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Music Business Degree: Requirements, Tuition, Universities

Music Business Degree

 

To obtain a degree in music business, you must study music business. This is no different than if you were to obtain a degree in chemistry or photography. You need to study the industry, the workers and the players as well as how they’re all integrated into a worldwide market via technology.

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Apply for an internship

Internships are a great way to get real-world experience, network with other professionals in the field, build your resume and gain contacts before you graduate. Your internship will also give you a better understanding of the kind of career you want to pursue once you earn your music business degree.

Enroll in a music business degree program

To get a music business degree, it’s important to look for a school that will offer practical experience (for example, internships or other real-world opportunities) in addition to academic coursework. While any four-year program will help you build your foundation of knowledge, the best programs are taught by professors with industry experience and are located close enough to a major city that you can work in the field while completing your studies.

Two great options for those who aren’t quite ready to commit to four years of schooling right away include earning an associate’s degree online and then transferring credits earned toward a bachelor’s degree or pursuing an undergraduate certificate in music production or another specialty before enrolling in a four-year music business program. These options are often more affordable than earning a bachelor’s degree at once, and they can provide you with some quick insight into the field so that you can decide whether it is right for you before making a long-term commitment.

Consider an associate’s degree or certificate program in music business

You may wish to consider an associate’s degree or a certificate program in music business. These programs can be completed in less time than a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science, and are typically available at junior and community colleges. Some four-year schools offer certificate programs, as well.

Earning an Associate of Arts (A.A.) or Associate of Science (A.S.) degree in Music Business is also possible, though this is relatively uncommon; the majority of these degrees are offered by two-year schools, though some 4-year universities do offer them as well. This kind of degree usually takes two years to complete and can lead to entry-level employment upon graduation or transfer into a bachelor’s degree program if you wish to continue your education and pursue other career opportunities.

Music industry jobs are tough to come by, but if you can get a degree, you’ll have a better chance of success.

As harsh as it sounds, you need to have a degree if you’re going to succeed in the music industry. That is not to say that it is impossible to land a music industry job without one, but if you have the money and time for it, you should definitely go for it.

Jobs are hard to come by in this industry, and the competition is fierce. If you want to be able to compete with other candidates who can boast an academic background in business or music marketing, then going back to school may be your best bet. Although they are expensive and require a lot of dedication, degrees will give you a better chance at success once your career gets off the ground.

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Careers in Music Business

Business Manager:

The Business Manager manages the business aspects of a performer’s career. The Business Manager acts as a business advisor to the artist and negotiates all of the artist’s contracts and deals. The Business Manager manages the artist’s schedule and hires and manages the artist’s staff. The Business Manager maintains the artist’s budget.

Books and Music Reviewers:

Books and Music Reviewers:

There are two basic types of reviewers, professional and freelance. Professional reviewers are paid on a full-time, salaried basis to review new music releases for magazines, newspapers or online publications. Freelance reviewers also write reviews but do so on a contract, fee-for-service basis. Freelance reviewers may sell their services to magazines or to individual artists.

Concert Promoter:

  • Concert Promoter: A concert promoter is the person responsible for booking venues and promoting (advertising) a show. Once the show is booked, this person is responsible for making sure that the artist is paid. The concert promoter may also be responsible for hiring security, staff and/or crew; however, larger shows will have their own security and crew working for them.
  • Concert Production Manager: Coordinates all aspects of the concert from “load in” to “load out.” This includes instrument rentals, hotel reservations and catering arrangements. Production managers are usually employed by a large venue or organization like a university. They can also work for an artist as part of his/her touring company.

Agent or Talent Scout:

If you love music and are able to spot the next big trend, a career as a talent scout or agent might be right for you. The job is similar to that of an A&R representative but tends to involve more scouting of new talent.

Agents work with artists on all levels, from those who are just beginning their music careers to big-name acts. They work in many different genres, from classical to pop.

Music agents find jobs for musicians the same way actors’ agents find jobs for actors: by pitching their clients for gigs, negotiating contracts with venues and other parties, and trying to secure the most advantageous terms possible. For example, when working with a musician who is about to embark on a tour of Europe, an agent may negotiate with venues (or promoters) regarding payment rates, set lists, and other contractual points.

Agents should be familiar with copyright law and contract law (including union regulations), have excellent communications skills (both written and verbal), be well networked within the industry they serve​

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Recording Studio Manager:

The recording studio manager oversees all aspects of the studio’s day-to-day operations. In this position, you are responsible for ensuring that the studio is fully operational and ready to record at a moment’s notice. You also ensure that the staff is running smoothly, troubleshoot any issues that arise during sessions, hire new employees, and ensure that clients are happy with their experience in the studio.

Strong communication skills are a must as a recording studio manager. Not only will you be talking with your own employees often, but you will also need to handle speaking with bands or artists who may be interested in working in your facility. Because of this focus on customer service, strong organizational skills and attention to detail will also help make you successful as a recording studio manager, as you’ll constantly need to balance client needs with studio administration tasks.

Recording studio managers typically have at least a bachelor’s degree in audio production or engineering as well as relevant work experience (either through internships or full-time employment). The median salary for recording industry professionals was $39,000 per year as of 2018 according to BLS data; however salaries can vary depending on location and individual roles within the industry.

