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Whats your day gig?


mikecorbett

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I have been reading many posts recently about the demise of the live music scene, how hard it is to get paid, and how its a difficult time to be a working musician. For these reasons, I myself am going back to Uni this fall with the eventual goal of becoming a high school music teacher. This move comes after working for the last 15 years or so solely as a gigging keyboard player.

 

With that In mind I´m curious as to what the rest of yáll are doing? I know many of you already know each others stories, and I occasionally come across a post where someone fesses up to what they do to keep a roof over their head, but I´m curious to hear about professional musicians who chose to find some other way to make their primary income? What made you make the decision? Is your day job music related or not? Weekend warriors chime in!

 

I know one friend who used his bMus from Berkeley to do a post grad and become an optometrist..

 

Forgive me if this topic has already been exhausted..

 

Mike

We are all slave's to our brain chemistry!

 

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Personally, I have an engineering degree and work in industrial sales. But I think you're more interested in folks who went from full time musicians to picking up day jobs. I know lots of people around here like that. Most of supplement their band income by teaching lessons, working in music stores, and a couple have become booking agents. The guy who books us is pretty successful at it and plays in several bands as well. He makes a lot more from the booking agency than he does playing in the bands. But there's only room for so many booking agents. What's unique about him is that he represents the bands, not the bars. Most booking agents around here land contracts with rooms to where you have to book through them to play the room. They are basically working for the bar and act as gate keeper. In those cases, we end up paying our guy and them commissions to play those rooms, but it's worth it to not have to deal with them. Most of the bands our guy books book exclusively through him. He's got the top 3 bands in town and almost a dozen others. That gives us all some bargaining power if somebody starts to mistreat the bands or doesn't pay. He can threaten to pull all the top band from their room and their business would suffer. Also, the agents that work for the rooms try to get price down as much as possible, he tries to maximize it. Just a thought if that's something you could be interested in doing - he seems to have a pretty good business model, but there wasn't really anybody in town doing it like that before. Your market may be different.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

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mikecorbett said: I myself am going back to Uni this fall with the eventual goal of becoming a high school music teacher.

________________________________________________________________

A worthy goal....but in my area and in many areas around the nation public school music programs and music teachers are being axed as the school districts try to save money. Please don't consider this post as a negative comment on your future career....just wanted to let you know what is happening...at least in California.

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mikecorbett said: I myself am going back to Uni this fall with the eventual goal of becoming a high school music teacher.

________________________________________________________________

A worthy goal....but in my area and in many areas around the nation public school music programs and music teachers are being axed as the school districts try to save money. Please don't consider this post as a negative comment on your future career....just wanted to let you know what is happening...at least in California.

 

Most private schools still have strong music programs, but the pay is less and often the music teacher teaches other classes as well. These schools may have different requirements than the public schools. For instance, as far as I am aware, most Lutheran schools require you to have a degree from a Lutheran university such as Concordia. You may want to research this a bit - check out the future of music programs at various public AND private high schools, compare pay rates, and inquire as to the job requirements, before making a decision.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

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Besides playing in bands since I was 14 years old (I'm a bit older than that now :) ) I have worked in the music industry (piano, organ, synth) both in retail and the manufacturing side, so I consider myself a professional musician. While I do still gig with several bands my last corporate day gig at a keyboard manufacturer/distributor was January 2008. My wife is a veterinarian and worked for a animal hospital for 14 years until January 2009 when she and I decided to open our own veterinary hospital. She does the doctoring and I do pretty much everything else like run the office, book appointments, mop the floor, manage the website, etc. It has been a real culture shock for me but at the same time is a lot of fun. Premier Animal Wellness & Surgery Hospital

Wm. David McMahan

I Play, Therefore I Am

 

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I am an accountant... :bor: funstuff-not!! My initial major was music, but I changed it halfway through my freshman year...one of the biggest regrets in my life.

 

I do however have a part time job playing piano at a church every weekend and I have recently joined a wedding/club band that plays a lot of 70's, 80's and current stuff.

Gear: Roland RD700, Yamaha MotifES6, Roland Fantom FA76, Roland JP-8000, Roland AX-7, Roland Juno-106.
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My day gig is graphic designer & photographer. Doing mostly web work these days, although I've picked up a customer where I handle all their media needs. Used to be in construction before this. But this is more funner.

Steve

 

www.seagullphotodesign.com

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I am an accountant... :bor: funstuff-not!! My initial major was music, but I changed it halfway through my freshman year...one of the biggest regrets in my life.

 

I do however have a part time job playing piano at a church every weekend and I have recently joined a wedding/club band that plays a lot of 70's, 80's and current stuff.

 

Interesting: I majored in music performance, couldn't find a job in that field, went back to school for my accounting degree, got a job in that and then got laid off, now my main source of income (other than unemployment compensation) is from music performance!

