How To Make Money And Pay The Bills From A Music Career
Today it seems that everyone wants to be on the microphone or in the studio making rhythmic sounds. You can bet there are thousands of singles and albums produced each year but only a few make it to the limelight.
What happens to the rest?
They often become obscure. Well, except for the few friends and family of the aspiring artist that listen mostly for the sake of encouraging them. A few times, though, the songs make it round to the limelight.
But is singing all there is to music? Is that the only way to have a music career?
Of course not.
The music industry is so vast an industry that one can argue that the potentials have barely been scratched. If you have been thinking of joining the industry but worried about how to pay the bills when pursuing this career, then read this article.
This article focuses on 5 career options open to you as a music performer or writer. Which of them have you ever considered? Or which ones did you not know existed?
Share your thoughts in the comment section. Feel free to discuss the options you’re open to trying out if you have the chance.
Music Careers for Performers and Songwriters
• Production Music Writer
Ever wondered where TV commercials get their gigs? You guessed right. From production music writers.
The good thing is, you don’t have to restrict yourself to writing music gigs for one brand or company. In fact, you will have no direct dealings with the companies.
Your job is to write and make music that is befitting for commercials, films, and television shows. Then sell the music to a production music library.
You have to write and produce very good music if you want your music to be accepted by a library. So move away from the cliché and do something unique. These days, even good pop music is accepted by commercials and other programs.
The downside of Production Music Writing is usually with mixing and production. You can build this skill by taking a course on music production at a music school.
When a brand picks your music from the library, you’ll get a percentage from the production music library. There are no limits to how much your track can be sold though.
• Background Vocalist
Have you ever listened to Happier by Marshmello featuring Bastille? How do you think the chorus would sound without a backup voice?
Background vocalists are needed in almost every genre of music. They provide different forms of backup vocals to music pieces and performances.
As a background vocalist, you can work with a recording studio to provide backup vocals for recording artists. Or with a live performance band. You can even assist a touring artiste.
You’ll need to be very good at what you do if you want to get well-paying gigs. You will be able to sharpen your skills if you practice often. Volunteering your skills and connecting with other background singers will help you get more gig opportunities.
If you are assisting a singer on tour, you should consider getting a backup microphone for yourself. Any of the shure sm58 versions
will serve you efficiently.
Accompanists play instruments like the piano, guitar, or organ for musicians, performers at theatres, choirs, soloists, and opera singers.
They can also help with instructing choristers, dancers, and other types of artists.
As a music accompanist, you can work as a freelance pianist or organist, with a church, or sign up with a band. You can also work as a music tutor at an institution or for individuals.
You should be able to work with virtually everyone. This will increase your chances of landing more jobs.
• Beat Maker
A beatmaker is usually not in the public eye. They produce beats and sell them to recording artists who then use the beats to make their music.
They can work with the artist to produce beats for a written song. They often help to arrange the song of the artist they work with so it can flow harmoniously.
You should practice mixing beats on your own if you want to build a career in making beats. Consider setting up a home studio where you can practice often. Get some training at a music school and attach yourself with a practicing beat mixer.
Being creative and connecting with other people in the music industry will gain you some decent exposure. This will also increase your chances of winning gigs and making some money.
• Jazz Musician
Jazz music was a hit in the 1900s. It rocked the entire African American community and even the white community. Today, it doesn’t seem to excite the people as much as it used to.
Does this mean Jazz music can’t put food on your table anymore?
By no means. There are several ways Jazz music can provide money for those bills.
You can compose songs that can be performed at jazz orchestras, for music lessons, or included in music books.
There is also the opportunity of working as a music tutor in primary schools and colleges. This will require you to have some degree in music and education.
You can also offer your services as a private tutor in your home or at your client’s home. Online tutoring is also a mine that you can explore to your advantage.
Making money as a musician is not as defined as it is for an office secretary. If you land that defining gig it could change your life forever. But you can’t say when and where you’ll land the defining gig.
You can always engage the opportunities provided by the internet to advance your career today. Put yourself out there. Build a social network that exposes what you do to the world. Continuously improve on your skills.
Even more, learn to manage your finances. Spend on what is important and avoid trying to impress people. They don’t matter that much anyway.
Have fun growing your career in music.