Band as Business, Musician as Entrepreneur

How to earn a career as a professional musician by composing, performing and recording the songs you love to share.
Free tutorial
Rating: 4.6 out of 5 (274 ratings)
11,935 students
5hr 24min of on-demand video
English [Auto]

Understand why musicians and artists are small business entrepreneurs
Understand that writing songs, recording, and performing music makes provides you with economic and legal rights from which revenue flows
Understand possible business entities and the legalities of group issues
Understand the importance of developing a strategic approach to your businesses by setting goals and making and implementing plans
Understand the aesthetic and technical issues of composition, songwriting, recording, and performing
Understand the business and legal issues of composition, songwriting, recording, and performing
Understand marketing and promotion in terms of shared values, conversations, and permission marketing
Understand distribution platforms, how distribution follows marketing
Understand licensing and how to allow others to use your rights
Understand crowd sourcing
Understand the importance of getting and retaining customers and the importance of data, research, and networking to make it possible to improve in all areas.
Understand that music is a part of a larger, multi-faceted “Creative Life”
Understand the importance of follow through, continuity, making and implementing plans
Understand what it takes to create a sustainable career in the creative arts


  • A passion for music - writing it, recording it, performing it, or listening to it
  • An interest in the legal and business implications of music composition, recording, and performance
  • An interest in how the music business works and a curiosity about why some musicians make it and some don’t


How do I earn money with music? Every musician asks themselves this question at some point. Few receive an answer in the form of a career in music.

This course gives you all the answers you need to succeed as a professional musician. 

Musician as Entrepreneur: Band as Business features over 5.5 hours of insightful video interviews with 70 of the top music business minds. We won't bore you with lectures. We offer only practical, specific, real-world advice from the likes of Jimmy Iovine, Glen Ballard, Irv Gotti, Jerry Moss, Martin Atkins, Ray Parker Jr., Randy Newman, Don Passman, Dave Stewart, Wayne Kramer and Lawrence Lessig, to name just a few.

Alongside the video, in-depth PDF lesson guides are provided to steer you through the course. Each section covers a critical component of the music career, and you'll find a book's worth of material to pore through. We also list additional online resources from Artists House so you can dive deeply into your area of interest.

The purpose of this course is to help musicians make money by understanding that the music they write, record and perform creates business and legal rights that will help them create sustainable careers.  It’s practical, it’s philosophical, and it’s determined to help you, the musician, and you the music entrepreneur, understand the legal foundations and business opportunities inherent in doing what you love.   

  • How to think: Understand musicians, bands, and performing artists as businesses and the best practices available for their sustainability.
  • How to know: Understand excellence in respect of the production processes and the specific legal and business consequences of a musician’s creative work.
  • How to share: Understand the process and consequences of publishing, sharing, giving, licensing, distributing, selling, and marketing opportunities in respect of the creative work of the musician and the performing artist.
  • The way forward: Understand the processes for sustainability and continuity, the availability and role of online resources and outsourcing, and the importance of personal development and business growth. 

Who this course is for:

  • Beginners and young musicians who want to understand how the music business works and where they fit into it
  • Anyone interested in a career in music
  • Any musician, amateur or professional, looking for ways of making more money making music
  • Professional musicians and bands who want to move to the next level
  • Music teachers on all educational levels
  • Parents of children considering a career in music


Make Music, Make Meaning, Make Money
John Snyder
  • 4.6 Instructor Rating
  • 274 Reviews
  • 11,935 Students
  • 1 Course

John Snyder is the founder and president of the Artists House Foundation, a nonprofit music company dedicated to creating educational presentations in several areas, including instruction for instruments, master classes, careers in the arts, and legendary performers. In addition to his producing career, Snyder has held positions at the upper levels of many major recording companies. As the assistant to the president of CTI Records, Creed Taylor, Snyder oversaw legal and business affairs, publishing, manufacturing, distribution, and artists and repertoire operations. Under the tutelage of Herb Alpert, he served as director of Horizon Jazz Series for A&M Records.  Snyder later served as director of jazz production for Atlantic Records, reporting to Ahmet Ertegun, where his responsibilities included production and packaging, promotion, publicity, and marketing. Thirty-two of the over 300 recordings produced by Snyder received Grammy nominations and five of them received Grammy awards.  Snyder is currently a member of the New York Bar. As a former member of the New York Chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), he served on the Board of Governors, Education Committee, and Grammy in the Schools Committee. He has been with the Loyola University New Orleans College of Music faculty since 2004 and is currently Chair of the Department of Music Industry Studies and the Conrad N. Hilton Eminent Scholar at Loyola.

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