High-quality Tune a Profession within the Music Business With an MBA

The music {industry} is a enterprise like no different. It produces a product that displays your entire human situation and supplies the soundtrack to our lives. These in search of a profession within the music {industry} discover that it’s a various and ever-evolving enterprise, using thousands and thousands of individuals and producing billions of {dollars} in income. Nevertheless, it’s additionally typically cited as a notoriously troublesome {industry} to interrupt into and discover success. Might a specialised MBA specializing in the music {industry} train you all it is advisable to know in regards to the music enterprise worldwide to take pleasure in a profitable profession within the {industry}?

Robert W. Smith, Professor of Music and Coordinator of the Music Business Program at Troy College — and a extremely completed composer, writer, musician and music {industry} skilled — definitely thinks so.

Smith, alongside along with his colleague Dr. William Neese, Affiliate Professor of Advertising and Director of the MBA Program, has been instrumental in creating a brand new MBA program at TROY that’s designed for professionals in search of to advance their careers within the music {industry}.

Whereas Dr. Neese takes care of the normal enterprise aspect of the MBA program, Smith provides the related {industry} element to make the Music Business MBA a very distinctive and immersive expertise.

From Music Professional to Music Training

Smith’s profession within the music {industry} stretches again to 1983 when, after being found at an occasion, he was invited to affix the sheet music writer Columbia Footage Publications.

“Once I began with Columbia Footage, they have been searching for anyone who might bridge the hole between numerous sides of the music {industry},” says Smith. “They wanted anyone who understood issues like orchestra, marching band, live performance band and different types of instructional music.”

Smith explains how the American training system is a driving power within the home music {industry}.

“America is likely one of the solely locations on the earth the place music is obligatory in our training system,” says Smith. “Principally, 100% of scholars in elementary faculties must take music. Because of this, we have now a big music training system. This creates alternatives for companies that produce educating supplies, the books and the music that’s written for youths, and the manufacture and provide of inexpensive pupil line devices.”

Smith’s profession noticed him work for numerous iterations of Columbia Footage Publications and Warner Brothers Publications earlier than changing into the vice chairman of the CL Barnhouse Firm, the second oldest music publishing firm in america. He then launched his personal music publishing firm and have become a professor of music at TROY.

Alongside his tutorial profession, Smith continues to compose, rating music for movies and tv, write pop songs and play keyboard and trumpet with a number of ensembles.

“Most individuals know me as a composer,” says Smith. “However I’m additionally a conductor, a producer and a songwriter. This offers me a novel perspective on our music applications right here at TROY.”

Smith explains that folks typically joke that he has by no means fairly discovered his area of interest within the music {industry}. Nevertheless, it’s this eclectic talent set that Smith cites as the key behind his success.

“A mantra for us right here at TROY is that our music college students have to be a jack-of-all-trades and grasp of three or 4,” says Smith. “So we deal with the music, the media, the music know-how, the music distribution corporations, the imaginative and prescient, the entrepreneurship and the enterprise to maintain gainful lives and careers in our industries.”

Shaking Up MBA Applications

Based on Dr. Neese, the music {industry}’s quickly evolving nature represents the proper alternative for TROY to shake up the best way college students entry and profit from their participation in MBA applications.

“MBA applications have been round for a very long time,” says Dr. Neese. “I received my MBA from a sister college in Alabama within the Nineteen Eighties, and that program remains to be mainly the identical immediately. One of many issues that I take pleasure in about being an MBA director at TROY is that I’m working with individuals who actually wish to enhance the MBA program by modernizing it and making it a unique factor from what it’s been for actually the previous 50 or 60 years.”

Whereas Dr. Neese has a protracted and distinguished profession educating advertising and marketing courses in MBA applications, he’s fast to credit score the imaginative and prescient of Dr. Judson Edwards, Dean of the Sorrell Faculty of Enterprise at TROY, together with the expertise of Smith, for making the Music Business MBA program so compelling.

