The Beatles had used music videos to promote their records starting in the mid-1960s.
The creative use of music videos within their 1964 film A Hard Day's Night, particularly the performance of the song "Can't Buy Me Love", led MTV later on June 26, 1999, to honor the film's director Richard Lester with an award for "basically inventing the music video".
In 1977, Warner Cable a division of Warner Communications and the precursor of Warner-Amex Satellite Entertainment launched the first two-way interactive cable television system named QUBE in Columbus, Ohio. One of these specialized channels was Sight on Sound, a music channel that featured concert footage and music-oriented television programs.
With the interactive QUBE service, viewers could vote for their favorite songs and artists.
The concept itself had been in the works since 1966, when major record companies began supplying the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation with promotional music clips to play on the air at no charge.MTV has toned down its music video programming significantly in recent years, and its programming now consists mainly of original reality, comedy and drama programming and some off-network syndicated programs and films, with limited music video programming in off-peak time periods.It has also become involved in promoting left-wing political issues and progressive social causes.Few artists made the long trip to New Zealand to appear live.am Eastern Time, MTV launched with the words "Ladies and gentlemen, rock and roll," spoken by John Lack and played over footage of the first Space Shuttle launch countdown of Columbia (which took place earlier that year) and of the launch of Apollo 11.