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professional musicians

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by evilbob101, May 20, 2002.


  1. I was wondering what all the types of jobs for a musician there are and how much do they make.

    for instance, I know there is always the obvious---be in a band, but the money can be from nothing if you dont have at least one hit, up to several millions.

    studio session player---no idea how much they make

    what else is out there?
     
  2. JayAmel

    JayAmel Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Aurillac, France
    Though music is far from being my main source of incomes, here is what I do professionally :

    - bass lessons,
    - instrumental stock music (used by TV productions when they need to illustrate a report or a documentary),
    - occasional replacements in orchestras (I don't want to stick in a variety-show band).

    I must acknowledge that only the second point really pleases me. The other points just allow me to have full financial independence for my musical budget, without having to "bite" into the family budget. All my gear was 100% financed by what I earned with music.

    The bands I'm newly involved in are not profitable for the moment. I hope they will one day or another, but the biggest richness they give me is to allow me to play the music I love at no cost.

    All the best,
     
  3. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Uncle Sam is the biggest employer of musicians around! Service bands pay between $20K and $50 or 60K (I'm ballparking here) with benefits and 30 days paid per year.


    And you pretty much always work with really good musicians, plus you can freelance on the side....:cool:
     
  4. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Cruise ships hire musicians so you have the advantage of playing music and traveling to exotic places. To get a crusie ship gig you absolutely have to read music as you will be playing what they tell you to play.
     
  5. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    Don't forget the circus
     
  6. now by service, you mean the military, right?
     
  7. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    I do. All of the (U.S.) Armed Forces have bands of varying levels (all quite professional, though, just some more than others). Even the Coast Guard has one!
     
  8. Oysterman

    Oysterman

    Mar 30, 2000
    Sweden
    Pac, I've never quite understood why they have that. Morale booster in troubled times?
     
  9. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Several reasons. Boosting troop morale (in good times as well as bad) is a big part of it. Also, to many in the U.S., the bands are the only "face" of the military many people see. Public relations is probably 50% of our gig, if not more. Additionally, especially for the Army Band program, psychological operations is a factor. How scared do you think the enemy is if you can hear their rock band blasting away across the DMZ? (Right Lump?)

    The other thing is, we're so darned cost effective. The entire Army Band program (over 50 bands) costs less to run per year than one tank company. How's that for bang for the buck? (No pun intended)
     
  10. Oysterman

    Oysterman

    Mar 30, 2000
    Sweden
    Awright, got it now. Thanks!
     
  11. interesting, i assume that means you are in it, correct? If so, what division of the armed forces are you in.
     
  12. Murf

    Murf

    Mar 28, 2001
    Ireland
    I went into the army band here when I was 17 (playing trumpet) and it was a fabulous experience, while my contempories were worrying about exams etc I was learning how to play, playing and getting paid for it (also the beer in the 'mess' was half the price :D ). By the time I was 20 I had travelled around most of Europe...great times.

    An off shoot of the army band scene was the theatre/show gigs, invariably if a show needed a brass section theyd get them from the army band..this still goes on to this day, not to mention the amount of gigs that went on in the messes on weekends.

    All this and good pay, pension plan, health plan, cheap housing (price wise not quality) and a cool uniform.

    Unfortunately the band is more or less gone the way of the dodo here due to cut backs:(

    (although some of the older guys pulled some nice strokes by claiming 'deafness' and suing the state for a lorra lorra money ;)
     
  13. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    I am. I was in the Army Band for almost 14 years, but I finally wised up (!) and now I'm in the Air Force band.
     
  14. Why the change? More benefits?
     
  15. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    The Air Force is probably the best service to be in, period.

    No shipboard duty.

    Lots of air bases in cool places in Europe, Japan and the UK instead of hellholes like Okinawa or Guantanomo Bay.

    Less battlefield exposure in case of an actual armed conflict.

    They have the best band (Airmen of Note are WICKED).
     
  16. A friend of mine told me today, that to join the air-force band, you need to be able to play 5 insturments. Can I get any clarity on this issue?
     
  17. lump

    lump

    Jan 17, 2000
    St. Neots, UK
    Do you guys do "Ride of the Valkyries?" ;)

    90% of the people stationed here in Korea are on one-year tours, away from their families (I'm the other 10%). For people doing dirty, dangerous or even worse, mundane work, military bands play a very important role in boosting morale.

    Not only that, but for a good hour and a half, it makes you forget that when you get back to the states, you're going to have to figure out how to tell your wife you caught the clap from a Russian bar girl. :D
     
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I know nothing about this whatsoever, really, but I'm just a bit worried that the way this thread is reading, a career in the armed services is looking like an "easy option" for all those youngsters out there considering a future in music.

    Presumably it's not that easy - there is hard work and discipline involved? So I assume this would involve things like - dress codes, getting up early, parade routines, etc. ?

    Not to mention the hard work involved in learning to sight read and knowing a fair bit about music! ;)
     
  19. CamMcIntyre

    CamMcIntyre

    Jun 6, 2000
    USA
    my jazz band teacher used to play trumpet on carnival cruise lines. He said he thought it was fun. besides the above mentioned the only gigs that i can think of are: band teacher/director, music director @ a theme park [our director for FE band brandon now works @ Ceder Point] the jazz band director also teaches lessons & is in a band on the side. Bradon doesn't play so much anymore as he does arrange which involves playing/using the keyboard. Thats all
     
  20. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Better Musicians, better lifestyle.