What can you do with a music production degree? There are several career paths you can explore with a music production degree including Music Producer, Sound Designer, Live Sound Engineer, etc.
If you hold a music production degree or planning to get one, you may be wondering what you can be able to do with it.
Well, a music production degree can open doors to so many exciting career paths and job prospects.
As a music production graduate, you can work in several musical settings and the best part is that jobs in this industry pay pretty well.
In this comprehensive guide, we will take a look at 10 career paths you can explore with a music production degree as well as other essential things you need to know.
Ready? Let’s go!
What Is a Music Production Degree?
A music production degree is like a backstage pass to the music industry.
It’s an educational program that gears you up for all things music production and audio engineering.
Think of it as the school of rock, but more technical.
These programs come in flavors of undergraduate and graduate degrees, and they’re your ticket to a career in the music biz.
So, what’s on the curriculum? Well, you’ll be diving into music theory, digital audio tech, recording techniques, and even the business side of the music world.
But it’s not all theory; you’ll get your hands on the gear too.
You’ll learn to work those recording consoles, microphones, and digital audio workstations (DAWs) like a pro.
Editing, mixing, and mastering music will become second nature.
Some programs even sprinkle in a bit of music theory and composition to flex your creative muscles.
Plus, you’ll probably get to spend quality time in professional recording studios and live sound setups.
Now, remember, the music industry isn’t just about melodies and chords.
You’ll also learn the ropes of music marketing, copyright law, and all the nitty-gritty details of how the music biz works.
If you’re into a specific music niche, like electronic music or film scoring, some programs let you specialize.
And many offer internships and chances to network with professionals, which is golden for landing that first gig.
Once you’ve got your degree in hand, you can chase careers like music producer, recording engineer, sound designer, or even studio manager.
You could be working in recording studios, handling live sound, or doing post-production for movies and TV.
Whether you’re rocking a bachelor’s or master’s degree, the key is to keep honing your skills and staying up-to-date with industry trends.
The music industry is a wild ride, but with a music production degree, you’ve got a backstage pass to the show.
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How Long Does It Take to Get a Music Production Degree?
The time it takes to get a music production degree varies depending on the level of the degree and the specific program or institution you choose.
Here’s a breakdown:
1. Associate’s Degree
If you’re looking for a quicker entry into the world of music production, an associate’s degree might be your jam.
It typically takes around 2 years to complete. Think of it as a crash course in music production basics.
You’ll get the foundational knowledge, but it’s a bit more condensed compared to a bachelor’s program.
2. Bachelor’s Degree
Now, if you’re in it for the long haul and want a more comprehensive education, a bachelor’s degree is the way to go.
It’s the standard choice for most people aiming to make a career in music production.
Plan for 3 to 4 years of study.
You’ll dive deep into everything from recording techniques to music theory and even the business side of the industry.
3. Master’s Degree
For those looking to level up even further, there’s the master’s degree.
This is where you can really specialize in your chosen area of music production.
It usually takes an additional 1 to 2 years on top of your bachelor’s degree.
You might be working on advanced projects, conducting research, or even preparing a thesis.
4. Doctoral Degree
Now, if you’re eyeing a career as a professor or aiming for high-level research, there’s the doctoral degree.
This one’s a marathon, often taking 3 to 5 or more years to complete.
Doctoral programs are less common and super specialized, designed for the music production elite.
Remember, these timelines are just ballpark figures.
Your actual duration might vary depending on factors like the specific program’s requirements, whether you’re studying full-time or part-time, and if you’ve got any transfer credits from previous courses.
Some programs offer fast-track options or let you take summer classes to speed things up.
Ultimately, whether you’re in and out with an associate’s or diving deep with a doctorate, it’s all about what suits your goals and your groove in the world of music production.
What Can You Do with a Music Production Degree?
With a music production degree, you can explore a wide range of career paths including Music Producer, Sound Designer, Live Sound Engineer, and many more.
