Underground or Mainstream: Why I Care

Why do I care about underground and mainstream talent?

Do you ever think about the fact that we are always seeing the same group of celebrities? Regardless of country, we all have that favorite big name act we always have an eye out for. Their next big film or the latest concert schedule. They do fantastic work and deserve the opportunities earned.

At the same time, you start thinking about all the people who never get through the first door and/or disappear after one great performance. It’s not that they doesn’t have the talent. Maybe their network is still weak. Maybe they were second on the list for a big film franchise or music festival. Regardless, they just never seem to take off.

I’ve spoken about the nature of celebrity before and where I stand on fame. There’s never going to be a chance for everyone to have the spotlight in the same way. It sucks, but it’s true. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a need for clearer and fairer pathways in the industry. The path to fame can be cold and bitter, regardless of the path you find yourself on, if you trust the wrong crowd. The severity is a spectrum.

When it comes to music, I want to discover the local talent as much as the opportunities to hear my favorite major-label acts. Just last week, I was watching an episode of Tokio Hotel TV. There was a moment when Bill and Tom Kaulitz are reviewing potential opening acts for their current leg of the world tour. Bill commented along the lines of “we want to find local acts from each city instead of one act for the entire tour“.

Both approaches are a huge platform for any “lesser-known” acts and have their own pros and cons. I just think it’s so important that some sort of collaboration is involved.