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bighead384
08-29-2008, 06:45 PM
How would you define selling out? How do you feel about bands who sellout?

Personally, I have mixed feelings on this issue, which is why I'm interested in hearing other opinions. I understand that musicians need to make a living just like anyone else, yet I can't help but be annoyed by some things that bands pull to make money. For example, I heard that tickets to to a Weezer concert are 60 bucks. I've heard of overcharging, but that's a price so high that it will actually keep poorer fans from being able to see the band live. That's bullshit.

Rag Doll
08-29-2008, 08:10 PM
I don't have much of an opinion on selling out.

Though, I was looking at ticketmaster like 2 hours ago and was also pretty damn annoyed at weezer ticket prices. $54.50 for super shitty seats to see weezer? no way in hell.

jacknife737
08-29-2008, 08:14 PM
Personally, I don’t let shit like this bother me. I always feel when one accuses another of “selling out”, they always come across as nothing but self-righteous hypocrites What gives another person the right to judge another’s actions, when they are not affected by them? Now, Weezer can charge whatever they want for tickets, but if it’s over $40.00 (hell, I groan, if tickets are over 25), I won’t be buying.

Little_Miss_1565
08-29-2008, 08:44 PM
...you guys realize that bands don't set their own ticket prices, right? Where are Weezer playing?

Rag Doll
08-29-2008, 09:02 PM
...you guys realize that bands don't set their own ticket prices, right? Where are Weezer playing?

If that was directed at me, then yes. But the venue is also pretty goddamn dumb.

Here they're playing at the Garden. Dumb question, but maybe you know....why would every single seat be $54.50? From floor all the way to Promenade Level 300.

Llamas
08-29-2008, 09:15 PM
I generally disagree with the whole "the band needs to make a living" argument. A band can make a decent living these days on a smaller label. Signing to Columbia is not necessary. Hell, I know a girl who isn't signed at all. She releases her own albums and tours alone. She's not rich, but she loves it. Bands don't choose their ticket prices, no. But they made the decision to give that power to someone who would do that.

I'd never go see a band for more than $30. Pretty much the only live music I'd spend more than $30 on is a professional orchestra.

Oxygene
08-30-2008, 12:54 AM
My thoughts on selling out are that the most important thing is intent, above all.. making dishonest music. I think consciously avoiding writing mainstream catchy tunes, is even worse than selling out. Because you pose as something you aren't...

Ticket prices are determined just like everything else. If there are enough people who will buy them at that price, that's what they are gonna go for. It's got nothing to do with rock n roll

If weezer can sell 1000 tickets at $60 or sell 1010 for $30, why would they pull in $30k less on a show? It's like Jim Carrey said when he was making the most money as an actor. "If the money is there, why not take it"

Anyone willing to pay to see weezer deserves to get ripped off anyway :D

As for the "I don't believe in the band needs to make a living argument".. I wonder how that girl you know will feel about her life when she's 40 with 3 kids, and she and her kids don't have insurance and say one of the children get real sick. I don't wish it onto her, but I feel like that everything in life comes before the "zomg what will the trupunx think.. that I am a selloutz?"

Free?
08-30-2008, 04:02 AM
I don't give a shit about someone calling a band sellout, the only thing that is important is how they sound. If I like it, that's fine, If don't - ignore them. People need to grow up and step over such struggle against false music, it's a waste of time and will not them make more tru. It's like saying that only music that you like is the right one, anything other just sucks. Wouldn't it be wiser to try to open your mind and expand your musical taste than remain an ignorant self-proclaimed rebel against things you didn't even try to understand?

About ticket prices. It's still a big thing to us when some world famous musician comes to Latvia. I've payed like 55$ per ticket to see Metallica, Korn and Ozzy, they were for the first time here (Lars Ulrich even asked the crowd "Should it be another 30 years for us to wait until Metallica comes back here?"). You see things different when you live in a country where you know that you will see a famous band at least every year, when you're surrounded by such shows. For us it is a big celebration and we would gladly pay that price to be there (and not because we are too wealthy).

