Diddy aims to be bring music back to television with Revolt TV
The newly unveiled Time Warner partnership adds nearly 12 million current customers to Revolt’s potential viewership when the channel debuts later this year, with programs that Combs says will carry a certain “rawness” to them to complement the heavy emphasis on airing music videos.
“We will not be doing a bunch of reality shows,” says Combs, alluding to the current lack of music programming on MTV. “We’ll be doing music-driven shows that will be exposing you to the discovery and curation of new talent. We’ll also be doing in-depth interviews and shows that will go into social issues with different panels and debaters of the culture. We’ll be doing our version of a Barbara Walters/Oprah interview, but with someone from this generation, and of this generation. We’ll be going to where the pulse of music is happening, and we’ll be covering it in the way ESPN will cover a sports story, with that level of urgency and seriousness.”
Combs acknowledges that his personal affinity for music videos has colored his desire to turn Revolt into a hub for the art form; the 43-year-old says that he “can’t imagine” his life without having watched the iconic “Thriller” or “Walk This Way” clips at a young age. And although current music videos are largely constructed with minuscule budgets and digested for free on computer screens, Combs remembers the thrilling feeling of watching the bombastic, money-burning videos of the mid-90s — many of which were his own product — and believes that music fans are still craving that visual limitlessness.
“We were shooting million-dollar videos with [directors] Spike Jonze and Mark Romanek, shooting videos like ‘Victory’ and using actors like Ben Stiller in ‘Bad Boy For Life,’ and being able to be creative on a hip-hop level and appeal to the masses,” Combs recalls. “It gave me another outlet of expression as an entertainer, a key piece of the experience. Now, that key piece is missing. Now, you find a video and you may see it for the first time on your phone, and you may not see the details of it or feel the emotion of it. Every director wants to see their video on the big screen and framed in the right light.”