25 Music Jobs That Most People Don’t Know About

25 Music Jobs That Most People Don’t Know About

You may have heard that music jobs are almost impossible to find, especially if you’re young and just starting out. While it may be true that few aspiring musicians will reach the top of the charts, there are hundreds of thousands of music jobs available. Some are for performers, some for teachers, and some for support staff for musicians and performers. Musicians and others in the music industry may work in production, performance, promotion, and education – even medicine. I promised you 25 music jobs that most people don’t know about – but that’s not technically true. Many of these are jobs that people know about – but don’t consider when they think of ‘music jobs’. Ready for the list? Here we go:

Music Jobs for Songwriters:

A Staff Songwriter works for a record or media company and writes songs for the artists signed by the label.

A Freelance Songwriter writes and markets his or her own songs. Your hours are your own, but you’ll have to work a lot of them to get your songs heard.

A Lyricist writes just the words to songs. He may team up with a composer, or be teamed up with one by a music production company.

A Jingle Writer writes those catchy ads that you hear on the television and radio – you know, the ones that get stuck in your head for days. A jingle writer may not become a famous household name – but he or she will always find work.

Music Jobs in Publishing:

A Music Publisher finds and acquires the copyrights to songs with the intent of licensing or selling them to record companies and musicians.

A Copyright/Licensing Administrator ($20,000 – $60,000) manages the licensing and copyrights for a music publishing company.

A Music Editor ($20,000 – $60,000) works closely with the composer to document, organize and time cues for the musicians in a project.

A Notesetter ($15,000 – $50,000) transcribes music from audio to the page.

Music Jobs in the Record Business

An A&R Coordinator (artist and repertoire) finds talent for a record company to sign. His boss is the A&R Administrator, a position that includes planning budgets for artists, managing reps and coordinators and monitoring the expenses on production.

Public Relations music jobs range from assistant publicist to director of public relations. The PR department is responsible for getting the names of the artists on a record company label out in front of the public often. Pay ranges from nothing for an intern to three figures for highly experienced public relations managers.

An Artist’s Relations Representative is responsible for maintaining communication and cooperation between the record company and an artist or band.

A Promotional staffer works with radio stations and video stations to get airplay for a label’s records.

Campus representatives are promotional agents – but they work directly to promote a record label’s products to college students and music retailers. Working as a campus representative is a great way to get your foot in the door at a record label.

Music Jobs in Education

A music teacher teaches music to classes from pre-school through college, with duties varying depending on the age of the classes. In the elementary grades, the music teacher may concentrate on teaching music appreciation and theory, with some teaching of instruments and performance theory. By high school, the job duties are more varied, and may include directing student performances and organizing and directing a band or choir.

A Music Director or Supervisor is responsible for managing and setting policy for music instructors hired by the school department.

Music Jobs in the Ministry may include part time work as an organist to full time work directing a professional choir and the entire music worship for a parish or citywide.

The Legal Rights of Musicians

The Legal Rights of Musicians

Creative people of all types all come back to one legal touchstone and that is copyright law. It is often sited in all kinds of cases involving literature, film, publishing and certainly in music. Within the music industry, the ability of copyright to protect an artist’s work has come under new challenges in the last ten years. The rise of peer-to-peer file sharing, online music downloading and other internet related ways that music gets passed around has presented some real challenges to musicians to collect what is due them as owners of music under copyright.

There are numerous royalty rights associated with the writing, publication, performance and distribution of music that have to be sorted out by a complicated infrastructure that the music industry maintains to protect its own. But when you get back to the basics, the copyright of a piece of music works in music the same way it does in any literary field. That copyright, at least at first, belongs to the songwriter.

That is where the simplicity of the situation ends. For most songwriters, complete ownership of a song rarely remains the exclusive property of that author of the song. Most songwriters work with a publishing house to get their music out on the market. Even if the songwriter is writing songs for their own band, the publishing house provides the valuable service of not only publishing the song or songs but getting them out on the market to be covered or produced by others as well, if that is how the songwriter wants.

So this is a valuable service that is provided by the publishing house. In exchange for handling all of the promotion of the music, the publishing house takes over 50% of the copyright. This may seem like a lot to give up but there is a hidden side to sharing copyright that benefits the songwriter maybe even more than the promotional help the publishing house provides.

Because the publishing house now has a vested interest in that creative work, they also have a vested interest in protecting it. A copyright over a piece of music, at least on paper, is a pretty strong legal right. It covers all aspects of how that song can be used. If the song is used on a recording, obviously the songwriter has some rights to the proceeds of that release. But even if the song is just covered in a performance, technically the copyright owner has some rights to payment for the use of that exclusive creative intellectual material.