'57 Hammond B-3, '60 Hammond A100, Leslie 251, Leslie 330, Leslie 770, Leslie 145, Hammond PR-40

Trek II UC-1A

Alesis QSR

 

 

 

 

 

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Short story: I host karaoke shows and DJ 4-5 nights a week. It's very steady. The rooms are busy - even on weeknights. Although I don't make a killing at it, I can easily live off of it now that I'm on my own.

 

Long story for those who haven't puked yet:

 

As recently as 2005 I was doing a piano bar gig on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and playing in a band on weekends. Attendance in all rooms was slowly winding down, and had been for several years.

 

Two attractive women suggested that I add some karaoke to my weeknights to pick things up, and drug me into my first karaoke bar. It wasn't something that I immediately took a liking to, but at the time I thought "Yeah I can probably use that."

 

At first I tried to combine live music (provided by myself) with karaoke but the karaoke quickly took over. Within 4 months a sleepy little room became filled to capacity, and the owner started to fill every nook and cranny in that place with extra tables and chairs.

 

Around this time last year I moved the show to a room with twice the seating capacity because we were just overflowing the other place. This new place only seats 150 but we are usually full up on Thursdays, with Tuesdays and Wednesdays active. No nights are dead - all the way up to 2:15am.

 

The DJ jobs kind of fell in my lap when the main DJ in the area suddenly quit in the middle of a Friday night at the busiest bar in the area and walked out. These guys can be real prima donnas - we've all dealt with these personality types in our fronts, but you have no idea! Anyway I had done a little substitute DJ work but was offered his job because I was a known quantity (and was known to be easy to work with). It was all conditional, but I really woodshedded on Traktor and got the basics down.

 

To be honest, I really love both these jobs - and it's refreshing to have managers and owners thank me for bringing business into their bars instead of constantly complaining about how slow it is.

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Im between day gigs, i was Key account manager at BIC guatemala, and i quitted about a month ago, decided to take a month off for some R&R, now im looking for something in the technology/telecomunications field.
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I have 3 degrees in Science, Math and Computer Science. I work for NASA in Atmospheric Sciences. In addition to being retired Air Force. But I have been a weekend warrior musician for nearly 40 years.

Boards: Kurzweil SP-6, Roland FA-08, VR-09, DeepMind 12

Modules: Korg Radias, Roland D-05, Bk7-m & Sonic Cell

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I work as a radio Dj/producer for a world music/jazz/other radio station in Athens. I have a daily show. And 30% of my income comes from music - mostly gigs in and out of my country.
Be grateful for what you've got - a Nord, a laptop and two hands
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At first I tried to combine live music (provided by myself) with karaoke but the karaoke quickly took over. Within 4 months a sleepy little room became filled to capacity, and the owner started to fill every nook and cranny in that place with extra tables and chairs.

 

One of the gigs the aforementioned booking agent does is something he calls "Rockstar Karake". A lot of the bars were replacing live music with Karaoke, and he came up with this. His band plays the music, people from the crowd come up and sing. He's got a big book full of songs and signup sheets, just like regular Karaoke. They don't have the screen with the bouncing ball, so to speak, but I believe they have lyric sheets. They have a huge repertoire, and it's been very successful. Just think how often people want to sit in and sing with a band - now they get to do it! He's been able to fill Mon, Tues, and Wed nights with that sort of thing, which would typically not be nights for live music at most places.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

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I used to do a karaoke gig, I used to play guitar to many of the tunes. I used a wireless and a pedal. I also had a small clip on mic for horns so I would often let musicians plug into the wireless. I heard some pretty good sax solos! But I soon became bored because the drunken wannabe singers were starting to get on my nerves. And their numbers were increasing exponentially!

Boards: Kurzweil SP-6, Roland FA-08, VR-09, DeepMind 12

Modules: Korg Radias, Roland D-05, Bk7-m & Sonic Cell

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I have 3 degrees in Science, Math and Computer Science. I work for NASA in Atmospheric Sciences. In addition to being retired Air Force. But I have been a weekend warrior musician for nearly 40 years.

 

Badass!

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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At first I tried to combine live music (provided by myself) with karaoke but the karaoke quickly took over. Within 4 months a sleepy little room became filled to capacity, and the owner started to fill every nook and cranny in that place with extra tables and chairs.

 

One of the gigs the aforementioned booking agent does is something he calls "Rockstar Karake". A lot of the bars were replacing live music with Karaoke, and he came up with this. His band plays the music, people from the crowd come up and sing. He's got a big book full of songs and signup sheets, just like regular Karaoke. They don't have the screen with the bouncing ball, so to speak, but I believe they have lyric sheets. They have a huge repertoire, and it's been very successful. Just think how often people want to sit in and sing with a band - now they get to do it! He's been able to fill Mon, Tues, and Wed nights with that sort of thing, which would typically not be nights for live music at most places.

