No Pop: The Movement Against Commercialism

Founded by music lover Lonely Vagabond, the No Pop movement is all about rejecting the ever-increasing focus on commercialism in the music industry. Instead, the movement aims to promote local and independent artists, especially those that remain on the fringes, as well as bringing back old school music and recordings. 

“A few years ago it occurred to me, why aren’t more speaking out against how corporate the music industry has become? People have a voice! That’s when I founded a new music movement called No Pop (short for Not Popular or non-commercial music) What I’m offering is a flag for people, bands, and artists to rally around.” ~Lonely Vagabond~

With advent of technology, especially YouTube and social media, everything is so accessible with everyone getting on the bandwagon for every trend. As those trends are disseminated so quickly there isn’t enough time to fully appreciate them. Not only that but because as a society we are inundated with popular trends from everywhere – social media, YouTube, TV, radio – it’s like we don’t get the time to look at the less popular. 

Popular music has always been around. At first it was dominated by folk tunes then progressed to Baroque and Classical Music which was commissioned by royals. Only a select few managed to ‘make it’ and were dependent on the rich and the system which they perpetuated. It wasn’t until composers like Beethoven broke away from royal sponsorship that more styles and genres included in popular music. 

This movement reminds of the movie Begin Again where in the end the protagonist decides to release her music on her. Not only was the music sold much cheaper than it would have through a record company, but all the funds went to the artists and none to a record label. Although, it did help that Ceelo Green promoted the venture, it was a success both artistically and financially. 

Some could even say that the Classical Music Industry is in a constant state of decline because it no longer fit the bill of ‘popular’. But why? There’s still an audience both young and old, especially in film. Could you imagine film without classical music? The answer is most likely popular music. Every day more and more pop tunes are being released, like a well-oiled production line, and something as complex as Classical Music just cannot keep up. 

This No Pop movement could even be the modern-day equivalent to Avant-Garde. Artists were sick and tired of the norm, and most likely the industry itself, and rebelled with music that was the exact opposite. By creating a name and movement for this opposition, Lonely Vagabond is opening a path for others to follow, raising awareness of often overlooked aspects of the music industry.


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