The issue is as much one of enforcement as it is whether the rights are there or not. This is a judgment call to be made by the songwriter, the publishing house and the legal representation of all involved. Sometimes seeing your creative material used has such a positive marketing value that to start a legal battle for the monetary rights could hurt your music career as much as it might help you.

These are decisions that musicians and owners of copyright or royalty rights are making every day in the music industry. The debate over the value of fighting for copyright versus allowing small infractions in exchange the marketing value of your music being heard is one that is held more and more as music sharing has become more common with the spread of internet services. While a strict copyright lawyer might argue that once you stop defending your ownership, you loose it forever, the truth of the marketplace is not always that black and white. The rights are there, to be sure. But the wisdom of how to let your music make you more successful calls for the use of judgment and a savvy that comes from your extensive knowledge of how the music industry really works. 639

Get Ya’ Money Right: The Truth About Publishing

Get Ya’ Money Right: The Truth About Publishing

What up Playa? By now you should be getting the big picture. There ain’t no business like show business. But here’s the problem, you keep putting on the show, but you ain’t handling the business. If you are like many of the young artist coming-up in the game, you probably don’t have a strong grasp on the Music Industries many rules and regulations. You might have read an article here or there, or even picked up a book or two about the music business, but chances are that unless you’re a lawyer you probably didn’t understand it. Relax, I got your back. Look at me as sort of your music business guardian angel, here to help you add a little business to your show. Let’s face it, the music business is a well-oiled machine designed to do one thing, and that is make money. Throughout your career you will notice that at every corner you turn there is someone who is waiting to benefit from your talent and success. Regardless to how large you may become, you will never be able to completely eliminate the middleman. Go ahead and screw up your face if you want, but if you think you can cross out the middleman then you need to close your eyes and go back to La-La-Land, ’cause homie your still dreaming. Even when you become a Hip Hop mogul like Russell Simmons or P-Diddy, you still have answer to someone else, and they are usually making more money then you are. Alright, here is where I will stop myself because I am known for going off on a tangent about the many, many economic inequalities of the music business. So with no further delay, let’s talk about getting paid…

Get Your Money Right

Now that we have established other people are going to be making money off of your talents, lets focus on how you can begin to get your beak wet too. During the week I get a million and one emails with questions about the music business. The one question that comes up the most is, “what is Publishing and what does it have to do with me?” Publishing is quite a difficult topic; so I will explain it as simple as humanly possible. Sit down class and pay attention.

Publishing is money earned from the songs that you have written. This money comes from two separates sources.

Source #1: Mechanical Royalties-This is the money that record companies pay to the publisher for songs that have been mechanically recorded(pressed-up) on record or CD.

Source #2: Public Performance Income-Better known as performing rights, this allow others to use your music in different mediums such as; radio, t.v., movies, etc.

Pump the brakes, Playa! Your not entitled to all of the money, just a portion of it. Let me explain. All money made from music publishing is simple known as Publishing Royalties. Publishing royalties are broken down into two separate shares; publishers share and writers share. Think of the shares as a pie with two halves; the publishers side represents 50% of the pie and the writers share represents 50% of the pie, and together they represent 100% of Music Publishing Income.

The publisher is the party that collects both shares and then pays the writer’s share to the writer or writers of the song. The Publisher is the one who owns or controls the copyright of the song. This means that they have the rights to do with it as they please, such as licensing(renting) it out for movies, or sheet music. Also, granting permission to other singers to re-record it. At some point, you as a songwriter are going to have to deal with a Publisher on some level, whether you decide to self-publish or not. The main advantage to self-publishing is that your are the sole controller of your copyrights, but unless you have the time, energy, and resources to do what a publisher does, you better learn to play “Let’s Make A Deal.”

What a Publisher can do for you the Songwriter

• Copyright your songs so your butt is covered around the world.

• Make sure your songs are used in every imaginable medium, such as: radio, video games, downloadable ring-tones, movies, etc.

• Hook up manufacturing and distribution deals for music books and sheet music of your songs.

• Register your songs with collections agencies like BMI, ASCAP, SEASAC, and the Harry Fox Agency.

• Protect you from copyright infringers trying to steal your material by sampling, file-sharing, and bootlegging.

• Develop and Promote you as a writer.

• Negotiating licensing deals on your behalf

Your best bet is to set-up a co-publishing agreement with a large publisher; this way you will ensure that things will be done correctly, without you losing your mind in the process. There are far too many types of publishing agreements to get into detail, but you have to always agree to the deal you can live with. Think long-term and your money will grow, think short-term and the next song you write may be one for Food Stamps.