Lying Media Bastards

October 20, 2006

Negligence and Dilemma

Sorry no radio show this week, I was out of town, working for The Man.

At one point during the day, I passed by some young men who were hustling outside of a mall, rappers trying to sell their self-produced CDs to tourists and passers-by. And surely hoping to put the CD into the hands of a Music Industry Insider, and one day become rich and famous. This was Hollywood, so that sort of thing always seems like it could maybe be possible.

The first guy wanted me to buy his for $10, stuck a pair of headphones on me to listen to it. I didn’t really want it, but was willing to donate a few dollars to a struggling musician. He dropped the price to $5 and I agreed to buy it. A friend of his quickly ran up and tried to get me to buy his CD for $5 as well, and I figured “what the hell”. A third fellow tried to get me to buy his too, but I’d reached my limit at that point and kept on walking.

So here’s the question.

By buying CDs I didn’t want from amateur musicians on the street, am I a supporter of independent music, or am I a sucker?

Posted by Jake on October 20, 2006 9:44 am

6 Comments »

  1. Both.

    Comment by Evan — October 20, 2006 @ 11:19 am

  2. Really, it depends on how good the CDs are. If they really suck, and you had a chance to listen to them before buying, you are indeed a sucker. If they are worthy of a little time on your show, then you’re a philanthropist.

    Were you down on Sunset? I’ve been down there before and seen 5 different guys chasing people down with headphones and portable cd players. I think it’s pretty cool, actually. These guys really want to make it, and they’re putting in the effort.

    Comment by jeremy — October 20, 2006 @ 2:06 pm

  3. Yes.

    Comment by Lou — October 23, 2006 @ 4:55 am

  4. Jake,
    I am stunned by your question and your assenting to being hustled. Maybe you’ve lived in the Hell-A environs for too long. While I understand the impulse to drop a few bucks into the guitar case of a busker singing for their supper, I have a tremendous problem with being accosted by people I don’t know, forcing their product upon me. Anyone who can afford portable CD players, headphones and equipment to press their own CDs does not need my money. And the whole putting of ‘the CD into the hands of a Music Industry Insider’ is so, so offensive. Rap (and popular music in general) stopped being about art and communication a long, long time ago, about the time MTV went on the air. It’s all about commerce, careers, ‘making it’ and commodity brokering, especially in LA. Selling that bullshit ‘American Dream’ that You Too Can Be A STAR!! Wowee!! Never mind voting, never mind feeding the hungry: LISTEN TO MY RAP STYLINGS. Bling fucking bling. Phoney mutherfucking poseurs trying to ‘make it’. Ugh. I can’t think of anything I’d rather listen to less, other than more lies from the current administration. Instead of filling the streets after the stolen 2000 election or the invasion of Iraq and the murderous neglect of Katrina, all young people give a fuck about these days is their phoney fucking careers. I’ll be impressed when they stop trying to ‘make it’ and start trying to improve this world.

    BTW, I just recorded a new CD that I want you to play on your show. It’s got a lot of attitude, and was produced by that guy who sat in with that one guy who knows that one producer whose studio is next to the cappucino place where George Clooney gets his hair done in Santa Monica by Schwartznegger’s gym where Paris Hilton did that one video with Jennifer Aniston’s dog groomer whose brother knows that chick that was in that one episode of the O.C….

    Comment by Dead Civilian — October 23, 2006 @ 8:07 am

  5. It depends because in Nyc its a whole different story. Hustlers pretend to be independent muscians by putting their face on blank CD covers, and instead of allowing people to listen to their music or even try to convince them to buy their CD, they intimidate tourist and bystanders to donate to their “cause”. They make quite alot of money ranging from $250 to $500 a day and since intimidation isn’t a crime free to continue to do this. Not all indepent musicians are hustlers but after a while you try to avoid all people selling music because it gets annoying. You’re lucky because at least the the people who sold you their music were actual muscians.

    Comment by Michael Iloris — October 23, 2006 @ 8:23 pm

  6. Never regret charity, Jake.

    Comment by Indira 'Late List Giver' — October 24, 2006 @ 2:31 am

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