Someone once said to me ‘start a music blog and help feed a starving musician’. They were probably joking. But it is a way of saying that those of us who are still excited by music, and who still value the creativity of people driven to make and release ‘unpopular pop music’, need to do something to help other music lovers find it. Telling people ‘you have to listen to this’ is what I’ve been doing most of my life. Initially as a music writer, more recently with a record label.
You can help as well. If you discover something here you like please consider buying the track or album (most tracks will be embedded players from band or small label Bandcamp pages). More important than the value you choose to pay is the acknowledgement this action gives the musicians that what they do is worthwhile. It’s a tangible way to ‘like’ something of value to you.
Even more importantly please tell others about it and share the post or the music however you can. That way we can all nourish and help those who need it most and keep new music alive.
Why ‘Pop Lib”?
‘Pop Lib’ was the title of the very first mini-album by The Puddle, on Flying Nun Records in 1986. The record was a shabbily recorded collection of great songs not may people would ever listen to. Although Luke Haines (The Auteurs, Black Box Recorder etc.) once referred to it in an interview:
“99.9% of people on the street are unaware of ‘Jane From Occupied Europe’ by Swell Maps. 99.9% of people on the street are unaware of ‘Oar’ by Skip Spence…. 100% of people on the street are unaware of ‘Pop Lib’ by The Puddle… make that 150%.”
Luke Haines, Sabotage Times, 2012
Let’s all liberate “pop” music from the artificial formula created by anonymous ‘taste-makers’ in large corporate record labels driven by the desire to maximise shareholder profits at the expense of listener experiences and supported by the narrow conventions of mainstream media who dictate and prescribe the limits of what you are informed about and what you listen to. Liberated pop is subversive pop.
Dunedin, New Zealand
[This beautiful ‘wave angel’ picture was stencilled on a concrete wall at St Clair beach in Dunedin by an unknown artist, until it was painted over by overzealous graffiti-removal contractor philistines.]