Which music career direction should I take?

I graduated with a Music degree in 2014 but have struggled to find a job in this industry since.

I have had a couple of insurance based jobs but ultimately I won't be content with a career until it involves something with music.

I have a background in private guitar teaching and have considered becoming a high school music teacher but I can't read music or play the piano to a high enough standard.

I know this is just a breif insight but if there was any sort of career advice that could be given to me that would be much appreciated.

— Anon

Expert answers

Juwon Ogungbe's reply:

May I suggest that you start by actually plying your wares as a performer? I think most people involved in music based careers need to perform and get noticed for their talents, then other things start falling into place. Your personal attributes and character should lead the way in defining the type of musician you are and the role you can play in the business. Best wishes.

Arit Eminue's reply:

Hi Ross, 

Sorry for the delay in responding your query.  I overlooked the initial email notifying me of your message.  

In the first instance begin networking, so you get a sense of the different roles and opportunities that are in the music industry and build contacts in the sector. Networking includes face-to-face meetings as well as connecting to different organisations that support the music industry.  Subscribe to their newsletters, follow them on social media, so you are kept up to date on sector news. 

Good networks to consider are:

Young Guns, https://www.facebook.com/younggunsnetwork/ 

The Big Music Project: http://www.thebigmusicproject.co.uk/what-is-the-big-music-project/

Urban Development: http://www.urbandevelopment.co.uk/ 

UK Music: http://www.ukmusic.org/skills-academy/careers-advice/ 

There is also the apprenticeship route, which combines a mixture of on the job training with practical experience.  In this instance have a look at the Find an Apprenticeship website for details on apprenticeship roles in the music industry. https://www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship  Apprenticeships are open to those aged 16 and above who have the right to work in the UK.  From 1st May, graduates became eligible to apply for an apprenticeship. The major labels all have their own internship programmes, which are advertised on their individual websites.  

Hope this helps you get started!

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