Technical careers in Music Industry

Not surprisingly in today’s stressful times, youngsters are increasingly opting for both technical as well as non technical careers in the music industry.

Prospects for professionals

Interested students can choose from a range of options such as teaching, performing professionally sound editing and recording composing , arranging , music software development , virtual reality sound environment creation (for internet , games and programs), music production , radio jockeying etc.


While many schools employ music teachers, private music teachers are also in great demand. Music has always been popular. With the economy booming and reality shows like Indian Idol and Star Voice of India capturing the fancy of television viewers an increasing number of youngsters are now keen to learn music. In fact, many trained students are increasingly taking private lessons for beginners in order to make additional pocket money. The prime advantage of teaching music privately is that the working hours are flexible only a few hours every week, in most cases.

Sound recording / editing

Another popular option for music lovers is sound recording and editing. A sound editor often deals with complex electronic equipment. Hence this career may require training in audio science. The advent of the gaming culture among Gen next has crated options in the sub field of virtual reality sound creation as well.

Production / Direction

Second only to singing (in terms of popularity) music production and direction is an extremely viable option. Professionals can find opportunities in the television as well as film industry. However, the competition is mind boggling and it takes time for one to make in the industry.

Music Therapy

Quite unlike the conventional careers, music therapy is slowly gaining recognition as an important healing science. According a musician and music therapists, human beings respond to different types of sounds in different ways. These sounds can be used to provide therapy to people suffering from physical pain, high stress, coming years and may soon offer excellent career opportunities for those who believe in the concept.

Other worthy and up and coming options include becoming a musicologists music business attorney, music reporter, architectural acoustic consultant and arts administrator. Of this music reporting is increasingly gaining prominence with most newspapers, magazines and music channels hiring music reporters.

While not all careers mentioned above need any prerequisites or academic qualifications, employers generally prefer freshers with a diploma, degree or a certificate in the concerned field. This especially is true for those aspiring to pursue highly technical careers such as audio engineering where training is like capturing sound recording, copying and editing, mixing and reproduce sound using electronic and mechanical devices is crucial. Even radio stations prefer to employ people with the requisites training for the post of RJ. Aspirants can pursue a six month course in voice modulation that will train them in all the facets of the job including management of the technical equipment. However, an academic qualification is not mandatory as many radio stations employ a number of interns and expose them to the different aspects of the job. The extremely talented interns are then offered full time jobs at the station. Similarly a course in sound editing, though not essential is certainly beneficial for those planning a career in the field. Asserts a music composer and a song arranger, I learnt sound editing by joining a studio and gaining practical training. However, I have ha to struggle that extra bit since I didn’t have the relevant educational training. Therefore, it is advisable to enroll for a professional course as these courses will help you become job ready faster. Having said that you can certainly learn no the job if, for some reason, you are unable to pursue a courses

Music direction calls for the knowledge of electronic instruments synthesizer and electronic theory, experience in playing instruments and singing as well as familiarity with computers, desktop copying and publication.

Once you get started it is your experience and ability to network with professionals that will pave the way for bigger projects. Clients lay more emphasis on your achievements and experience than a degree.

Strike the right chord

Personal motivation, the ability to work in a team, talent along wit technical know how showmanship, confidence and the ability to work under deadlines are crucial skills required to succeed in the music business. A dynamic personality is a must have for performers and RJs. Music performers may need additional specialized knowledge of music theory. Hard work, luck and the ability to meet the demands of your clients can lead you towards a rewarding career.

Remuneration Radar

Not only is the work profile of a technical professional in the music industry interesting, it is monetarily rewarding as well. While teachers in music schools earn anywhere from Rs one to two lakh per annum private music teachers charge around Rs 3000 per month per student ( for four sessions in a week).

Sound editors can earn anywhere from Rs 10,000 to Rs 50,000 per month subject to one’s talent and experience. Professional music composers generally quote anywhere between Rs 10,000 to 20,000 per song, while charging between Rs 5000 to 10,000 for arranging a song. Professional rock bands charge up to Rs 10,000 per performance. While experienced RJs can earn around Rs 30,000 per month, fresh graduates, aspiring to become RJs can command anywhere between Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000 per month.