VH1 Classic to Be Renamed MTV Classic

MTV will rebrand VH1 Classic into an MTV Classic channel that will feature vintage MTV programming from the 1990s, the network said Thursday.

VH1 Classic’s rock-themed music videos and live concert programming will be replaced by MTV Classic on Aug. 1 – 35 years to the day that MTV first debuted, said network officials. The newly branded network will launch by replaying MTV’s first hour of programming from 1981, said network officials.

 The “MTV Hour One” will also air on MTV’s Facebook page via Facebook Live.

Later that day MTV Classic will also air a Total Request Live retrospective,The TRL Decade, as well as a marathon of MTV Unplugged episodes featuring such artists as Bob Dylan, Alice In Chains, Erykah Badu, Oasis, Neil Young and Nirvana.

In primetime the network will air classic MTV animated including Daria, Beavis & Butt-head and Aeon Flux.

The network’s weekly schedule will feature MTV’s classic music series every Friday in primetime including MTV Unplugged, Storytellers and live music performances, while on weekends the network will offer full season marathons of such shows as The Real World, Laguna Beach and Road Rules.

“From ‘Beavis & Butt-head’ to ‘Laguna Beach,’ MTV’s programming vault is a music and pop culture goldmine with universal resonance,” said Sean Atkins, President of MTV.  “MTV Classic gives audiences a modern and artful home for classic MTV programming and — alongside MTV, MTV2, MTV Live and mtvU — rounds out a diverse portfolio with music and youth culture at its core."

VH1 Classic is the latest network in the MTV family to be rebranded. In February MTV’s Palladia channel was renamed MTV Live, while VH1 Soul was rebranded BET Soul last December. 

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.