Monday, July 25, 2011

Hipsters vs. Indie

Annie and I had a discussion the other day regarding if Indie and Hipster were different subcultures.  I was sure that they were.  I have to emphasize was.  The more I tried to defend their difference, the more smeared my differentiation became.

I also have to point out that I do constantly make fun of hipsters.  They look ridiculous: mostly just the scarves and skinny jeans and beanies and glasses, though.  Neither a fixie, nor a beach cruiser with a basket, are real bicycles.  My favorite tv show episode pointing out all things ridiculous about hipsters came from Happy Endings.

When I think Hipster, I think "I only listen to music that doesn't exist yet."  Or:

I always think of this pic now, thanks to S.G.'s blog.

When I think Indie, I think of a tshirt of a real band that that they're into.  They're literally into small, unknown bands and they are out late on most weeknights seeing these people play at bars.

Indie peeps look exhausted from lack of sleep and music that doesn't ever really let your brain rest.  Hipsters look great cuz they stay out of the sunlight and get plenty of rest so that their brains are sharp for making bad clothing decisions.

Hipsters would ironically where a Phil Collins t-shirt.  (I love Phil Collins, and I don't know why he has taken such a hard hit by the 'I'm too good for your crappy pop music' movement.)  Indie would wear a worn-out tshirt from some band that you've never heard of.  However, Indie would be really, really into that band and anyone who toured with them.  Hipsters can only like indie music ironically, for hipsters have no souls or care genuinely about anything.

Anybody with real insight into these two subcultures wanna confirm/deny my characterizations?  I'd like to be in tune when I'm judging people.

"You've probably never heard it before",


  1. I feel like the difference between the two is that hipsters like/wear/do things to be ironic, that "I'm wearing this wool hat because it's a 100 degrees out" or "I found these really horrible 1980s glasses at the thrift store". They do it out of spite, not because they actually like it. And they will never admit it.

    Indie people, on the other hand, like/wear/do things because they genuinely like to do so and will readily admit it. I think admitting it is a defining feature between the two.

  2. So, I kind of got it right then...

  3. but a person can be characterized by both things, right? Like if someone wears the ironic glasses and also really really loves the totally obscure band, could that happen?

  4. If they are genuinely interested in anything, I'd call them indie. Maybe they're really into those glasses, too.