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Beyond Performance: 5 Jobs for Musicians

Being a musician doesn't just mean jumping around a stage every night. The field of music is a vast and many-faceted one, and numerous opportunities exist for musicians of every stripe, skill set, and personality type. If performance isn't particularly your style, here are five jobs for musicians beyond performance.

Music Therapist

If you love the idea of healing with music, this may well be the profession for you. The field of music therapy is growing rapidly, and institutions from hospitals to schools for disabled children have music therapists on their payroll. This job requires a minimum of a master's degree in music therapy, but also represents one of the best-paid professions in music.

Session Producer

Session work is often the bread and butter of working musicians, and the role of the session producer can be an especially lucrative one. Session producers oversee the organizing of session musicians and scheduling of studio time, and frequently have more than just a hand in the creative aspect of managing instrumentation, writing, and producing. Session producers may have degrees in music with a variety of specializations including performance, audio production, or composition, but many also have risen through independent study.


If the idea of writing songs for some of the biggest names in music while sipping coffee in your pajamas out on the balcony appeals to you, this job might be for you. Songwriters are often commissioned by studios and record companies to write music for and with performing artists – and while they might be required to spend time in the office at least from time to time, a lot of that work can be done from home. If writing music is your first love – especially if you have a composition degree or music songwriting certificate – this may be a great path to stroll down.

Private Instructor

The role of the private instructor is perfect for those who have a passion for teaching, but are perhaps less enthusiastic about doing it in a classroom of thirty. Private instructors typically must have at least a bachelor's degree in music or music education, but not always – instructors may qualify to teach at a music studio or store with sufficient experience of one or more instruments. Private instructors are typically fairly well-paid, particularly if they remain with the same studio or shop for many years.


Promoters are often working musicians or DJs themselves, and spend a lot of time behind the scenes helping to market other musicians, organizing shows and tours, or booking interviews. If show organization and marketing are passions of yours – especially if you did a music degree with a minor in marketing or business – the position of promoter may be one you'll want to chase, particularly with well-known music or media production companies.

Not all musicians are destined for arena tours – and not all musicians want the rock star life. Each of these jobs represent important roles within the music industry that the more introverted musician may find incredibly fulfilling.

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