The rise of the indie genre

Olivia Barone

Anchor Staff Writer

Image via Athena/Pexels

In recent years, the indie genre has taken the entertainment world by storm. New music, games and films are frequently seen with the “indie” title as the industry has progressed; but what does this new term entail?


The 1980s brought forth an emergence of new and unique types of music, including pop-punk: A subgenre that quickly soared in popularity. Musicians everywhere were experimenting with what this new sound could offer, but not all had access to record labels to assist them in their ambitious aspirations. Thus, “indie” or independent producers were born: Artists who wrote and produced their own music without the help of already established corporations. Since its original use, the term has grown into its own genre of not just music, but all forms of entertainment, paving the way for a rise of fresh, creative minds.


Indie music has proven itself to be a worthy competitor for those in the industry, and is often considered to be the most well-known form of the genre. Some of the most popular artists began with indie music, including the famous Billie Eilish, who began producing music with the sole help of her brother. Popular bands like the renowned Arctic Monkeys are also considered indie, with lead singer and producer Alex Turner guiding the band to great heights.


The success of these artists has led to a rise in indie production amongst young musicians, with many beginning on TikTok and other social media platforms. This accessibility to mass-sharing has proven to lead to great strides with independent artists, including indie-rock band, The Backseat Lovers. Having recently reached four million monthly listeners on Spotify and currently touring the world, this once-small band has captured the hearts of indie-music enjoyers without the help of a large record label.


The indie genre doesn’t only pertain to music, but is a term used to describe independently-produced video games too. From role-playing games to platformers, the indie genre has dominated the video game industry in recent years, and is showing no sign of stopping. The popular farming simulator, “Stardew Valley,” has risen to popularity since its release in 2016. Produced by indie-developer Eric Barone, whose alias is “ConcernedApe,” the game has earned itself a large community of loyal fans who are eagerly awaiting Barone’s current work in progress: Another indie role-playing game with a similar style to the already popular “Stardew Valley.”


Perhaps the most niche form of indie entertainment, films are considered the most complex to produce without the aid of a large team. However, this has not discouraged indie-film producers who have provided the industry with some iconic titles. The famed 1992 release, “Reservoir Dogs” is astonishingly enough, an indie movie. Producer and actor in the film, Quentin Tarantino, began as an indie creator who has since progressed to making other iconic films such as “Pulp Fiction” and “Kill Bill.”


Creative minds are everywhere, and the success of the indie genre provides those outside of the mass entertainment industry with the chance to see their projects triumph. Stepping outside of the flashy main-stream media to support an indie creator might enlighten you to unique forms of entertainment, and will ensure the satisfaction of an artist working hard to see their projects succeed.


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