Here is a list of five books that I personally found to be useful on my journey to learn about the music industry. Most of these are directly related to music and/or music business. Some of them might not be directly related, but they will help keep you inspired to follow your dream. Some of these might overlap in knowledge. However, they each bring something different to the table to help strengthen your knowledge of the music biz.
This book is laid out well and helps get you started in the music business. I liked it because it was set up in little chunks to work through. It made it easier to keep focused, and not think about the project as this whole big daunting task. It has straightforward lessons to help guide you through Ariel’s process to get you going in the music industry.
Ari Herstand, of Ari’s take, has been around for a long time. Here is a guy who is practicing what he preaches and is a touring musician when he is not speaking at music conferences about the new music business. This book came out in 2016, so the contents cover what is going on right now in the music world. Ari has a good sense of humor and it makes its way into this book. It isn’t just some boring textbook. You’ll enjoy reading it, and you will learn a lot.
Derek Sivers was the mastermind behind CDBaby. I actually remember sending an email in the early days of CDBaby to ask a question, and Derek personally replied. He even followed up a few times after to make sure I was happy with my experience. Why the Follow Up is so important
His unique way of running an online business has turned Derek into an entrepreneur superstar. He is followed by many people who just want to absorb some of his wisdom about business and life. This book is not directly about the music business, but it will give you insights on running your music business. Derek is my hero!
Peter Mclan is probably best known for producing albums for the band, Men at Work. In this book, he shares the techniques he uses in his recording sessions. He also explains how to apply that to the home studio. I had an older edition, so some of the techniques are for using older equipment. If you look past that and apply the techniques for mic placement, drum tuning, etc. then you can still acquire a great deal of knowledge from this book. Sometimes the old techniques are still the best as well. You shouldn’t just rely on fixing it in Pro Tools later. Learn how to do things right from the start.
I got this book from a former coworker many years ago because it changed his life. He was that inspired by it that he had to give me a copy. This has absolutely nothing to do with music, but it does have everything to do with how you handle your career. There are some great concepts in here to show you that making a million dollars in a job you hate isn’t a success. Being able to pay the bills doing what you love is how these authors define being successful. As a full-time musician, you will be required to be smart with your money.
Do you have any favorite books? If so, then leave a comment below to let me know about it. Don’t forget to grab a copy of my FREE guide to making money from your music here – GET FREE GUIDE NOW! I tell you how to start making money off your music without investing a single penny.