George Michael’s ‘Freedom ’90’: The Cultural Impact of the Song and Music Video

George Michael's 'Freedom '90': The Cultural Impact of the Song and Music Video

George Michael’s “Freedom! ’90” has had a lasting cultural impact. The catchy song addressed his struggles with identity, artistic growth and stardom in a meaningful way. And because Michael refused to appear on-camera, the song ended up with an iconic music video that brought the worlds of fashion and entertainment together. Michael didn’t want to appear in the video, so he enlisted the world’s most popular supermodels Michael didn’t want his image used to promote his 1990 album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 , but his record label still wanted music videos for MTV. After spotting the January 1990 cover of British Vogue , which featured five of the era’s top models — Christy Turlington, Cindy Crawford , Naomi Campbell , Linda Evangelista, and Tatjana Patitz — Michael had an inspired solution to this dilemma: instead of him appearing in front of the camera, these supermodels could be in a music video for the song “Freedom! ’90.” Some wrangling was required — the women were heavily booked, and their fees weren’t cheap — but all five eventually agreed to appear in the video. And though models being in a music video wasn’t a new phenomenon, in the past women […]

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