Here are 10 career paths you can explore with a music production degree:
1. Music Producer
With a music production degree, you can dive into a cool gig as a music producer.
Picture yourself as the maestro behind the scenes, working with artists to bring their tunes to life.
You’ll oversee recording sessions, tweak the sound, and add your creative touch to the tracks.
It’s all about turning musical ideas into reality.
Whether it’s pop, rock, hip-hop, or any genre, you’ll be the sonic architect making it happen.
It’s a dynamic and rewarding career where your degree becomes your backstage pass to the music industry.
2. Sound Designer
Ever considered a gig as a sound designer?
It’s like being a sonic wizard, conjuring up immersive audio worlds for movies, video games, and beyond.
You’ll craft sounds that tug at heartstrings or send shivers down spines, all to amp up the storytelling.
Whether it’s the creak of a haunted house or the roar of a sci-fi spaceship, you’ll make it happen.
With your technical chops and creative flair, your degree becomes your ticket to a career where you’re the magician behind the scenes, adding depth and emotion to stories through the power of sound.
3. Live Sound Engineer
A Live Sound Engineer is a fantastic gig if you’ve got a music production degree.
You’ll be the expert behind the scenes, making sure the music sounds amazing at live events.
Think about setting up gear, tweaking sound levels, and working closely with musicians to create unforgettable shows.
It’s like a mix of technical know-how and artistic flair.
You’ll find gigs at music festivals, theaters, and on tour with bands.
It’s the perfect blend of your tech skills and passion for music, making it a seriously cool career choice.
4. Music Supervisor
Being a Music Supervisor is like being the DJ for movies, TV, and more.
You get to handpick and license the perfect tunes to enhance storytelling.
With your production know-how, you’ll sync up music flawlessly with visuals, creating powerful moments.
Negotiating licenses and managing budgets are part of the gig. You’ll work closely with directors to set the mood for projects.
It’s where your love for music meets the world of media, making it a super cool and influential career where you’re the maestro of soundtracks.
5. Recording Engineer
Imagine your music production degree as your backstage pass to the world of recording engineering.
It’s all about capturing the music magic in the studio.
You’ll set up mics, play with fancy recording gear, and make sure every note sounds its best.
Whether it’s a rock band’s anthem or a solo artist’s ballad, you’ll be the expert behind the sound curtain.
Your keen ear and technical know-how will turn tunes into sonic gems.
So, with your degree in hand, step into the world of recording engineering and let your passion groove with the music.
Being a Composer/Arranger is like being a musical architect.
You’ll create original compositions or give existing tunes a fresh spin.
Your production skills will let you use high-tech software and studio tricks to make your music stand out.
Whether you’re scoring for movies, TV, video games, or working with artists, it’s all about turning ideas into incredible sound.
You’ll collaborate with directors, producers, and fellow musicians, turning their visions into musical magic.
It’s where your technical wizardry meets your artistic soul, making it a fantastic and diverse career choice in the music world.
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7. Mixing Engineer
Think of mixing engineering as your music production degree’s cool gig.
You’ll be the audio sculptor, taking raw tracks and turning them into pure gold.
Adjusting levels, adding effects, and finding that perfect balance – that’s your jam.
Whether it’s rock, pop, or indie, your magic touch will make every song shine.
You’ll collaborate with artists, producers, and studios to craft sonic gems.
So, if you’ve got an ear for detail and a love for music, mixing engineering is your stage, and your degree is the backstage pass to the action.
8. Studio Manager
As a Studio Manager, you’ll be the captain of the recording ship.
Your job is to make sure the studio runs like a well-oiled machine.
Think of scheduling sessions, balancing budgets, and keeping gear in top shape.
Your technical know-how will come in handy for troubleshooting and helping artists get the sound they want.
You’ll be the go-to person for clients, producers, and engineers, making sure projects stay on track and on budget.
It’s the perfect combination of your music passion and organizational skills, making it a sweet gig in the music biz.
9. Mastering Engineer
Ever thought about becoming a mastering engineer?
