Part 2 of "Building the Pop Music Empire" published on Esthesis

Part 2 of my essay, “Building the Pop Music Empire,” is now up on Esthesis. See my previous post for Part 1.

Here is a brief excerpt:

As artists who construct music empires develop their brands, their identities become conflated with the content they produce, the texts and discourse that surround them, and any other brand empires they collaborate with. For artists desired in other cultural capacities, their brand develops into a larger and more extensive persona that moves beyond a single cultural platform.

For example, Nicki Minaj is an example of an artist who navigates a variety of cultural spaces: she has appeared as a regular judge on the television show American Idol; has acted in the box office success The Other Woman; and currently endorses a number of products, including the Beats by Dre Pill™ and Myx Fusions from beverage company Myx Beverages, LLC. Artists like Nicki Minaj thus develop into larger than life brands and personas, and exist across multiple platforms in the music industry to establish their presence in other cultural spaces. In this sense, Nicki Minaj and artists who achieve similar levels of popularity grow beyond individual cultural figures and into intertextual commodities.

Navigating through popular culture spaces as an intertextual commodity allows for the possibility to exist across multiple platforms and occupy a number of cultural spaces all at once,

Olivia Duell