March 5, 2008

Redefining "Indie"

Once upon a time in a land far far away, indie meant something different. Sure it still represents the concept of independent in spirit or independence from a major label but now the indie torch has been passed up from artists like Fugazi to Dolly Parton. Indie was a term embraced by the alternative music culture to reflect the DIY bands that once filled up these small label rosters but indie no longer means kids doing it for themselves, it means Garth Brooks has decided to create an exclusive distribution deal with Wal-Mart and now his "Ultimate Hits" sits in position number 3 of this weeks current "Indie Album chart. "

Here are the top 10 titles on the Soundscan chart this morning:

1) Once - Soundtrack

2) Dolly Parton - Backwoods Barbie

3) Garth Brooks - Ultimate Hits

4) Eagles - Long Road

5) Radiohead - In Rainbows

6) Vampire Weekend - S/T

7) Jim Jones - Harlem's American

8) Pillar - For the Love

9) Leeland - Opposite Way

10) Bullet for My Valentine - Scream Aim

The chart is what it is and since I don't have the interest or energy to campaign to keep the word indie equating to kids with home haircuts who tour in a 1987 Dodge Van with no windows, I think we should work on a new term for this generation's DIY rockers. Indie as we knew it is officially dead. indie rock types need to coin a new phrase, who are we now? I am open to suggestions.
And no, over the hill is not what I am looking for.


  1. Shit, all these years I thought I was supposed to be listening to 'Indian' music. But really, I only like 1 kind of music, honest music, no matter how it's distributed. But, I do see the semantic dilemma. So, is it Post-Indie? Indie 2.0? Maybe next time around we will pick a genre name thats not connected to a distribution method. I've got it! Let's just ask Albini! He's smarter than the rest of us and 'indie' as fuck.

  2. is that the top 10 indie albums or just overall?

  3. That chart is top "indie". How scary is that?

    And indie 2.0? I love it!

  4. Another idea would be to pick a genre name that NO ONE else would want to use, then you could have it all to yourself. Smelly-core, Poop-rock or Cootie-music.

    And yes, I know exactly how mature I am.