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For information on the MTV Video Music Awards 1989 and a complete list of winners, browse through the article.
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MTV VMAs 1989

Arsenio Hall was back again hosting the 1989 MTV VMAs and this time he was famous. “The Arsenio Hall show” was quite popular and Americans all over loved his cheesy grin, his fist pumping and barking. Performances from Neil young and Weird Al Yankovic spiced up the show.

Former Choreographer to the stars Paula Abdul came out with Straight up  and danced away with four Moonmen among which were Best Female Video and the Best Dance Video award (A brand new category, it looked like they needed one with the sudden increase in dancers in the music industry.) She also took the stage and mesmerized the audience for a full seven minutes with her medley of hits, Straight Up, Cold Hearted Snake and Forever Your Girl. True Paula was the star of the show, but MTV never forgot Madonna and she too went home with three awards. Guns N Roses received the award for Best Heavy Metal Video for their unforgettable Sweet Child O’ Mine.

Other performances during the night included ones from The Rolling Stones Mixed Emotions, Def Leppardwith Tear It Down, and even Cher with her nostalgic If I Could Turn Back Time. Another night at the VMAs and as usual MTV didn’t disappoint.

 List of Nominees and Winners at the MTV Video Music Awards 1989

Video of the Year
  • Neil Young - This Note's For You
  • Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Madonna - Like A Prayer
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It

Winner: Neil Young - This Note's For You

Best Male Video
  • Elvis Costello - Veronica
  • Bobby Brown - Every Little Step
  • Lou Reed - Dirty Boulevard
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It

Winner: Elvis Costello - Veronica

Best Female Video
  • Paula Abdul
  • Tracy Chapman - Fast Car
  • Madonna - Express Yourself
  • Tanita Tikaram - Twist In My Sobriety
  • Jody Watley - Real Love

Winner: Paula Abdul

Best Group Video

  • Living Colour - Cult of Personality
  • Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy
  • Guns N' Roses - Sweet Child O' Mine
  • Traveling Wilburys - Handle With Care

Winner: Living Colour - Cult of Personality

Best Rap Video
  • DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - Parents Just Don't Understand
  • Ice-T - Colors
  • Kool Moe Dee - How Ya Like Me Now
  • M.C. Hammer - Turn This Mutha Out
  • Tone Loc - Wild Thing

Winner: DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - Parents Just Don't Understand

Best Dance Video
  • Paula Abdul
  • Bobby Brown - Every Little Step
  • Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal
  • Jody Watley - Real Love

Winner: Paula Abdul

Viewer's Choice
  • Madonna - Like A Prayer
  • Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It
  • Neil Young - This Note's For You

Winner: Madonna - Like A Prayer

Best New Artist
  • Living Colour - Cult of Personality
  • Paula Abdul - Straight Up
  • Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians - What I Am
  • Neneh Cherry - Buffalo Stance

Winner: Living Colour - Cult of Personality

Breakthrough Video
  • Art of Noise - f/ Tom Jones
  • Paula Abdul - Straight Up
  • Elvis Costello - Veronica
  • The Escape Club - Wild Wild West
  • Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Jody Watley - Real Love

Winner: Art of Noise - f/ Tom Jones

Best Stage Performance
  • Living Colour - Cult of Personality
  • Bobby Brown - My Prerogative
  • Def Leppard - Pour Some Sugar On Me
  • Guns N' Roses - Paradise City

Winner: Living Colour - Cult of Personality

Best Heavy Metal Video
  • Guns N' Roses - Sweet Child 0' Mine
  • Aerosmith - Rag Doll
  • Def Leppard - Pour Some Sugar On Me
  • Metallica – One

Winner: Guns N' Roses - Sweet Child 0' Mine

Best Post Modern Video
  • R.E.M. - Orange Crush
  • The Cure - Fascination Street
  • The Escape Club - Wild Wild West
  • Love & Rockets - So Alive
  • Siouxsie and the Banshees - Peek-A-Boo

Winner: R.E.M. - Orange Crush

Best Video From A Film
  • U2 with BB King - When Love Comes To Town
  • The Belle Stars - Iko Iko
  • Ice-T - Colors
  • Annie Lennox & Al Green - Put A Little Love In Your Heart

Winner: U2 with BB King - When Love Comes To Town

Best Direction
  • Madonna - Express Yourself
  • DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - Parents Just Don't Understand
  • Van Halen - Finish What Ya Started
  • Jody Watley - Real Love
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It

Winner: Madonna - Express Yourself

Best Choreography
  • Paula Abdul
  • Bobby Brown - Every Little Step
  • Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal
  • New Kids On the Block - The Right Stuff

Winner: Paula Abdul

Best Special Effects
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Adrian Belew - Oh Daddy
  • The Escape Club - Wild Wild West
  • Prince - I Wish U Heaven

Winner: Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone

Best Art Direction
  • Madonna - Express Yourself
  • DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - Parents Just Don't Understand
  • Debbie Gibson - Electric Youth
  • INXS - New Sensation
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Jody Watley - Real Love

Winner: Madonna - Express Yourself

Best Editing
  • Paula Abdul
  • Michael Jackson - Leave Me Alone
  • Madonna - Express Yourself
  • Jody Watley - Real Love
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It

Winner: Paula Abdul

Best Cinematography
  • Madonna - Express Yourself
  • Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal
  • Tanita Tikaram - Twist In My Sobriety
  • Steve Winwood - Roll With It
Winner: Madonna - Express Yourself

  
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