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Selling Out -- Your Thoughts

Posted by - 09:29 AM on 06/21/07
Last week, you all decided that "Idioteque" would make the best next single from Radiohead's Kid A. This week we're going to take a departure from the hypotheticals and get into a situation that has plagued bands for decades--selling out.

Recently, we've seen Cartel in the Dr. Pepper bubble. We've seen Fall Out Boy and Yellowcard featured in Verizon commercials. And we've all seen the backlash. Looking on message boards such as AP.net, you'd be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn't have an opinion on the topic and it's a controversial one to be sure. Then again, we've seen Coheed and Cambria's music on commercials and, heck, we've even heard Thursday's "Running From the Rain" in a Saturn commercial. However, there is hardly any animosity toward those bands. Is it simply because those bands have not achieved the success that the other aforementioned bands have?

What we here at AP would like to know is, what do you consider selling out? There are so many different interpretations that the idea has become completely muddled.

Does a band sell out when they have achieved radio status? If you remember back to the days of Good Charlotte's The Young and the Hopeless, the Internet was abuzz with this band becoming a commercial success overnight because of this album and many called them sell outs. Many argued that they compromised their music in order to become more fan-friendly and with the amount of Riot Girlz that emerged, there's no doubt that they appealed to the masses. If this is true, why hasn't a band like Jimmy Eat World, whose Bleed American was noticeably more poppy and radio-oriented received the same backlash?

Does a band sell out when they have a corporate sponsorship? Look no further than Cartel, who, before anyone had even heard any of their new music, had been labelled sell outs the second the Dr. Pepper campaign was announced. Thursday was featured in a Saturn commercial and people applauded the decision because it was a way for the band to get some exposure.

What is selling out to you? Is it the music or is it the idea of a corporate sponsorship? Is it the new crop of fans that come out of the shadows and emblazon themselves with Sell Out Boy shirts and write FOB on their left cheek and ROX on their right that makes people turn against bands? Why are some bands lambasted, while others are praised for having their art and image sold to the masses?
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 187
09:30 AM on 06/21/07
#2
jaimej
too caught up in the beautiful
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It gets me PUMPED!!
09:33 AM on 06/21/07
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jaimej
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Personally though, I view selling out as doing something that's against your morals or agenda for $$. I don't see anything wrong with being on a Verizon commercial, or whoring out Dr. Pepper; but the second I see a band who are serious vegans and PETA supporters in a McDonald's commercial, that would be where I draw the line. It's all about being true to yourself.
09:36 AM on 06/21/07
#4
get2sammyb
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This thread reminds me of Reel Big Fish. Good times.
09:36 AM on 06/21/07
#5
MarkyMark1984
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if a band changes their style, their actions, or their beliefs in order to make their band "bigger" then i think that is selling out. If you stay true to yourself and your music, and if you get "bigger" along the way, then that is great! But if you're changing just in order to make a buck (i'm not talking about progressing as a band musically), while it may be a good financial decision, it is selling out.
09:36 AM on 06/21/07
#6
love_american_style
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Personally though, I view selling out as doing something that's against your morals or agenda for $$. I don't see anything wrong with being on a Verizon commercial, or whoring out Dr. Pepper; but the second I see a band who are serious vegans and PETA supporters in a McDonald's commercial, that would be where I draw the line. It's all about being true to yourself.



in my opinion thats what selling out is.

people sometimes define selling out as landing a record deal with a major if your on a indie for so long. bullshit. what a load of bullshit.
09:39 AM on 06/21/07
#7
Why Bother?
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Personally though, I view selling out as doing something that's against your morals or agenda for $$. I don't see anything wrong with being on a Verizon commercial, or whoring out Dr. Pepper; but the second I see a band who are serious vegans and PETA supporters in a McDonald's commercial, that would be where I draw the line. It's all about being true to yourself.

That's pretty much what I think. I don't see how Fall Out Boy or Yellowcad are sell outs because they're huge bands and because they're in commercials, every band has a right to grow and I hate people calling FOB sell outs just because they're so popular now.

Now, Green Day being on American Idol, that's a little awkward.
09:39 AM on 06/21/07
#8
enter return
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"selling out" and hating a band for it, to me, can be seen from two perspectives. I know that in a heartbeat id sign a deal with a major record label if it gave me the chance to do what i love AND get paid more than enough to do so. I think any band would, integrity or not, if you say you'd do otherwise then you're a liar. Now lets use Fall Out Boy as an example. The second they got signed to a big label, their music changed. They lost the touch that Take This To Your Grave had. Now all of their songs sound like the same repeatative musical vomit. I wouldnt hate a band for "selling out". I'd hate them for changing their music to appeal to the masses. Though, some would argue that ALL bands, once signed to a major label, change their sound.
09:39 AM on 06/21/07
#9
RomeoAGoGo
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When a band changes their sound drastically enough for the sole purpose of making it accessible and marketable then they've sold out.

Cartel hasn't sold out because they were made to be exploited. They make fun, catchy, pop-rock tunes that every 13 year old girl and her mini van mom can listen to on the way to soccer games and such.

Let Dr. Pepper and every other corporation under the sun sponsor them. More exposure for a band that seems more or less gimmick-free (FOB, MCR, P!ATD)
09:40 AM on 06/21/07
_all_star_me_
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I think just like society, the business side of music is evoling. I was totally thinking about how radio airplay, 5-6 years ago was counted as selling out. But slowly people realize radio is an outlet; it's a way to get their music out there.

How many bands have we seen get signed to a major and have had not the right push? Yet, when we do see that push, we call them "Selling out". It's almost a lose/lose situation.

Selling out to me is when a band themselves write music that they don't like because they feel it will sell more. Everything else, (Band in bubble, commercials etc.) that's all marketing. Of course some marketing techniques fail, and some work well. The integrity of the marketing is another topic as well.
09:41 AM on 06/21/07
antiradio
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correct me if i'm wrong but hasn't cartel openly admitted to doing "what it takes" to get big? maybe i am wrong but the last time i read something from that band that was posted on here it made me sick...i think it was the singer responded to the dr. pepper thing. anyway, they (cartel) make me sick. i think jaime durante got it right
09:41 AM on 06/21/07
Fordzy9
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Personally though, I view selling out as doing something that's against your morals or agenda for $$. I don't see anything wrong with being on a Verizon commercial, or whoring out Dr. Pepper; but the second I see a band who are serious vegans and PETA supporters in a McDonald's commercial, that would be where I draw the line. It's all about being true to yourself.

Completely true, I don't think it has anything to do with how many fans they have, how much money they make or the kind of music they play. I band sells out when they allow someone, or something (money), to change the way they make and play thier music. To me, selling out is giving up your artisitc integrity.
09:41 AM on 06/21/07
themakebelieve
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in terms of the 'changing one's music to fit the mold of the masses' idea. anyone who has ever written a song will see their tastes change, as does it for those listening to music. change simply happens. this change could lead to more 'radio friendly' styles or lead away from that, it depends on the artist. granted im sure some bands out there will listen to some label telling them what to do in order to get more famous, more exposure, more money. but who knows who has done that and who hasnt? its all a matter of perspective.
09:41 AM on 06/21/07
rosematter
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What a fire-starter of a topic
09:43 AM on 06/21/07
rosematter
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If Yellowcard and FOB haven't sold out, I don't know how you can even coin the term selling out. They're on the face of corporate America every day. To kids with real punk rock roots, that would be the very definition of selling out back when indie music was actually indie.

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