5 Times Singapore Was Featured In A Music Video By International Artistes
Singapore is an attractive destination for international artistes holding concerts in this region. In 2023 alone, we’ve already welcomed the likes of Blackpink and Harry Styles to our shores. We’ve just seen global stars like Coldplay and Taylor Swift announce multiple dates at the National Stadium. Which got me to thinking, have any famous musicians actually shot a music video here?
I did a little digging and promptly fell down a YouTube rabbit hole.
Presenting five MVs filmed in the +65 that even the Singapore Tourism Board would be proud of:
One Republic - RUNAWAY (2023)
Background: OneRepublic needs no introduction. The American pop-rock is still going strong even 16 years after their breakout single ‘Apologize’ ft. Timbaland hit the airwaves.
More recently, they returned to mainstream prominence with their summer anthem ‘I Ain't Worried’ which was featured in Top Gun: Maverick.
Having toured our city-state multiple times, Ryan Tedder and co. decided to shoot parts of the music video for their brand new single ‘RUNAWAY’ during their concert here in Singapore earlier this year.
‘I recognise that place liao’ moment: Set against our iconic city skyline, the band performed during sunset atop Marina Bay Sands’ SkyPark Observation Deck, the first time anyone has filmed a production of this scale on the location. But hey, when you’re one of the biggest-selling rock bands of this millennium, it comes with its perks.
Billie Eilish - The 30th (Live From Singapore’s Cloud Forest) (2022)
Background: At the tender age of 21 years old, Billie Eilish is already a Grammy-award winning artist, has toured the world, and has even recorded a song for a James Bond film. Billie also happens to be a huge fan of our garden city.
She once shared in a statement that she "absolutely fell in love" with Singapore the first time she visited during the St. Jerome's Laneway Festival, despite having only stayed here for a day. She loved it so much, in fact, that not only did she stage a sold-out concert in the Singapore Sports Hub last August, she even found time to record two live performances here, which she released on her YouTube channel.
‘I recognise that place liao’ moment: The singer-songwriter released two live performance videos for the songs "TV" and "The 30th", from her latest Guitar Songs EP in September 2022, filmed in the Cloud Forest dome at Gardens By The Bay. The ethereal setting was the perfect location to showcase Billie’s equally haunting voice.
Grimes - REALiTi (2015)
Background: Although she's widely known as the ex-girlfriend of billionaire magnate Elon Musk, Canadian dream pop artist Grimes is a popular musician in her own right and has been a hipster icon for the better part of the last decade.
She has performed multiple times in Singapore, including at the Laneway Festival at Gardens by the Bay in 2016. As a homage to her SG fans, Grimes filmed a music video of her unreleased demo track ‘REALiTI’ which can be described as a manic fever dream of neon colours and tour clips.
‘I recognise that place liao’ moment: Grimes can be seen dancing at Gardens by the Bay, Haw Par Villa and other recognisable city landmarks, capturing the mood of Singapore’s nightlife perfectly.
A1 - No More (2001)
Background: While the rest of the world was simping over the Backstreet Boys and NSYNC in the late 90s/early 2000s, one English-Norwegian boy band held a special place in the hearts of Singaporeans.
A1, of ‘Treat Me Like A Rose’ fame, was a staple of K-Box karaoke sessions everywhere. And way back in 2001, the quartet even filmed the music video for the single ‘No More’ off their second album entirely in Singapore to the delight of the teens of that generation.
‘I recognise that place liao’ moment: Featuring a very retro CBD skyline, there were cutaways of the now-demolished Tang Dynasty Village theme park, Keppel Bay and Singapore River among other landmarks.
B.o.B - High Life (2011)
Background: Back in early 2010s, rapper B.o.B was literally everywhere on the radio. Hit songs like ‘Nothing On You’ ft. Bruno Mars and ‘Airplanes’ ft. Hayley Williams was on constant replay.
But then, he just seemingly fell off a cliff in terms of mainstream influence. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that he outed himself as a Flat Earther (there’s a geography joke in here somewhere).
However, at the height of his popularity, he actually shot a music video right here in Singapore, totally upping our street cred.
‘I recognise that place liao’ moment: B.o.B showed out in typical rap superstar fashion, lounging in the Marina Bay Sands’ infinity pool with a bevy of Singaporean beauties.
There was also footage of the iconic Merlion statue and even our beloved chilli crab was featured as well.