 

Yeah there's a place in Portland that does this. I haven't been there yet but I know it's popular.

 

I should add that the reason my show took off and became "the" karaoke show in the area was because I use my full band PA - complete with quad 18" subs. There's probably 1/2 dozen karaoke shows around here, but they're all low key affairs mostly attended by country and oldies fans. My show where you go if you want to sing Metallica, Alice In Chains, Ke$ha, or Gaga. We have some rappers too. :cool:

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Electrical Engineer here. But don't tell Mother (she thinks I play piano in a whorehouse)

 

My mother lives in constant fear that I'm going to quite my career (I'm an environmental lawyer for the gummint), to play music. She thinks this because I mostly talk to her about my music and gigs, rarely about my day job. My work involves a lot of detailed scientific crap, so when I try talking to her about it, her eyes glaze over. With mothers, you just can't win.

 

Gigging: Crumar Mojo 61, Hammond SKPro

Home: Vintage Vibe 64

 

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theatre director, with a MFA in theatre from the national academy...but i spend more time with music nowadays...

NORD STAGE 2, IPAD 2 with lots of soft syths

Roland td9 expanded

Guitars, basses, Pod Xtl, GT-10b

Garritan, Reason, Symphonic Choirs , Cubase, Sibelius

Three shelter cats

 

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Theoretical Physicist (specializing in supergravity and M-theory) and university professor here.

 

A former professional student, earning 5 degrees, including dual Ph.D.'s in physics and mathematics, plus a SM in management (all from MIT). When they finally tossed me out of school, the only way I could stay on was to join the faculty, and I did (since I thought it beat working, as teaching and research never felt like work to me, just pleasure).

 

I've always kept one world in academics and the other in business, while being a serial entrepreneur founded and sold two companies and been a C level officer at three others.

 

I've continually done music at a pro level (varying with my other professional and life commitments) for 30 years and will always play music. High points in my musical career were road stints with Stan Getz and Mike Stern! These days, I have the luxury of doing as much music as I want, under my own terms and for the most part, I'm digging it!

Yamaha C7 Grand, My Hammonds: '57 B3, '54 C2, '42 BC, '40 D, '05 XK3 Pro System, Kawai MP9000, Fender Rhodes Mk I 73, Yamaha CP33, Motif ES6, Nord Electro 2, Minimoog Voyager & Model D, Korg MS10
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There are very well educated people here, very good indeed.

Three degrees and all a person is able to say is badass.

My parents were well educated and talked about the kids going to college or uni all the time. I received my degrees late in life after being a pro touring rock/country drummer/keyboardist/vocalist more than 35 years. I learned to play piano and read from classically trained rock keyboardists. My degrees are biology and atomspheric physics. I was given an honorary masters in performance music in Houston, Tx because at the time no one had done the type of performing in front of so many people that I had, and the music students wanted to learn how it was done. I was also a long shoreman and had my own computer installing/repair business working all over Houston with 30 employees. Then, three severe auto accidents, none my fault put an end to it all. Now, I build acoustic guitars and really work hard at learning new classical pieces as well as many of the old rock/country tunes. I am on disability from severe back injuries and doing the very best I am able. I am not in a wheel chair thank God!

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There are very well educated people here, very good indeed.

 

Allow me to represent the less educated crowd. I'm a college dropout. I left school to go be a rock star. :facepalm:

 

I actually went to school to get a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology so I'd have something to fall back on if that music thing didn't work out. I quickly learned two things. 1/ I had no aptitude for EET, and 2/ if I wanted to do anything with music, I needed to go for it full tilt. That decision led to many a job asking people if they'd like fries with that. I eventually got a gig with a road band (Top 40 / Holiday Inn circuit in the 80's). That became my education that schools back then didn't offer. I became very well versed in numerous playing styles, developed very good ears, became a wiz at synth programming (because pre-programmed synths weren't availble yet!) and embraced MIDI full on when it came out. All these things (along with always writing tunes on the side) prepared me very well for the day gig I've had for the last 13 years.

 

I'm the staff composer / music director at a production studio. I write music & do audio / sound design for corporate videos, TV spots, jingles, etc. I play with toys all day until the wife makes me come home.

 

My "other full time job" (a part time job that often feels like full time) is that I'm the Music Director at my church. All music, all different, all good. :thu:

Custom Music, Audio Post Production, Location Audio

www.gmma.biz

https://www.facebook.com/gmmamusic/

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Sr Measurement Engineer, got my BTEE back in 1988.

 

My engineering job pays for the music hobby (I learned quickly that you can't make a living from club gigging). Just emerged from semi-retirement from live gigging as I finally found a decent band.

