Image vs Talent in Music Marketing and Success

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Pop music has long been defined by “idols” and superstars that are subjects of high levels of adoration from severely devoted fans, whose love of these superstars often blurs the line between fandom and obsession. This love is mainly based off of physical looks and charm more often than actual musical talent, as majority of the songs written by these massive superstars are not written by the artists themselves, instead by people hired to write for these artists in a way that will best connect with a crowd willing to spend their money on these manufactured stars. Therefore, it has become evident that in the world of popular music, image has overtaken talent as the determining factor of success in the industry. Instead of skill and…show more content…
Continuing the trend of “boy bands” in the 1990s were the two major American variants of the genre in The Backstreet Boys and ‘N Sync. While The Beatles and The Beach Boys were more concentrated on rock music, The Backstreet Boys and N’Sync were more pure pop and dance music, which sounded much more simple and less progressive than the music of the original boy bands. An article by Matthew Benz in Billboard highlights the profits that ‘N Sync’s final album, “Celebrity”, brought to the music distribution company Handleman. Although Handleman is not as massive of a corporation as the media conglomerates that basically control entertainment, it is still a sizable company with ties to several big-name artists. In the article, Benz includes a quote from the CEO of Handleman: “Peter Cline, president/COO of Handleman, chalks up that performance to the simple drawing power of mass merchants. ‘Mass really did a nice job displaying the product--getting it out in front of the customer.’” (Benz, “Handleman Has Help From 'Celebrity' Friends 'N Sync”, Billboard). Since this is a

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