Monday, September 20, 2010

It's About The Music, Man

Just read a really interesting article at the Wall Street Journal about how the Black Eyed Peas are the most corporate band in America. It's a great in-depth detailing of how group frontman/hologram views the band as "a brand" and uses said brand to make millions, shift paradigms, unlock new cash flows, and other corporate buzz words I can't even bother to make up.

It's a pretty fascinating read and pretty indicative of the myriad problems of modern pop music. What's most striking about it is how proud Mr. is of his corporate shilling -- it not only doesn't strike his as odd or out of sorts that he would spend most of the time recording an album working on the one promotional track for Dr. Pepper over the rest of the music, but how proud he is of his corporate connections. It's still somewhat shocking even for someone as jaded and cynical as I to read of a "musician" so proudly discussing how he specifically makes music only as a vehicle shilling for various corporate backers.

It's also a good counter-argument to people who call you a music snob for not listening to shitty music. When I say this type of music is horrible and only designed to sell cell phones and third-rate soft drinks, I'm not being hyperbolic, I am quite literally describing what happens. And much the way commercial jingles are rarely good, top-40 music that is specifically designed to be long-playing commercial jingles is rarely good as well.

It's just funny to think that at one point in time, bands were called sell-outs for leasing their music for commercials. A sad, far cry from specifically making your entire career for commercials...

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