I would never suggest that she’s stripping down just to get attention—not RiRi!—but I will say her cheesecake photos have made me think of other pop stars who have gotten naked for their fans.
Here are three music videos with meaningful nudity… although sometimes the meaning is just “hey, that’s hot.”
(1) “Lessons Learned” by Matt & Kim
In this video, indie pop duo Matt and Kim get naked and run through Times Square. Are they making a statement about the bald ambition of New York City? Are they placing their nudity in a public space to make us consider our own social mores? Are they pushing themselves to dangerous limits to prove their own edginess? I feel like they’re saying all of those things.
But what I’m saying is that Matt Johnson is so ferociously hot that he is welcome to make a naked statement in my house any time he likes. FOR ART.
In this clip, Erykah Badu strips naked and strolls through Dealey Plaza, the same place JFK was assassinated. She gets shot at the end of the video, and her blue blood spells the word “groupthink.” This caused controversy, but I buy Badu’s claim that the video is about the willingness of a mob to turn on someone being vulnerable or subversive. Badu’s always had a political streak in her music, and I think she’s found a powerful way to force a conversation.
It’s been 12 years, but D’Angelo’s video still sets the standard for male sexiness. It’s not just that his body looks amazing. It’s that he burns up the camera with his gaze, intensely letting his woman know she has him right where he wants him. Yowza,y’all. If I wore panties, I would drop them right now.
PREVIOUSLY: David Beckham Shirtless: A Photo History
Mark Blankenship tweets as @IAmBlankenship. He assumes that being naked in Times Square would result in disease.