When Indie Music Meets Advertising

I was really pleased to see this long-form article, “How Selling Out Saved Indie Rock,” on Buzzfeed the other day. It explores the intersection of my two favorite industries — advertising and music — and although it’s admittedly pretty biased and I wouldn’t go so far as to say that selling out saved indie rock (as the article’s sensationalized title suggests), I agree with it for the most part. Basically, the piece is about how indie artists, struggling to make a living amid plummeting record sales, are increasingly turning their songs over to be used in commercials. The indie music community has traditionally balked at the thought of selling out to the corporate world of consumerism, but nowadays, it’s a little more complicated. As in, it’s become more accepted that ‘you gotta do what you gotta do,’ and getting a song in a commercial can be a big break for a lot of these artists. Signing a licensing deal with an ad agency is no longer considered an artistic compromise to the extent it used to be.
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