And most importantly,
#4 There is a misconception regarding the amount of money successful indie bands make. To me, that is the most salient point of the NY Mag article. It is not about whether Grizzly Bear is rich or not rich, or why they are rich or not rich, it is that the fans and general public don’t have an accurate read on how much money these bands make.
The truth of the matter is this. Top-tier indie bands, or bands whose records are consistently debuting on the top 50 Billboard chart, have members that make between $5,000 and $30,000 per year. These are bands that perform regularly on Letterman, etc, who consistently sell out 500-1000+ seat venues in the US, Europe, and Australia, and who tour for 6-9 months per year.