“Our dean is an open-minded, free-thinking one who is extraordinarily clever, and he simply likes innovation,” says Dr. Neese. “He thinks exterior of the field, and he is aware of lots of people. So he and Robert received collectively and got here up with this factor that we’re really blessed with.”

Dr. Neese explains how TROY’s Music Business MBA program covers the standard economics, ethics, finance, advertising and marketing and administration courses that college students would anticipate finding in an ordinary MBA program, earlier than introducing electives designed across the music {industry} specialization.

“It’s a novel program,” says Dr. Neese. “We’re the one college with a Music Business MBA that’s accredited by the AACSB (Affiliation to Advance Collegiate Colleges of Enterprise).”

Music Business Connections

Dr. Neese is especially happy with TROY’s entry to main music {industry} professionals, thanks primarily to Smith’s connections.

“Robert is aware of a few of the most well-known folks on the earth,” says Dr. Neese. “It wouldn’t shock me if he walked within the door in the future with Elton John!”

Smith’s handle ebook reads like a Who’s Who of the trendy music {industry}.

“Gloria Estefan launched me to Victor López,” says Smith. “He was the trumpet participant within the Miami Sound Machine and is a good author. Victor and I are finest mates to at the present time. He was one of the best man at my marriage ceremony. I’ve had the chance to work with legends just like the late jazz icon Dave Brubeck and legendary movie composer Henry Mancini. I’ve additionally labored on plenty of the printed music from Star Wars and Harry Potter and have had the chance to do orchestrations and preparations for John Williams as his iconic music is printed and distributed worldwide.”

Smith’s {industry} connections are sometimes invited to talk to his college students at TROY.

“We not too long ago had Shaun Murphy are available in,” says Smith. “She’s the feminine voice on Eric Clapton’s ‘Leila’. She’s additionally on the whole lot Bob Seger has ever recorded and was within the unique solid of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Membership Band. In order that was an enormous deal.”

Extra not too long ago, Smith invited Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame inductee Chris Vrenna to go to as a visitor lecturer and share his expertise of the {industry} as a bona fide rock star with TROY’s pupil physique.

“Chris Vrenna is the drummer and founding member for 9 Inch Nails,” says Smith. “Chris is a pricey pal. It was wonderful to have him working with our college students.”

However Vrenna isn’t only a good pal of Smith and a vocal supporter of TROY’s music applications. He’s enrolling in TROY’s MBA program as a pupil.

Smith explains how Vrenna made the transition from rock star to MBA pupil.

“Conditions like COVID didn’t deter Chris Vrenna. He’s a really good man and took up a educating place at a neighborhood faculty right here in Alabama. He taught folks tips on how to document and use Professional Instruments and all of the music-producing know-how we use within the studio immediately. He had a beautiful educating expertise and now that we’re rising from the pandemic, he’s not giving it up.”

Why Get an MBA?

Based on Smith, Vrenna is becoming a member of the MBA program for 2 causes.

“He needs to study extra in regards to the enterprise,” says Smith. “The stuff he needs he had recognized when he was youthful and began 9 Inch Nails. Secondly, there isn’t any doctorate for people who train music {industry} applications in larger training. So this MBA shall be thought of a terminal diploma. Which means he can transfer up the tenure and pay scale and work up the educational ranks to change into a full professor. So we’ve received a rock star that shall be considered one of our first college students. That’s fairly wonderful.”

It’s not simply musicians that Smith invitations to TROY to discuss their experiences. Vrenna and his fellow MBA college students will profit from the perception of quite a few visiting professionals from the enterprise aspect of the music {industry}.

“We not too long ago had Paul Quin, an leisure legal professional to megastars, go to,” says Smith. “He was in a position to share his unbelievable perception into the authorized and enterprise aspect of the {industry}.”

Smith explains why it’s so essential for college students to study from {industry} professionals like Quin.

“I need them to have the ability to learn a recording contract and perceive the whole lot inside that contract,” says Smith. “They nonetheless have to get an legal professional to be concerned, however they are going to be capable to have significant and productive discussions relating to the content material of that contract. What makes our program decidedly distinctive is the steadiness between the enterprise and the artwork.”

