
William Dear
Directed byWilliam Dear
Presented byHowie Mandel
Jack Armstrong
Jeff Michalski
Charles Fleischer
Bill Martin
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
Executive producer(s)Michael Nesmith
Producer(s)Jac Holzman
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Warner-Amex Satellite Entertainment
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Distribution
Original networkNickelodeon
Preceded byElephant Parts (video)
Followed byTelevision Parts
Related showsMTV channel

Former Monkee Mike Nesmith conceived the first music-video program as a promotional device for Warner Communications' record division. Production began in the spring of 1979 at SamFilm, a sound-stage built and operated in Sand City, California by Sam Harrison, a Monterey Peninsula College instructor with a motion picture background. The series was produced by Jac Holzman.

With an infinity cyclorama as the background, set flats were made from the Styrofoam packing used to ship laserdisc players and 3/4" video decks. The first "VeeJay" was Jeff Michalski. The director was William Dear. Besides Harrison, the production team was made up of Bruce "Buz" Clarke, Keith Cornell, Marybeth Harris, and Leslie Chacon.

The program was broadcast weekly on the youth-oriented cable television channel Nickelodeon in late 1980 and early 1981. The channel's owners at the time, Warner Cable, wanted to buy the name and idea, but instead, according to Dear, "they just watered down the idea and came up with MTV."

PopClips was preceded by the video Elephant Parts (which won the first ever Grammy Award for Music Video),[1] and followed by a second series titled Television Parts, both of which Nesmith hosted and produced.

Early videos broadcast on PopClipsEdit


  1. ^ The New Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock and Roll (1995) ISBN 0-684-81044-1

External linksEdit