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Publisher, writer, editor in areas of nonprofit management, business, mental health, addictions, public health, a bit of fiction--and to date one music book. I do substantive development of long books, working with authors from concept through production; I get commissioned to write books and edit/develop/co-write series; I have a growing series of business articles on OpenForum; I write other types of material (promos, web text, etc. as needed); and I take on other related activities. I work from my home office, which is also my studio space. It's great--I can get up from my work and go practice. I started freelancing right as the recession hit, but I've been very busy (knock wood) due to a deep network. This year is busy musically, too, with a steady house gig right now.
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Project manager for a Industrial equipment vendor to GM and Ford based in detroit area. M.E. degree... havent gigged in over a year.

 

I hate my life...

-Greg

Motif XS8, MOXF8, Hammond XK1c, Vent

Rhodes Mark II 88 suitcase, Yamaha P255

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When the time came to start working for a living, because I couldn't live off what I made playing, I started off as a handyman for a weekend home rental company. Hated that job. Then I started building bicycles. Hated the job. Then worked temp crap. Hated it.

 

Then my wife and I moved to Florida, moving in with her mom.

 

I built bicycles again, hated it.

 

Then, I got the chance to go back to school. I got an A.S. Degree in Information Technology, with a Networking option. I started to work for the college after the first year.

 

After graduation I worked my way through several jobs in IT, settling with a desktop support position for a local health care organization. I was there for almost 5 years, when I lost my job. After a month off, I started working for Harris, a multi-national communications company in the help-desk. It was a contractor position that lasted 1 1/2 years. When I found out I was not going to be hired on, and was to be let go, I scrambled, and found a help-desk position with United Space Alliance, a NASA contractor. I was there, also as a contractor for almost 2 years. We knew all along that there were impending layoffs with the end of the Space Shuttle program, layoffs that have already started.

 

Then I saw an email concerning an open position back with Harris. The job description was perfect for me. I applied, had one phone interview with the same people that I had worked for before. I was told the next day by the recruiter that I would get a call setting up another phone interview. Instead of an interview, they offered me the job. We negotiated the price, and I gave my 2 weeks notice.

 

Now, rather than driving 45 miles one way for a job with no benefits, I drive 5 miles, and have full benefits, and there's no spector of a layoff. I get 30 minutes for lunch, and can go home and back in that time if I have to.

 

Now I work at the computer service desk for the Aviation Safety Division of the Federal Aviation Administration, and I LOVE my job. I've loved airplanes my entire life, and even have a Private Pilot License, so it's great to be around aviation.

 

I've been here for almost 2 years. This past 2 weeks I had to take off for 6 days due to my wife's health, and actually looked forward to going to work. The people I work for and with could not possibly be better. Plus the hours are such that I can gig without any problem, and I'm never on call.

 

Took a while, but I found my dream job.

 

Now I just need my dream gig, and I'm set.

"In the beginning, Adam had the blues, 'cause he was lonesome.

So God helped him and created woman.

 

Now everybody's got the blues."

 

Willie Dixon

 

 

 

 

 

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While I was a full time musician I started to worry about insurance and retirement. Went back to school for electrical engineering. Took a programming class and fell in love with the meld of logic and creativity. Immediately changed direction and got my degree in computer science. Went back some years later and took enough accounting to qualify for an MBA program. Never followed through.

 

Day job - Chief Information Officer and Risk Management Director for a not-for-profit regional mental health center in one of the poorest rural areas in the nation. Sort of like a health department for mental health, mental retardation and substance abuse. Sadly, mental health does not get the funding that physical health gets.

 

I hope we survive Kentucky's movement to managed care. Managed Care has to be the stupidest thing politicians ever implement. :mad:

This post edited for speling.

My Sweetwater Gear Exchange Page

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There are very well educated people here, very good indeed. Three degrees and all a person is able to say is badass.

 

No, I could have said nothing at all.

Kawai C-60 Grand Piano : Hammond A-100 : Hammond SK2 : Yamaha CP4 : Yamaha Montage 7 : Moog Sub 37

 

My latest album: Funky organ, huge horn section

https://bobbycressey.bandcamp.com/album/cali-native

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There are very well educated people here, very good indeed. Three degrees and all a person is able to say is badass.

 

No, I could have said nothing at all.

 

I thought the comment was spot on. Nothing better came to my mind, but then, I only have one degree. :)

This post edited for speling.

My Sweetwater Gear Exchange Page

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I am a mineral / real estate attorney. I do oil and gas title work in the extremely busy Marcellus Shale region in Appalachia, as well as provide title insurance for large commercial real estate projects (theaters, big box stores, etc.).

 

I also do a small amount of entertainment law work. Right now, I am advising a production company client on legal issues, and recording theme music and background cues for the shows the company produces in my home studio!

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