The music industry is a tough nut to crack into. It’s filled with lots of dreams, promises and often will leave many in the hands of dumb luck to catch a break. Between finding a band, creating a solo career, or maybe even doing session work in studios, networking and contacts are everything. This is why the bedroom guitarist, who can make YouTube videos playing the most complex work, makes zero dollars. While the man who knows three chords is raking in a fortune. This article will discuss how musicians make money.
Artists who are signed to record labels make money based off their contracts. Most of them have clauses that wind up with them making very little their first albums. The profit after the production, distribution, and promotions is calculated, gets divided among the members of the band, or artist. If they perform with studio musicians, this gets cut out of that as well. The artist is always the last person to get paid.
Now, depending on whether they retained their copyrights will also make a difference. A musician who retains their intellectual property will get royalty checks every time the song is covered, or played in a venue. This includes everything from bars and restaurants, to retail shopping stores. All places of service that play music, have to be registered and with a PRO, (Performing rights organization). Your local radio stations also belong to this, and they send out checks every month. That money is then calculated by popularity of music, distributed in tiers, and every musician that owns their rights is sent out a check.
With the advent of digital media internet stores, independent musicians can now release their own work, and sell it on any major site or program. Usually these online markets take a 30 percent cut, and the rest goes directly into the artist’s pocket. Although many require an upkeep fee to pay for the online storage, and downloading every year.
The second largest way is writing music and selling it. This is actually how many pop artists start out, including Katy Perry, and Kayne West. They become hired guns for studios, or start their own. Many people are shocked to find out how many of their favorite artist’s music wasn’t actually written by them. This also is done by musicians in the video game, commercial, and film industries. They often do not retain their rights afterwards, but they are compensated usually by good pay and getting credited.
Another big way music artists make money is by performing. Many venues require the artists to sell enough tickets before giving them the stage; others charge a flat rate for acts that have built in crowds. With performing you can also have a stand after the show that has posters, CDs, and other promotional items