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Performing Arts Agency Manager:

Performing arts agency managers help clients get jobs, promote them to employers and negotiate contracts. They also manage their clients’ finances, advise them on career moves, and counsel them during personal problems. Some performing arts agency managers specialize in one area of entertainment, such as television or theater. But most work with a variety of entertainment media.

Music Therapist:

Music therapists use music to help individuals improve their physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being. Music therapists are trained in both psychology and the musical arts, and they use a wide range of musical interventions (e.g., singing, playing instruments, listening to music) in order to achieve therapeutic goals with their clients.

Music therapists work with people of all ages who have developmental disabilities (autism spectrum disorder), neurological disorders (Alzheimer’s disease or brain injury), or mental health issues (depression). They also work with premature babies and children who have learning issues.

It is recommended that you major in music therapy or music and psychology if you are interested in this field. Learn more about degree requirements for each by searching our careers database!

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Sound Engineer/Producer/Technician.

As a sound engineer or producer, you are responsible for the live sound and recording of the music. All sounds heard in the studio or at a concert have been sculpted by your hands into what our ears hear. You must know well how to use microphones, mixers, amplifiers, and speakers to create excellent recordings and amazing concerts. The quality of sound that is produced is your responsibility.

A sound engineer/producer can become part of the audio-engineering community through college training or apprenticeship experience with a recording studio or live concert venue. The more experience you have operating audio equipment, such as mixing consoles and equalizers, the better qualified you will be for employment as a sound engineer/producer. A good ear for music is also necessary in order to enhance its quality with proper equalization techniques.

There are a lot of different careers available in the Music Business.

As you probably know, the music industry has many different roles. Knowing what these are will help give you an idea of what career path might be best for you. Roles in the industry run the gamut from creative to analytical, and from public-facing to behind-the-scenes. They also vary in terms of travel and location demands, as well as whether or not a college degree is required.

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Universities offering Music Business Degree

A degree in music business can give you the tools to work in a variety of different settings as a music producer, promoter or manager.

A music business degree can give you the tools to work in a variety of different settings as a music producer, promoter or manager. It can also help you work on your own independent label. Most music business programs provide students with an understanding of how the industry works and prepares them for financial and legal aspects of the job. A bachelor’s degree in this field may be offered as a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) or a Bachelor of Arts (BA). You may be required to take classes like audio engineering, recording techniques, concert promotion and marketing. Other topics that may be covered include:

  • Music fundamentals
  • Music theory
  • Composition
  • Marketing principles
  • International business
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Full Sail University

Full Sail University is a private, for-profit university in Winter Park, Florida. The school was founded in 1979 in Dayton, Ohio as Full Sail Recording Workshop. Full Sail University is a trade school that offers associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees in over 70 programs.

Northeastern State University

This Oklahoma school is a great choice if you’re looking to earn a degree in the music business. It’s located in Tahlequah, about an hour away from Tulsa, which has a vibrant music scene that often features local talent. The university boasts 6,055 students and offers music degrees ranging from vocal performance to instrumental performance with an emphasis on jazz. The tuition for this university is $7,705 for residents and $16,460 for non-residents. This university offers academic scholarships as well as music scholarships. You can find out more information about those here.

The coursework for this degree focuses on giving students an understanding of the legal and business side of the music industry by covering topics in history and theory of music as well as contracts and royalties. Students also complete an internship in their preferred area of interest and enjoy access to career placement resources through the Career Services department at Northeastern State University.

Middle Tennessee State University

Middle Tennessee State University

Location: Murfreesboro, TN

Program Details: The Department of Recording Industry at MTSU offers a Bachelor of Science in Music Business degree with concentrations in either Artist Management or Record Production. Students can also pursue a Master of Arts in Music Business Administration.

Tuition and Fees: $9,865 (in-state) — $25,715 (out-of-state) [source]

Website: https://www.mtsu.edu/recordingindustry/mba/index.php

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Anderson University School of Music

Located in Indiana, Anderson University is among the top schools in the Midwest with a music business degree. The program’s tuition costs are competitive, and there are a number of scholarships available for both incoming freshmen and continuing students. This school has an average graduation rate of 65 percent and specializes in student-centered education that helps to prepare graduates for success within the music industry.

The university has a 21:1 student/teacher ratio, which offers personalized attention and ensures that students get plenty of one-on-one time with their professors. Courses include music theory fundamentals, audio production, leadership skills development, copyright law and events planning basics. Many students choose to enroll in this school because it offers hands-on experience through internships at local radio stations and music festivals throughout the region.

Earning a BM in Music Business from Anderson University can help you find work within all areas of the entertainment industry including marketing companies, recording studios or even as an agent representing artists who perform live or on stage.

Berklee College of Music

Berklee College of Music, located in Boston, MA, offers a Bachelor of Music in Music Business degree. The school is a private not-for-profit institution. The cost for undergraduate tuition is $38,220 per year. This is 187% more expensive than the national average public four year tuition of $13,296. An estimated 12,448 students are enrolled per year at Berklee College of Music and the student-faculty ratio is 11:1.

People can get degrees in music business and find careers in a wide variety of fields.

Music Business is a broad field with many career paths. A music business degree can prepare you for careers such as:

  • Artist Management
  • Booking Agent
  • Concert Promoter
  • Music Lawyer (Entertainment Lawyer)

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