Breaking news… the music business is tough. It is one of the most competitive fields you can possibly be involved in, and to complicate measures, there is a seemingly endless supply of misinformation and bad advice on how you should take your career to the next level. In the end, all we really want some great, actionable insights that we can put in to practice and move on to what we really fell in love with: the art of creating music. That’s where podcasts can be a great help (specifically these ones listed below). If you have any time during the day where you are not able to be actively creating music (working out at the gym, daily commute, waiting in a line for… well anything) you could be learning from some of the most brilliant minds in the entertainment industry about how to create better music, impact more listeners, and maximize your music business. Do yourself (and your career) a favor and check these out. If you have any favorites that we have missed, let us know in the comments below! 🙂
1) Song Exploder
What & Why? Song Exploder is a brilliant podcast in which world-class music artists (and composers) break down the writing process behind some of their biggest hits. You will surely walk away from each episode with a handful of practical ideas that you can apply to your next project.
Standout Episode: RAC – Let Go (feat. Kele & MNDR) – RAC is one of the hottest artists in the EDM/pop scene. This interview is a great look into the disciplines of writing and collaborating with other artists on a hit track.
What & Why? TechMuze covers a ton of different topics that the independent musician has to deal with on a daily basis. From music theory to marketing strategies to studio techniques,TechMuze is a one stop shop for improving your professional music career.
Standout Episode: The Six Figure Musician – There’s an attention-grabbing title for you! This interview with songwriter Cathy Heller is full of practical strategies to help you achieve greater success in your music-making career.
3) (Billboard) Pop Shop Podcast
What & Why? A big part of being successful in any field is being aware of what is current, and your music career is no different. The Pop Shop Podcast by Billboard offers weekly chart breakdowns, discussions music news, and coverage of major music events as well.
Standout Episode: Check out the most recent one for current info!
4) DIY Musician
What & Why? Being an independent music maker can be difficult to say the least. Often times, you are expected to be your own administrative assistant, marketing manager, and salesperson – all while leaving time and energy to actual make music! The DIY Musician Podcast features interviews with artists and industry professionals who share some very insightful tips to help you navigate this crazy business.
Standout Episode: Jack Conte (of Pomplamoose) Turning fans into patrons – Jack Conte is a fantastic example of a successful DIY artist, and he shares some great insights in this interview on the level of commitment it takes to keep a music career afloat.
5) Pensado’s Place
What & Why? In the Pensado’s Place podcast, Grammy winning mix engineer Dave Pensado and veteran manager Herb Trawick share their vast wealth of knowledge on recording techniques, give their opinions on new gear and software, and interview some of the biggest names in the music business. This is an essential resource for anyone involved in recorded music.
Standout Episode: Effects Plug-Ins & Advanced Modulations – Chances are pretty good that if you are recording your own music, you are using plug-ins. But what do all these different virtual knobs do? Dave sheds some light on the subject.
6) Music, Money, and Life
What & Why? The title pretty much says it all. Music, Money, and Life focuses on strategies and techniques to help take your music career to the next level. There is a ton of vital info in every episode, so be sure to check it out!
Standout Episode: How To Make A Full Time Income With Your Music On Youtube – Video killed the radio star… and YouTube killed the video star. Learn what it takes to be a viral video success in this episode.
7) The Tim Ferriss Show
What & Why? At first glance, The Tim Ferriss Show appears to have nothing to do with music. In actuality, there are usually multiple takeaways from each interview that you can apply in your journey towards becoming a better and more successful (and happier) musician. Tim’s interviews are poignant and honest, and he even interviews musicians sometimes!
Standout Episode: The EDM Cinderella – How The Glitch Mob Exploded – Justin Boreata of Glitch Mob delves into his creative process and recounts the transition from unknown artist to international superstar.
8) Soundworks Collection
What & Why? One of the fastest growing areas of the music business is in interactive media and motion picture scoring. Soundworks Collection profiles some of the leading figures in this industry, from sound designers to film composers.
Standout Episode: The Music of Captain America: Civil War with Composer Henry Jackman – Listen to this interview, and learn what goes into scoring one of the year’s biggest blockbuster films.