Ralph McDaniels of Showtimes’ Doc You’re Watching Video Music Box
January 21, 2021
Hosted By: G.Keith Alexander
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McDaniels approached a local TV station with an idea to host a music-video show in 1982. The station was not enthusiastic about McDaniels idea at first, because the concept didn’t exist. After about a year, McDaniels founded a show he called Video Music Box (VMB). It was not long before VMB’s 6-day, 60-minute public television viewership began to grow. The show was #2 in it’s time slot, second to Oprah. In 1985, McDaniels became the first to broadcast a hip-hop concert called Fresh Fest, on VMB. It featured many of today’s hip-hop icons such as Run D.M.C., LL Cool J, Whodini, and many others. In 1995, Billboard magazine recognized the show and awarded VMB as the Best Local R&B/Hip-hop Regional Show. Additionally, the show was also notably voted as the Top-10 Greatest Hip Hop TV Moments by VH1 in 2003. By 2005, over 192,000 households per week were regularly viewing VMB. McDaniels had shined a light on an under-tapped urban audience and literally answered its outcries against mainstream media’s disregard of its favorite artists with VMB. Film and Production Video Music Box started to and so did McDaniels.He believed he could do a better job of producing videos for some of these emerging artists, McDaniels partnered with childhood friend Lionel C. Martin (The Vid Kid) and co-founded Classic Concepts Productions, a film- and video production company that produced over 300 music videos, commercials, films, and documentaries between 1987 and 1997.
Documentary producer and creator of everyone’s favorite Hip-Hop “Video Music Box”. He talks about creating it, the artists, and his hit documentary.