Data Memos and Reports

We have a huge amount of qualitative and quantitative data that we have collected through interviews, a large-scale survey, and financial case studies. Instead of issuing one enormous report, we have been examining the data through various lenses:

Topline survey respondent characteristics

Specific revenue sources

By genre

By demographic characteristics

By external factors and support structures

Special series


Six Financial Case Studies
As part of this project, a handful of full-time musicians granted us access to their musician-related financial records. Our case studies illustrate each musicians’ income and expenses year-by-year.


Some additional writing about challenges of doing research on this population


Sign up for our monthly newsletter to learn about upcoming releases on income from live performance, whether membership matters, music cities, income for songwriters/composers, or the revenue streams or session musicians, and more.

Additional resources
42 Streams: Existing, Expanded, NewThe same list, but reorganized to identify revenue streams that have expanded – or been newly created – in the past 15 years. Read more
42 Revenue Streams A list of all the potential revenue streams for US-based musicians, performers and composers based on the contours of copyright law and business practice. Read more


FMC’s Digital Distribution A diagram designed for musicians to help them understand how to get their music into various platforms and services. Read more
FMC’s New Business Models Google spreadsheet that shows if/how/how much songwriters, performers, record labels and publishers are paid when their music is used/performed on a variety of new digital platforms. Read more


Music and How the Money Flows An infographic that illustrates how the money flows back to musicians and songwriters when their music is downloaded, webcast or streamed. Read more
Music and Money Quizzes A quiz about the copyright laws, licenses and agreements that frequently determine who gets paid, and how much. Take one of these quizzes and see how you measure up! Read more

Why “I don’t know” is an acceptable answer

Posted on 15th February, by Kristin Thomson in What We're Learning. 1 Comment

As we roll out the results of our work, there’s sometimes a curious reaction to pie charts that include a significant number of musicians/composers who answered “I don’t know” to any given question. Take this one, for example:

Some think these are just disorganized musicians that aren’t on top of their game. But, after conducting many interviews, running nearly a dozen financial case studies, and testing this survey for months prior to launch, and thinking about it ourselves, we know that “I don’t know” is an acceptable answer, for at least three reasons: (1) a gap in respondent knowledge, (2) insufficient access to information or (3) a reflection of the intricacies of income transfer.

This is a complex world, full of new revenue streams with confusingly similar names. How many musicians know the difference between an interactive stream and a non-interactive … Read More »

Survey Snapshot

Posted on 8th February, by Kristin Thomson in Participant Data, What We're Learning. 5 Comments

The Money from Music survey was open from September 6 – October 28, 2011. The survey was built by project staff using SurveyMonkey’s premium level services.

The survey was open to all musicians, composers and performers aged 18 years or older who were US citizens or residents.

Here are some top-level statistics about the survey participants.

MIDEM: Bands, Brands and Revenue

Posted on 31st January, by Kristin Thomson in What We're Learning. 7 Comments

On Monday, January 30, 2012, FMC’s Kristin Thomson participated in Visionary Monday at the annual MIDEM conference in Cannes, France. Drawing upon data from both Money from Music survey findings and artist interviews, we explained the changing relationship between artists, brands and earnings.

Going to Music School

Posted on 12th January, by Jean Cook in What We're Learning. 5 Comments

The FMC team spent some time with the Network of Music Career Development Officers at their annual meeting on Thursday, January 11, 2012 at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City.  Here are some slides from our presentation, which look at some of the survey results with respect to conservatory and music school graduates.

In this presentation we looked at the characteristics of the 2,728 musicians and composers who said they graduated from a conservatory of music school.  The top regions for this group were New York, Boston, Washington DC, Long Beach/LA, San Francisco, Denver, Chicago, Detroit, Madison, Minneapolis, Nashville, Cincinnati, Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth and Rochester.


We found that music school or conservatory graduates were more likely to be earning more, working more, and were more likely to have … Read More »

A First Look at Jazz Musicians

Posted on 9th January, by Jean Cook in What We're Learning. 8 Comments

FMC was at the Association of Performing Arts Presenters annual conference, speaking on Sunday, January 8, 2012 on the panel, “Platforms that Move Jazz Forward.” Here are three slides from our presentation, based on data collected in the Money from Music Survey.

First, some quick context for these slides. More than 850 of the 5,000+ survey respondents said they generate the most money from the Jazz genre. These respondents came from 45 states and the District of Columbia. The top fourteen cities represented were New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, DC, Seattle, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Detroit, New Orleans, Minneapolis and Denver.