Sunny
08-30-2008, 05:50 AM
Personally, I don’t let shit like this bother me. I always feel when one accuses another of “selling out”, they always come across as nothing but self-righteous hypocrites What gives another person the right to judge another’s actions, when they are not affected by them?

this.

i don't care what a band's intent is. if i like the sound, all is well in the world. if the sound blows, well, so it does. i understand the desire to experiment AND i understand the desire to make money. sometimes things go wrong. oh well!

i have little reverence for the self-righteous "indie/punxx!!!" ideology and the concept that making money off of art is somehow ignoble.

i think it's a load of shit that "bands should just be happy with making music and making a modest living". thing is, if you have the potential to make money, what's wrong with wanting to make more money?

on a sort of related note, i've heard a lot of the "sellout" rhetoric in art school, and i'm sick to death of it. you should just make reeal art and be a real arteest! yeah, no, fuck you. if you like what you're doing, and you're good at it, it's only normal that you want more than a modest living. i don't think anyone older than 13 can argue otherwise.

i used to really like KMFDM and their last few albums just SUCK. i don't care if they "sold out" (by the super punx definition, they sold out a while ago), or got old, or just experimented and went wrong. the result is the same.

wheelchairman
08-30-2008, 06:42 AM
I think I would have to define selling out as

"When a band makes a series of statements (before they are big or mainstreamish) preaching about their virtues and accusing other bands of being total sell outs and how it compromises their artistic integrity, then years later (or a shorter amount of time) they go on to do the exact same things."

I mean that's more an example of hypocrisy, but that's what I would call selling out. Though like Sunny and Jackknife, I really don't care that much and I don't think I would mind listening to bands that "sold out". I just like the sound really.

bighead384
08-30-2008, 10:06 AM
If weezer can sell 1000 tickets at $60 or sell 1010 for $30, why would they pull in $30k less on a show? It's like Jim Carrey said when he was making the most money as an actor. "If the money is there, why not take it"

So basically what you're saying is, Weezer should be focused on only one thing: profit.

Free?
08-30-2008, 10:14 AM
So basically what you're saying is, Weezer should be focused on only one thing: profit.
I think you're overpulling his words. He doesn't mind Weezer to do some expensive live shows, he doesn't say that they should focus on that.

bighead384
08-30-2008, 10:25 AM
I think you're overpulling his words. He doesn't mind Weezer to do some expensive live shows, he doesn't say that they should focus on that.

It seems to me that he was explaining that if you can make more money by selling the tickets at a certain price, you should do it, regardless of how incredibly expensive it that price may be. Doesn't that sound like something a band who is mainly focused on profit would do?

Little_Miss_1565
08-30-2008, 11:19 AM
If that was directed at me, then yes. But the venue is also pretty goddamn dumb.

Here they're playing at the Garden. Dumb question, but maybe you know....why would every single seat be $54.50? From floor all the way to Promenade Level 300.

Wow, that's actually incredibly reasonable for the Garden. My Nick Cave ticket (Oct. 4th bitches!) for the theater at MSG wasn't much cheaper, and I'm right up front (OH MY GOD HOLY CRAP I AM GOING TO DIE). I think it actually speaks well for Weezer that all the seats are the same price. That gives the real fans a chance to be on the floor and not just the rich old lame bastards shelling out $100+ for the best seats.

Rag Doll
08-30-2008, 03:25 PM
Wow, that's actually incredibly reasonable for the Garden. My Nick Cave ticket (Oct. 4th bitches!) for the theater at MSG wasn't much cheaper, and I'm right up front (OH MY GOD HOLY CRAP I AM GOING TO DIE). I think it actually speaks well for Weezer that all the seats are the same price. That gives the real fans a chance to be on the floor and not just the rich old lame bastards shelling out $100+ for the best seats.


