Tag: Publishing Income
On Tuesday, April 10, 2012, Artist Revenue Streams co-director Kristin Thomson delivered a luncheon lecture called “All You Need is Love…(and a manager, an accountant and a web designer). Making it as a Musician in an Increasingly Networked World” hosted by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. She was joined by musician and Berkman Fellow Erin McKeown.
The focus of the lecture was examining the question of whether emerging technologies have made it possible for musicians to “do it all themselves”, and the impact that various intermediaries can have on a musician’s career and earning capacity.
On Saturday, March 25, 2012, Artist Revenue Streams co-director Kristin Thomson took part in the 30th annual Canadian Music Week in Toronto. Drawing upon Money from Music survey findings and artist interviews, she presented some top level data about musicians’ careers and their earning capacity.
She started the presentation by describing the project’s methodology. The research involves three data collection methods: in person interviews with about 80 different US-based musicians and composers, financial case studies based on verifiable bookkeeping data, and a widely distributed online survey.
She also underscored that this study is not about label market share, or consumer spending, or measuring an artists’ social graph. It’s about individual musicians’ earning capacity. It’s about what they end up putting in their pocket, and how it’s changing over time.
When looking at the Artist’s gross revenue, we note 72.3% of his income is tied to live performance, whether it’s live performance fees or CD sales at shows. He is completely dependent on touring for his income.
We look at the Artist’s income by band and see that while he is an active member of four bands in addition to his solo work, 94% of his gross income comes from one Main Band and his own solo work.
Unlike the Professional Orchestra Player, who is also a salaried musician, the Artist also writes for the group that pays him a salary, and that provides 21% of his income in addition to his salary.
When examining income versus expenses, we note certain roles, like salaried, sideman or teaching work (approximately 31% of his income from 2008-2011) have few expenses. The Artist is able to use that income to invest in his own solo work, in lieu of being beholden to a label, publisher, or tour sponsor.