I get what you're saying, but this IS the problem with defining an artist these days. Money is THE priority. When that happens, the ability to express yourself beyond a mathematically calculated attention span becomes impossible.
I agree. A true artist makes their art for themselves FIRST and enjoys the fact that others like it too second.
Of course with rock music, it also plays to helping ugly guys get laid too, but that's another thread.
But in most cases, trying to pander to the money or follow it over art is in the not very long term a failure.
Take Led Zeppelin. Sure they made a LOT of money, but that didn't seem the reason for their musical choices. It was what THEY wanted to explore and convey. It happened to be of such quality that they sold a lot of it, and continue to do so after all these years.
They also went out and gave the people what they wanted in the form of live performances. In those days, your ticket got you usually nearly a 3 hour concert, and it wasn't lip synched....no auto tune, and often it was improvised on the spot. Sure you would get some flub notes....especially with Jimmy trying to squeeze 50M notes into two bars at times, but hey...they gave you all they could. You don't see that much anymore.
But if you are good, you will get the money....but your art should be for YOU first, and if it is worthy the crowd will follow and pay you for it.