Academics

Occupational Employment Statistics for Music Programs:

 

The data and information provided on this page for the degree programs in Music Business, Business Management come from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Listed below are the Standard Occupational Codes (S.O.C.) for the paid positions for which an A.A.S. Business Management, Music Business Specialist, A.A.S. Jazz/Commercial Music, B.P.S. Business Management (Music Business), M.M. Jazz/Commercial Music, or D.M.A. Composition/Arranging degree might be appropriate qualifications. On this page are also provided employment estimates and mean wage estimates for musicians, singers and related workers. In addition, there are links to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website for all of the information that follows:

 

Nature of the Work

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

Employment

Job Outlook

Projections

Earnings

Wages

Related Occupations

Sources of Additional Information

 

27-2040 Musicians, Singers, and Related Workers

 

This broad occupation includes the following two detailed occupations:

27-2041 Music Directors and Composers
27-2042 Musicians and Singers

 

Significant Points

 

*Part-time schedules—typically at night and on weekends—intermittent unemployment, and rejection when auditioning for work are common; many musicians and singers supplement their income with earnings from other sources.

 

*Aspiring musicians and singers begin studying an instrument or training their voice at an early age.

 

*Competition for jobs, especially full-time jobs, is keen; talented individuals who can play several instruments and perform a wide range of musical styles should enjoy the best job prospects.

 

27-2041 Music Directors and Composers

Conduct, direct, plan, and lead instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups, such as orchestras, choirs, and glee clubs. Include arrangers, composers, choral directors, and orchestrators.

 

27-2042 Musicians and Singers

 

Play one or more musical instruments or entertain by singing songs in recital, in accompaniment, or as a member of an orchestra, band, or other musical group. Musical performers may entertain on-stage, radio, TV, film, video, or record in studios. Exclude "Dancers" (27-2031).

 

 

Projections Data for Musicians and Singers

 

Projections data from the National Employment Matrix

Occupational Title

SOC Code

Employment, 2008

Projected 
Employment, 2018

Change,
2008-18

Detailed Statistics

Number

Percent

Musicians, singers, and related workers

27-2040

240,000

259,600

19,600

8

[PDF]

[XLS]

Music directors and composers

27-2041

53,600

59,000

5,300

10

[PDF]

[XLS]

Musicians and singers

27-2042

186,400

200,600

14,200

8

[PDF]

[XLS]

    NOTE: Data in this table are rounded. See the discussion of the employment projections table in the Handbook introductory chapter on Occupational Information Included in the Handbook.

 

 

Earnings for Musicians and Singers

 

Median hourly wages of wage-and-salary musicians and singers were $21.24 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $11.49 and $36.36. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $7.64, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $59.92. Median hourly wages were $23.68 in performing arts companies and $12.50 in religious organizations. Annual wage data for musicians and singers were not available because of the wide variation in the number of hours worked by musicians and singers and the short-term nature of many jobs. It is rare for musicians and singers to have guaranteed employment that exceeds 3 to 6 months.

 

Median annual wages of salaried music directors and composers were $41,270 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $26,480 and $63,200. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $16,750, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $107,280.

 

For self-employed musicians and singers, earnings typically reflect the number of jobs a freelance musician or singer played or the number of hours and weeks of contract work, in addition to a performer's professional reputation and setting. Performers who can fill large concert halls, arenas, or outdoor stadiums generally command higher pay than those who perform in local clubs. Soloists or headliners usually receive higher earnings than band members or opening acts. The most successful musicians earn performance or recording fees that far exceed the median earnings.

 

The American Federation of Musicians negotiates minimum contracts for major orchestras during the performing season. Each orchestra works out a separate contract with its local union, but individual musicians may negotiate higher salaries. In regional orchestras, minimum salaries often are less because fewer performances are scheduled. Regional orchestra musicians frequently are paid for their services without any guarantee of future employment. Community orchestras often have limited funding and offer salaries that are much lower for seasons of shorter duration.

