antiMusic Logo
Jealous Haters Since 1998!
Home | News | Reviews | Day In Rock | RockNewsWire | Singled Out | Feeds
spacer

antiMUSIC is pleased to welcome aboard Trent McMartin who not only has been filing special news reports but now will give you the "lowdown" on various music related topics! 

As always the views expressed by the writer do not neccessarily reflect the views of antiMUSIC or the iconoclast entertainment group
.

The Art of Selling Out: Compromising the Music

A few months ago I wrote an article entitled “The Art of Selling Out” examining the growing trend today where musicians are selling their songs to corporations to be used in advertisements. I debated the pros and cons of musicians selling their creations as a way to make money and to gain exposure in today’s short-attention-span music industry. What this new article will examine is the propensity of many musicians to compromise their musical integrity. When an artist actually chases fame and fortune putting aside musical quality, original intentions and moral convictions

In the summer of 1998 the Ben Affleck/Bruce Willis popcorn flick Armageddon was a huge hit in theatres and everywhere that summer could be heard the Dianne Warren penned hit “I Don't Want To Miss A Thing”. The song was sung by veteran rock act Aerosmith and it would become the band’s first ever number one hit even though they didn’t write it. This of course isn’t the first instance of an artist not writing their own material but it stood out because it took 25 years and someone else to provide Aerosmith with their first number one song. 

The king of rock and roll Elvis Presley wrote little of his own material hiring countless musicians and songwriters to provide him with the hit making material that would propel the unstoppable Elvis machine. Prolific songwriting duo Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller wrote some of Presley’s greatest songs such as “Hound Dog,” “Jailhouse Rock,” and “King Creole.” 

Even if someone writes their own material or brings in songwriters there is always an inclination to come up with something catchy, new and relevant that has the possibility of becoming a hit. You cannot blame an artist wanting to make a living from creating music and wanting to spread their music to as many people as possible. That’s every artist’s goal but sometimes during the pursuit of success, the music is compromised. 

“I've been a punk-rocker for a long (expletive) time and I guess I've struggled with the thought of bands that would want to compromise the music they create to try to ‘make it’,” said Liam Harvey Oswald, vocalist for the Canadian pop/core outfit A Last Goodbye.“ I always thought that there are two kinds of musicians...the ones who play the music for the love of it, and the ones who just want to be famous.”

Fans are not stupid and usually they can pick up on the distinction between artists doing it for the music and others doing it just for the money. “I would say that ‘selling out’ is left up to the listener/buyer of the CD,” said Jason Manning, Music Director for Edmonton’s modern rock radio station Sonic 102.9 FM. “Some people get pissed when an artist sells a lot of one CD.  Take for example Moby.  Play sold a TON of records.....his last 2 CD’s...well they have not done so well.  Is his music crappier now....well that’s for his fans to decide.  I do not think bands automatically suck after they sell a gazillion CD’s,” Manning added. 

Oswald agrees. “We're seeing alot of really heavy bands, mellow out, and have producers work with them to help give them the 'hooks' that the radio execs wanna hear,” the vocalist said. “It's pretty much left up to you to decide which bands are full of (expletive), and which bands have any integrity at all.”

Can artists be blamed when they don’t or just cannot write the same material they did when they first started out? Many bands have been accused of going softer and because of that, they’re branded as sell outs. In 1991, Metallica would release their most popular record to date, The Black Album, which would go on to sell more than 10 million records bringing heavy metal into the mainstream. Many hardcore fans cried fowl calling it Metallica’s sell out album but others were kinder and less judgemental. “In my opinion their sound didn't change,” said 92. 5 JOE FM Assistant Music Director and huge Metallica fan Ryann Bradley of Edmonton, Canada.  “Why not go mainstream to make the bank account fatter and gain a more diverse audience?”

It’s really hard to say who has “sold out” and who has kept intact their artistic vision. A guy like Neil Young could never be accused of compromising his music. But it also could be said that Neil Young only has the ability to follow his musical ambitions because of the success and achievements he garnered early in his career as a solo artist and a member of Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. 

