This article addresses how isolationism is constructed within indie music publicity and how it indexes gender, race, and socioeconomic status. Using indie musicians Justin Vernon and Nick Zammuto as case studies, I analyze the phrases “the cabin in the woods” and “the middle of nowhere” to examine how the presentation of place within the genre reflects the identities of its musicians and audience. I conclude that the isolation narrative, in effect, inexorably exemplifies the genre itself: it enables musicians to reify their music’s originality, bolster its assumed authenticity, and thus solidify its purported “indie-ness.”
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