Working 9 To 9… Ways To Make A Living Through Music

If music flows through your veins (like it does for so many of us), yet you don’t have the musical aptitude (again, like it does for so many of us!), then what are your options for working in the music business? Plenty, actually! If you really have a passion for getting new music to the masses, there are ways to get it out there. Here are three of them.

Music Writer

While the heyday of NME and Melody Maker are long gone, there are so many small music blogs going around online that are looking for contributions. If you are aiming high and you want to go into Lester Bangs territory, you need to be prepared to put in the hours and the funds off your own back. There are sites that will give you tickets for gigs, like The Digital Fix or The 405. But as with many websites that have been running for a few years, they cannot afford to pay a full-time wage so you will have to make the most of getting experience as a springboard to getting paid work. The other option is to set up your own music blog, so you can, in effect, create your own work and pay yourself. In doing this, it is much like setting up a business. You will work from home in the beginning, and you need to have the business acumen, as well as the website know-how.  

Run A Record Label

An extension of running your own music blog or website may not quench your thirst for new music, and so the natural progression is to set up a record label. While running a music blog is an oversaturated market in many ways, it may make more logical sense to run a label depending on your location. But be warned! It is a lot of hours and a lot of learning on the job. It’s running a business, and while your passion for music is the overriding factor in setting up a label, you still need to learn the ropes. Things like accounts, marketing, searching for clients, it means a lot of long journeys hundreds of miles away for a client that may not suit your label. You also need to think about making yourself look professional. Setting up an international virtual business address is a simple method for tiny businesses. It helps to bolster your image in the eyes of other distribution companies. Independent record labels are the mainstay of alternative music, but with the effect of downloads and streaming having an impact on the way music is consumed, it means a lot of the artists are seeing very minimal returns on their efforts. As a result, you may want to try this option…

Set Up A Subscription Music Site  

Yes, the market has been well and truly taken by the big boys like Spotify. But a lot of smaller artists are trying to reclaim the ownership of their music by streaming their tracks on a subscription basis, which, if you get the balance right, could be very lucrative for your artists. The change in the musical landscape is having an effect on the choice of career for people keen to be involved with music, but with fewer roles in the more established companies, branching out by yourself may be the way to go.