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Flashback Video: 'That's What Friends Are For' by Dionne & Friends

Ever since the dawn of MTV and Friday Night Videos, the music video has significantly impacted musical tastes and pop culture. It might not be as extreme as when the Buggles declared that "Video Killed the Radio Star", but there is no arguing that the music video certainly could make or break a song's popularity. So this regular Flashback Video feature will serve to remember some of the music videos from the great '80s decade that made an impact on me in one way or another.


This issue we will cover "That's What Friends Are For" by Dionne Warwick & Friends. The song was written by Burt Bachrach and Carol Bayer Sager and first recorded in 1982 by Rod Stewart for the soundtrack of the film Night Shift, but it is better known for the 1985 cover version by Dionne Warwick featuring Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder. This version released in October of 1985 was a charity single to raise money and awareness for AIDS research and prevention. It was a massive hit, not only raising over $ 3 million for that cause, but the song held the #1 spot of the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart for two weeks, #1 on the Billboard R&B/Soul chart for three weeks, #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks in January of 1986 and became Billboard's #1 overall single of 1986. "That's What Friends Are For" also went on to win Grammy Awards for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals as well as Song of the Year.


The music video for "That's What Friends Are For" was directed by John B. House. It appears House hadn't directed anything prior to this, but had been a producer for some music videos including Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Yes, James Brown and Fleetwood Mac. The music video is very simple just focusing on the incredible foursome singing the song together side-by-side in a studio enjoying each other's company. I guess when you have that kind of star power assembled, you don't need to overcomplicate things. Here is the music video for "That's What Friends Are For" by Dionne Warwick & Friends...



Even though the four artists actually recorded their portions of the song separately, as you can see, they all came together to record the music video. What an awesome moment and song from the '80s!


Hope you enjoyed another trip back to the '80s thanks to Flashback Video!

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