Do bands profit from members’ solo work? A look at Speedy Ortiz & Sadie Dupuis

By ERIN McAULIFFE

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Speedy Ortiz, Sadie Dupuis, Sad13

You’d assume the popularity of a band and its lead singer to be positively correlated — interest in the band leads to interest in the lead singer. However, a look into Google searches for punk-rock band Speedy Ortiz and lead-singer Sadie Dupuis show that when interest in one spikes, interest in the other drops.

Sadie Dupuis has fronted Speedy Ortiz since 2011, but she recently released her first solo album. A look into searches for the band and the solo artist show a steady increase in Dupuis’s searches until she surges past the band on Aug. 23 — the day she announced her upcoming solo album and released her single “Get A Yes.” This is also the peak of search results for her name, which makes sense as she announced that she’d release her album under the moniker Sad13, splitting search results after that date.

Search results for Dupuis also surged around her Sep. 22 “<2” music video release and other pre-album track release “Hype” on Oct. 25.

“Slugger” was released on Nov. 11, by this point fans were familiar with and searching her Sad13 moniker more frequently than her full name. Sad13 was trending at 2x the rate of Sadie Dupuis or Speedy Ortiz in Google searches on Nov. 14 and beyond.

Although Dupuis’s solo work peaked intrigue into Speedy Ortiz tangentially, the band had higher search results on days Sadie Dupuis returned lower — pointing to fans consuming the two discographies separately rather than together. Dupuis told Fader that her label advised Speedy Ortiz not to release music this year and risk possible fan fatigue. The theory will be tested upon Speedy Ortiz’s next release — did Sad13 attract new fans to the breadth of Sadie Dupuis’s work or will her band become obsolete?

Sadie Dupuis vs. Speedy Ortiz vs. Sad13

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