If you’re an up and coming band it may be more tempting to write something more appealing to listeners or to bring in outside help. “The music industry is ruled by suits now, and you have to play by their rules,” said Cort Smith, television producer at Vancouver’s Global television. “You absolutely need to sell yourself if you have any expectations of making a career out of music.” 

And it’s this dilemma that tears apart many artists who feel conflicted between their artistry and the industry. Kurt Cobain went through this conflict up until his tragic death in 1994 taking the accusations of being a sell out very hard. Having the ability to write great hooks and catchy melodies should not be criticized but commended. As one community figure remarked to me recently, “art is a state of mind; and for one person to slag another person’s vision or opinion is crap.” 

And while many artists and people agree with the concept that selling out is nonsense, others remain hesitant to follow trends. “I don't think I'd ever be happy if I allowed someone to take complete control over all the things that make a band great,” said Liam Harvey Oswald. “I do believe that it is almost impossible to do it all on your own, and expect any sort of great success, but still believe that with hard work, and determination, anyone can achieve their goals,” he explained.

“After all, radio & video stations ain't everything... it's the people behind your music, at the shows, showing their support, helping to inspire, and allowing you to continue to do what you love to do.” 
 
 


 
 


advertisement
advertisement

.
News Reports
.
Day in Rock:
Ozzy Osbourne Leads Music Festival Lineup- Grim Reaper Frontman Has Part Of His Leg Amputated- Radiohead Announce U.S. Tour Dates- A Perfect Circle New Music?- more

Page Too
Louis Tomlinson Recorded With Steve Aoki Amid Personal Tragedy- Charlie Sheen Apologizes To Rihanna For TV Insult- Tupac Biopic Being Released On His Birthday- more

Iron Maiden Announce North American Summer Tour- Where Are The New Guns N' Roses and Nirvanas Asks Lars- Dashboard Confessional Release Surprise EP- Ghost- more

 Subscribe To Day in Rock

advertisement
.
 
Reviews
.

TBT: David Bowie Live In Chicago 2004

Michael Hornbuckle - Soul Repo

Saint Blasphemer - Simon Templar

David Bowie - Station To Station Remaster

Travel News, Trips and Tips: January 2017 Edition

The Blues: Big Jay McNeely - Blowin' Down the House: Big Jay's Latest & Greatest

Bruce Springsteen - Nebraska

The Blues: Popa Chubby - The Catfish

Tumbler - Come to the Edge

Butch Walker - Stay Gold Album of the Year

The Blues: The James Montgomery Blues Band

In Tribute: George Michael's Faith Deluxe Edition

RockPile: Spotlight on Steamhammer/SPV Records

TBT: David Bowie - Space Oddity 40th Anniversary Special Edition

Color You - The Grand Trine

Santa's Jukebox: Jazz Dispensary- Latin Christmas- Bon Qui Qui- more

Santa's Jukebox: Legacy Vinyl Edition

TBT: David Bowie's A Reality Tour

Fallen Asunder - Self-Titled

Holiday Gift Guide: Music DVD or Blu-ray Edition

Bassett - Ghost Hwy

TBT: The Cult, Stabbing Westward, Monster Magnet and Bird3 Live


. .
.
Today's Rock News
. Ozzy Osbourne Leads Music Festival Lineup (top story)

Grim Reaper Frontman Has Part Of His Leg Amputated (top story)

Radiohead Announce U.S. Spring Tour Dates (top story)

A Perfect Circle May Reveal New Music This Year (top story)

Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds Announce U.S. Tour (top story)

Billy Corgan Fuels Hope For Smashing Pumpkins Reunion (top story)

KISS Won't Make New Albums Due To Filesharing (top story)

Aerosmith and Los Lobos Stars Join Experience Hendrix Tour (top story)

Metallica's Hetfield Sees No Reason For Bad Blood With Mustaine (top story)

Black Sabbath Members Curate New 31-Track Release (top story)

George Harrison Vinyl Box Set Announced (top story)

Rolling Stones Documentary Coming To TV Next Month (top story)

Iron Maiden Announce North American Summer Tour (top story)

