Being an independent musician means that you have the ability to make the type of music that you want, affect your community, and – even make money from it. Considering all the options available to you as a musician will help you broaden your career options.
As an independent musician, how do you start your music business?
If you want to look at music performance from a business perspective, it is simply a way to advertise and market yourself to the right target market. This means that before you go out to perform, have everything in place first. Have an area, either locally or on the internet where people can contact you and find your music. This also means you will need to invest in putting together an album and have it available in both hard copy (CD) and digital version (MP3) for those interested in downloading it. The general business rule is that an independent musician should not start playing live until they have a promo package and CD in place to make profit off of.
Even though this seems like a large investment and a lot of time, it is becoming simpler and cheaper with the growth of technology. You can easily put together a home recording studio with a microphone, mixer and music software. You can also make sure that your gigs are lined up for you to make incomes. Over time, and as your specific musical expertise grows, you will be much more likely to make a profit off both the gigs and the CD/mp3 sales.
Independent musician? But you can still afford the basics!
What are the investments that you have to make? Thanks again to technology, not a lot. Of course, you will need an instrument to play or software to substitute for the instruments that you don’t have. A mixing board will usually cost around $250 and the software, with the basics can come to around $150. Of course, if you want more recording equipment for better quality sound, it will cost more. After this, the only investments you will need will be based around advertising and marketing. However, for those on a shoestring budget, there are plenty of places to advertise for free.
Of course, your options don’t have to stop at performances and CDs. As most people know, it is best to keep all options open. For example, you can become a musician for hire for other bands and can also become a studio musician for other engineers in your area. There’s no shortage of options for the independent musician! As most already know, teaching other musicians (private lessons) can help to significantly increase your incomes as well. You can also offer things such as classes to non-musicians who are interested. Writing lyrics and songs for others can also bring in profit. The main concept to keep in mind is that the more skills you have as a musician, the more you can market yourself in your locality and to different groups of people.
There’s hope for the independent musician!
From here, you can expect to make a comfortable profit, depending on how you continue to advertise your skills. For example, music teachers that only teach privately with a full studio can be expected to make an average of $5,000 every month.
Even as an independent musician, it helps to think like a businessman! This means keeping doors open to possibilities in your local area, as well as through various types of portals. Making sure that you have tools in your musician’s bag and are prepared for any type of gig that may come your way. This will give you the ability to play music all the time and make money off of it. And all of a sudden being an independent musician may not be so bad after all! 🙂