How to Make Money with Music

Written by on November 14, 2012 in Money - No comments | Print this page


For nearly as long as there has been music, musicians have had a tradition of performing in order to fulfill their passions and earn an income. But in modern times the landscape has changed, so much so that there are many new avenues in which to pursue music as a career, as well as new revenue streams in which to earn cash.

Many of the newer ways to earn cash through music involves technology, such as the Internet. That being said, there are more traditional methods musicians can earn money which are just as vital as embracing modern technology.

With that in mind, here are some ways the average musician can start earning a living through their hobby.


These days it isn’t enough to have a website in which to peddle songs and merchandise; a marketing plan involving popular social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter is vital as well. It’s also important to back-link as much as possible and use automated tools found on these social media sites to direct traffic back to a main website. Once the word is out on social media, people can then visit the site where they will find all the music.


It’s simply a matter of the time we live in that people are more used to downloading songs than buying CDs in a store. And it’s very hard for those trying to sell their music to compete with the free downloading many Internet users are doing these days. The solution is, once visitors have arrived at the website, to entice them with a few key downloads that showcase the musical style while whets their appetites for more.

An added benefit is that many websites actually generate money for the owner for these downloads. So even by giving some of his or her music away for free the owner can still make a bit of cash.


Playing lives is one tried and true method for musicians to earn money. Obviously the best arrangement is direct payment, which sees the musical act get paid directly by the venue. Of course less-established acts may have difficulty finding venues to play in that will actually pay them up front. But there’s no need to forgo a non-paying gig because there are other ways to earn money at a show. The most important thing is to sell CDs and merchandise at the venue. This not only helps spread the word, it puts some cash in the musician’s pocket as well.


Those interested in playing and earning money from music should seek out officially licensed venues. That’s because they are required to pay money to collectors for every performance of a song. Once the musician has banked enough cash in royalties they can collect.

These are just a few ways for musicians to go from hobbyists to a career track. The most important thing to bear in mind is that there are no quick roads to earning a steady income as a musician. It takes time, patience and, most importantly, a daily commitment to getting the word out about the music.

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This is a guest post.  Justin Miller is a professional blogger that writes for JamPlay is a leading online music educator offering 2,000+ online advanced guitar lessons in HD.


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