If you’re musically talented, you already have the potential to make a great entrepreneur. There are plenty of potential business opportunities that let you showcase your musical talents or work in the music industry. Below are different business ideas for musicians.
Business Ideas for Musicians
If you want to play or create your own music, you can build a business as a recording artist where you record tracks and albums, offering them for sale online or in other formats.
You could also take your talents on the road and build a business as a touring musician. You can make money from selling tickets and merchandise to people at each location you visit.
Local Event Artist
Or you could stick to performances in your local area. Book gigs at local restaurants, clubs and various events to fill out your calendar.
You could also focus specifically on performing at weddings. Make yourself a website and market your services so that couples can find you and book your services.
Many musicians also have great taste in music and know from experience what people like in live settings. So with a little mastering of the technology, they can also make excellent disc jockeys. Disc jockeys are also popular for weddings, clubs and other special events. So you can start your own business and then book various gigs.
If you have the talents to actually write music, you can build a business as a songwriter where you sell your songs or offer your services to other musicians.
You could also carve out a more specific niche as a lyricist, writing the actual words to go along with various melodies.
If you want to play music, but don’t necessarily want to be a headliner, you could work as a session musician. Session musicians work with bands or artists that need backup instrumentals to go along with their songs.
You can also offer similar services as a backup vocalists, offering your talents to other musicians on a freelance or contract basis.
A bit more than a songwriter, a composer has the skill set to create not just melodies and accompanying chords but to write more sophisticated arrangements for every instrument. For someone who has the talent to actually compose full arrangements of music, especially for larger groups of musicians, there’s the possibility of work on scores for movies, TV shows, events and more.
A conductor also has a knowledge of full musical scores and how larger musical groups — like a symphony — work together. They are in charge of leading a group of musicians in the performance of these musical pieces. And this is not just at symphony hall but for commercials, videos or television. With the right training, you could offer your services to various musical entities on a freelance basis.
If you want to write quick, catchy tunes, you can also build a business as a jingle writer, working on songs for TV commercials and other advertisements.
Theme Song Creator
Or you could work on slightly longer content by specializing in theme songs for TV, movies or other content.
Song Licensing Business
Similar to product licensing, you can also write songs and then offer to let others use them for various purposes in exchange for a fee.
You don’t necessarily need to have a lot of resources to start a business as a musician. You can actually start a business as a street performer with the proper permits.
Streaming Service Musician
It’s also possible to make some money by recording songs and then offering them on streaming services like Spotify.
You can also share your musical talents with others. As a teacher, you can start your own school or even offer workshops to people looking to play or write music. You can also do this through a franchise program like School of Rock.
Or you could work with clients on a more individual basis as a musical tutor. This can be an especially helpful format if you want to teach people how to play specific instruments like the piano.
For those whose musical talents lie more with singing than with playing instruments, you can also start a business by working with clients as a voice coach.
You can also work with musicians to get their recordings actually produced. Music producers handle things like song arrangements and recording sessions.
Record Label Owner
Or you could focus more on the business side and start your own record label, signing various artists to record work under your label.
If you want to focus on live performances, you could help artists book gigs as a booking agent.
Then you can also build a business that promotes concerts and other music related events, either online or using more traditional methods.
You could also handle pretty much every aspect of keeping a band or musical act running by serving as a band manager.
Recording Studio Owner
Or you could open your own studio and then allow musicians and recording artists to come in and use the space and equipment in exchange for a fee.
Sound engineering is a specific focus within the recording industry. You can offer your services to musicians who want someone to help create the best possible sound quality for their recordings.
Sound Effects Producer
Musicians, movie producers and others can also use the services of sound effects producers. While not necessarily directly music related, offering this type of service can use many of the same talents.
Video Game Audio Creator
Similarly, you can focus on creating sound effects, music and other audio elements for video games.
Cover Band Musician
If you want to play music but not necessarily write your own songs, you could start a cover band playing other musicians’ songs at small events in your local community or in other communities.
Or you could even start a business as a parody artist, turning popular songs into fun spoofs to be performed live, through other meda or on YouTube or other online video channels.
Music therapy is a growing industry. You can start your own business as a music therapist or even offer your services at places like nursing homes.
Music Video Director
For those who are also visually oriented, you can start a business as a music video director for artists.
Or you can showcase your own talents in videos on YouTube and make money from the ads or royalties from the site.
You could also start your own website where you showcase and sell your music using a platform like WixMusic.
If you want to write about music or even share multimedia on your own site, you can start your very own music blog and run it as a business.
For a more audio focused format, you could start your own podcast where you share songs and thoughts about music.
Instrument Rental Service
If you have access to a decent supply of musical instruments, you could start a business by offering to rent out those instruments to other musicians.
Instrument Repair Service
Or you could offer repair services to musicians and anyone who owns various musical instruments.
Musician in Residence
For those who want to play music but stick to a more steady schedule and location, you could offer your services to just one or two locations. For example, you could play at a specific restaurant in your area every Friday evening on an ongoing basis.
Singing Telegram Service
You could also offer a sort of telegram service for people who want to send friendly messages in musical form.
Or you could help others showcase their own musical talents, or lack thereof, by starting a karaoke service.
Music Festival Organizer
You could also focus on more serious musical events, organizing festivals that feature multiple artists and groups.
Concert Venue Owner
Or you could open your own venue and host concerts and other music related events.
Lots of musicians also bring in an income by selling merchandise. You can make it available at concerts so that you can make money even at free shows. And you can also sell products online.
Record Store Owner
Though musical talent isn’t an actual requirement to open a record store, it can be a popular business for the musically minded. And you can even host shows or open mic nights if you have enough space.
You can also offer your services to companies and movie or commercial producers as a voice artist. Not every job will necessarily require singing, but it’s a good thing to have on your resume.
Music Social Network Leader
For entrepreneurs who are skilled with technology and the music industry, consider starting your own social network that’s specifically for helping musicians share their skills and helping listeners find new bands and artists.
Musical Mobile App Developer
You could also put your talents into mobile app development, working on new apps for playing, finding or writing music.
Music Magazine Publisher
For the more old school entrepreneurs, you can also start a zine or other print publication aimed at musicians or music fans.
And finally, reviewing music doesn’t necessarily require one to have musical talent. But having that understanding can certainly help. You can start your own review site or even offer your talents on a freelance basis.
Keyboard Photo via Shutterstock
This article, “50 Small Business Ideas for Musicians” was first published on Small Business Trends