In the Music Biz: Community College Programs in Artist Management, Concert Promotion and More

Updated December 23, 2016 |
In the Music Biz: Community College Programs in Artist Management, Concert Promotion and More
If you have a head for music and business, consider a career in the management and marketing of the music industry. Learn about how you can jumpstart a career in the music business at community colleges.
When people think of the music industry, they usually imagine the artists on stage as the bread and butter of the field. However, the real action in the music business takes place behind the scenes.
If you are interested in a career in the business side of music, there are plenty of community colleges offering degree programs that will get you out of the books and into the action much more quickly than the four-year degree route. Consider these opportunities waiting for you in the music business, as well as where you can obtain the training you need to jumpstart your entertainment career.
Career Opportunities Behind the Scenes
Whether you have a head for numbers or fashion, you can find a job you love in the music industry. Below, we have listed just a few examples of music-related careers found at the Berklee College of Music website for your consideration:
  • Artist Manager/Agent – This professional handles the career for a single musician or an entire band. The artist manager may be responsible for making both business and creative decisions to further the musician's career and hopefully guide him to the top of the charts.
  • Concert Promoter – If you enjoy organizing and promoting large events, this is the job for you. The concert promoter will also secure the financial backing for concerts by either funding them herself or finding sponsors. She will also choose the venues, set the concert schedule, and oversee the advertising for the event.
  • Booking Agent – These professionals are responsible for setting up performance engagements for an artist. They must have good networking skills and the ability to negotiate, since they are often responsible for negotiating the artist's contract for various events.
  • Business Manager – When the work becomes too much for an artist manager to handle solo, a business manager is often brought on to deal with the financial affairs of the musician. This professional usually has a background in accounting or business administration to prepare him for the many tasks that may be a part of his position.
  • Tour Coordinator – While the concert promoter sets up and advertises the concert tours, the tour coordinator makes sure everything runs smoothly at the operational level. Typical tasks might include travel, lodging and setting a budget for the tour.
  • Road Manager – This person is responsible for ensuring that all of the equipment, sound and lighting arrive at destinations intact and that everything is set up properly for each concert venue.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 10% growth in careers within the musical fields, and music promoters enjoy some of the highest levels of employment in the industry.
No matter what type of job in the music industry sounds right for you, the proper training will make a sound difference in your ability to land a job and advance in your career. Consider two of the community colleges offering training programs in this field today, but there are many more music programs available across the country.
Mesa Community College offers a music business program to start students off in their career or prepare them for a four-year degree program. According to the college website, the two-year curriculum offers courses both for the performing artist and the people who strictly want to work on the business end of the industry.
An article in the Phoenix New Times raves about the quality of teachers the program hires and the opportunity for students to receive on-the-job training while they are still in school.
What could be better than hitting the books along the white sand and glorious palm trees of Hawaii – unless it is to receive training in the music business industry that will prepare you for a fun and rewarding career?
At Honolulu Community College, students can participate in the Music & Entertainment Learning Experience, which includes degrees in music business or audio engineering. According to the program's website, students can choose between day and evening classes so they can get the training they need without quitting their day job.
The music industry offers much more diversity than your average desk job, making it perfect for those who can't fathom the idea of sitting in front of a computer all day. If you have a passion for music, a head for numbers and a knack for negotiation, inquire with the community colleges in your area to find the perfect music business training program for you.

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