Saturday, April 17, 2010

Your Favorite Musician is A Sellout! (Who Cares?)

I came across an interesting article on speaking about musicians, and if it's possible for them to sellout within this decade of music. The author (Matt Rosoff ) spoke about how many bands have been getting that extra push from corporations to get their music out to the public and generate a stronger stream of revenue from recorded music. Mr. Rosoff spoke about a band he discovered (Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes), and how he really enjoyed their single “Home”. Then when he saw that Microsoft was using this same single as the theme music for the launch of their new Smartphone “Kin”. He lost interest in the band because now the song he enjoyed for the artistic value is being used as a tool to sell a product. Mr. Rosoff goes on to ask the readers whether this makes him a dinosaur for believing that this makes a band a sellout.

I thought this was interesting because we spoke about this a little bit in our class, and how many bands have linked up with corporations (Mountain Dew, Red Bull, etc.) to have their music associated with selling a product, and whether this was an appropriate move for a band to make? I think it is because things have changed dramatically over the past few decades, and with CD’s becoming irrelevant musicians need to find other ways to make profit from their work instead of just touring and selling merchandise.

To me it all boils down to what the product is, and what its sellers are trying to say to its consumers by using a musician’s song. The Wilco and Volkswagen collaboration we spoke about is a good example of this. So, the issue of selling out is becoming a dated thing to say about a musician when they are limited to the ways they can profit from recordings. In the end, music is an art and that should never be forgotten, but at the same time it’s a business, and that can’t be overlooked . Especially when you’re trying to make it your career.

Submitted by: Jarvis R. Smith


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