Is it really that easy to spot a sell out? Some would say yes. I’m not so sure. There are some strong opinions out there, but easy targets aside, what is a sell out anyways?
ABOVE: 2007 Presidential $1 Coin image from the United States Mint
According to Wikipedia, selling out is:
“The compromising of integrity, morality, authenticity or principles in exchange for personal gain, such as money. In terms of music or art, selling out is associated with attempts to tailor material to a mainstream or commercial audience.”
While I do think it’s possible for an artist to sell out, far too often, the term is used to deride the successful and boost the ego of the accuser – who liked them ‘before’ they were successful.
Truth be told, unless you can read the mind of the artist, you’re not really qualified to call them a sell out.
Only they know for sure.
They have to.