The Second Eclectic

Technology changes how we relate to God and each other

Authenticity v Commercialism

One of the first entries on my first blog was called Organic Attraction. Today, I was reading my newest issue of Relevant Magazine, and two articles reinforced the opinion I stated in that post.

Nick Harmer from Death Cab for Cutie was talking about the appeal of Death Cab's music. He said:

People can smell when something is really authentic and when it's not.I think that when it comes to music and anything creative, it is an extension of things that you have been through or things that you are currently going through because that's what adds authenticity....I think what people latch onto most is the authenticity of the music and the lyrics.

Speaking to commercialism, Paul Feig, who had a hand in creating and directing the tv shows Freaks and Geeks and Arrested Development, said, "People do tend to rebel against things that feel blatantly commercial or corporate."

The inherent attraction toward authenticity was revealed too in Death Cab's transition from indie rock band to Atlantic Records label. The fanbase wavered a bit, wondering if Death Cab would maintain their integrity with honest authenticity or would sell out and cash in.

There's something attractive about the organic, the authentic. People want something real, not something contrived. They're savvy consumers tired of being market-labeled and stamped with a big $ sign.

I think part of the reason for this attraction is that there are ends beyond money. Some things are so contrived simply to make money (think, Super Bowl). But some things are produced for more meaningful ends: like honesty, discovery, truth, or love. And both of these things may be the same product (a CD or a movie), but you can smell the stench of commercialism, the exhaust of the big city. People want the scent of reality because it reminds them of life.