How to make money as a musician

Concert earnings.

Commercially Oriented Project (COP). What’s this? COP is a kind of business that allows one or a group of artists to earn solid capital through the correct and timely investment in promotion, with prepared mass-oriented material.

It all starts with an analysis of the music market: what is trending right now? What kind of music do the masses prefer? Who are your competitors and what can you offer to counter them? A vivid image, shocking and music that will resonate with the masses – these are your three pillars.

It’s impossible to enter this river just like that – you need start-up capital. You need to invest in promotion: hire image makers, pay radio and TV for the rotation of your product, make props for the stage, etc. Everything is grown-up – first you invest, then you receive (if everything is done correctly).

If there is no starting capital, an excellent way out will be to find an investor. It is important to understand here that he needs you as much as he needs you – if an investor sees a prospect, he will invest. Work out the concept of your project, draw up a business plan. Make a few demo songs, think clearly about your image and find your zest for which people will visit your concerts.

If you are ready for such a difficult step as the creation of a commercial project, be prepared to wait. This is a kind of risk and a sea of ​​wasted time (at first), which can both play for you and leave nothing but unfulfilled hopes.


  • Looking forward to high fees
  • Popularity, interest among journalists and other media
  • The presence of free time, in fact, the lack of a clear schedule
  • Opportunity to see the world, concert tours


  • It’s hard to get out of this kitchen
  • Requires strong moral and physical fitness, mobility
  • Dependence on cash receipts
  • The need to comply with the terms of the contract
  • The virtual absence of personal life – one of the most common clauses of the contract prohibits the creation of a family at the time of cooperation

Session musician: “Caliph for an hour”

Session workers are a strong and reliable rear of any serious performer. As a rule, the stars do not have a single team of musicians, therefore, during the concert, they constantly need session people. The rules of the game are simple – you have a couple of rehearsals, a concert and get your money.

Becoming a session worker is not easy, because their services are mainly needed by already established and well-fed sharks of show business. Naturally, they need some kind of exits. It’s just that it’s unlikely that you will be able to come from the street and say “hello, when you need a musician, call.” Most often, “their own” are hired, there is a place for recommendations. No announcements, such issues are resolved almost immediately in a rather narrow circle. What to do?

First, of course, you must have a weighty 100-kilogram portfolio. A YouTube channel is very useful here, the more subscribers, the more chances for success. You must be quite popular in your environment. This is how most often you are found, the element of chance helps here like nowhere else.

Do everything to get noticed, sooner or later it will bear fruit. If there are any connections, do not neglect them.


  • Good but unstable earnings (prices are individual $100-1000)
  • Opportunity to make many useful contacts
  • Constant self-improvement, good professional development
  • Popularity in your circle


  • Good equipment is needed, several musical instruments
  • Sometimes you have to learn the program in an extremely short time, frequent stress
  • Constant trips, it’s not a fact that performers from your city will hire you
  • Penalty in case of failure, sometimes reaches specific amounts

Earnings on YouTube: monetize your talents

Everyone is partially familiar with the specifics of earning on this site. We’ve all seen covers, reviews, etc. – someone goes out due to charisma and makes funny content, someone demonstrates his skills to the fullest, lowering someone’s self-esteem to the level of an outlet. Be that as it may, absolutely anyone who has the time and desire can develop their channel.

Most often, they start with covers of popular works. The more popular the song you replay, the more likely it is that the desired audience will reach your channel.

Another way to get an audience is to shoot video tutorials. A lot of music bloggers got their start this way, making videos on the topics that so often appear in the query string. Bloggers who effectively combine useful information with an original, humorous presentation become especially successful. The clearest example of this is Sergey Tabachnikov. From foreign bloggers, I can recommend the following: Jared Dines, Steve Terreberry. The example of these guys shows that it is enough to find your “chip” and success will not be long in coming.


  • A well-established channel brings in a lot of money
  • Passive income
  • Opportunity to earn money from advertising
  • Full creative implementation – you can embody any idea


  • Work that requires constancy – few people dare to wait for the release of new videos for a long time
  • At first, you will need to invest in the channel, buy advertising
  • Psychological aspect: can you continue even if there is a lot of criticism against you?
  • The crisis of ideas is sudden – it is necessary to draw up a content plan for the months ahead

Finding a good income for a musician is difficult, but possible. Moreover, the modern world now and then makes this task easier: you can transfer tutoring online, and freelance, recording music while sitting at home. Each of these ways to earn money has its pros and cons, but one thing is important – look for your place in this musical kitchen, constantly improve your skills and be confident in yourself. And one of these options will be successful for you.