'Indie' or Not?

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'Indie' or Not?

By | September 2007
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‘Indie' or not?
Ever heard of the band ‘Death Cab for Cutie'? Despite their surging popularity, they still have managed to dodge the ‘sell-out' label and retain their long time devoted fans. They are only one of the many Indie bands who have risen to mass popularity throughout the world. Indie music gains more and more exposure daily and will continue to scale the charts, but only depending on whether the bands want to keep their true identity as an Indie band. Although so many bands and artists characterize themselves as Indie, only a part of those truly deserve the title, describing an Independent label.

Indie music exists to have many different interpretations and meanings, yet the original and most accurate being that of having an independent music label. Indie music strives to separate the ‘good' from the ‘popular'. It strives to stand as not simply an ‘alternative to', but ‘independent of' the "economic and political forces, as well as the value systems and aesthetic criteria, of large-scale production" (Hibbett). Indie bands are usually classified as so due to their organization of their own personal music label and funding of everything, including their CD productions and touring, solely by themselves. Through funding everything themselves, they are able to keep all of their profits for themselves and cut out the middle man. Many indie bands choose to become independent in hopes to dodge becoming a ‘sell-out' to a major record label and losing their true identity. The only downfall to this stands to be that they're "not the top priority and even with the best of relationships".

Unknown to most, Indie music has existed for quite a while. It originally began in the late sixties and started as an underground music scene. They wanted to establish their own brand, one that was independent of outside help (Martens). One such example, the Velvet Underground, stood as an edgier and poorly received alternative to the ever popular Beatles...