When music isn’t pop, rock, country, folk or classical, what is it? It could actually have many names but most refer to it as “alternative”. So how did this name come about?
There are many theories or ideas about how “alternative” became a term used so commonly today. Some say it stemmed from the DJs and promoters of the 1980s who were playing music beyond the top 40 rock radio formats. With freedom of song selection, new bands began making a presence and becoming more requested. From here, college radio grabbed on to the sound, dubbing the music with terms such as new post-punk, indie, or underground music. The use of the term “alternative” gained further exposure due to the success of Lollapalooza, where festival founder and Jane’s Addiction frontman Perry Farrell coined the term “Alternative Nation.”