I guess I'm annoyed because I paid $30 for floor tix to see Fall Out Boy at MSG in November. And this is nearly twice that, for even super far away seats. You know?

SP might be playing MSG in November. I am *dreading* the ticket prices.

bighead384
08-30-2008, 04:00 PM
I think it actually speaks well for Weezer that all the seats are the same price. That gives the real fans a chance to be on the floor and not just the rich old lame bastards shelling out $100+ for the best seats.

I don't think a band that's charging 60 bucks for tickets is generously considering something like that.

coke_a_holic
08-30-2008, 04:11 PM
http://stereogum.com/archives/commercial-appeal/of-montreal-art-brut-do-tmobile_007208.html

This.

I always thought Kevin Barnes would be pretty stupid or ridiculous, because his music is ridiculous, but this is a pretty well-written essay on the act of selling-out and I rather enjoyed it and wish that more people would read it and understand the motivations behind certain decisions.

Speaking of which, the new Of Montreal cd leaked, anyone listen to it yet?

Rooster
08-30-2008, 04:36 PM
I don't give a fuck what label the band is on. If i like the music, i'll listen to the band making it. This sell out thing is getting quite annoying.

Probably the best definition of a sell-out band would be something like this: "a band who started playing the the music they like, then signs with a major label and starts producing the music that they don't enjoy any more, play only the music label orders them to play, and just solely for the money and nothing else". That's how i would define a sell out band. But here is where the problem comes up: how do we know if the band likes the music they play or not?

Anyway, i don't bother with the sell out thing much, i just wanted to give my opinion how i would define it. I like some types of music and dislike other types. I don't judge it based on the sell out argument, i judge it by how much i enjoy it.

Let's take Anti-Flag (don't kill me for bringing them up :D) for example: they signed with a major label, but their music hasn't changed that much in a short time (their sound was changing to more pop-punk sound through the years of being in the indie labels), they signed because they wanted to be heard, and of course also for the money (don't tell me you wouldn't), but their message is the same, the music is still awesome.The Bright Lights Of America isn't much poppier than For Blood and Empire or Terror State. I don't like the Bright Lights as much as the other albums though, but i don't think they sold out because i don't like it - just the songs don't feel that good to me (although the album is slowly growing up on me). I think they still enjoy what they do, just see their live performances (at least on youtube if nowhere else), they still seem to have enthusiasm.

bighead384
08-30-2008, 05:33 PM
Probably the best definition of a sell-out band would be something like this: "a band who started playing the the music they like, then signs with a major label and starts producing the music that they don't enjoy any more, play only the music label orders them to play, and just solely for the money and nothing else". That's how i would define a sell out band. But here is where the problem comes up: how do we know if the band likes the music they play or not?

Would say you're more likely or less likely to give the band the benefit of the doubt if the music has suddenly become less unique and more radio friendly?

People often say "they didn't change for money...they progressed, they evolved". I find it strange that so many bands "progress" and "evolve" and "experiment" with sounds that, by mere coincidence, are perfect for radio and mainstream consumption.

Aside from that, I'd like the point out that I personally don't necessarily think there's something wrong with listening to music from a band that has "sold out" in some way. But if a band has sold out to some extent, it's not like your being some dickhead simply by acknowledging it.

Llamas
08-30-2008, 06:08 PM
I do think I lean more on the "anti-selling out" side, but I hate the "omg trupunx" stuff just as much as the next guy.

Why not take the money if it's there? Maybe because you abandon many devoted fans who LOVE you and your music, but can not afford to pay $60 to see a 1.5 hour concert. If it was solely making more money for exactly the same thing, I'd have no argument against it. However, it becomes selfish when you put money above fans, you'd rather have an amphitheatre full of people who only know your singles than a venue full of people who actually know your music.

Changing your music... well, if you start out because of the money, then I don't care. The Goo Goo Dolls are a prime example. They changed their music SO drastically after "Name" got popular, and that's fine, because they never claimed to be about the music. They were always in it for chicks and money. For that, I'd never be able to respect them as artists, but I still like their music.

