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Shut up and buy my new record

I hate the term sell-out. I overheard two kids talking today about how some of their favorite punk bands have sold out. In the venacular of teeanagers, to sell-out means to become successful.

I don't understand why a fan would deny their favorite musicians the right to be successful, to make money, to not have to eat ramen noodles and drink Miller Lite for the rest of their lives.

The term sell-out can apply in some cases; for example, when a band changes their sound completely, to a sound that fits in with the radio playlists of the day, in an effort to get top 40 hits (see, Incubus).

From what I hear, the bands these kids were talking about (Good Charlotte, Blink 182, Ataris, Sum 41) sound pretty much the same as they always have. It's just been the right time for the new school of punk sound and they happened to be in the right musical place at the right time.

You can't keep a good band down. Ok, in some cases you can't keep a band with a good promoter down. Either way, cheer their success. They've made it out of their garage, off of a shitty label and into the big time. So what if they're on the radio all the time? Hey, at least you can tell your little brother, I was listening to them back when they were selling their sperm for food money!

Music is a tough business. For every band that makes it to MTV, there are thousands that don't. Just buy their album, enjoy the music and stop bitching about them getting laid more than you do.

That's what this is all about it, isn't it? These ugly ass guys get the chicks and you don't.

An appropriate song for you:

Tool, Hooker with a Penis. Lyrics below. Enjoy.

I met a boy wearing Vans, 501s, and a
Dope Beastie t, nipple rings, and
New tattoos that claimed that he
Was OGT,
From '92,
The first EP.

And in between
Sips of Coke
He told me that
He thought
We were sellin' out,
Layin' down,
Suckin' up
To the man.

Well now I've got some
A-dvice for you, little buddy.
Before you point the finger
You should know that
I'm the man,

And if I'm the man,

Then you're the man, and
He's the man as well so you can
Point that fuckin' finger up your ass.

All you know about me is what I've sold you,
Dumb fuck.
I sold out long before you ever heard my name.

I sold my soul to make a record,
Dip shit,
And you bought one.

So I've got some
Advice for you, little buddy.
Before you point your finger
You should know that
I'm the man,

If I'm the fuckin' man
Then you're the fuckin' man as well
So you can
Point that fuckin' finger up your ass.

All you know about me is what I've sold you,
Dumb fuck.
I sold out long before you ever heard my name.

I sold my soul to make a record,
Dip shit,
And you bought one.

All you read and
Wear or see and
Hear on TV
Is a product
Begging for your
Fatass dirty
Dollar

So...Shut up and

Buy my new record
Send more money
Fuck you, buddy.

Comments

Can I chalk up the Goo Goo Dolls as major sell-outs? Once upon a time, they were a fine, fine band...loud, brash, angry - and then suddenly they became the Nicholas Cage Angel-Movie-Lovefest singers. I think the beginning of the end was the album "Superstar Carwash."

"Jed" and "Hold Me Up" still have an honored place in my CD collection though.

Tool on sell outs, V2.0:

Ænema
Some say the end is near.
Some say we'll see armageddon soon.
I certainly hope we will.
I sure could use a vacation from this

Bullshit three ring circus sideshow of
Freaks

Here in this hopeless fucking hole we call LA
The only way to fix it is to flush it all away.
Any fucking time. Any fucking day.
Learn to swim, I'll see you down in Arizona bay.

Fret for your figure and
Fret for your latte and
Fret for your hairpiece and
Fret for your lawsuit and
Fret for your prozac and
Fret for your pilot and
Fret for your contract and
Fret for your car.

It's a
Bullshit three ring circus sideshow of
Freaks

Here in this hopeless fucking hole we call LA
The only way to fix it is to flush it all away.
Any fucking time. Any fucking day.
Learn to swim, I'll see you down in Arizona bay.

Some say a comet will fall from the sky.
Followed by meteor showers and tidal waves.
Followed by faultlines that cannot sit still.
Followed by millions of dumbfounded dipshits.

Some say the end is near.
Some say we'll see armageddon soon.
I certainly hope we will cuz
I sure could use a vacation from this

Silly shit, stupid shit...

One great big festering neon distraction,
I've a suggestion to keep you all occupied.

Learn to swim.

Mom's gonna fix it all soon.
Mom's comin' round to put it back the way it ought to be.

Learn to swim.

Fuck L Ron Hubbard and
Fuck all his clones.
Fuck all those gun-toting
Hip gangster wannabes.

Learn to swim.

Fuck retro anything.
Fuck your tattoos.
Fuck all you junkies and
Fuck your short memory.

Learn to swim.

Fuck smiley glad-hands
With hidden agendas.
Fuck these dysfunctional,
Insecure actresses.

Learn to swim.

Cuz I'm praying for rain
And I'm praying for tidal waves
I wanna see the ground give way.
I wanna watch it all go down.
Mom please flush it all away.
I wanna watch it go right in and down.
I wanna watch it go right in.
Watch you flush it all away.

Time to bring it down again.
Don't just call me pessimist.
Try and read between the lines.

I can't imagine why you wouldn't
Welcome any change, my friend.

I wanna see it all come down.
suck it down.
flush it down.

I couldn't agree more, Michele. Calling a band a sell-out just because they sign with a major label and sell records to people other than their personal friends is childish and irrational. In general, I don't even care about what a band's motivation was when they made a record - all that matters to me is whether it's good or bad. It's hard enough to find good rock & roll without arbitrarily disqualifying bands from consideration based on non-musical criteria.

As far as I'm concerned, Good Charlotte is a competent band that has done nothing to earn such vociferous scorn other than be popular. Sure, there are better bands that don't enjoy the same degree of popularity. That's life. If Good Charlotte helps get a generation of kids turned on to rock & roll, a lot of them will eventually discover other, even better bands. From my point of view, that's a good thing.

I think King Missile did a song once called "Detachable Penis."

There was an article in Reason a few years ago about making music and money. One of the people interviewed for the story dealt with a band that wanted to price their work so that they didn't make a profit. They felt like just getting the music out was reward enough for them. Gives a new meaning to the phrase "Don't give up your day job........."

the problem with labelling those particular bands as "sell-outs" is that they are radio-bred punk anyway. They don't come from the old-school DIY punk generation that we knew... you know, the Black Flag/SST records thing, or Minor Threat, the misfits or DK putting up the money for 3 hrs of studio time, then self-releasing....

these are punkers who were shopping for labels. The labels figured they could rocket them up, signed them and promoted them onto every radio station. In some cases (blink 182, anyone?), the punker image was manufactured to make them more "cutting edge"

There's nothing wrong with being sucessful or even having a radio-friendly sound or being manufactured by a label, as long as the music is good.