I posted another album review today, which means I wrote it a couple of weeks ago (barely making deadline, cough cough) and my editor put it up today. Which is how it always works, but on the days something goes up, I wait a few hours and then post it to my Facebook feed. Because I’m a views whore, that’s why. Don’t you know anything about the Internet?
Of my Facebook friends, I’d say that about 7% are the type to click every link, read every review, and either like or comment. About 10% click every now and then and read half of it, and the other 83% couldn’t give less shits about what I write on the Internet. Unless, of course, I link to this blog and lede with something about poop or sluts or whatever.
I’m okay with these numbers because the people who do click and read are the ones who care about the stuff I’m writing, and the people who don’t are like most people, because most people don’t listen to independent radio or activate any interest in independent media in general. Which is why it’s independent.
I’d rather write about independent artists, music, and art forms than something mass market, anyway, and not for the usual hipster reasons (I once walked out on a band who played in a basement before anyone knew who they were because that show was terrible). I just like listening to, thinking about, and telling people about people who make art for the purpose of making art. Who aren’t making very much money at all but who have found a way to live while pursuing something creative, who work their asses off for zero TV and hardly any radio recognition, and who are in it because they really fucking love it. And for the pussy, obviously.
Which is not to say that all mainstream music is garbage. Most of it is, but some of it is pop (that is, popular) for a reason. It’s catchy and enjoyable and there’s nothing wrong with liking it. But for the most part, the music you hear on mainstream radio isn’t being played because anyone actually likes it. The music you hear on mainstream radio is being played because someone paid a corporation to play it. You’re not hearing the same songs four times a day because those songs are super good. You’re hearing them because a corporation is telling you to, and because they’re trying to return an investment made by another corporation in terms of album and tour sales. I’m the first to admit that some indie music is unlistenable whiny crap, but in my experience, more of mainstream music is unlistenable soulless dreck, and I’d rather cast my lot in with the people who aren’t getting paid off or buttfucked by gigantic companies who don’t really give a shit about their product, anyway.
So when someone I know tells me that I write about bands nobody has ever heard of or will ever listen to*, I’m sorry, but not only is that incorrect, but it implies that a band that everyone has heard of and everyone listens to (probably by virtue of mainstream radio) is somehow more artistically credible. Which is insane, and anyone who’s paid any attention to the music industry in the last ten years would have to agree with me.
Again, this isn’t a defense of my own impeccable tastes (remember that thing I said about Bryan Adams once), but it is a defense of independent music as a whole, all that music that so many of the people I know have never heard of and because of that, assume isn’t worth listening to at all. And meanwhile they don’t even realize that the Z-One-Oh-Whatever station has been playing Nickelback for years and it’s fucking dumpster music, because it’s easier to be anaesthetized than just change the fucking station, already.
*Schmoe I love you but you are so, so wrong.