Lists

The Ten Best Recent Music Videos Shot in Miami

Can you spot which music videos have been shot in Miami?
Can you spot which music videos have been shot in Miami? Photo by Ian Witlen
Biscayne Bay, boats, and bottles are the three b's musicians use when filming videos in Miami. And though we've seen that formula time and time again, we can't deny the beauty the Magic City provides as a backdrop, regardless of how worn the Miami might may be. This list of the city's best music videos inevitably features those kinds of works, but we also aim to shine a light on those that highlight other corners of the 305, such as the Everglades and Little Haiti.
1. Drake, "God's Plan." If you weren't a Drake fan before, chances are the video for "God's Plan" turned you into one. And no matter how many times you watch the Miami-made video, you're bound to ugly-cry in the best way possible. The emotional video directed by Karena Evans, dubbed Best Music Video by New Times (though snubbed at the VMAs), captures Drake generously spreading the wealth around town. Instead of using the $966,631.90 his label budgeted on fancy whips and CGI for a flashy video, he used the money to make a lot of Miamians happy. From giving a student a $50,000 scholarship to the University of Miami, to buying everyone in Sabor Tropical Supermarket groceries, to sneaking up behind unsuspecting citizens and surprising them with stacks of cash, Drake displayed a kindness that makes you damn proud to be a resident of the Magic City.
2. Dua Lipa, "New Rules." Before you even think about picking up the phone when an ex calls, stop, drop, and hit play on this video for Dua Lipa's pop hit, "New Rules." In this empowering video shot at the Confidante in Miami Beach, Lipa's fierce-ass femsquad helps her avoid doing the unthinkable. The colorful video includes choreographed moves, flamingos, and Lipa walking on water. She sings, "One: Don't pick up the phone/You know he's only callin' 'cause he's drunk and alone/Two: Don't let him in/You'll have to kick him out again/Three: Don't be his friend/You know you're gonna wake up in his bed in the morning/And if you're under him, you ain't gettin' over him." Follow Lipa's rules in this breakup anthem before you do something you'll regret.
3. Arcade Fire, "Signs of Life." Arcade Fire enlisted Miami's eclectic film collective Borscht Corp to direct the video for the single "Signs of Life," from the 2017 album Everything Now. The video features local actor Shariff Earp, artist Carly Mark, and Coral Morphologic's Colin Foord and Jared McKay, attempting to solve a mystery. "Really honored Arcade Fire reached out to us about making a video for ‘Signs of Life,’” Leyva told New Times last year. “Really happy they let us make an absurdist Miami New Wave X-Files shot in 16mm inspired by their funky song." You'll recognize local institutions Pérez Art Museum Miami and the Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as the Everglades. Leyva also shared with New Times that the UFO in front of PAMM at the 30-second mark is, in fact, a fidget spinner shot in his living room. Keep Miami kooky.
4. City Girls, "Period (We Live)." City Girls from the 305/Ghetto booty, pretty face, thick thighs/Period!" the newest queens of the South proudly rap from the beach in the "Period (We Live)" music video, directed by Video God. If there's one thing Miami has right now, it's bragging rights. City Girls are making some of the best music emerging from the 305, and we're proud as hell. The duo's Yung Miami and the currently incarcerated JT pay homage to their hometown by riding Jet Skis, rapping in bikinis on the beach, and dancing in the streets with a marching band decked out in carnival costumes. Does it get more Miami than
that? #FreeJT.
5. Cardi B, Bad Bunny, and J Balvin, "I Like It." The 2018 MTV Video Music Award winner for Song of the Summer rightfully went to Cardi B, Bad Bunny, and J Balvin's colorful video for "I Like It." Can a song even be dubbed a summer anthem if it wasn't shot in Miami? The bilingual Billboard chart-topping track, which samples Pete Rodriguez's 1967 song "I Like It Like That," features club scenes in the Little Havana mainstay Ball & Chain. The Calle Ocho club's co-owner Zack Bush told Miami.com: “We take great pride when some of today’s biggest stars show up at our historic venue in Little Havana. For years we would hear about celebrities on South Beach. Now the stars are venturing off the beaten Miami path to film and to hang and dance at this historic [place].”
KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.