How to Start a Music Career in Los Angeles

Overhead picture of two people working at a soundboard to illustrate how to start a music career in Los Angeles.

How to Start a Music Career in Los Angeles

Los Angeles California is the entertainment capital of the world, chock full of movie studios, recording studios, and production studios–if it has anything to do with entertainment, they have a studio for it! There can be so many opportunities for young go-getters to start working in the music industry. But it’s a big place, so it can be a little scary when you think about how to start a music career in Los Angeles.

The great thing about Los Angeles is all of the different jobs available to you in the music industry. This means there are a variety of ways for you to get your foot in the door and build toward a career that best suits your skill set. You don’t even need to know how to sing, play an instrument, or write a song to make a life for yourself in the music business. The Recording Connection Music Production Program in Los Angeles will start you on a path to kick off your music career and get you working directly with industry pros.

How to Start a Music Career in Los Angeles

Success in the music industry often requires a combination of talent, hard work, networking, and a bit of luck. To stand out as a musician in the crowded L.A. marketplace, take the time to develop your musical talents and skills. Practice your instrument, improve your vocal abilities, and continue learning and growing as a musician.

During this time, consider finding work within the industry so you can see for yourself how the music biz operates. This could be as a booker at a venue (or any job where live music is played), as a roadie for a band, as an assistant at a recording studio, and so on.

You may find yourself developing skills more suited for something other than a performer, such as an audio engineer or music producer. Or you may reaffirm your love of making music and double-down on perfecting your sound. Once you’ve established a good set, it’s time to start showcasing your music.

Your portfolio could include demo recordings, music videos, live performance footage, or a well-curated online presence that highlights your music.

Work With Others That Can Help You Start a Music Career in Los Angeles

This is where some of those other jobs you had, while you were working on your music, can really come in handy. You may be able to lean on those relationships to find venues to play at, submit demo recordings, and so on. This leads to another important note: never think you’re above a job. You’ll never know who you’ll need to help your career down the line.

Because in this industry, who you know is just as important as what you know. Networking and building relationships responsibly will go a long way to creating opportunities for you in the industry. Attend local music events, open mic nights, and industry mixers to meet others in the industry and start making those connections.

Start collaborating with others and really building on those relationships you’ve been fostering. Just make sure to give as good as you get–one-sided relationships won’t last very long. This could be other musicians, audio engineers, music producers, and others that can help you grow as a musician.

Promote Yourself

Developing a marketing strategy to promote your music is an essential step in gaining traction in the music industry. By utilizing various tools such as social media, online music platforms, local press, and music blogs, you can generate buzz and attract attention to your music.

Social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and TikTok are great tools to connect with fans and promote your music. Online music platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud also give you the opportunity to reach a larger audience while promoting your music.

Reaching out to local press and music blogs can help gain more credibility and drive attention to your music. With a solid marketing strategy in place, you can effectively promote your music and take your career to the next level!

And, of course, get out there and perform! Los Angeles is known for being a haven for aspiring musicians. The abundance of local venues, open mic nights, and showcases make it easy to dive into the live music scene and gain exposure. Performing at these events not only gives you the experience you need to grow as an artist but also helps you build a loyal following.

You never know who may be in the audience, so take advantage of every opportunity to showcase your talent. Who knows, you could be the next big thing to come out of LA’s thriving music scene.

Behind the Scenes Music Careers in Los Angeles

Most people think of glamorous rock, rap, or pop stars when they think of music careers in Los Angeles. But being a musician or singer is just one of the music-related jobs you can get in the L.A. music scene. Musicians are the ones that get up on stage, but there are others that make them sound their best when they’re up there.

Audio engineers, music producers, live sound engineers, and others help artists sound their very best, whether it’s in the studio or during a live set. The best way to build a career in these positions is to just dive in and start learning. Spending the time to master a digital audio workstation (DAW) is a great place to start.

Once you have a good understanding of your DAW, start working with artists to help develop their sounds or put the finishing touches on their music. If possible, develop a relationship with an established engineer or producer and see if they’ll show tips and tricks of the trade. Offer to help around the studio (cleaning, looking for new clients, etc.) and you may work yourself into a job.

Don’t have a musical bone in your body, but still want to be where the action is? There are plenty of crossover careers in the music industry that attract the non-musically inclined. For starters, many artists have a manager or agent that helps them with the behind-the-scenes work of a band. Scheduling concerts, booking studio time, setting up appearances, handling the finances, and more.

For bigger bands, accountants and lawyers may be required to help ease the paperwork load. For these positions, your best bet is to get a degree in that field and then start looking for work. It can take years to be proficient in these positions, but you can also find work outside of the music industry to bolster your career.

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