Where Are The New Guns N' Roses and Nirvanas Asks Lars (top story)

Dashboard Confessional Release Surprise EP (top story)

Ghost Make U.S. Chart History With 'Square Hammer' (top story)

Train Announce Massive North American Tour (top story)

Kid Rock To Kick Off New Season Of The Big Interview (top story)

Ozzy, Slayer, Avenged Sevenfold Lead Rock USA Lineup (top story)

Mikkey Dee Reveals Scorpions New Album Plans (top story)

Judas Priest Stream Live 'Locked In' From Turbo Reissue (top story)

Staind's Aaron Lewis Sinner Tour Continues Through Spring (top story)

Ringo Starr Giving Away Song 'Now The Time Has Come' (top story)

Jack Russell's Great White Release 'Sign Of The Times' Video (top story)

Bob Seger Giving Away Glenn Frey Tribute Song (top story)

Guns N' Roses Reunion Wasn't Motivated By Money (top story)

U2 Add Dates To The Joshua Tree Anniversary Tour (top story)

Video From Black Sabbath's Final German Concert Goes Online (top story)

Metallica Rock Classic Song With Lang Lang (top story)

We Are The Ocean Breaking Up Following Farewell Tour (top story)

Paul McCartney Reportedly Suing Over Beatles Songs (top story)

Melvins, At The Drive-In Offshoot Crystal Fairy Album and Live Dates (top story)

Brian May Announces Queen In 3-D Photo Book (top story)

Allman Brothers In The Studio For Eat A Peach Anniversary (top story)

Bastille Add Dates To North American Tour (top story)

Spoon Announce New Album 'Hot Thoughts,' Stream First Song (top story)


Subscribe to Day in Rock Report by Email

.
.
Today's Page Too News
. Louis Tomlinson Recorded With Steve Aoki Amid Personal Tragedy (top story)

Charlie Sheen Apologizes To Rihanna For TV Insult (top story)

Tupac Biopic Being Released On His Birthday (top story)

Ed Sheeran Makes Billboard History With New Singles (top story)

Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban To Duet At The Grammys (top story)

Little Big Town Reveal New Details For 'The Breaker' Album (top story)

Skrillex Recruits Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper For New Video (top story)

Thirty Seconds To Mars Announce Third Annual Camp Mars (top story)

The xx Perform New Songs On Jimmy Fallon (top story)

Country Hall Of Famer Bobby Bare Inks Deal For 1st Album In Five Years (top story)

Chris Lane To Perform On The Bachelor (top story)

Lady Gaga's Super Bowl Halftime Show Song Details Revealed (top story)

Jennifer Lopez Confirms Drake Collaboration (top story)

Lady Antebellum Stream New Single, Announce Album and Tour (top story)

Kanye West Course Coming To Washington University (top story)

Alanis Morissette's Manager Admits To Embezzling Millions (top story)

Quincy Jones' Michael Jackson Lawsuit Moving Forward (top story)

Gorillaz Release 'Hallelujah Money' Video (top story)

The Bellamy Brothers Launching World Tour (top story)

Justin Moore Releases 'Somebody Else Will' Video (top story)

Kaleo Featured In New 'Logan' Trailer (top story)

Big Sean Streams New Track 'Halfway Off The Balcony' (top story)

Ryan Adams Streams New Song 'Doomsday' (top story)

Carrie Underwood Wants To Play Zombie on 'The Walking Dead' (top story)



More News

.
 
anti Worthy Links
.
Rock On the Rise Radio The Screen DoorA Journal of Musical ThingsLloyd Zeffler blogDemolish MagNightwatcher's House of RockCJ ChilversDeja VoodooThe 1st FiveHard Rock Memorabilia thecopycat.bizDay in Rock @twitter

.
  .
.
 

Tell a Friend about this page - Contact Us - Privacy - antiMusic Email - Why we are antiMusic

Copyright© 1998 - 2016 Iconoclast Entertainment Group All rights reserved. antiMusic works on a free link policy for reprinting of our original articles, click here for details. Please click here for legal restrictions and terms of use applicable to this site. Use of this site signifies your agreement to the terms of use.