But if you start out wanting to share your music, wanting to be an artist, and then change your music to mainstream pop for the money, yes I'm going to lose respect. (Rilo Kiley is a good example.) If I still like the music, I'll probably listen to it, but I probably won't spend money on albums or concerts.

bighead384
08-30-2008, 06:35 PM
I do think I lean more on the "anti-selling out" side, but I hate the "omg trupunx" stuff just as much as the next guy.

Exactly. I think it's stupid to be so OBSESSED with going against "tru punx" that you won't even acknowledge that some bands actually do sell out and/or become too focused on profits. I really think it's stupid that people have to be apologetically "anti-selling out" these days.

Little_Miss_1565
08-30-2008, 08:57 PM
I don't think a band that's charging 60 bucks for tickets is generously considering something like that.

Blame the promoter and Ticketmaster, not the band. Ticketbastard and promoters are entirely the reason why.

Jakebert
08-30-2008, 10:32 PM
The idea of selling out is extremely subjective and it depends on someone's personal opinions on integrity and whatever else. For me, I do take a band's personal integrity into mind when I listen to them because it helps me figure out how genuine or not the band may be. Not that it's wrong to not care, it's just a different perspective on music as a whole.

But that said, I don't let it really effect what I listen to too much. If I like a band enough, I'll look the other way and treat it as a necessary annoyance. For example, R.E.M.'s whoring of Greatest Hits collections, live albums, and pointless reissues is annoying, and I may bitch about it from time to time, at the end of the day, I can still pop "Life's Rich Pagaent" into my car CD player and love every second of it.

And, like Per said, a lot of it has to do with a band's prior statements and actions towards an issue. Sam Beam was attacked when Iron and Wine songs started getting used in TV shows, but from the get-go he said he didn't mind because the TV shows are really just showing appreciation for his music and that he finds it flattering. That, in my mind, makes it not a sell out move because he'd never prior said he was against such an action.

Jebus
08-31-2008, 01:13 AM
I do think I lean more on the "anti-selling out" side, but I hate the "omg trupunx" stuff just as much as the next guy.

Why not take the money if it's there? Maybe because you abandon many devoted fans who LOVE you and your music, but can not afford to pay $60 to see a 1.5 hour concert. If it was solely making more money for exactly the same thing, I'd have no argument against it. However, it becomes selfish when you put money above fans, you'd rather have an amphitheatre full of people who only know your singles than a venue full of people who actually know your music.
Since when have there been some type of correlation between the poorer you are the bigger the fan you are? Why would the people who could afford the tickets be the ones who only listen to the singles? I don't understand that logic. If anything, the bigger the fan you are, the more likely you'll be saving up for months to see your favorite band live. If you can afford to buy all 20 albums and rare singles from a certain band, you can definately shell out an extra 100 bucks to buy a ticket.

jacknife737
08-31-2008, 01:36 AM
I find the “more radio friendly music” argument to be bullshit (a lot of the time), especially when it comes to “punk” bands. Since most of the time, the band goes from some uber small indie (say Asian Man) to a major label, and thus can afford better recording equipment, so obviously their sound is going to be more “polished”.

And although I initially wish to side with the anti-stadium show crowd (mostly because stadium shows suck), it is still a hypocritical argument. Because who determines the size of the venue? You may think a 500-3000 person venue is the “right” size, but what about the trupunx who saw Against Me! play a 50 person show at a church basement (I’ve met these people), to them, playing a bar of 500 is “selling out”. And we can bitch about paying $50, I know people who won’t go to concerts that are over $10.00. So it’s all subjective.

Even the “prior statement" argument is kind of silly at times. I don’t believe the same shit I did when I was 14, so why should a band member at age 30, be expected to hold the same ideals as they did when they were 20? ***

***Obviously there are exceptions to this rule. Ie, I can see how a band like RATM are hypocrites, but that still doesn’t affect their music, to me.

