Minor in Business of Live Music

The business of live music minor provides students with an opportunity to gain the skills, tools, and networks necessary for successful long-term careers in the live sector of the music industry, whether as a professional musician or a music business professional. While the record industry is continually challenged to keep up with evolving technologies and consumer patterns, live music has developed into a multibillion dollar industry, existing as the largest sector of the global music industry. The minor, which lives within the Berklee Popular Music Institute, provides a comprehensive platform for learning the fundamental aspects of the live industry including promotion, production, touring, key players, brands and sponsorships, festivals, ticketing, finances, and more.

In this minor, students will gain an understanding of the responsibilities of key industry players such as agents, tour managers, and promoters and will develop skills in event production and promotion. Using these skills, students will successfully engage in real-world experiences such as booking, promoting, managing, and performing.

Entrance Requirements

None; this minor is open to all B.M. and P.D.M. students. Submit the Declaration of Major/Minor form to the Music Business/Management Department. See detailed instructions in the Registration Guide

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, students will:

  • define, describe, and discuss the live music sector’s terminology, core concepts, the role of each of its key players, as well as current and future trends;
  • list and discuss the legal considerations of producing and promoting concerts, tours, and music festivals (e.g., licenses, permits, union regulations, intellectual property laws, municipal, and state regulations, etc.);
  • list and describe all of the factors to consider when producing different types of live events; 
  • apply knowledge of contract law and standard practices to critically assess most common contracts found within the live music sector (i.e. performance agreements, sponsorships, and endorsements, etc.);
  • apply knowledge of finance, ancillaries, accounting, and taxation to budgeting, profitability, and ticket pricing within the live music sector;
  • identify and describe new and current sources of income within the live music sector;
  • effectively market and promote events and tours, as well as identify and evaluate potential sponsorship and endorsement opportunities;
  • identify career opportunities within the live music sector and effectively navigate the job market;
  • apply DEIA (diversity, equity, inclusion, and access) and eco-responsibility considerations in business practices and decision-making; and
  • draft effective presentations and communications that align with the standard practices and applications of the live music sector.
Curriculum and Courses

Take five required courses (10 credits):

  • MB-101 Introduction to the Music Business (2 credits) or MB-211 Legal Aspects of the Music Industry (2 credits)
  • BPMI-101 Starting Out in Live Music (2 credits)
  • BPMI-202 Tour Personnel (2 credits) 
  • BPMI-303 The Business of Music Festivals (2 credits) 
  • BPMI-306 Sponsors, Brands & Strategic Partnerships in Live Events (2 credits)