21 July 2021
Martin Kahan has died at the age of 74.
The renowned music video director – who worked with KISS, Bon Jovi and Motley Crue during his career – passed away in New Jersey on Sunday (18.07.21) after a battle with cancer.
Billboard shared a statement from Martin’s long-time friend Arthur Levy, who explained how the director was still looking to make an impact on the music scene.
The statement read: “In his final years in Lakewood, Kahan never stopped theorising about country music’s gradual downsizing of its promo video output, and how he could work his way back into the fold.”
Kahan worked with Canadian rockers Rush early in his career before breaking through in 1983 when Columbia Records gave him the chance to direct the video for Scandal’s single ‘Love’s Got A Line On You.’.
After being nominated for an MTV Video Music Award in the same year for Ian Hunter’s ‘All Of The Good Ones Are Taken’ he went to helm videos with Bon Jovi (‘In And Out Of Love’ and ‘She Don’t Know Me’) and the first clips to feature KISS without makeup (‘Lick It Up’ and ‘All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose’).
Kahan added to his catalogue by working with country artists Emmylou Harris, Hank Williams Jr. and Alan Jackson.
His final work was the clip for the Kenny Chesney song ‘I Lost It’ in 2000.
Kahan was praised for his efforts on the 1983 tune ‘Lick It Up’, which marked a different approach for KISS.
The band’s creative consultant Danny Goldberg recalled in the group’s biography: “I remember sitting with their business manager, Howard Marks, and Gene (Simmons) and Paul (Stanley), saying, ‘Guys, you have to do something dramatic.’
“That was absolutely the right way to launch it… (Kahan) did a really good job. The video really brought the band back.”