Actual World Music Business Expertise

Based on Smith, college students within the MBA program will graduate with real-world expertise.

“College students who be part of our MBA program aren’t simply going to check,” says Smith. “We put issues into motion and study by doing. For instance, we run a document label right here at TROY. Ilium Data is a student-operated, unbiased document label that offers our college students real-world expertise of the ever-changing music enterprise.”

TROY additionally has an in-house pop group, POPulus.

“The group represents a possibility for college students to write down and play music collectively,” says Smith. “But it surely additionally creates alternatives to be the engineer, the supervisor, the agent, the advertising and marketing crew and the document label. I name it a biosphere of the music and leisure {industry}. So whenever you end at TROY, you have got the talents and the skilled credit the place the rubber meets the street.”

The Scale of the Alternative: Music Business Jobs

Based on Smith, the music {industry} represents a large alternative for musicians and enterprise professionals with many various talent units searching for jobs within the music {industry}. Nevertheless, to succeed, similar to in every other {industry}, it is advisable to perceive how the enterprise works.

“The solar by no means units on the American music {industry},” says Smith. “American music is streamed and performed dwell in actually each nation around the globe. I journey and carry out around the globe. I’m nonetheless amazed once I carry out in locations like Asia, and so they’re singing the phrases in English. It’s an enormous, multibillion-dollar, world {industry}, supporting thousands and thousands of jobs inside the music {industry}.”

Smith explains that jobs inside the music {industry} typically seem like careers in lots of different world industries.

“I problem my college students right here to call a job or occupation that’s not in our music or leisure {industry},” says Smith. “They’ll begin grabbing straws out of the air, however they can not identify a job that’s not within the {industry}.”

Based on Smith, as soon as enterprise college students perceive the breadth of the {industry}, they begin to recognize the dimensions of the alternatives forward of them.

“Each time and wherever people have existed on the earth, so has music,” says Smith. “You can’t separate it. It’s a common human want and it’ll by no means go away.”

Smith explains the largest problem for enterprise college students fascinated about following a profession within the music {industry} is studying tips on how to render it in numerous methods and monetize it.

“When folks say there isn’t any cash within the music {industry} or that it’s a troublesome market to interrupt into, it’s not that there’s not a requirement for our music,” says Smith. “It’s that we don’t perceive the market. We don’t perceive the kind of music persons are searching for. And we don’t perceive the supply methods and tips on how to monetize it.”

Hybrid Studying

In some ways, TROY’s MBA applications mirror the ever-changing enterprise panorama of the music {industry}.

Based on Smith, the Music Business MBA program is delivered utilizing a Flex format.

“Our lectures shall be delivered dwell on campus,” says Smith. “I’m a agency believer in that. I really like the interplay. However COVID has additionally pressured us to get fairly good at Zoom environments and video conferencing, creating choices for our college students.”

All dwell lectures are streamed and recorded for synchronous and asynchronous participation, which suggests they are often accessed every time it’s handy for a pupil’s schedule. Whether or not a scheduled, in-person expertise or a extra versatile, self-paced alternative is most popular, the assorted codecs create alternatives for working professionals and internationally-located college students to take pleasure in the identical rigorous requirements of a world-class MBA program.

Based on Dr. Neese, the flexibleness of studying choices creates alternatives for college students from many various backgrounds.

Counterintuitively, Dr. Neese explains that many college students who attend campus are worldwide college students, whereas the net college students are sometimes extra native when it comes to their location.

“The worldwide college students typically have visa necessities that imply they have to research on campus,” says Neese. “Our on-line college students at TROY are sometimes working adults or army. Alabama is a military-friendly state, so we have now plenty of army college students in our applications.” 

Study Extra Concerning the Enterprise of Music

The Music Business MBA is the newest program to affix the portfolio of enterprise levels out there from TROY’s Sorrell Faculty of Enterprise. To study extra in regards to the numerous applications or to talk with a member of the varsity’s enterprise college, please go to the music {industry} program web page on our web site.


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