Like The Ramones, many musicians would say, “It’s not my place (in the 9 to 5 world).” So then, how do they pay the bills? It’s become more complicated than ever in light of changes in the music industry, so the Future of Music Coalition launched the Artist Revenue Streams project, which examines how revenue streams are changing and why. Project co-director Kristin Thomson talks to Jim and Greg about their most recent data: five financial case studies profiling how different kinds of musicians make a living. There’s the Jazz Bandleader-Composer, the Indie Rock Composer-Performer, the Jazz Sideman-Bandleader, the Professional Orchestra Player and the Contemporary Chamber Ensemble.
The Future of Music Coalition, a Washington, DC-based advocacy group for musicians, has recently been releasing results of an extensive study of revenue sources for today’s musicians. The project, called Artist Revenue Streams, included an online survey of over 5000 musicians, as well as extensive case studies of nine working musicians. Five case studies have been released so far.[…]
Every time you warble Don’t Stop Believin’ at karaoke or buy a poster of Justin Bieber represents a small handful of change in the music industry’s tipjar. In fact, the Future of Music Coalition has identified no less than 42 distinct revenue streams ranging from karaoke licensing to merchandise sales.
Christopher Bavitz talks with Future of Music Coalition’s Kristin Thomson about how/whether artists are making a living today.
Artists have always had a unique relationship with money. On one hand, the lack of it can be what holds them back from realizing their full creative potential. If art doesn’t pay the rent, a part-time job becomes a necessity. Before you know it, the part-time job becomes a full-time job, leaving little to no time for art. Sound familiar?
On the other hand lies the internal struggle of capitalizing on your creativity. For most artists, money isn’t the driving force behind creation ― it’s expression. But you know you have to eat, so you accept the “art as commerce” reality and just pray you don’t end up like KISS. Artists know they need money, but have a hard time accepting it, for fear that it will become the force that drives them. read more
It’s the age of the one-man band, but the picture looks different from days past. Along with the drum on a strap, and a harmonica on a metal brace, the performer now carries a laptop – and with that and an Internet connection, she or he records and distributes music, designs Web sites, and schedules tour dates.
To understand better the issues affecting how American musicians earn a living today, the Future of Music Coalition launched in 2010 Artist Revenue Streams, a multi-stage research project to document musicians’ revenue streams. Kristin Thomson, co-director of “Artists Revenue Streams,” shares the recently-released results with CCC’s Chris Kenneally as part of the Beyond the Book Podcast series. […]
When we interviewed Kristin Thomson back in October, the Future of Music Coalition was in the midst of a landmark research project designed to illuminate just how musicians make their livings in the 21st century. The earliest of those results have started to be published at money.futureofmusic.org, but Kristin Thomson and Erin Mckeown were kind enough to give us a walk through of some of their findings this morning. read more
[…] Thomson says she hopes the study will help music fans to better understand the financial realities that musicians are dealing with.
“Sometimes there’s assumptions about musicians that, ‘Oh, they’re all rich,’ or the opposite, ‘Oh, this is just a hobby for them, they should get real jobs,’” she says. “There’s huge assumptions made about musicians, based on people thinking about all musicians being rock stars or crazy artists. We hope that this work, on the biggest level, can humanize or demystify the musical community … to give a sense of the more nuanced take on the way musicians knit a career together.”
Freelance musicians once provided the backbone of New York’s classical music scene. Work was abundant for the top players and the lifestyle never routine. But faced with changing tastes and new technology, many of the regional orchestras, Broadway pits and jingle houses that employ freelancers have cut back or shuttered. This is forcing musicians to get a bit more creative and entrepreneurial.
To explain this state of affairs, host Naomi Lewin is joined by three guests: Miriam Souccar, a senior reporter at Crain’s New York Business; Jean Cook, director of programs at the Future of Music Coalition and Mary Rowell, a freelance violinist and host on Q2 Music. read more
[…] One of the more interesting bits of data presented during the panel had nothing to do with startups but should be looked at and analyzed more in depth. Kristin Thomson, an Artist Revenue Expert at the national nonprofit Future of Music Coalition, presented those in attendance with a new study that showed most artists earning over 100k a year counted their accountant, lawyer and webmaster as their three most important team members. This needs to be looked into further because as Thomson pointed out, there is no way of currently knowing if these artists have that level of success because of the accountant, or if they have an accountant because they have reached that level of success.
The Future of Music Coalition (FMC), a national nonprofit advocacy group for musicians, has launched the Artist Revenue Streams (ARS) project, a multi-phase research effort that aims to document how today’s musician earns a living.
In the project’s first report, performance rights royalties have emerged as one of the most dependable, longest lasting sources of income for songwriters and composers. The findings independently emphasize the vital importance of BMI membership for creators, many of whom rely on BMI earnings their entire lives.
The ARS project will reveal more data gathered from a second test group in May 2012.