By Tegan Perry
As the year 2013 comes to a close and winter looms on the horizon, it’s time to take a trip down memory lane and review the top 10 most viewed YouTube music videos of the year. You may be surprised to find which music videos made the cut and which videos were left in the dust. But I bet you can already name three. Grab a hot drink, pull up a chair and lets dive deep into the realms of YouTube music videos:
We have reason to believe that all of these videos below purchased YouTube views from sites like Galaxy Ninja.
#1 ‘Wrecking Ball’ by Miley Cyrus
Uploaded on: September 9th, 2013
Number of views: 253,084,993
Music Video Director: fashion photographer Terry Richardson
In this video Miley Cyrus shares the spotlight with–you guessed it– a wrecking ball. Besides the wrecking ball, the video is a mix of Miley either mostly or completely naked smashing things and close ups of her face as she sings through tears. Though she also does things like lick sledgehammers, Miley gives a heart wrenching performance while singing about a relationship gone wrong. This video has managed to get more views in just over one month than other songs in the list has gotten in a full year.
#2 ‘We Can’t Stop’ by Miley Cyrus
Uploaded on: June 19th, 2013
Number of views: 241,108,927
Music Video Director: Diane Martel, who also directed ‘Blurred Lines’ by Robin Thicke
Take some giant teddy bears, a fake hand, a taxidermy dog, and a skull made out of some french fries and what do you have? This music video. With the addition of an all night party, twerking and Miley sticking out her tongue (of course). The first single from Miley’s new album ‘Bangerz’ became a party anthem over the summer. The video also brought a first wave of controversy for Miley due to a some possible drug references in the song (“dancing with Molly” and “trying to get a line in the bathroom”). Still, Miley can’t stop and the song has charged to the top of the most viewed YouTube music videos in 2013 list in only four months.
#3 ‘Just Give Me A Reason’ by P!nk ft Nate Ruess
Uploaded on: February 5th, 2013
Number of views: 213,114,843
Awards won: MTV Video Music Award for Best Collaboration in 2013
More teddy bears! But this time only one teddy bear in a bed with the sultry P!nk who is surrounded by smoke, stars and water. This vintage themed duet uses simple artistic visuals to showcase the vocals of both performers. What you may miss in all the smoke is P!nk making out with her real life husband, Carey Hart, in a pool of water.
#4 ‘Stay’ by Rihanna ft Mikky Ekko
Uploaded on: February 12th, 2013
Number of views: 198,328,351
Written by: Mikky Ekko and Justin Parker who also writes for Lana Del Rey
The video starts out with Rihanna in a bathtub looking vulnerable and lost. While it paints the picture of the emotions behind the song it also provides peeks at some of her many, many tattoos. This piano ballad is unusual for Rihanna but makes for a beautiful duet, especially with the miserable indecision she embodies at the end of the video.
#5 ‘Blurred Lines’ by Robin Thicke ft T.I, Pharrell
Uploaded on: March 20th, 2013
Number of views: 192,880,6401
What’s the chance of this song getting stuck in your head? It already is.
Where to begin with this one. How about the excessive use of hash tagging? The mostly naked women skipping around carrying dead animals? Wait, why is everyone skipping in this video?? From the song lyrics to the music video, everyone had an opinion about ‘Blurred Lines’ this spring. Overall a stupidly catchy song with many questionable components.
#6 ‘Kiss You’ by One Direction
Uploaded on: January 7th, 2013
Number of views: 173,233,567
Video Shoot Location: The George Lucas stage where parts of Star Wars were filmed
Aren’t they precious? One Direction driving vintage cars, dancing in a prison (?), fake skiing down mountains and stealing the hearts of every 10-14 year old girl in the world. Ok, I’m sure their fan base also includes females of every age. These British boys continue to have impeccably styled hair and genuinely look like they are enjoying themselves while channeling boy bands of the 60’s.
#7 ‘One Way or Another’ by One Direction
Uploaded on: February 20th, 2013
Number of views: 151,552,318
Money the group earned from the song? $0 (all proceeds were donated to charity)
In the opening scene in this video you will be blown away by how truly British they sound (unless of course you are British yourself and then you will have ‘no idea what I’m on about’). The One Direction-boys cover Blondie’s song from 79′ for the sake of charity. Filmed by the singers themselves during an around the world tour, the charming cameos from fans steal the show.
#8 ‘Come & Get It’ by Selena Gomez
Uploaded on: May 7th, 2013
Number of views: 149,154,894
Video Director: Anthony Mandler who also directed Taylor Swift’s ‘I Knew You Were Trouble’
The start of the video is beautiful and vaguely reminiscent of a BBC nature documentary. Though I can’t say much for the lyrics, the video has some striking visuals and an exotic slant. The video is supposed to represent the four different elements, but I for one was too mesmerized by her impeccable bright red lipstick to notice.
#9 ‘Can’t Hold Us’ by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ft Ray Dalton
Uploaded on: April 17th, 2013
Number of views: 139,396,815
Number of Continents the video was filmed on: 6
Finally! A music video with rappers performing on a pirate ship instead of a ritzy yacht. What I didn’t know I’d been waiting for! In the video Macklemore bounces around exotic locations and shares the screen with a team of sled dogs, a camel and many others including a mariachi meets marching band that I personally would like to see more of. What I find impressive about this video is that it was directed by the artists themselves and took over three months to film.
#10 ‘Best Song Ever’ by One Direction
Uploaded on: July 22nd, 2013
Number of views: 136,479,869
Awards Won: Song Of The Summer Award, 2013
If I’m honest, I will admit I wasn’t looking forward to watching the third One Direction music video on this list. However, seeing all of them dressed up as characters found in a music producer’s executive office did give me a chuckle. The rest of the video includes some of their normal hijinks, including Zayn Malik dancing with himself dressed as a woman.
There you have it. The top 10 most viewed music videos on YouTube in 2013. Some bigger names are notably absent from the list including Katy Perry (whose music video ‘Roar’ currently ranks number 12), Lady Gaga and the ever sparkly Taylor Swift. Lady Gaga’s new song ‘Applause’ with 78,429,027 views, did especially poorly when compared to Miley Cyrus’s ‘Wrecking Ball’ which was uploaded only in the beginning of September.
Overall, while One Direction may win for number of videos in the top ten, 2013 seems to officially be the year of Miley Cyrus. She has secured both the #1 one and #2 slot on the list of most views and will continue to bring in those views as long as her outfit choices and music performances continue to be as provocative as they have been in the past few months. So here’s to Miley, who won the year 2013 (depending how you look at it). The only question left is what YouTube videos are in store for us in 2014?