The History of Indie Music

The+Pixies+members+standing+on+stage+at+the+end+of+their+concert
The Pixies members standing on stage at the end of their concert

The Pixies members standing on stage at the end of their concert

The Pixies members standing on stage at the end of their concert

Haley Mathew, A&E Editor

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There are many genres of music, ranging from hip hop to country, or from metal to pop.  There is also rap, reggae, jazz, and most importantly indie. Independent music, better known as Indie music is music that is produced independently from major commercial record labels. It gives the music a more emotional raw feeling. In America, Indie music was derived from the 70’s punk movement. Many of the bands in the 70’s ended up pioneering the way for modern Indie music.

The Pixies are just one example of one of those pioneering bands. The Pixies debuted in 1986 in Boston, Massachusetts. The original members were Black Francis, Joey Santiago, Kim Deal, and David Lovering. According to the Houston Press, “almost every indie-rock band out there today is indebted to them in some way, they also paved the way for bands you didn’t even expect.” Houston Press also said ,“Kurt Cobain idolized them, Billy Corgan cited them, David Bowie covered them on 2002’s Heathen LP, and even Pj Harvey admits their influence on her music.”

Then there is Sonic Youth, who are perhaps the single greatest influence on modern indie. They debuted in 1981 with the founding members, Thurston Moore, Kim Gordon, and Lee Ranaldo. According to the Houston Press, “one can’t argue that the album (Daydream Nation), and Sonic Youth’s output as a whole, has had a massive impact on all the independent music that has followed it in the quarter-century since its release.”

Now onto the more modern, and recent Indie bands.

One band is Bon Iver, which was founded in 2006 by singer/songwriter Justin Vernon. Their debut album was “For Emma, Forever Ago” and it was self released in 2007. Even though Bon Iver creates Indie music which tends to fly under the radar, his song “Skinny Love’ became very popular. It was released in 2007 under the aforementioned debut album, and it now has accumulated a total of thirty-three million views on youtube.

Another popular Indie band around today is Rainbow Kitten Surprise. Once you get past the name the band is actually pretty good. They debuted in 2013, the members being, Sam Melo, Darrick “Bozzy” Keller, Ethan Goodpaster, Charlie Holt, and Jess Haney. They have performed at the famous festival known as Firefly, playing their popular songs like “Devil Like Me’ and “Cocaine Jesus”.

Indie music has ultimately lead to the creation of many great artists in and out of the genre. Without them I personally would not have the great taste in music I have today. Also many artists would not have had the creative influences that make them and their music what they are today.

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