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Old 07-11-2015, 08:44 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Bands that were on SST, Touch and Go, Alternative Tentacles, etc were living the dream. At least compared to my ****ty life.
I don't know about the rest of them, but I remember reading that bands were always having problems with getting money from SST cause they'd take the money they made from artists like Sonic Youth and the Meat Puppets and put it all in ****ty bands that made nothing. So I challenge the notion that independent labels were all that great to work for.
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Old 07-11-2015, 08:51 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Well I did say compared to me which is a pretty low standard.
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Old 07-11-2015, 08:56 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Well I did say compared to me which is a pretty low standard.
Without any kind of stability or retirement plan then I really don't see how it matters how much money you're making. Unless you're big enough that you can expect long-term royalties from your music then you're just counting time until you become a burger flipper.
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:04 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Did somebody say "Flipper"?

SEX BOMB BABY ----YEAH!!!
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:23 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Bands that were on SST, Touch and Go, Alternative Tentacles, etc were living the dream. At least compared to my ****ty life.
Today, you can put your music online so if you're worth listening to you should be able to get people out to your shows. There's a lot of competition in every niche these days because everyone is up against everyone online. ...People who can't make a living at it still get relatively incredible exposure....That guy from the Meat Puppets says he couldn't believe he didn't have to work a day job for years especially since their music was obviously mediocre after Meat Puppets 2. I also remember getting to chat with a member of Napalm Death after a show and he wasn't complaining he was like saying touring America was amazing and was describing the different clubs in different cities. I don't feel sorry for anyone who plays music and enjoys any success at all. I'm just thankful I have easy access to whatever I want to listen to. The musicians should feel the same way. I don't want to hear boohoo I'm broke. So what? I'm broke too bitch.
You made some good points, some of the bands on alternative tentacles were able to make a reasonable profit off their album sales. I even heard that some of the Dead Kennedys releases became gold albums over time (though I don't know if this is true)

I imagine the guys in the Meat Puppets were able for the most part, to make a career primarily by just doing music, and I imagine the guys in Napalm Death are somewhat well off after being picked up by the majors for years.

I've also heard that the internet has made things more competitive as well, back in the day it was either word of mouth or who the co-op radio stations promoted, but today there is access to a much greater field of artists.

Anyways my hat goes off to you for trying, best of luck.

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A lot of hiphop artists I know have been on the grind for over 10 years and slowly gaining recognition. I know others who completely fell off. Idk enough about the industry to understand what happens, but based on interviews it seems like you either through all your money on the line and hope to get some recognition or you fall flat on your ass.
Yes, despite hip hops continued success in the pop charts, I think rap music has really suffered from the decline of the major record companies. For instance, bands like the Wu Tang Clan, The Roots, Massive Attack ect, used to get signed to a smaller subsidiary companies of the majors, and then would bubble up to the surface.

It seems like rap artists today are having to go solo, there will always be Kayne West's and Rick Ross's but how are the Immortal Technique's and the Jedi Mind Tricks of the world doing these days?


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Without any kind of stability or retirement plan then I really don't see how it matters how much money you're making. Unless you're big enough that you can expect long-term royalties from your music then you're just counting time until you become a burger flipper.
Eventually most of them I imagine do go back to being general labourers, but artists like Killing joke & Nick Cave are probably better off than you might think. The guys in Rancid for instance are multi millionaires. In the era of free downloading, I don't think that would happen today.

As for a retirement plan, I would argue that for me an 8 year lifespan for an indie band is good enough, but I'm worried that where hitting a point where their lifespan is getting considerably shortened to the point that most of them never get off the ground.

Anyways thanks for your input guys interesting topic.
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:55 PM   #16 (permalink)
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The Problem With Music :Negativworldwidewebland

I remember very well when this article by Steve Albini was published in Maximum Rock 'n' Roll.

Gives you a little feel for the good ol days.
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Old 07-12-2015, 09:47 AM   #17 (permalink)
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It seems like rap artists today are having to go solo, there will always be Kayne West's and Rick Ross's but how are the Immortal Technique's and the Jedi Mind Tricks of the world doing these days?
I wonder the same thing. I heard a few years back tech is clearing well over $100k, but he also does a lot of traveling and goes around talking about politics and stuff.

I wonder about groups like JMT who have been around for a long time and still push out content. Seems like they and many others have a built a strong enough following to live a regular blue collar life + travelling. I don't think they are caking it in.

The underground scene is so volatile, I'd fear for my future when I can't do it anymore. You never see rappers performing in their 60s like you do some of these rockstars.
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Old 07-12-2015, 09:52 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I wonder the same thing. I heard a few years back tech is clearing well over $100k, but he also does a lot of traveling and goes around talking about politics and stuff.

I wonder about groups like JMT who have been around for a long time and still push out content. Seems like they and many others have a built a strong enough following to live a regular blue collar life + travelling. I don't think they are caking it in.

The underground scene is so volatile, I'd fear for my future when I can't do it anymore. You never see rappers performing in their 60s like you do some of these rockstars.
Back when I worked at Burger King, I asked my black coworkers why they didn't listen to old school rap like white people listened to classic rock, and I was generally told that when black people drop something, they don't pick it back up. Which is why dances made up by black people only last a certain amount of time before being completely and utterly forgotten, except by goofy white people who like to embarrass themselves at weddings and on Youtube. I've never seen anything to contradict this, so I'd have to assume that's why rappers who don't have white audiences aren't still around.
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Old 07-12-2015, 10:23 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Idk, I'm sure if Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff got together they could still pack a decent sized venue performing their early work. I think that would be a mostly black audience except for the few people like me.
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Old 07-12-2015, 10:30 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Idk, I'm sure if Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff got together they could still pack a decent sized venue performing their early work. I think that would be a mostly black audience except for the few people like me.
Lol @ Will Smith having a black audience. Start doing the Fresh Prince theme in a room full of white people and see how many of them don't join in.
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