Spanish techno DJ Regal would like to see techno go more mainstream. Not necessarily in terms of the sound, but garner more success for those making it and playing it.
In a post on Facebook, he starts out by addressing some critics who say his music is too mainstream at the moment. He then goes on to make his point about techno becoming a bigger part of the music business, saying it could rise like rap music.
“Techno music is a business and it can be a bigger business. Right now we are living in a time where rap music is mainstream, a music genre, which was born in the ghetto, for a minority is now producing millions of dollars and it’s the main music in radio. As you may now music hype is cyclic and when the rap era will end, we need to be there to make techno music the new mainstream music.”
He then uses the example of sync for tv spots that use knock-off techno that has been “repurposed” as the real thing. Instead of allowing that to happen, make real techno for the brands and represent the community right because others are already hopping on the bandwagon.
“Fashion brands and tv spots use shit music tagging it as “techno”, lets give them real techno.”
“The next generation is us, wake up and open your eyes, it’s not about being rich or change our sound, it’s about expanding our sound and make the new generations listen to techno, getting out of the underground mark” he continues. “Many of you want to stay underground but then when there is 50 people in the club you complain...well that’s underground buddy!”
There is a lot to unpack here and while many will get caught up on the word mainstream, he isn’t totally wrong. Since techno is becoming part of the greater music conscious, it makes sense for the actual techno acts to be the ones leading that charge. Why not benefit monetarily from what the business is already doing? Is there a point in being a struggling artist for the sake of being “underground” when you can have a comfortable lifestyle and support a family?
The flipside of this is that the business changes and morphs artists. Money corrupts and can cheapen dance music. We all saw what happened with the EDM boom. It brought more people to techno, but the side effects for many acts were bad. You don’t want the culture to be polluted by carpetbaggers out for a quick buck. There would be more people making it and inevitably plenty of garbage would come from that. However, increased exposure for some under appreciated acts could also be good and create more opportunities for bookings and signings that might not have been available before.