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Rick Astley’s ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ Rolls Past 1 Billion YouTube Views

Rick has rolled into YouTube’s billion-views club.

The official video for Rick Astley’s 1987 hit “Never Gonna Give You Up” — uploaded almost 12 years ago — surpassed 1 billion lifetime views on YouTube on Wednesday.

The video has benefited from one of the earliest YouTube memes: “Rickrolling,” a prank in which someone shares a link promising one thing — but which, in fact, launches the red-headed Brit’s dance-pop iconic music video. The indestructible Rickrolling meme has generated untold millions of views for Astley’s video: On April Fool’s Day 2021 alone, it topped 2.3 million views, according to YouTube.

“Never Gonna Give You Up” is only the fourth music video from the 1980s to join YouTube’s Billion Views Club, behind Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child o’ Mine,” A-ha’s “Take on Me,” and Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean.”

Astley, 55, celebrated the milestone in a tweet, saying in a video, “So I’ve just been told that ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ has been streamed a billion times on YouTube. That is mind-blowing. The world is a wonderful and beautiful place, and I am very lucky.”

To celebrate the milestone, Astley announced the release of 2,500 numbered 7-inch blue vinyl copies of the single, each signed by him. Priced at $17 each, Astley’s website says that the records are sold out.

“Never Gonna Give You Up,” Astley’s best-known song, hit No. 1 on singles charts in 25 countries when it was first released. Thanks to Rickrolling, Astley in 2008 won the MTV Europe Music Award for Best Act Ever for the song after a crowd-sourced internet voting effort.

Astley has previously commented on the Rickrolling phenomenon — and he’s cool with it. “I think it’s just one of those odd things where something gets picked up and people run with it. That’s what’s brilliant about the internet,” the singer said in a 2008 interview with the L.A. Times.

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by Anonymousreply 34October 12, 2021 8:43 PM

I bought the single years ago. His first 2 singles went to #1. Glad he's still around.

by Anonymousreply 1July 30, 2021 4:35 AM

He seemed like a one-hit wonder, but he was so good and it was such a good song. I wish he had delivered more music way back when.

by Anonymousreply 2July 30, 2021 4:38 AM

He's still handsome too, R1!

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by Anonymousreply 3July 30, 2021 4:40 AM

I wonder if this "viral stunt" is making him any money?

by Anonymousreply 4July 30, 2021 4:40 AM

I don't think it's a viral stunt, if it is, it's one of the most successful of all times because it's been going on for years on Reddit among other sites.

But I have always wondered how and if the original artist gets paid when their official or original video is played on YouTube. There's no way something like that would be in their original contract, but I have to think they are getting something.

by Anonymousreply 5July 30, 2021 4:45 AM

The real story

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by Anonymousreply 6July 30, 2021 5:03 AM

Is the video monetized on YouTube? Who gets the money? The rando who uploaded it?

by Anonymousreply 7July 30, 2021 5:14 AM

I think that's the way it works, R7.

More clicks on your video, the more you make.

There might be an exception though, if a record company owns the rights to the music. The person who uploaded the video has to put that on there, as a disclaimer.

In which case, they might not make any money from it.

by Anonymousreply 8July 30, 2021 5:16 AM

Good for him. Always seemed like a nice guy.

by Anonymousreply 9July 30, 2021 5:18 AM

[quote]I wonder if this "viral stunt" is making him any money?

Nope. It was written and produced by Stock Aitken Waterman.

by Anonymousreply 10July 30, 2021 5:20 AM

I am not one of his fans, one hit wonder but he should get money from this. Uncool that you get made into a global joke and someone else profits from it. Sadly, I doubt he's getting a dime from it since it's not his Youtube channel and the song came out long before Youtube was around.

by Anonymousreply 11July 30, 2021 5:21 AM

Why do you say he's a global joke, R11?

Rick thinks that having GenZ newly rediscover his songs, is pretty great.

by Anonymousreply 12July 30, 2021 10:51 AM

The joke is about the goofy lyrics to a catchy song, it isn't about Rick himself as a person or a performer. It's all in good fun and fortunately Rick realizes that.

Vanilla Ice is a joke. Rick Astley is merely a singer of silly radio songs from the late 80s.

by Anonymousreply 13July 30, 2021 12:03 PM

Embarrassed to admit but, back when cassettes were a thing, I bought the album (is it still an album if it's a tape??). I was into walking and aerobics back then; a lot of the songs on the tape were good for that.

by Anonymousreply 14July 30, 2021 12:07 PM

Rick on Graham Norton talking about the video, and that trenchcoat.

His daughter told him "You, realize, this isn't about YOU." Guess he forgot.

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by Anonymousreply 15July 30, 2021 12:52 PM

He was a Northern soul singer packaged into Eurobeat pop star. It worked well.

by Anonymousreply 16July 30, 2021 9:37 PM

I STILL laugh when I get Rickrolled.

by Anonymousreply 17July 30, 2021 9:38 PM

He's more famous in the US than Kylie or Robbie Williams. He deserves credit for that.

by Anonymousreply 18July 30, 2021 9:42 PM

He was one of the few SAW-produced acts that was the real deal in terms of talent and a vocalist. Donna Summer was another.

by Anonymousreply 19July 30, 2021 9:46 PM

His daughter is very pretty. Looks a little like Melissa McCarthy.

by Anonymousreply 20July 30, 2021 9:48 PM

Damn it! Rickrolled again!

by Anonymousreply 21July 30, 2021 9:49 PM

I agree, R20.

She's gorgeous!

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by Anonymousreply 22July 30, 2021 9:51 PM

I bought Rick's first TWO cassettes...and I still have them!

by Anonymousreply 23July 30, 2021 9:55 PM

R5 Rick Astley earns the money, his account uploaded the video

by Anonymousreply 24August 10, 2021 8:27 PM

Oh my God, R23! How fun!

by Anonymousreply 25August 10, 2021 8:49 PM

R23 Yes! I listened to Whenever You Need Somebody on my Sony Walkman on the bus ride to school.

Yes, I wore out that tape. Didn't care for the second cassette Hold Me In Your Arms. She Wants To Dance With Me was the only interesting song.

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by Anonymousreply 26August 10, 2021 8:51 PM

Super handsome R3

by Anonymousreply 27August 10, 2021 9:17 PM

Rick Assy

by Anonymousreply 28August 10, 2021 9:48 PM

Rick is HOT!

His daughter had to teach him about "Rickrolling."

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by Anonymousreply 29October 12, 2021 7:32 PM

Re-arrangement with Bastille.

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by Anonymousreply 30October 12, 2021 7:56 PM

R19 Pete Burns of Dead or Alive was good too. Underrated songwriter as well.

by Anonymousreply 31October 12, 2021 8:12 PM

R29, see R15.

by Anonymousreply 32October 12, 2021 8:14 PM

He was very cute and twinkish when young. I'm sure Pete Waterman tapped that.

by Anonymousreply 33October 12, 2021 8:39 PM

I wonder if he has ever Rickrolled anyone... or was Rickrolled. hahaha

by Anonymousreply 34October 12, 2021 8:43 PM
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