4. Many Musicians Become Great Professors
You likely already know this, but it is worth saying.
The skills you learn in music school can be directly applied to a career in teaching. Many musicians I know end up getting a Doctorate in performance, which allows them to have the skills to teach in a university setting.
For a doctorate, there are two types of degrees – a DMA as well as a PhD. Find out more about the different types of music degrees here.
3. You Actually Can Make Great Money As a Soloist
As a solo artist, you have complete control over your destiny, and unless you hire back-up musicians, you can essentially take your instrument out anywhere and just simply start performing while reaping all the monetary benefits.
You can also sell your own music online and profit from streaming. Although streaming services don’t provide that much income, you can definitely make a little extra from all the free streaming services out there, like Spotify (keep in mind you would need a great deal of plays on Spotify to make even a $1,000, but hey a little extra income never hurts).
2. There Are Other Lucrative Professions You Can Pursue With a Music Degree
Going back to our article on 70+ careers you can undertake with a music degree, there are actually so many other great, well-paying jobs you can get as a musician. From being a music marketing specialist, a concert booking agent, and a music editor to being a journalist or even a commercial music film scorer, the job market for people with music degrees is actually much better than you may think. Some professions, like being an A&R Representative, seem like they are super fun jobs – I’ve never been an A&R representative, however it does seem like an incredibly rewarding position – basically you are asked for your opinion on choosing top talent for record labels.
1. You Can Start Your Own Orchestra/Ensemble
This might be the best reason on this list yet! In 2014, a well-connected and well-networked musician can start his or her very own ensemble, taking artistic control over the music he or she plays, and likely have greater job satisfaction than that of a prison guard (see above).
Some extremely provocative and successful “modern music” ensembles that started off with a small budget, grass-roots approach include Bang On a Can, Alarm Will Sound, Ensemble Signal, Wordless Music Ensemble, and Eighth Blackbird.
Where Do I Go Next?
I have known many, many musicians who have joined orchestras – some of them are happy, successful, and are able to support their families. If you are the type of musician who is absolutely born to play in an orchestra, than you should absolutely go for it, and by no means is this article a knock on orchestras – orchestras are incredible musical forces that can perform canonical works with great depth and mastery.
However, if you play to the beat of a different drummer, you have many, many options. Should you wish to see more options, I highly recommend you check out and download my premium ebook, How to Start a Music Career – The Ultimate Guide.
Here’s to having a 21st century musical entrepreneurial spirit!
Featured Image by MITO SettembreMusica Via Flickr Creative Commons