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An entrepreneur in the music business understands the industry's history, learns from the latest trends, and creatively pushes the boundaries of art and sound. This learning path provides best practices for working in the music business.
Learn the roles and inner workings of the music business.
Understand music law and social media best practices.
Sell & Promote your music, merchandise, and digital releases.
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 1 The Big Picture with Steve Rennie
Learn how the music industry really works. Insider Steve Rennie explains the big picture, the realities of getting by, and how artists and songwriters can kick off successful music careers. The first of 9 courses on getting ahead in the music biz.
1h 4m • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 2 Making Great Music with Steve Rennie
Learn the secrets of making great music that makes its way into the hands of music biz movers and shakers.
28m 20s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 3 Treating Your Career as a Business with Steve Rennie
Steve Rennie explains how to approach the music biz with the mindset of an entrepreneur and look at a career in music as a business.
50m 39s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 4 Building a Professional Team with Steve Rennie
Picking a great team of professionals is one of the most important and impactful decisions you are going to make in your music career. Learn about the key players you need on your team (managers, publicists, etc.) and what they do, how much they get paid, how you find them, and when you need them.
30m 41s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 5 Managers with Steve Rennie
Learn how to find and hire a manager to guide your music career, and build a long-lasting artist-manager relationship.
51m 18s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 6 Marketing and Promotion with Steve Rennie
Learn how to market and promote your music and turn music consumers into permanent fans.
34m 28s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 7 Record Labels with Steve Rennie
Learn about the role of record labels in the music business. Learn the secrets of finding a record label, negotiating a record deal, and getting paid.
54m 55s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 8 Music Publishing with Steve Rennie
Get started in music publishing. Learn how to sell your music and turn your songs into money.
36m 57s • COURSE
An Insider's Guide to Today's Music Biz: 9 Touring with Steve Rennie
Learn how to plan and organize a music tour, book gigs, and build out a great live show. Steve Rennie shares insider tips for a successful music career.
38m 44s • COURSE
The Business of Songwriting: First Steps with Garrick Chow
Get started in the business of songwriting. Learn about all of the major organizations, rights, and procedures that songwriters have to deal with in the music business.
1h 20m • COURSE
Super Fans: The Future of the Music Industry with Benji Rogers
In this short film, Benji Rogers, founder of PledgeMusic, heads to SXSW to talk to music insiders about the ways artists can connect with super fans—the fans who want deeper relationships with their favorite musicians, and are willing to pay for it.
15m 38s • COURSE
Music Law: Managing a Band's Business with Richard Stim
Learn to avoid the major music business and legal pitfalls that can break bands apart, such as financial mismanagement and contract disputes.
58m 49s • COURSE
Music Law: Copyrighting a Song with Richard Stim
Learn how to get and protect copyrights for your songs, and understand the critical language, concepts, and business aspects of music copyright.
1h 7m • COURSE
Music Law: Recording, Management, Rights, and Performance Contracts with Richard Stim
Learn how to understand and negotiate terms for the four major types of music business contracts: recording, management, performance, and rights agreements.
1h 40m • COURSE
Selling Music: MP3s, Streams, and CDs with Bobby Owsinski
Learn how to make money selling your music. Get tips for boosting sales from CDs and digital downloads on iTunes, Spotify, and Pandora.
53m 59s • COURSE
Selling Music Merchandise with Bobby Owsinski
Learn how to make money selling music merchandise. Find out where to order merch, how to price it, and how to run a successful merch table or online store.
38m 41s • COURSE
Digital Release and Promotion Strategies for Musicians with Evan Sutton
Find out how to promote your music online. Learn the best practices for self-releasing and marketing music.
59m 18s • COURSE
Taxes and Accounting for Music with Richard Stim
Making money in the music business? Find out how to claim income from gigs, maximize your deductions, and file the right tax forms with the IRS.
56m 24s • COURSE
You'll learn the music business with these experts.
Steve Rennie is a music industry expert, having promoted and managed bands such as Mötley Crüe and Incubus.
Steve Rennie began his music career working as a booking agent at USC. After dropping out of college in 1980, and being passed over for a job in the mailroom at the William Morris Agency, he decided to start his own concert promotion company called Steve Rennie Presents. For the next 2½ years he promoted a number of up and coming new wave bands, including The Motels, The Plimsouls, Adam Ant, X, The Blasters, Mötley Crüe, and INXS, in secondary markets outside LA. On New Year's Eve 1983, he had his first big breakthrough in LA, booking The Motels at the Beverly Theater in Beverly Hills, getting the nod to promote the show over the big promoters in town. By 1983, he had caught the attention of Southern California's leading concert promoter, Avalon Attractions, which offered him a chance to join the company. Steve accepted and soon rose in the ranks to become the senior vice president of Avalon Attractions.
