Work is a part of life for almost every adult and as the phrase goes, "he who does not work does not eat". Some of us work jobs we love while others work jobs that they hate.
I think we all would love a work opportunity and environment in which we could turn our passion into a paycheck and that's what I wanna talk to you about today if your passion is creating music!
This is gonna be a brief overview of making money as a music creator.
The WHO- The main music creators that generate revenue in the music industry are songwriters, recording artists, producers, and musicians.
The WHAT- The 2 main sources of income for music creators are music publishing and the master recording. Music publishing refers to the actual lyrics, melodies, harmonies, and rhythm that make up the song...this is the composition. Then you have once you capture that composition into a recording...this is the master recording.
The WHEN- Music creators can earn income when the songs they have written or recorded are played on the radio, streaming platforms, video games, youtube videos, tv shows and movies, digital downloads, physical cd purchases, sold as sheet music, or licensed to another artist (this list is not meant to be exhaustive)
The WHERE- Music creators are entitled to this money they earn on a global scale but will most likely need some form of help to be in a position to receive this money.
The HOW- There are a few key steps you must take as a music creator to put yourself in the best position to collect this money:
Register as a writer AND publisher with a Performing Rights Organization such as BMI, ASCAP, or SESAC.
Register with a Publishing Administrator to help collect like Tunecore, CD Baby, or Songtrust to collect the monies that aren't collected by your PRO
Each time you release or are about to release a song make sure that they are registered with your PRO and Publishing Administrator
*Optional but HIGHLY RECOMMENDED*- Create a legal structure for your business (LLCs are not the only option but probably the most popular) so that you can open a business bank account and separate your personal and business finances.
Now that you've taken the steps to prepare for financial success, you have to do a few more things:
Make sure your music is dope...POINT BLANK PERIOD! There won't be any money generated if no one likes your music and it doesn't get played
Expand your target market beyond dropping a mixtape on audiomack or getting a placement with a local artist. You can also make money getting your music played on a tv show or in a video game or as background music for a radio commercial. Think outside the box, put in the work, and remember that no one owes you anything!
Remember your love for the music and keep creating!