How to Become a Music Producer in New York

How to Become a Music Producer in New York

If you’re passionate about music and love being part of the creative process, becoming a music producer may be the perfect career choice for you. And if you’re going to hit the big time, you need to be where the action is–and The Big Apple is a great place to start. But you may be wondering how to become a music producer in New York.

To become a successful music producer here–or anywhere in the world really–you really need to have a solid understanding of music theory, recording technology, and mixing and mastering techniques. You also have to be a great communicator and have a natural talent for creative problem-solving.

The beauty of being a music producer is that you get to work with a diverse range of artists and projects, and you can play an essential role in bringing a brilliant composition to fruition. As a music producer in New York, you have the opportunity to make a meaningful impact in the music industry.

What Does a Music Producer in New York Do?

A music producer is a professional who oversees the recording, mixing, and mastering of music. They work with artists to bring their musical vision to life, make sure it sounds good, and use their expertise in music production to help create high-quality recordings. Where the audio engineer might bring a more technical hand to a session, the music producer adds that creative touch to a recording.

They’re also responsible for a lot of the business decisions, such as securing studio time, hiring backing instruments and singers, and how a song or album is promoted and marketed. But they should also be able to handle the technical side of things, and sometimes on smaller projects, a music producer may take over audio engineering duties.

Having an understanding of music theory and knowing how to use the studio equipment (including editing gear) will also make you a more marketable music producer in New York. Taking charge of the mixing and mastering process ensures the song and album maintain a consistent vibe throughout.

Many music producers have had several jobs before making this step. Audio engineers, mixing engineers, working in sound design, or even just artists themselves that wanted to take their careers in a new direction.

How to Become a Music Producer in New York

If you are interested in getting a music production job, there are a few things you can do to prepare. First, you should get a good education in music production, train your ear, and get that step-by-step instruction. There are many music production schools that offer certificate programs and workshops at undergraduate and graduate levels.

Second, you should gain experience by interning or volunteering at a recording studio or working with independent artists. This will give you the opportunity to learn from experienced producers and work on real-world projects. Finally, you should network with other music producers. This will help you learn about job opportunities and make connections in the industry.

Let’s take a closer look at these steps.

Educate Yourself

While formal education isn’t always required, it can be beneficial to pursue a degree or take courses related to music production, audio engineering, or music business. You can build up a strong foundation of skills, but you won’t get a lot of practical experience inside a classroom. And four-year universities, colleges, and trade schools can really saddle you with student loan debt.

But you will need to learn music theory, how to operate the gear, and other necessities of the music producer. Some of this you can learn in a classroom, and there are other things you can learn through online tutorials (although they can’t answer your questions or give you feedback). For many successful music producers, getting hands-on, practical experience is where they learned the most. Evening learning to play an instrument can be a huge help on a song.

Recording Connection offers several audio engineering and music production classes that give you the opportunity to learn one-on-one with an industry insider. Your mentor is an experienced music producer, teaching you the building blocks of music production from inside their studio.

You’ll see firsthand how the music of today is being made, get the opportunity to meet with others in the industry, and even take control of a session if you’ve proven yourself. It’s the kind of practical experience you just can’t get in a classroom setting. This is important–nothing prepares you for working with an artist quite like working with an artist.

Get Hands-On Experience

Start creating your own music and producing tracks, experimenting with different genres and styles to gain a diverse skill set. You can use digital audio workstations (DAWs) to record, edit, and mix your music. There are plenty of free versions on the market, but when you’ve mastered the basics, consider getting updated versions from Ableton, Pro Tools, or Logic Pro.

At some point, you’ll need to move on and work with others–it’s one of the pillars of the Recording Connection curriculum. But you can do this on your own as well, offering to work with other up-and-comers in New York to help polish their sound (while you work on your relationship, creative, and technical skills).

Working with a mentor here is invaluable because they can show you important workflows, shortcuts, and troubleshooting hacks that make the experience that much better for everyone involved. Whether it’s through us or by knocking on studio doors to see if they need someone green to help around the studio, experience is a major key to becoming a music producer.

How to Become a Music Producer in New York: Build a Portfolio

Creating a professional portfolio to showcase your music production skills is an absolute must. How can potential employers or clients work with you if they don’t have an example of what you can do? This could include tracks you’ve produced, collaborations, and any notable projects you’ve been involved in.

A great way to do this is to collaborate with local musicians and artists to produce their music. Collaborations can help you expand your skills by learning different genres, personalities, and techniques to reach the right sound for your client. Showing diversity in your portfolio will go a long way to proving you can work with anyone.


This leads nicely into another aspect of how to become a music producer in New York: networking. The more people you meet and the more industry folks you impress, the easier it will be to become a sought-after music producer. Just remember–anyone you meet can be a potential employer or client, so treat them all with the respect you would like to be treated with.

Attend music industry events, workshops, and conferences in New York City to meet other musicians, producers, and industry professionals. Networking can open up opportunities for collaboration and career growth. Another way to network is to take entry-level positions, internships, or assistant positions at recording studios, music production companies, or with established music producers.

This hands-on experience will give you valuable insights into the industry and help you build your network. With Recording Connection, these opportunities are built in as your mentor is working in the real world right now, not in a classroom. Every day is a new day to impress someone new.

Understand the Business Side

Familiarize yourself with the business aspects of music production, including contracts, royalties, and licensing. This knowledge will be valuable when working with artists, securing studio time, hiring backup vocals and instruments, and everything else that goes into making a record.

This includes managing yourself. Work on your brand, create an online presence, and keep it updated. Build a professional website or social media profile to showcase your online music production work and connect with potential clients and collaborators. Every little job will help keep the lights on at the start of your career.

How to Become a Music Producer in New York: Never Stop Learning

Stay updated with technology, the latest trends, and advancements in music production technology, software, and equipment. Being proficient with various tools will make you more versatile as a music producer. And the only way to stay proficient is to keep learning.

The music industry can be competitive and challenging, so stay persistent and remain passionate about your craft. Success often comes with perseverance and dedication–keep grinding, bettering yourself, and opening yourself to new sounds and techniques.

Getting a music producer job is a journey that requires dedication, creativity, and business acumen. Keep refining your skills, stay connected with the music community in New York City, and seize opportunities to make your mark in the industry.

With Recording Connection, you get the curriculum, you get the experience, and you get the networking opportunities that many of the best universities in the world just can’t offer. We offer it all for just a fraction of the cost of those schools and our programs last just six to nine months, meaning you can get out there and start earning much sooner than those attending other institutions.

What makes sense to you? Get started today.

Get your music production certification and build your music production and audio engineering skills by learning with an industry professional near you.