Valuing independence: Esteem value and its role in the independent music scene

Brown, Hugh (2012) Valuing independence: Esteem value and its role in the independent music scene. Popular Music and Society, 35(4), pp. 519-539.

View at publisher


This article reports on a qualitative study investigating the characteristics, motivations, and organization of a sample of self-identified “Indies.” It identifies three characteristic dimensions of life for the Independent musician in the digital age: the “intrinsic motivation for extrinsic value” dimension; the “independence as network” dimension; and the “artist as business” dimension. The author argues that these dimensions are linked by their relevance to the esteem that musicians must generate in pursuit of a sustainable career. They also characterize levels of artistic control, network diversity, and business intimacy within a musician’s relationships. These dimensions are rarely occupied at their extremes; rather, a wide variety of positions are taken up between totally independent and totally “indentured” musicians. Seeing relative “independence” as a combination of these three dimensions helps us more clearly understand the dynamics of emergent new music industries.

Impact and interest:

2 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™
1 citations in Web of Science®

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

37 since deposited on 26 Jul 2016
37 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 97665
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Music industry, Esteem economy, Music career, Music value, Political economy
DOI: 10.1080/03007766.2011.600515
ISSN: 1740-1712
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Past > Institutes > Institute for Creative Industries and Innovation
Past > Schools > School of Media, Entertainment & Creative Arts
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: The Version of Record of this manuscript has been published
and is available in Popular Music and Society, 07 August 2012,
Deposited On: 26 Jul 2016 22:46
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2016 23:34

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page