It’s like being the last magician in the music-making process.
Your job is to fine-tune tracks until they sound absolutely mind-blowing, whether it’s on a hi-fi system, earbuds, or in a club.
You’re the one who ensures that the song you love sounds epic everywhere.
With your tech skills and that finely tuned ear, you’ll make tracks radio-ready and irresistible.
So, if you’re into putting that final sparkle on music, mastering engineering is your stage, and your degree is the backstage pass to the sonic wonderland.
10. Music Educator/Instructor
With a music production degree, you can rock the role of a Music Educator/Instructor.
Picture yourself teaching music theory, composition, and production tricks to students of all ages.
Thanks to your tech skills and creativity, you’ll make learning music a blast.
Whether it’s in a school, giving private lessons, or leading workshops, you’ll be nurturing the next generation of music lovers and producers.
It’s a super rewarding gig where you get to share your passion, ignite creativity, and shape the future of music education.
So, if you love music and teaching, this path is your stage!
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is Music Production a Good Career?
Yes, music production can be a good career if you’re really into music and tech.
It lets you be super creative and potentially make good money by producing songs, albums, or soundtracks for stuff like movies and games.
But it’s a tough game – it’s super competitive, so you need mad skills and connections.
Your income can be all over the place, and you’ve got to keep learning because things change fast.
Still, if you’re up for the challenge and love music, it can be a seriously rewarding career with chances to work in studios, freelance, and maybe even hit the big time.
What Is the Best Degree for Music Production?
The best degree for music production depends on your groove.
Consider programs like a Bachelor of Music in Music Production, a Bachelor of Science in Audio Production, or a Bachelor of Arts in Music Technology.
These courses dive into music theory, recording tricks, sound design, and digital production.
Some even toss in music business know-how.
But remember, many successful producers have different degrees or none at all.
Real-world experience, internships, and building connections can be just as vital in this competitive field.
So, choose the degree that harmonizes best with your goals and passion for music.
What Are the Best Music Production Schools in the USA?
If you’re eyeing the best music production schools in the USA, here are some top picks.
Berklee College of Music in Boston is a legend, known for its comprehensive programs.
USC Thornton School of Music in LA has awesome connections and resources.
Full Sail University in Florida offers hands-on training with high-tech studios.
NYU and the Clive Davis Institute in NYC put you right in the heart of the music scene.
It’s all about what suits your goals, location, and interests within music production.
So, pick the one that vibes with you best!
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Is It Hard to Find a Job As a Music Producer?
Getting a job as a music producer can be a bit of a grind.
The competition is fierce, with lots of people chasing the same dream.
It’s about who you know, so networking is key.
Most producers freelance, so steady gigs can be hard to come by, and income can be up and down.
But if you keep honing your skills, stay persistent, and develop a unique style, you can find your place.
Nowadays, using online platforms and social media can help you showcase your work.
It’s a tough road, but with talent, hustle, and business smarts, you can make it happen.
What Subjects Do You Need to Study Music Production?
To rock music production, you’ll need to hit some key subjects.
Start with music theory for the basics like melody and harmony.
Audio engineering is a must, teaching recording, mixing, and mastering.
Sound design gets into crafting unique sounds.
Tech skills matter, so get comfortable with digital audio workstations (DAWs) and gear.
Don’t forget the business side – music business and marketing help you navigate the industry.
Soft skills like communication are golden when working with artists.
Remember, hands-on practice and experimentation are just as crucial as hitting the books to master music production.
A music production degree can open doors to so many exciting career paths including Music Producer, Sound Designer, Live Sound Engineer, etc.
Whether you prefer mixing, sound design, or production, there’s something for everyone.
Although the music industry can be very competitive, it has extremely high-paying jobs too.
The best part is that you will have the opportunity to work with several amazing artists to create nice music for people to hear and vibe to.
Overall, a music production degree is highly recommended and can lead to a fulfilling and rewarding career.
If you have any inquiries or questions, kindly drop them in the comment section and I will respond as soon as possible.