Berklee or L.A.?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by LazyAssedLover, Dec 28, 2019.

  1. G19Tony


    Apr 27, 2018
    Las Vegas, NV
    A young friend of mine started in the Music program at UNLV. He's a monster bassist, Electric and Double. He changed majors and got his degree in Radiology. He worked at that for awhile, but is currently the Bassist for Lovelytheband, and is doing quite well. I'm glad he has a solid backup.
  2. IamGroot


    Jan 18, 2018
    If you have a PE and old school skills, an engineering degree can be rewarding. Just need to find the right niche.
    DrMole, Mike Whitfield and SactoBass like this.
  3. G19Tony


    Apr 27, 2018
    Las Vegas, NV
    Not being a real musician, just a hack, I will say that walking past Berklee to get to Fenway, the Berklee chicks out busking on the corners were good musicians, and cute as buttons. :)
    DrMole and Mike Whitfield like this.
  4. I'll just add I didn't go to school for music...went to get into law enforcement. I ended up picking a bad major for that too. The advice I'd give, and take it for what you want, is get a degree that you can do if music doesn't work or if you get injured and it stops your ability to do music. That's why I always tell young kids that want to go to the FBI or whatnot is to get a degree in accounting or engineering. That way they have a fall back.

    I understand that there is a certain level of academic learning needed to a pro (or even a skilled hobbyist) but it really comes down to ingesting music and being able to replicate or enhance or simplify it. I can't do much more then learn (and then mostly forget) 4 to 7 songs in a session. About 4 years ago I started taking lessons and doing the Adult Performance program at the local School of Rock. Prior to that was about 30 years ago in middle school chorus.

    I do it because I always wanted to learn how to play the bass. Maybe one day I'll try the sax, but that is way in the future. Most likely after I retire.
    12BitSlab and G19Tony like this.
  5. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Lake Havasu City, AZ
    +1 :thumbsup:

    PE here (civil). Recently retired after working as a civil engineer for 35 years. Yes, it was very rewarding, and quite lucrative (for me, anyway). And now I have all the time in the world to play music (as long as I remain alive!) :eek: :D

    But I will say this: getting my degree and working as a civil engineer as a career did not leave me with enough time to pursue a professional music career. That was certainly fine with me since I wanted to go with a career that had a higher probability of success. But for the OP, his career interest may differ from what mine was. :thumbsup:
    DrMole, 12BitSlab and IamGroot like this.
  6. RichSnyder

    RichSnyder Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    My nephew was accepted to Berklee but he didn't go due to cost. Still graduating with a music degree and did a semester with a Nashville school that was affiliated with his college. The Nashville thing sounded cool but in talking to him, it sounded like they were loaned out to concert venues to run the march tables for "experience". I didn't press for more detail, but it seemed sketchy. Berklee has the best reputation, but at $64k / year don't go into debt to go there. Wherever you go, network, network, network. You will need the skill set, but connections and connections of connections will open the door for auditions and opportunities. I wish I could explain that to much younger me.
    DrMole likes this.
  7. Jon McBass

    Jon McBass Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2017
    South Carolina
    Berklee is the best school of those three without a doubt. Also maybe the most challenging. Add to that, Boston in my experience is a fantastic world class city to be a student, full of culture and with plenty of venues for you to get live performance experience.

  8. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    I have lived in a Boston since 1988 and I do not know anybody who has had a car stolen. I know a jazz pianist who got drunk and left his van running, double parked in Copley Square and when he went back in the morning it was still there with the radio on. He did get a ticket, though.
  9. Bill Staudt

    Bill Staudt Guest

    Jun 18, 2002
    Go to UNT
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
    bass4more and BOOG like this.
  10. BOOG


    Dec 13, 2016
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Nuff said.
  11. Where did Joe Dart go?
  12. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    Univ. of Michigan
  13. What are your musical and creative goals? Each school is going to offer you something different musically, so in the end I would go with whatever will make your goals hopefully easier to attain.

    That being said I'm a believer that the LA/SoCal music scene as a whole is really popping right now and on an equal caliber to the East Coast. There's great music happening pretty much any night of the week and both the schools you listed in LA have some great faculty on it. Jerry Watts is one who stands out to me. If you really want to base yourself in LA, you should also consider checking out CalArts, USC, CSUN, and to an extent UCLA. Those schools have a serious reputation in the LA scene, have a huge alumni network in the area, and tons of connections to the industry. If jazz is your thing, a lot of the young players who are soaring in LA have some sort of connection to those schools.
  14. Manticore


    Feb 27, 2016
    There are excellent options on both coasts. On the west coast, and LA in particular, I believe USC would be a better better option than MI, but this is a personal opinion.
  15. LowFactor


    Jul 6, 2018
    Can’t say much about the other two but I did graduate from Berklee in December of 2001. Not sure how much it has changed in the last 20 years... it was a great place to network and make friends. Learned a lot while I was there.
    however music schools are generally easy to get into but tough to finish. I think Berklee averaged an 85% dropout rate after the first semester..... a lot of kids get there and just party and think it’s a music school, it’ll be easy. You have to apply yourself. Or they look at Steve Vai who went for a year then dropped out to work with Zappa..... and think they will do the same. As with anything you get out of it what you put into it.
    My suggestion is go to a community college or some local school that is cheaper first and get all of your general education stuff out of the way then transfer to Berklee or one of the other schools. Saves a lot of money and still get the ‘name’ on the degree.
    And don’t just go as a performance major. Look into getting a business degree or a music production degree. Most of the best players when I was there were studying something besides just playing. I was a music production and engineering major. Though these days I would recommend getting a business degree.
    A lot of the music industry, especially on the engineering side is still very old school. Start at the bottom and work your way up. But no one really teaches you the business side of things. Like taxes and being self employed and what not. Which is just as important to surviving as knowing all the music theory stuff.
    Also would say maybe check out Belmont in Nashville. Really good school for music and performing. And a lot cheaper than the others. And Nashville is probably the hottest scene out there right now. Just food for thought. Good luck in your journey.
  16. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    With the OP coming from Austria, I can offer that picking Berklee would have you in the Norheast which has cheaper/ shorter flights back home than LA. Berklee is definitely geared towards an international student body. As a teenager from a rural American background, it was a gift to be able to play with people from all over the globe. Also, we have dreary winters that lend themselves to really hunkering down with practice. I am not sure I could have gotten much done with all the temptations of sunshine and beaches if I had gone to Los Angeles at 19.
    Also, the truth is that a Berklee does give you the skills to make a living as a working musician. If you apply yourself, you’ll leave with the fundamental ear training and theory to be able to play in a wide variety of settings. It is expensive as hell, it must be said. Much more so than when I went there and I am still paying off those F#^*ing loans.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
  17. timonvh


    Oct 16, 2010
    If you are going to correct spelling mistakes, do it right. Julliard???
  18. BOOG


    Dec 13, 2016
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Jewel Yard, yes?:smug:
  19. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Why the urge to move on to LA?

    Either way, figure out your best plan to pay the student loans back and go there as your place after graduation. California is way too expensive a place to live right now.
    Mike Whitfield and BOOG like this.
  20. RichSnyder

    RichSnyder Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Boston isn't the definition of cheap either.
    DrMole likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jul 29, 2021

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.