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The Legacy of Run-DMC’s “Walk This Way” Collaboration with Aerosmith

Introduction: The Birth of a Classic Music Video

When Run-DMC and Aerosmith came together to create a music video for their hit song “Walk This Way” in 1986, they had no idea they were about to create a piece of history. The song was originally released by Aerosmith in 1975 and was a hit for the band. However, it wasn’t until Run-DMC released their own version of the song that it truly became a crossover hit and launched the hip hop genre into the mainstream. The collaboration between these two legendary groups introduced the world to a new level of music and music videos.

The Video That Changed the Game

The “Walk This Way” video was directed by Jon Small and featured the members of Run-DMC and Aerosmith performing together on a split screen. The video showed the two groups coming together and breaking down cultural barriers. At the beginning of the video, we see Aerosmith playing the original version of “Walk This Way” in one room, while Run-DMC is in the other room rehearsing for their own version of the song.

The turning point of the music video occurred when Steven Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith, walks into the room where Run-DMC is rehearsing and says, “What are you guys doing with my song?” Run-DMC replies, “We’re taking it back to the streets!” This moment perfectly symbolized the collaboration between the two genres and their coming together to create something new and innovative.

Impact on the Music Industry

The “Walk This Way” music video was a game-changer in the music industry. It not only introduced hip hop to a wider audience, but it also helped blur the lines between different genres. Run-DMC and Aerosmith were able to break down the barriers between rock and hip hop, thus allowing artists to experiment and collaborate with different sounds and styles.

Furthermore, the video helped launch the music video as an art form. Prior to this collaboration, music videos were not taken seriously as an art form and were often considered as mere promotional tools. However, “Walk This Way” was different. It helped to change the perception of music videos and paved the way for future collaborations and innovative music videos.

A Humorous Touch to a Classic Video

One thing that makes “Walk This Way” stand out even today is its sense of humor. There are several moments in the video that are not only legendary but also funny. For example, there is a scene where Joe Perry, the guitarist of Aerosmith, plays a solo and is interrupted by Jam Master Jay from Run-DMC, who scratches the record to start the rap part of the song. This moment is not only innovative but also hilarious.

Additionally, there are multiple moments in the video where the members of Run-DMC and Aerosmith are seen goofing around with each other. This humor adds to the charm of the video and makes it more relatable to audiences.

The Enduring Legacy of “Walk This Way”

“Walk This Way” has endured through the years as a classic video that bridged the gap between different genres. The video was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s music video category in 2008, solidifying its status as a music video classic.

Even today, “Walk This Way” is a go-to example of cross-genre collaboration and is often used as a benchmark for the future. The impact of this music video goes beyond just the music industry and has contributed to popular culture as we know it today.

Conclusion: The Continued Relevance of a Revolutionary Music Video

“Walk This Way” is a legendary music video that changed the game for both the music and music video industries. The collaboration between Run-DMC and Aerosmith not only broke down cultural barriers, but it also showcased the power of cross-genre collaboration and helped launch the music video as an art form. The humor and creativity displayed in the video have ensured its enduring legacy and made it a timeless classic. As we look to future collaborations and innovations in music, “Walk This Way” serves as a reminder of the impact that can be made when different genres come together.

So, next time you hear “Walk This Way” blasting from the speakers or see the iconic video playing on a screen, take a moment to appreciate the impact it had on the music industry and popular culture.