Q Music News

Rick Astley performs during Magic Of Christmas, in association with Magic FM, at London Palladium on November 25, 2018 in London, England.

Rick Astley’s career is getting a second act with a new version of his iconic “Never Gonna Give You Up” music video for a car insurance company, of all things.

The English singer-songwriter appeared in a near-exact recreation of the original 1987 music video released by AAA insurer California State Automobile Association Insurance Group. In the intro of the video, Astley, 56, was wearing the same striped polo and cardigan combo as the original. It’s a pretty fun side-by-side comparison.

Including backup dancers donned in AAA gear, there is a whiteboard that checks off what the insurance company will never do to their customers using the song’s lyrics.

“Is this still a thing?” Astley asks other versions of himself on stage together, who nod in agreement to the video on his phone in the commerical. The video has amassed over one million views since its Monday (August 15) posting. Watch below:

 

Re-creating the original music video “has been an amazing trip down memory lane,” Astley said in a statement to People. “The song has been so good to me, and I’m thrilled to be working with another iconic brand that has certainly stood the test of time.”

As of Friday, the original 1987 “Never Gonna Give You Up” music video has been viewed more than 1.2 billion times on YouTube. The video was boosted into internet fame in the 2000s as “Rickrolling” turned into a phenomenon.

“Listen, let’s face it, ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ has sort of become something else,” Astley said. “The video and the song have drifted off into the ether and become something else, and I’m ever so grateful for it.”

In 2016, Astley told People that he first learned of “Rickrolling” when someone pranked him with the music video for the first time. “A friend of mine Rick-Rolled me a couple of times, and I didn’t really know what he was doing. I just thought he was being an idiot. I just kept thinking, ‘What is this idiot doing? This is just not amusing. I don’t really know what’s going on.’ So, we eventually got on the phone, and he explained it to me.”

Even with an explanation, it took some time to sink in. “To be honest, I still didn’t really get it. It took a few weeks for me to grasp.”

21 Music Videos with 1 Billion Views on YouTube

Since MTV doesn’t really show music videos anymore, YouTube is the place for those who want to watch music videos to their heart’s content.

Some music videos — both classic and recently released — have caught on more than others and have racked up 1 billion views and more.

For your viewing pleasure, here are 21 rock/pop music videos with at least 1 billion views on YouTube.

(Note: View numbers listed are as of January 31, 2022.)

  • Cyndi Lauper - 'Girls Just Want to Have Fun' (1 billion views)

  • Metallica - 'Nothing Else Matters' (1.08 billion views)

  • Whitney Houston - 'I Will Always Love You' (1.17 billion views)

  • AC/DC - 'Thunderstruck' (1.04 billion views)

  • Rick Astley - 'Never Gonna Give You Up' (1.14 billion views)

  • Bon Jovi - 'It's My Life' (1.08 billion views)

  • The Cranberries - 'Zombie' (1.18 billion views)

  • a-ha - 'Take On Me' (1.41 billion views)

  • Guns N' Roses - 'November Rain' (1.81 billion views)

  • Nirvana - 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' (1.41 billion views)

  • Queen - 'Bohemian Rhapsody' (1.45 billion views)

  • Linkin Park - 'In The End' (1.32 billion views)

  • Coldplay - 'Paradise' (1.53 billion views)

  • Imagine Dragons - 'Radioactive' (1.34 billion views)

  • 4 Non Blondes - 'What's Up' (1.24 billion views)

  • twenty one pilots - 'Heathens' (1.79 billion views)

  • Guns N' Roses - 'Sweet Child O' Mine' (1.33 billion views)

  • Linkin Park - 'Numb' (1.73 billion views)

  • Imagine Dragons - 'Believer' (2.13 billion views)

  • Coldplay - 'Hymn For the Weekend' (1.59 billion views)

  • Imagine Dragons - 'Thunder' (1.77 billion views)