Selling Out is All the Rage?

Independent record labels were separate from the larger labels but in order for them to support their artists, it was better for them to partner with other companies, who could provide the financial support needed. This can lead two ways, either they partner wants to have some power to control what is being produced or they are clueless and let the indie companies have full range. The latter was what happened with the indie company One Little Indian according to the piece, Indie: The Institutional Politics and Aesthetics of a Popular Music Genre, by David Hesmondhalgh. They partnered with an entrepreneur that had little knowledge of the aesthetics of punk. This allowed for the company to have control and keep to the indie aesthetics. But as with all things indie, after there is success in the indie world larger companies will do anything to capitalize on it. This is where the term ‘selling out’ comes into play.   

The aesthetics of indie music, as Hesmondhalgh describes in his piece,  are based on “mobilization and access.” The aesthetic if affected by what tools the artist and producer has access too. They were not always be able to work with the best equipment which created a sound that was not as clean as the main stream popular music. Being independent lets the artist to get their music into different countries and throughout our own country as well. It is more appealing to a larger amount of people.

I don’t think indie music may have the same kind of relationship that indie TV has institutionally, but I don’t agree that indie film does. Indie music and TV, in my opinion, still have the ability to be free from the restraints of the conglomerates; granted not overall, but they still have the ability to make out of the box, thought provoking, controversial media and still be successful. People, who has Netflix, are talking about Orange in the New Black or listening to a punk album. They have the ability to still reach the general population and be accepted, whereas a lot of indie films, unless produced by a mini major or the like, are not really heard of or brought to the eyes of the media consumer. It’s just not what people are buzzing about.


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