Rooster
08-31-2008, 02:34 AM
Would say you're more likely or less likely to give the band the benefit of the doubt if the music has suddenly become less unique and more radio friendly?

People often say "they didn't change for money...they progressed, they evolved". I find it strange that so many bands "progress" and "evolve" and "experiment" with sounds that, by mere coincidence, are perfect for radio and mainstream consumption.

Aside from that, I'd like the point out that I personally don't necessarily think there's something wrong with listening to music from a band that has "sold out" in some way. But if a band has sold out to some extent, it's not like your being some dickhead simply by acknowledging it.

If the music they make would still seem good to me, i'd still listen to them. However i usually prefer a bit rawer sound than too polished and overproduced sound. Like Social Distortion's White Light, White Heat, White Trash album - it was released on a major label, but the production was still quite raw, they used feedback (lately it's almost gone in the mainstream) and stuff. But that doesn't matter to me as much as the melodies, good riffs, vocals and stuff.

Static_Martyr
08-31-2008, 10:53 PM
I'm pretty liberal with my use of the word "sellout." I save it for pretty much the MOST mainstream "artists" of all time --- stuff like Britney Spears and NSYNC and all that 90's fluff-pop stuff, and people like the Jonas Brothers. I saw the Jonas Brothers on Ellen Degeneres awhile back, and they were so absurdly fake with the way they answered questions (gaging the crowd before answering questions, going with the answer that'll get the most applause/praise, etc.), I immediately knew they weren't genuine as musicians. Even so, I watched them play, and as expected, I was very disappointed. It was very generic, it didn't approach any subject that hasn't already been approached in music (love songs with the words "baby" and/or "it's alright" and "I love you" are pretty much out of style as far as I'm concerned, unless we're talking about really old blues).

So I guess I define sellout as a person who kind of makes a public spectacle/joke out of the fact that they play music. The kind of person who clearly doesn't take themselves or their work seriously. Anybody else, I'm willing to give the benefit of the doubt, so long as their music doesn't suck. Hell, I bought Collective Soul's last 2 albums, just to give them a chance before I wrote them off as another pop-twist band*. So I gave them the benefit of the doubt not once but twice, just because (a) I liked their old stuff, like S/T and Dosage, and (b) I really didn't want to believe they were going the watered-down pop route.

*=a pop-twist band is, in my terminology, a band that forces their genre into bubbly radio-pop rather suddenly.

Llamas
09-01-2008, 12:29 AM
Since when have there been some type of correlation between the poorer you are the bigger the fan you are? Why would the people who could afford the tickets be the ones who only listen to the singles? I don't understand that logic. If anything, the bigger the fan you are, the more likely you'll be saving up for months to see your favorite band live. If you can afford to buy all 20 albums and rare singles from a certain band, you can definately shell out an extra 100 bucks to buy a ticket.

I never said there's a correlation between poor and big fan... Let's put this way:

You're an indie band with thousands of fans. These fans range from rich to poor. Your tickets are $15 each, and nearly all your fans are able to attend your shows.

Then you go major. You get on the radio, and millions of people hear your singles. Your ticket prices go up to $60 each. Now only half of your "real" fans can attend your shows, but the rest of the venue is filled with thousands of people who only know your singles. That half of your devoted fans can't afford to come see your show.

And let's say someone is such a huge diehard fan... if I was a well known musician, it would actually make me sad to see people with no money saving up forever just for a 1.5 hour concert... knowing I could've put on the same show for 1/3 the price, and those people could've spent their money in so many better ways. That's just me, though.

Anyway, I have plenty of money generally. If I really wanted to, I can afford to spend $60 on a concert. I'll buy every album from a band I love. But I will not spend more than $30 to see a rock/pop/etc concert. It is just flat out not worth that kind of money.

XYlophonetreeZ
09-01-2008, 01:00 AM
Man, I hate this thread.

That's my contribution. Bye.