Here’s the thing: just about any subcultural scene worth talking about is kind of like high school. Status-obsessed, clique-ish to the point of tribalism, quick to cast out anybody who challenges the prevailing orthodoxy, and often just plain bitchy. All of which is to say: no surprise that some EDM purists are hating on David Guetta for being all popular and having hit records and stuff.
The latest: Spanish dance fans are trying to get him booted off the lineup of next month’s Monegros Desert Festival. The grounds are a bit vague, but it seems to have something to do with his mainstream commercial success. There have even been threats of “direct action” — that is to say, efforts to disrupt Guetta’s set. There’s a Facebook page, naturally.
Meanwhile, via inthemix, we see that Brit DJ Funkagenda has mounted a spirited defence of Guetta on his blog. His praise for the French superstar is decidedly backhanded, but the message to haters is straightforward enough: get over yourselves. Here it is:
Just doing a little post after a convo I had on twitter with an EDM fan. He claimed that a certain French DJ had “sold out” and “bastardised” dance music. On the surface you might think he had a point, but you have to look a little bit deeper to realise what utter poppycock that is. True, the un-named Parisian artist in question now makes what is closer to pop music than house music. But is it selling out? Of course not. And I know this to be true because of the following:
I could play my favorite seminal Sasha set, recorded at Privilage in 2002, to one of these new wave of ‘dance music’ fans and they would look at me like I was just playing them brown noise. “Where’s the vocals?”. “How do you dance to it?”.
But play one of monsieur’s tracks to them + they will bounce around the room like a spastic woodpecker on Adderall.
See, the thing is, this person would have NEVER liked the set that I played him/her, because they just aren’t wired that way. They want to hear simple riffs, hooky repetitive vocals and commands telling them to “Throw Their Hands Up” or “Rock The Party”. Does that sound like a Sasha and Digweed fan to you? No, me either.
So then ask yourself this question: Would I have gone to a club to listen to pop music before HE started making it? The answer In my case is a resounding no (unless I was VERY drunk and thought I had a chance with some college girl possibly).
So my conclusion is thus:
I don’t like pop music. I would rather listen to the wealth of more ‘intelligent’ dance acts out there…
Pop fans DO like this particular person’s music but will probably NOT be attending gigs or buying music of the aforementioned more ‘intelligent’ dance acts…
Hmmm… So… What exactly has changed? NOTHING, that’s what. He will continue to delight pop fans worldwide, and on rare occasions, will be a helpful gateway for newcomers to the EDM scene who might wanna do more than scratch the surface. However the more highbrow listeners out there will NOT be listening to him + will instead be prattling on about how things were better in the 90s, how everything is commercialised these days and generally dishing out vehemence about anything that anyone else likes…
Sounds like the same old EDM scene to me so you can all relax. Mr Guetta did NOT kill dance music…
Dammit… I was doing him anonymously wasn’t I? Oh poo.