You know the saying: if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. It’s not 100% accurate (there will always be aspects of your job that you’ll hate… I’m looking at you, accounting), but I do think people need to follow their passions and make careers out of them.
I meet lots of people who tell me they want to work in the music industry. After all, music is something that’s easy to be passionate about, so why not make a career out of that? Makes sense.
I get lots of people asking me advice on how to get started. I was just speaking with someone last week who graduated with an MBA who wanted to work in the industry, and he asked me “Where do I start? Who’s hiring? What kind of jobs are out there?”
What I told him was this: it’s both the best time and the worst time to be looking to enter the music industry.
Many companies are shrinking. Some are going out of business. Still others are relying on interns to stay afloat. As revenues shrink, businesses have to cut costs, and that can partially mean cutting staff and salaries. It’s a tough, tough time to be looking for a job in the music industry.
The good thing, however, is that the industry as a whole is undergoing a monumental revolution. New business models are popping up all the time. Convention is slowly being thrown out the window.
What does this mean for people looking to get into the industry?
Simple: you can do whatever you want.
Whenever an industry re-defines itself, it creates unlimited innovation opportunities. We’ve seen all sorts of new music products and services (far too numerous to list here) that fly directly in the face of the ‘old model.’ Some succeed, some fail, but ultimately the industry is moving forward because of them and their out of the box thinking.
Smart, creative minds will continue to be a big part of shaping the music business of the future. If you have the entrepreneurial spirit and determination, you can help define the new paradigm simply by throwing your idea into the ring. If you have an idea for a company or service that can help the industry, TRY it. Go for it. In many ways, the industry needs you.
Scott Honsberger is chief blogger at Your Band’s Best Friend, and is the Founder & President of the Toronto Music Industry Association