If you’re a music geek that loves tinkering with music and audio equipment, then a career in music production is probably right up your alley. These professionals work on all aspects of recording and mixing music, from overseeing the recording process to developing a budget for various recording projects. Audio producers may work mainly with musicians, or they may also produce audio for TV, multimedia, and other formats. If this job sounds appealing to you, read on to see how you can get started in this career.
Familiarize Yourself With Technology
While a love of music is a great place to start, audio production is all about technology. With robust production software, it’s possible to get a solid start in production at your own home “studio,” consisting of a desktop computer or laptop. Pro Tools is the software of choice for recording and mixing audio, and you’re well advised to buy a copy, try out some online tutorials, and start using it. Free online courses in music production and technology from schools like MIT can also be a great way to develop a basic understanding of analog and digital recording techniques.
The first step to becoming a professional audio producer is to actually record audio. Here you’ll need to bring your networking skills into play, to connect with local musical acts or others who need audio production work. You can even start recording your musician friends, in order to get real-world experience recording and mixing music. Another great opportunity is volunteering to record cultural and musical events that happen in your local community; in most cases, artists are thrilled to have a recording of their performance.
Consider blogging about your audio production projects. This way, you’ll have a place to direct interested musicians who might want to use your production services. Getting your name out there will lead to more production opportunities; after you’ve had sufficient experience, you could also land an internship or job as a production assistant in a studio.
Take a Class or Earn an Audio Production Degree
Without a home studio, it can be hard to learn some of the major aspects of audio production. Many community colleges and technical schools offer audio production courses, which can give you this useful studio time. If you’re too busy to take a traditional course, then an online class or degree could be a more flexible educational option. This guide to online audio production degrees is a great place to research your online options.
As far as audio production degrees go, they are available at nearly every degree level, from undergraduate certificates, associate degrees, and bachelor’s degrees, to graduate programs. Students in these degree programs take classes like Principles of Audio Technology, Business of Music Production, and Microphone Theory. A degree can give you the technical skills to land a full-time production job.