Why Learn The Music Business?

© 2010 Vinny Ribas

Being successful in the music industry requires that you possess a strong working knowledge of the industry itself. That means knowing the terminology, knowing how every facet of the industry operates, knowing where your incomes come from, knowing how each division is tied to the others and more. There are many reasons why this knowledge is not just good to have, it is absolutely vital! Here are some examples of why educating yourself should be a priority for you.

  • You’ll know how to avoid getting ripped off. Scam artists can smell a green ‘wannabe’ from a hundred miles away.
  • You’ll know how to communicate with your producer, other musicians, your manager and everyone else. What good is hiring someone with a vast amount of experience when you can’t speak the same language?
  • People will take you seriously. What benefit is there in meeting someone who could have a profound affect on your career if they walk away thinking you’re not serious about it?
  • You’ll know what to expect and what not to expect. You’ll be much less frustrated if you know what needs to be in place for certain things to happen, how long things take to happen etc. You won’t think that everyone is just trying to rip you off or that your team members aren’t doing their jobs.
  • You’ll have realistic expectations. Knowing how things work enables you to guage how far you can go and in what time frame.
  • You will attract key people who can help you. People love to help other people who are working hard to help themselves.
  • You don’t have to rely on everyone else to take care of your business. You’ll find that there are things that you can be doing personally to improve your chances of success.
  • You’ll hire the right people. If you know how to qualify a potential manager, booking agent, producer etc., you’ll recognize the real deals as well as the snow-jobbers.
  • You’ll manage your money more effectively. You won’t waste money in areas where you could have spent less or gotten something for free. You won’t squander it on bad ideas or investments (unnecessary equipment, paying team members too much, buying ineffective advertising etc.)
  • If you know where all of the ways in which artists and songwriters get paid, you’ll recognize opportunities to increase your income. It would be a real shame to leave serious money on the table.
  • You’ll be a much better leader. No one wants to be in a band or on a team with a clueless, pie-in-the-sky leader. If they are serious, they want to work with someone with a vision and a solid plan on how to attain it.
  • You’ll be respected by the industry, ranging from other musicians up to the highest-level executives, and everyone in between. You can’t buy that respect; you have to earn it.
  • You’ll know how the industry is taking advantage of technology instead of being left in the dust. You’ll also be able to market yourself more effectively.
  • You’ll get bigger and better gigs because you are taking care of every detail of business on the smallest jobs. Entertainment buyers talk to each other.
  • You’ll be recommended to ‘the right people’ by others who are willing to put their reputations on the line for you. Would you recommend someone you met who doesn’t have his or her act together?
  • You’ll be invited into the ‘inner circle’ – that illusive club of movers and shakers who know how to make things happen.

This list can go on forever!  But please note that I am not saying that you need to be an expert in every facet of your business. You just need to be versed enough to be able to 1) hold your own in industry conversations; 2) protect your money and your reputation, and 3) attract the influential people who can help you take giant leaps instead of baby steps or remaining stagnant.

Learning how the music business works doesn’t need to take years or even months. This website is packed with full-length videos, articles, tools, podcasts and more that are available to our members. We cover every aspect of the business business and teach you what you need to know to make wise career decisions and attract the right kind of help and contacts. Combine that with our numerous networking opportunities, and you’ll have everything and everyone you need to increase your chances of success in the industry.

About The Author

Vinny Ribas

Vinny Ribas is the founder and CEO of Indie Connect, an artist management, consulting and training company. The company also hosts networking and educational events and has published an app that connects people to the Nashville Music Industry. During his 40+ year career, Vinny has been a full time musician, artist manager, booking agent, songwriter, studio owner, producer and the Entertainment Director for the NV State Fair. He has also coached over 1000 artists and songwriters. He is a sought after speaker and has authored over 400 music industry articles. Vinny is also the CEO of Top 4M Entertainment, an independent film and television production company.