The music industry is incredibly broad and this makes it very difficult to really define it. However, if you study towards a music business degree, you will make some strides towards understanding it. Music business includes everything from huge recording studios to independent musicians, and from album designers to superstars. The industry literally is made up of hundreds, if not thousands, of individual elements and it can be difficult to see how these are integrated or connected.
That said, anyone with a true passion for music, and who truly wants to become involved in this business, can do so with an education. So what are some of the key things you need to know, to give yourself a step ahead compared to the competition? Below are seven key things.
7 Key Factors to the Music Business
- Be ready to embrace new technology. Any technology people commonly use today has been popularized in some way by musicians. Facebook? Used by musicians to promote their craft. Television? Think talent shows. Personal electronic devices? Used by managers to make sure their stars are where they should be.
- Success comes in unexpected forms and is sometimes unexplainable. Music is subjective, and you cannot guarantee whether something is going to be a true hit or a one hit wonder thanks to clever audio technology. This may be frustrating, but it is the way it is.
- Studios are adopting new types of technology, meaning that music is now produced in very different ways. Most of the production process is now fully automated and this means the face of the workforce is changing tremendously.
- Illegal music downloads continue to be very problematic for the industry as a whole. This means musicians now often have to be happy to be paid less than ever before. Some suggest that this may lead to new currencies being used for music, such as Bitcoins.
- There is no such thing as truly independent in the music industry. Top 40 charts are not developed simply by hoping people will buy things that they like. This is hugely manipulated by working with radio stations that play songs again and again. The only truly independent radio stations are “pirate stations”, and these do not affect ratings in music.
- There are numerous streaming websites, many of which are closed down for illegal downloads, only to see another one be started again.
- There is some suggestion that machines will soon start to make music. In fact, some AI (artificial intelligence) has already made sound recordings.
The music business is wide and varied and in a constant state of flux. It takes a special someone to be able to get involved in that, particularly from the non-performing side of things. This is because, as a manager or other business professional, you will be responsible for managing all these constant changes. If that sounds like something you want to take on, then completing a music business degree may just be the perfect option for you.