Grab your headphones as we delve into the best music videos that are set in the glitz and glam of Las Vegas.
Included in this list are some the biggest bands and artists in the world and by setting their videos in the city of blinding lights that is Las Vegas, it adds an extra bit of refinement to add to the music. We will look at how Vegas was used in each video and maybe a little bit about what the song is about in general.
Here they are, in no particular order as it would be like choosing our favourite child, our list of the best music videos set in Las Vegas…
U2- I Still Haven’t Found What I am looking for
We start with possibly the oldest video in the list and it comes from Irish rockers U2. The music video was shot whilst the band was travelling across America, which led to the creation of the iconic Joshua Tree album that was released in 1987. The video for this song was filmed on Fremont Street in Las Vegas in April 1987. The band filmed in Vegas after they played a gig in the city. In the video all the band members walk along Fremont Street, past all the flashing lights of the all casinos on offer, singing a song with very much a gospel influence. The video was so successful for the area that The Las Vegas events President, Pat Christensen, said that the whole perception of Las Vegas changed with that video.
The Killers- All these things that I have done
How could we talk about the best videos set in Sin City, without mentioning their biggest musical export once (or maybe twice). Well, this one takes place away from the glitz and glamour of the casinos and bright lights to focus on the more arid desert area of the city. In this video, the band are in a dream-like sequence as they are dressed as cowboys and are under attack from women armed with boomerangs. This kind of wacky video direction came from the mind of Dutch photographer Anton Corbijn, who also worked with the previous band U2 as well as Coldplay, Depeche Mode and Nirvana.
Imagine Dragons- Shots (Broiler Remix)
This one is kind of cheating as this is a remixed version of the song Shots, that had its own music video, but another Nevada native band has to be included on this list in some way. In this version of the song, the band go around Vegas and do various activities including bungee jumping. This is a different sort of video from what you would expect from a rock band. The aerial shots of the city are just stunning and really give you a sense of the grandeur of Las Vegas, which has to be commended.
The Killers- Shot at the night
Ok so we are going to bring up the Killers yet again, but, its for good reason. In this video we follow a hotel maid in one of the glitzy Vegas hotels, go on a sort of Cinderella story, where she meets her Prince in one of the hotel rooms and is taken on a whirlwind romance of the strip, experiencing what life is like from the other side. It’s a brilliantly put together video, as you can see the sort of conditions the maid has to go through on a daily basis, and then to find her Prince Charming is quite a sight. This all ties in well to the theme of the song, as it is all about being given that chance to prove to everyone that you deserve more. A very uplifting track and video if there ever was one.
Sam Smith- Money on my mind
This is quite a simple one and requires very little of a critique. When you name a song money on my mind, the obvious link to Las Vegas is staring you in the face. In this video, Sam Smith performs this song, in various casinos, as people are winning and losing money on the various casino games.
Katy Perry- Waking up in Vegas
This is one from the earlier days of Katy Perry’s career. The video was directed by famous director Joseph Kahn, who has also worked with Taylor Swift. This video is all about the extravagance of Vegas. It all kicks off with Perry and her partner played by Joel David Moore playing a slot machine and they win the jackpot. It then cuts to the night before where the two of them were enjoying a winning streak to end all winning streaks. This led to extravagance after extravagance along the strip. A particular highlight was Perry rolling down the strip in a Lamborghini Murcielago, which is up there as one of my personal dream cars.
Calvin Harris- Bounce
A change of pace as we go for a song by Scottish DJ Calvin Harris and in collaboration with Guy Lennox. The video starts with what looks like a couple splitting up and it then follows the journey of the guy in the relationship trying to get over it by heading into the bright lights of Las Vegas. He does a multitude of things across the city and he eventually returns triumphantly to a hotel room to show off his antics to his friends.
Bruno Mars- 24k Magic
Finally, we have Bruno Mars and the title song from his album 24K Magic. As you can imagine with 24K in the title, this is a video full of opulence and the finer things in life. It begins with Mars’ private jet landing at the airport in Las Vegas. There are lots of fancy cars all over the place and that sets the tone for this video. We then travel to the MGM Grand hotel where Mars and his friends are enjoying some time by the pool, before heading down to the casino with Champagne in hand and they enjoyed time on games. The video ends with Mars riding a jet ski in the Bellagio water fountain as you do.
Thus concludes our list of some of the best music videos that are set in Las Vegas. Let us know if we have missed any in the comments.