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Chapter 4 Musicians

DOI: 10.23912/978-1-908999-52-8-2262

ISBN: 978-1-908999-52-8

Published: May 2013

Component type: chapter

Published in: Music, Markets and Consumption

Parent DOI: 10.23912/978-1-908999-52-8-2009

Abstract

Being a musician can be like playing the Lottery – many try it, almost all enjoy the thrill, but very few win the jackpot. The reasons why someone decides to become a musician can be puzzling: it offers irregular and, on average, rather low income, is a competitive job market with low barriers to entry, entails a need to rely on financial support from others and the necessity to subsidise artistic work by taking jobs outside the music industry, and relies on self-proclaimed music experts who vote with their money and can make or break the musician’s career. And although practically everyone, at some point in their lives, has known at least one person who has claimed to be a musician, still only one out of thousands achieve any financial stability. Of those lucky ones who sign up with a record company, only about 5% break even (Seifert and Hadiba, 2006), and those who manage their own careers often end up spending more time on non-musical activities then they do actually playing music. Most musicians find it impossible to support themselves from their creative work alone. The old economic models tell us that no rationally thinking individual should decide to become a musician (Nagel, 1988).

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Contributors

  • Dr Daragh O’Reilly, University of Sheffield (Author)
  • Dr Gretchen Larsen, King’s College London (Author)
  • Dr Krzysztof Kubacki, Griffith University (Author)

For the source title:

  • Dr Daragh O’Reilly, University of Sheffield (Author)
  • Dr Gretchen Larsen, King’s College London (Author)
  • Dr Krzysztof Kubacki, Griffith University (Author)

Cite as

O’Reilly, Larsen & Kubacki, 2013

O’Reilly, D.D., Larsen, D.G. & Kubacki, D.K. (2013) "Chapter 4 Musicians" In: O’Reilly, D.D., Larsen, D.G. & Kubacki, D.K. (ed) . Oxford: Goodfellow Publishers http://dx.doi.org/10.23912/978-1-908999-52-8-2262

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