 

Although musicians employed by some symphony orchestras work under master wage agreements, which guarantee a season's work up to 52 weeks, many other musicians face relatively long periods of unemployment between jobs. Even when employed, many musicians and singers work part time in unrelated occupations. Thus, their earnings for music usually are lower than earnings in many other occupations. Moreover, because they may not work steadily for one employer, some performers cannot qualify for unemployment compensation and few have typical benefits such as sick leave or paid vacations. For these reasons, many musicians give private lessons or take jobs unrelated to music to supplement their earnings as performers.

 

Many musicians belong to a local of the American Federation of Musicians. Professional singers who perform live often belong to a branch of the American Guild of Musical Artists; those who record for the broadcast industries may belong to the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.

 

 

 

27-2099 Entertainers and Performers, Sports and Related Workers, All Other

 

*All entertainers and performers, sports and related workers not listed separately.

 

National estimates for this occupation
Industry profile for this occupation
Geographic profile for this occupation

 

 

National Estimates for This Occupation:

 

 

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for this occupation:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Wage RSE (3)
23,510 10.3 % $18.60 (4) 2.8 %

Percentile wage estimates for this occupation:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Hourly Wage $8.69 $10.35 $14.34 $22.03 $33.27

 


Industries with the highest published employment and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.

 

Industries with the highest levels of employment in this occupation:

Industry
Employment(1)
Percent of industry employment
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
11,610
3.27
$18.83
2,100
1.31
$13.93
1,440
0.09
$25.49
1,260
0.05
$18.18
750
1.65
$21.48

 

 

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in this occupation:

Industry
Employment(1)
Percent of industry employment
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
11,610
3.27
$18.83
750
1.65
$21.48
2,100
1.31
$13.93
60
0.34
$17.68
290
0.22
$17.09

 

Top paying industries for this occupation:

Industry
Employment(1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
(8) (8) $31.20 (4)
1,440 0.09 $25.49 (4)
170 0.18 $24.07 (4)
80 0.04 $23.77 (4)
750 1.65 $21.48 (4)


States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.

 

States with the highest employment level in this occupation:

State
Employment(1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
12,710 0.91 4.91 $18.38 (4)
3,760 0.53 2.86 $13.88 (4)
1,410 0.38 2.03 $28.04 (4)
680 0.08 0.44 $18.75 (4)
620 0.56 3.02 $27.55 (4)

 

25-1121 Art, Drama, and Music Teachers, Postsecondary

 

Teach courses in drama, music, and the arts including fine and applied art, such as painting and sculpture, or design and crafts. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

 

National estimates for this occupation
Industry profile for this occupation
Geographic profile for this occupation

 

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for this occupation:

Employment (1)
Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Mean wage
RSE (3)
86,860
1.7 %
$70,850
1.5 %

 

 

Percentile wage estimates for this occupation:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Annual Wage (2) $33,170 $45,010 $62,040 $85,330 $120,800

 

Industries with the highest published employment and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.

 

 

Industries with the highest levels of employment in this occupation:

Industry
Employment (1)
Percent of industry employment
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
61,460
2.17
$71,250
17,320
2.27
$72,990
7,210
2.24
$63,860
630
0.41
$51,500
70
0.06
$74,090

 

 

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in this occupation:

Industry
Employment (1)
Percent of industry employment
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
17,320
2.27
$72,990
7,210
2.24
$63,860
61,460
2.17
$71,250
630
0.41
$51,500
50
0.06

 

 

Top paying industries for this occupation:

Industry
Employment (1)
Percent of industry employment
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
70
0.06
$74,090
17,320
2.27
$72,990
61,460
2.17
$71,250
7,210
2.24
$63,860
630
0.41
$51,500

 

States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for this occupation are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in this occupation, see the Create Customized Tables function.

 

 

States with the highest employment level in this occupation:

State
Employment (1)
Employment per thousand jobs
Location quotient (9)
Hourly mean wage
Annual mean wage (2)
13,490
0.96
1.41
$95,760
6,720
0.81
1.18
$99,630
5,730
0.57
0.83
$62,670
4,850
0.98
1.44
$64,650
4,670
1.50
2.19
$84,080


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

27-2041 Music Directors and Composers

 

 

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