|The Dead Kennedys|
The music industry is always whining about piracy and YouTube giving away the music for free. They worry about the fate of their business, and they should, but I can tell you this started long before the internet was present in every American household. This phenomenon started in the late 70's with the Punk movement. Rebelious, artsy teens in the 70's and 80's felt like they were not being represented by the music industry, so they made their own! DIY culture was born, and independent record labels spread to big cities like NYC and Washington, D.C. Bands booked their own tours and paid for their own studio time. This allowed for complete creative control. No pandering to advertisers or religious people who are offended by curse words. Well. This never stopped. It simply evolved!
I came of age in the early nineties, just before Nirvana hit the big time. Right before that happened, I remember hanging out with the older kids at a club in Jacksonville Beach called
"Einstein A Go Go,"(Known as Einstein's to the "Steiners" who frequented this venue) where indie bands would stop on their tours to play to an all ages, music obsessed crowd of teenagers. Bands like The Cure, The Cranberries, *and* Nirvana, among countless others, all hit that stage before they exploded onto the mainstream radio airwaves. After that happened, we would usually loose interest and cheer on the next round of indie musicians. We bought independently produced records, and most of the time the money went straight to the artists. Kids even made their own Zines to spread the word about independent music. It was exciting to be part of a new music revolution.
|River Pheonix Performing at Einstein A Go Go|
|An Old DIY Show Flyer|
So, this is simply my opinion for why I have a hard time sympathizing with the failing music industry. Perhaps this will be a warning to other big markets who care more about profits than substance (film industry: take note).