Thirty years ago today, MTV launched, and indeed, video killed the radio star.
The network birthed a breed of celebrity far cooler than the conventional disc jockey: the video jockey, better known as the veejay. While those terms may now seem as antiquated as a VHS deck and a bottle of Aqua Net, before Snooki and co. ruled MTV, veejays were the face of the network.
Downtown Julie Brown and Kennedy became household names as veejays in MTV's 1990s golden age. Jesse Camp famously (and inexplicably, given his inability to complete sentences) joined the club after winning MTV's first Wanna Be a VJ contest. Then there were the auxiliary veejays, the news reporters like Tabitha Soren and Kurt Loder who lent an air of gravitas to a network known for its shenanigans.
But before all of them, there were the original five. Click through to check out what MTV's first veejays -- Martha Quinn, Alan Hunter, Mark Goodman, J.J. Jackson and Nina Blackwood -- have been up to since they signed off.
Quinn was one of MTV's most loved veejays. She won over viewers with her bubbly, girl-next-door persona and was named "MTV's Best-Ever VJ" by the readers of Rolling Stone. After 10 years with the network, she moved on to other TV projects, appearing on the fleeting "Brady Brunch" sequel "The Bradys," scoring a recurring role on the sitcom "Full House," and starring in a series of Neutrogena commercials in the '90s.
These days, Quinn, 52, hosts '80s music programs on SiriusXM radio along with many of her former veejays.
Hunter was an actor before he landed at MTV, but he dabbled in music videos too. He appeared in the video for David Bowie's "Fashion" two months before getting hired by the network.
On MTV, Hunter became the class clown of the original veejays. He did accents. He did cartwheels. He went on the road for "MTV Spring Break" and other specials. "You break stuff and you don't read the script," he told CNN about his MTV tenure in 2001. "That's the key. That was really kind of MTV's whole thing."
Today, Hunter serves as a host on SiriusXM's Big80s on 8 channel and co-owns a film production company, Hunter Films, with his brother.
Before intro-ing videos, Goodman rocked the airwaves as a deejay for New York City rock station WPLJ. He quickly became one of MTV's top-notch hosts after joining the network, helming "The Week In Rock", "120 Minutes" and "The Top 20 Video Countdown."
Goodman left the network in 1987 to launch an acting career (highlights include "Don't Be a Menace To South Central While Drinking Your Juice In The Hood" and "Police Academy 6: City Under Siege"). He returned to his former stomping ground in the mid 2000s to host interviews and specials on VH-1.
Now, he hosts SiriusXM's '80s programming along with his former MTV buds.
Blackwood had her first stint in the spotlight a few years before going on MTV, when she posed nude for the August 1978 issue of Playboy. With her wild mop of blonde hair, Blackwood embodied the rock 'n roll spirit of MTV's early years.
Post MTV, Blackwood continued to work in the entertainment industry, acting, hosting and appearing on celebrity news programs. She took on the stage too, performing as part of the 2003 road company of "The Vagina Monologues." She also serves as a host on Big80s on 8 with her MTV cronies.
A former entertainment reporter and DJ, Jackson brought credibility to the veejay crew. Older than his co-horts, he was known for his knowledge of rock music and the people who made it. He was able to score interviews with legends like Robert Plant and Pete Townshend in MTV's early years.
After five years with the network, Jackson returned to his disc jockey roots. He's the only member of the original gang no longer alive -- he passed away in 2004, at 62, after suffering a heart attack.