by Eric Salazar, Kristy Nichols and Spencer Prewitt
When you are in music school, you have a very full schedule between classes, studying, and (most importantly) practicing. Many music students live their lives on a limited budget. To make money, other musicians tell us “play more gigs!” and non-musician friends and family members say “get a day job!” While we would all love to play more gigs (and we all should), the reality might be that someone else is already getting those gigs or we may even not be ready yet for the gigging lifestyle. A day job is a great way to earn cash, but with such a full schedule, we might not have time to dedicate the amount of hours an employer needs. Music Majors have an especially sporadic schedule thanks to the added element of giving performances – a schedule that some employers can find hard to work with. With all of these factors, how are music students supposed to make money?
Last article we talked about how to utilize the internet to sell your music online. We talked about digital distribution companies and YouTube. If you are a composer or play in many genres, then selling music online is for you! Today BuzzReed brings you a method that works well for social butterflies and entrepreneurs.
Today: Method Three – Collaborate with Other Artists
Something that people often forget is that MANY projects outside of the field of music have a strong need for musicians! Although these project leaders might not be looking for someone to play Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, they may be looking for wind instrument players like us clarinetists to play scores, jam with bands, or even help compose music.
Here are some types of disciplines that might need our help:
Visual Artists – It is a common practice to combine art gallery shows with live music performance. The promise of experiencing visually pleasing sights while listening to aurally pleasing sounds often draws in a crowd. What better music to couple with contemporary visual art than contemporary classical music? Go out and meet some visual artists either from your university or your school. You might be surprised at what performance opportunities exist when you work together!
Videographers – Videographers are always looking for two things: 1. A great story and 2. Music to place in their film. If you have a great story (or an idea for a great story) that involves you and music – get in touch with videographers! See if they can help you tell your story. Additionally, if you are someone who writes music or can jam with non-classical bands you might want to explore the option of being involved with the music for an independent filmmaker.
Dancers – From the beginning of time, music has always had a relationship with dance. We all know about how live Music is combined with live dance in ballet, but there is more than one option for this. The same way we reduce the orchestra size (yet retain the sublime experience) with chamber music is applicable to reducing ballet. It is becoming more and more common to combine solo instrumentalists with solo dancers or chamber ensembles with small dance groups. Go out and meet some dancers, you never know what performances could result from teaming up on a project!
Collaborating with all manner of artists can be a hugely rewarding way to make some extra cash. Making friends with many different artists will help circulate your name. Project leaders are looking for music and musicians. If you are someone who has no problem leading, maybe you can be the person who coordinates all of the artists to see a project through to a successful conclusion.
That’s all for today! Over the past three articles we have given you three different ways (with three different skill sets) to actually make money while still in school. We hope you have enjoyed BuzzReed’s Savvy Clarinetist articles. If you have any questions about the content of these articles you can contact us directly at [email protected].
Get out there and make some cash! (After you are done practicing)