The original meaning of the term “indie” is: any music produced and released by independent bands or independent record labels. It was used to describe music artist without a signed record deal and/or independent artists. This is not to say their music is any less than well known.
“Indie” nowadays, has become a genre of music. “Indie,” at its core, is not a real music genre, so why is it being used to define types of music? Genres classify based on styles such as pop, rock, techno, heavy metal, electronic, hip-hop, jazz, and country. Since music comes together and blends so well, the difficulty to define one specific music genre is understandable.
Having said that, the term “indie” still does not fall into play with other styles of music. “Indie” was intended to describe the standing of a music artist, not style, sounds, or instruments.
As it is used today, it surely does not mean that the music had been or is independently produced. Many “indie” music groups and artist are signed under large record labels, so it is not being used to distinguish a label from an independent artist, but for describing the type of music.
Once a music artist has signed a deal, their “indie” label should automatically drop.
“Indie” has unseeingly replaced the word “alternative”, which is a pretty broad genre in itself. It has gone from alternative-rock to what is now “indie-rock”. If asking a person what kind of music that they play, it’s doubted that they will respond saying that they play indie music. It does not even sound as if it exists.
The word “indie” has also been used to describe music that is unique or different. Unique does not have the same meaning as independent.
The word “indie” has become so meaningless now that it is not even worth using still. It has become so weakened and does not hold the same definite meaning as it once did.
I’m not saying that there are not any legit “indie” music artist out there, but let’s start using words in their correct context. “indie” can still be used in music, but let’s not use it in ways of describing a music style or genre. There are actual words for that.