the antidote of mainstream can be controversial, can be unpopular. it can also relate to the listeners conception of the musics intent, is it intended to please/chart or does it have an ALTERNATIVE intent. Mainstream music can include any genre - its the audience that decides what is mainstream -depending on where you identify yourself ; depending on the trends of time. It goes without saying that Mainstream music can be equally meaningful to the individual as anything tagged in opposition
"Mainstream music denotes music that is familiar and unthreatening to the masses,"-- Um, no. It's anything that it's in the MAIN STREAM or charts as it were. Rage Against the Machine are threatening to the masses but very much mainstream.
"Alternative -> Built by 152,504 people (Used 1,229,471 times)"
"Mainstream -> Built by 796 people (Used 4,016 times)"
i guess mainstream is actually alternative music style, rofl, check out artists on both tags aswell, rofl hc :D