In 1990, he left Avalon Attractions to start his first incarnation of REN Management Corporation, an artist management firm where he managed a number of top alternative bands, including Dramarama, The Wonder Stuff, Ned's Atomic Dustbin, The The, and Primal Scream. In 1994, he accepted an offer from then Epic Records president and current One Direction manager Richard Griffiths. Steve became senior vice president and general manager at Epic Records, where he met and helped sign a young So Cal band called Incubus. He took the band under his wing and helped them build the foundation of what became one of the most successful alt rock bands of the late 1990s and early 2000s.
In 1998, Steve left Epic to become one of the founding members of one of the pioneering Internet music startups, ARTISTdirect. When he informed the members of Incubus that he would be leaving Epic to join his friends Marc Geiger and Don Muller at ARTISTdirect, guitarist Mike Einziger asked Steve to comanage the band with their then manager, Mark Shoffner. He accepted the offer and stayed at ARTISTdirect until 2000, when he left the company to manage Incubus on a full-time basis. Shortly thereafter, the band released their breakthrough, multiplatinum-selling album Make Yourself. Over the next 14 years, the band went on to have a #1 Billboard Top 100 album, a #2 Top 100 album, and a dozen Top 10 alternative radio hits. During his tenure as manager, Incubus built a huge live-touring business and one of the most dedicated and loyal fan bases in the music scene. In January 2014, the band and Steve parted company. Today, all of Steve's focus is on his new venture, RenmanMB, which is a mecca for all aspiring artists and music business professionals to come and learn the "real" music business from some of the smartest, most talented, and successful people in the music industry.
Garrick Chow has authored 75+ training courses, and is a presenter at Macworld and AIGA.
Garrick Chow is a senior staff author at Lynda.com, and has authored dozens of courses, covering a diverse range of topics. He regularly leads live classes and seminars at private companies, government agencies, colleges, and universities. He has been a presenter at the Macworld conference, and at events for design associations such as AIGA and UCDA. His interests include audio and music production, digital lifestyle tools, and fitness-related apps and gadgets. When not sitting in front of a computer screen, Garrick can be found playing with the indie-rock band The Jellybricks (www.thejellybricks.com) or trail running. Visit him at www.garrickchow.com or follow him on Twitter @garrickchow.
Benji Rogers is a London-based musician and founder of PledgeMusic, a fan-driven music publishing platform.
Benji Rogers is an independent musician from London who has been making his own records since 1999. In 2009, Benji founded PledgeMusic, the leading international direct-to-fan platform. PledgeMusic offers artists a unique way to engage their fans in the music-making process while interacting with a global audience of music super fans, which has resulted in chart-topping albums worldwide. In 2013, Benji was recognized on Billboard's 40 Under 40 Power Players list, and in 2014, he won Digital Executive of the Year at the MUSEXPO International Music Awards.
Richard Stim is an attorney specializing in intellectual property law and small business issues.
Richard Stim is a Bay Area attorney and author specializing in intellectual property law and small-business issues. He is the author or co-author of over a dozen books, including:
Music Law: How to Run Your Band's Business
Patent, Copyright & Trademark: An Intellectual Property Desk Reference
Getting Permission: How to License and Clear Copyrighted Materials Online & Off
Contracts: The Essential Business Desk Reference, and
Profit From Your Idea: How to Make Smart Licensing Deals
Stim regularly answers readers' intellectual-property questions at his blog: Dear Rich: Nolo's Intellectual Property Blog. In addition to working as an editor at Nolo, a Berkeley publisher, Stim maintains a private practice and has represented cartoonists, graphic artists, toy designers, software developers, musicians, and writers. He's worked as a musician and currently records with two bands. His new obsession is photographing crows.
With 23 books (and counting), Bobby Owsinski is a bestselling author and thought leader in the music business.
Using his music and recording experience combined with an easy-to-understand writing style, Bobby Owsinski has become one of the best-selling authors in the music recording industry, with sixteen books that are now staples in audio recording, music, and music business programs in colleges around the world. Based in Los Angeles, Bobby is also a producer of several music-oriented television shows and can frequently be seen as a moderator, panelist, or presenter at a variety of industry conferences.
Evan Sutton's music has been heard in clubs around the world, in short films, and in ad campaigns.
He is relied upon by a growing number of artists as a production luminary, working with Vince Clarke (Depeche Mode, Erasure), Dan Platzman (Imagine Dragons), Spank Rock, DJ Shiftee, and many more. As Astrolith, Sutton distills his sound further, rocking dance floors with live sets consisting entirely of original music. Astrolith has released on Mute; Boys Noize Records; Hot Mom USA; Slit Jockey Records; and his own imprint, Space Is The Place, comanaged by Rar Kelly.