Have you ever wondered what the pay scale is for a concert sound technician, tour publicist or road manager? Boston’s Berklee School of Music has the lowdown.
Berklee’s Career Development Center has come up with a comprehensive list detailing salary ranges for various jobs in the music industry. Tagged with one of those all-encompassing titles, the end result is called “Salary Ranges for U.S. Music Positions In Performance, Writing, Business, Audio Technology, Education and Music Therapy.” It includes such tidbits as booking agents making up to $1 million or more per year; road managers pulling down as much as $125,000 and tour publicists making as much as $100,000 annually.
But those are the high-end figures. The same guide notes the low end of the scale for road managers and tour publicists is $25,000 while bottom-rung booking agents are paid $20,000. In other words, there’s wide range of salary possibilities between the lowest and highest paid in any music profession.
The study began when Career Development Center Director Peter Spellman decided to create a chart showing music industry salaries that he could share with students at Berklee as well as the global music community. Spellman and his team spent six months conducting research which resulted in several revisions before releasing the report to the public. Future plans include updating the study every year.
“Music students and their parents need to see the options available to music creators,” Spellman said. “This provides a bird’s eye view of the music landscape and the many paths within it. Since faculty, private instructors, peer advisors and staff members are advising students on many different levels, this tool helps inform that advising too.”
Not all the salaries listed in Berklee’s study are presented on a yearly scale. For example, a Broadway pit musician’s salary is listed as $1,000+ per week “for the duration of the gig” and club gigs in Boston and New York might pay anywhere from $75 to $125 per person.
But what really caught the attention of all of us here at the Pollstar.com campus is the guide’s listing of salaries for music journalists, ranging from $20,000 to $70,000 per year. However, it also reports many scribes pull down anywhere from $50 to $150 for an interview and $100 to $500 for a feature.
And we always thought gas money and free CDs was the going rate.
Click here to read the complete study.