How To Land A Job In The Music Industry

Whether you choose to become part of an orchestra, a band, or even a solo act, there are plenty of choices to make. The path to becoming hired in the first place, however, is daunting.

Here’s how to land a job in the music industry.

1. Create an online portfolio of your best music.

Like any job, you need to have a resume to present. You’ll want to give your potential employer a list of skills to entice them. As a musician, you need a portfolio of music that shows employers the kind of music you play and how well you play it.

That’s why websites like YouTube feature songs created and played by so many different artists. Employers can look them up right away.

2. Create your own opportunities by going to auditions and reaching out to industry professionals.

Some musicians become famous because producers happened to spot their talents and offered them record deals. This sounds like a good idea for any musician, but remember that few people actually become hired that way.

You have to know where to go and who to ask for to be given a chance. If you’re part of an orchestra or band, then audition for an opening by finding them through every website possible. Search everywhere from Google to your local newspaper’s classified ads to find employers who are in need of a musician.

Take it a step further by reaching out to music industry professionals directly. Sort through any business cards you’ve collected while networking and get in touch with the producers, agents, or managers you’ve already connected with.

If you don’t have any industry pros in your network yet, then it’s time to start networking! Attend local shows, connect with music pros through social media, and ask other musicians you know how they’ve connected with industry professionsals.

3. Be prepared to move to where the jobs are.

Perhaps there might not be any openings near where you live, and there are no agencies, orchestras, or other job openings available nearby. Sometimes, if you’re really determined to make it as a musician, you have to turn your whole life around and move to a more suitable environment.

Places such as Los Angeles or New York are locations that usually have the most openings for a musician. Be aware that despite the job openings available in those places, there are far more musicians competing with you to fill those openings.

The life of a musician is rough and competitive, so be prepared to work hard without knowing if you’ll succeed. It sounds difficult, but if you’re truly passionate about music, working in that field can be rewarding in and of itself, even if fame and wealth don’t come your way at first.

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Kevin Kwon is a recent graduate from UC Berkeley, currently 23 years old. He works in San Francisco and hopes to continue in the graduate studies regarding the field of psychology.

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