Posted on December 13, 2021 | By MusicPromoToday

13 ways to make a living as a musician in 2022

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Who said musicians and bands have to take a vow of poverty? Especially when there are so many cash-waves to jump on.

Today, there are countless ways of earning money and making a living from your music!

Maybe some of them still appear blurry to you, which is why it is essential to consider and understand them all before incorporating them into the business model of your artistic project.

Yes, business and entrepreneurship is really what we are talking about here. What income will allow you to offset your expenses and invest in your career?

The solution to your problems lies above all in the diversification of its sources of income.

Here are a few ideas and ways to make a living from your passion!

CDs and vinyls sales

Despite all that has been said, physical media are still a safe bet for both artists and fans alike.

Whether it is CDs, vinyls, or DVDs, selling your music in “physical” form will allow you to generate an income with a rather significant profit.

Concerts and festivals

Although many newbie musicians primarily favor unpaid concert opportunities, the stage is still the lifeblood of the vast majority of professional artists.

When record sales crumble, ticket prices flare up. Industry players know how profitable concert and festival tickets sales have proven to be.

As such, this is truly one of the best ways to make money from your music.

However, remember that if you play too often in the same city, your potential pay will decrease. So, balance it out between the quantity and quality of your appearances.

The sale of physical and digital merchandising

Merchandising is a great complement to the sale of records, both in live concerts and online. 

These can be T-shirts, stickers, mugs, but also digital products such as concert videos, sheet music, unseen photos, NFTs, etc.

While most of your sales will probably happen during concerts, always consider putting-up your merch on your official website’s online store so that you don’t miss out on earning opportunities.


Launching a music NFT project can help you stand out in the music world and make some actual cash from ethereum based transactions. Check this page for insight knowedlge on how musicians can start in NFT’s.

Streaming and selling music online

More present in our lives than it has ever been, digital music and streaming are at the heart of financing an artist’s career.

Even if these tools are often criticized for the low margin granted to authors and performers, streaming services like Spotify and online music stores like iTunes remain essential in the business model of a majority of artists.

So arm yourself with a good online music distributor to make sure your music is wherever your fans are!


Nothing prevents you from monetizing your passion by selling not only your art, but also your skills.

For example, you can give lessons by teaching others the instruments you master, singing or anything else that you want (stage presence, creativity, etc.).

This choice is actually made by many musicians given the ease of the required set-up and the financial stability it offers.

Become a session musician

If you are talented enough with a specific instrument, you can also use your network to play for other artists.

It could happen by either joining other artist’s live performances, by recording on their tracks, or recording with your instrument in the studio on their next album. It is also a great way to gain experience and create strong bonds in the industry.

Compose for other artists

Likewise, if you are a songwriter, you can write songs for other musicians or directly sell your music to movies, television, or even commercials.

This is the choice many artists have made in order to have a more stable and substantial income once established.

Performing on the street

Fairly widespread and original, this method is a good way to test your songs in front of an audience of strangers and generate a (small) additional income.


Extremely popular in recent years, crowdfunding can be used to finance an album, tour or music video as well as to remunerate you through an additional margin.

For this you will need to run a successful campaign in order to raise enough funds, to secure all the costs related to your project (salaries, taxes, marketing, remuneration, etc.)


As a songwriter, composer, your music must be copyrighted through an organization that defends your rights and tracks the use of your music all around the world. Each use of your works on the radio, TV, in concert, on YouTube, on a streaming site, in a public or other place, means that you should receive a proportional collection of copyright rights, in other terms, royalties.

The more your music is heard, the more rights you will generate in an almost passive way.

Sync your music 

Likewise, if your music appears in an advertisement, in a TV show, in a film with your prior consent, you receive rights related to synchronization.

Of course, the amount will depend greatly on the production budget as well as the interest shown in your work. But this activity represents a real opportunity for artists, because it is experiencing a real boom with the exponential growth in visual content.


Sometimes it is also possible to find companies that will support you by sponsoring you, especially if you already have a strong fan base that matches a company’s target market and audience. The sponsorship could take the form of financial aid, but also logistics, musical instruments, free services or products.

All in all…

We hope that this article will help artists understand that the money is there, but it is your job as an artist to diversify your business and make the right moves to tap into these almost endless possibilities. At MusicPromoToday, we help artists through customized strategies that intend to maximize earnings, coverage and networking, for both beginner and established artists. 

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