Monday, April 7, 2008

indie is in...

I meant to write this post a long time ago...possibly even before I started this blog. Remember Juno? Remember how its soundtrack was the best selling soundtrack (or most downloaded) by several scales, including the iTunes music store? Remember how it was a "major breakthrough" for indie music into the mainstream?

Here's a question.

What does it mean to be "indie"? Indie rock, pop or otherwise? (As the music Juno is mostly self identified as anti-folk.)

One thing is that I think "indie" means is cool. Cool because it's different. Different from what I'm not sure. But I get the sneaking suspicion that the only reason the likes of Kimya Dawson is a household name is because people saw Juno, realized they could live with the music in the movie, and decided that they wanted to be labeled as cool for liking the music. Will they ever buy another Antsy Pants album? I don't know. They might give it a second take when they next go to Virgin Megastore or browse the iTunes music store, but probably realize they'd rather spend their money on something else.

But okay, I'll stop doing my angry rant against "people" and how I think I understand them even though really I'm just looking for a reason to be sassy.

Here's where my other "indie" music musing comes in. I feel like as I got older, I became more aware of the existence of this elusive genre of music. Is this because:
a) I'm older, wiser, and have approached life with an open mind. I've slowly accumulated the tastes that the top hits radio station failed to offer.
b) more and more groups have chosen to label themselves as indie (as the old term "alternative" lost meaning) and thus there more of it
c) there's some sort of aggressive counter publicity movement going on with the growing number of outlets looking to report on and praise something that's...NOT what is out there
d) none of the above...

What will we do when calling your music independent no longer has any meaning either? I believe there already was a New Age. And punk doesn't mean much anymore either. Given the focus on the environment, I vote that "green" music is next.