i guess maybe this is actually just a weird perception field glitch that has to do with the fact that i interact with the industry as someone who is making stuff and most of the people responding to or talking about the post i made are people who write about music […]
like, can the fact that people’s attitudes about particular types of music have been changing possibly not be at all related to drastic changes in the way those types of music get made? can you see how i’m not just rehashing the “there’s no such thing as a guilty pleasure” debate and trying to convince people they should dislike perfectly enjoyable music just because lots of other people like it? like i’m not trying to tell people they’re not allowed to like stuff, i’m just saying, “DIY” is like an actual word that describes how something is done, it’s not like the word “chillwave” or words like that that only describe how something is marketed. like i get that especially if you are a music writer and your job is reading stacks and stacks of the shitty press releases that drain impressive adjectives like “glacial” and “shimmering” of all applicable meaning and grandeur, i am not asking anyone to care about the distinction so much that it alters their listening habits or tastes. i’m not asking you to lie to yourself and insist that the organic fair trade banana tastes better than the cheaper corporate banana brand one does. i’m just in the banana industry and so i’m going to get butthurt if you go around telling people they are the same banana. i might even advocate that one way of producing bananas is likely to result in overall better bananas and a slightly healthier, happier world than we live in now. but i would never try to stop you from enjoying a banana because i am in the banana industry, bananas are my life, i love bananas. to stand in the way of a person and a delicious banana is antithetical to everything i am
Back in January we said: It’s okay to insist on authenticity in music, insofar as a privileging of authenticity remains one of the few ways that actual class-based critiques of corporate hegemony and consumerism become admissible in pop discourse. We look for authentic stuff, because we want to get behind people who are on the right team. We want the broccoli that’s labeled “organic and local” not to be pesticide covered and shipped in from Chile. That’s okay, even as our notions of authenticity might be confused, conflicted, sometimes contradictory. (source)
Easily the most obnoxious part of this conversation has been the cynical sneering at the idealism of non-poptimists. People making arguments rooted in an ethos of “Mostly I don’t care”—and the implication that if you care you’re stupid or lying or full of shit.
Listen, I know for most of our readers, who are largely LGBT middle and high school kids wanting to know they’re not the only ones who feel Lady Gaga and her ilk are totally alienating—this music criticism conversation feels like a bunch of Inside Baseball with no relevance to real life. So if we have completely lost you by getting sidetracked in this, here is the upshot:
There will always be people who tell you it’s not worth caring about how the stuff you consume is made—from music, to clothes, to food, to cell phones, etc. There will always be people who tell you the stuff that comes from giant corporations is really just the same as stuff that comes from stuff that’s made by little guys, and you’re stupid and naive if you argue that it matters to you. We are saying YOU ARE NOT STUPID AND YOU ARE NOT NAIVE IF IT MATTERS TO YOU.
I think Gays Against Gaga are my new favorite people. (Person?)