If you love music, there are a number of ways to have a successful and rewarding professional career in the music industry. Your goal may be to be a performing artist, but if not, there are hundreds of great positions that will allow you to be involved with music. You can be a manager, agent, A&R executive, marketing person, music publisher, booker, lawyer, promotions person, producer, recording engineer, PR person, and more.
Salary varies widely depending on role, education level, and location. Here is a sample of 2016 median salaries from the Occupational Outlook Handbook published by the Bureau of Labor:
- Musician/Singer: $25.14/hr
- Music Director/Composer: $50,110
- Sound Engineering Technician: $42,550
- Producer: $70,950
- Public Relations Specialist: $58,020
- Advertising, Promotions, or Marketing Manager: $100,810
- Lawyer (advanced degree): $118,160
BMI: BMI is the bridge between songwriters and the businesses and organizations that want to play their music publicly.
The Recording Academy: As the world’s leading society of music professionals, the Recording Academy is dedicated to celebrating, honoring, and sustaining music’s past, present, and future.
Sonicbids: Sonicbids is a website that helps bands get gigs, and promoters book the right bands. Their community includes over 200,000 bands, singers, songwriters, and performers of all kinds, and 18,000 music buyers of all kinds, including promoters, licensors, festival programmers, and much more. This is a growing organization, so look for entry-level jobs and internships on their site.
CareersinMusic.com: You don’t have to be a recording artist or performer to find success in today’s music industry. Whether your interests lie in music education, performance, manufacturing, or any number of other venues, the field of music provides countless opportunities for finding a fulfilling and rewarding career. You might be surprised at the variety of ways in which you can put your training and skills to work. Here’s a site to help you find an internship or starting job that fits you.
Creative Musicians Coalition: CMC is a 25 year old international membership organization dedicated to the advancement of new music and the success of independent musicians. CMC represents independent artists and record labels worldwide.
Billboard Magazine: Keep up on what’s happening in the music business and be better prepared for the big interview.
Music Business Worldwide: (MBW) is a free, in-depth news, insight and analysis platform for the international music industry.
Getsigned.com: Getsigned.com is a place where undiscovered artists can share their music and advice. Learn from music biz vets about how they grew their independent music careers.
StarPolish: StarPolish is dedicated to educating and empowering artists with an emphasis on artist advocacy and artist development. They are also committed to supporting the arts by rewarding and highlighting the most hard-working and deserving artists.
Los Angeles Music Network: LAMN promotes career advancement, education and good will among music industry professionals. They sponsor industry gatherings, workshops, private dinners and seminars with top executives; publish bulletins which feature interviews and business coverage of the music industry; and provide professional development opportunities and career services, such as job listings and a Mentor Network, to members. LAMN has grown to include members from around the nation and the world with branch operations being established in New York and London.
Show Biz Jobs: Covers film, television, multimedia and recording.
Music Career Finder: Good information about careers in the music industry and about careers for musicians.
Music Jobs USA: This site includes a broad range of jobs in the music industry.
New York Women in Communications: New York Women in Communications empowers women in all communications disciplines to reach their full potential by promoting their professional growth and inspiring them to achieve and share their successes in the rapidly changing world of communications. Their purpose is to strengthen the role of women in all communications professions. This site is a great source of internships in Advertising, Multimedia, Books, Newspapers, Corporate Communications, Photography, Film/TV Public Relations, Radio, Fund-Raising/Development, Graphics/Illustration, Sales/Marketing, Internet/New Media Special Events and Magazines/Publishing.