| Video |

Thirtysomething: MTV enters its third decade

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Thirty years ago today, music as we know it changed forever. Rather than the television overlords taking their cues from the kids, who in turn took their cues from the radio, MTV programmers skipped the middle man entirely and appointed itself as the arbiters of cool, the pied pipers of pop culture, and began spoon-feeding the starving masses. All week, beginning with this rundown of

MTV's top five greatest on-air moments

, we'll be reflecting on the station's highlights over the past three decades. In the meantime, here's how it all began at 12:01 a.m. on August 1, 1981. Ladies and gentlemen, rock and roll.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.