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Starting Out In Music? 5 People To Add To Your Team

The music industry is constantly growing as more musicians seek to start their career. Globally, independent musicians make up 43.1% of the music market. If you are hoping to join that number then there are a few things you need to know. In the early stages of your music career, you may be able to handle many things, like the promotion or external communication, by yourself. However, working alone can take up a lot of time and makes it challenging to grow as an artist. By expanding your work as a musician from a single person to a team, you can have specialized roles that can focus on external communication tasks, ensure you’re branding is consistent, and help you interpret the tastes of the audience. Investing in a team will leave more time for you to develop yourself and your music.

But before you can start searching for your next team member, you first need to know who to look out for. Listed below are five people a growing artist should consider working with:


One of the most important people to have on your team is a manager. A manager will become your right-hand person; they have multiple roles such as contacting various agencies, finance and accounting, and marketing, to name a few. Managers can also use technology to increase their work efficiency by looking into audience data and tracking their preferences. As you will be working with them most of the time, ensuring that your manager is someone you trust, and has your best interests at heart, is essential for growing your career.

PR Specialist

When it comes to handling publicity and press, public relations (PR) specialists handle internal and external communications. Public relations specialists are not only responsible for showcasing who you are as an artist in the best possible way, but they also take charge during times of change or crisis. In fact, these professionals are so in-demand that the growth potential in the field is estimated at 79% from 2019 to 2029. With many PR specialists available, it’s important to choose someone with a large network of media contacts and knowledge of the current media landscape, specifically those related to your genre of music.

Booking Agent

Landing music gigs is essential for promoting yourself as an artist, and booking agents can help you streamline this process. Their responsibilities lie in coordinating live shows: festivals, gigs in local bars, or personal appearances. When hiring a booking agent, it’s useful to look into how many contacts they have in your preferred area and if they have a good reputation in the industry. This will ensure that you get the best possible venues, timeslots, and stages, so don’t hesitate to ask your manager or other people in the industry for any recommendations or references.

Music Publisher

A typewriter with an "AUTOMATIC" key - when you're starting out in music, you might think that's how it works - photo by Mochammad Algi via Pexels

Publishing companies are businesses that boost the promotion and monetization of musical works. With an increasing demand for music, the global music publishing market has increased in size, reaching US$6267 million in 2021 and it’s expected to reach US$9532 million by 2028. The growth opens up many opportunities to make a publishing agreement with major companies like Kobalt Music, Downtown Music Services, and Pulse Music Group, which accept deals with independent artists. If you want to easily collect royalties for your music, consider connecting with music publishers.

Editor's note: many indie musicians act as their own publisher. You'll still need a distribution agent. For example, mine is DistroKid.


A gavel and books representing the work of law and lawyers - photo by Succo via Pixabay

Although a lawyer is not the most immediate member you should have, they are still one of the most powerful assets on your team. An entertainment lawyer can help you negotiate and handle contracts with different publishers or labels, agents, or other managers. They can translate copyright laws and ensure that you receive all the revenues and royalties as indicated in your contracts. When looking for a lawyer, make sure they specialize in the music industry and have experience in handling contracts.

If you’re interested in becoming a rising star much like female musicians Zoë Keating and Schumann, it’s necessary to build a team to assist you in your music career. Investing in the right people can expand your reach and improve your work as an artist.

Article contributed by Romy Jane
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