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4 Ways Musicians Can Earn Money During the Pandemic

The pandemic has created lots of disruption where jobs are concerned, and some creatives have felt the fallout harder than others as they watch venues shutter and gig after gig fall apart. If you’ve been dealing with job loss as a musician, there are a few options for making money while you’re waiting for things to reopen, but don’t forget to lean on your connections and make some new ones. Noisy Cavern is a great place to meet other musicians and have your talents showcased so you can spread the word about your music. When you’re ready to make some extra cash, use these tips to get started.

Become an entrepreneur

Starting your own business may sound like a major endeavor, but many musicians already have merchandise or creative materials on hand that would be perfect for an online store. You might choose to start a tutoring business that allows you to give music classes from your home or online. There are many ways to become an entrepreneur, so it’s important to choose the right platform and business entity for your needs. Creating an LLC will give you some flexibility, tax benefits, and liability protection as you move forward, but you’ll need to take a few steps first, including choosing a name for your business and filing some paperwork. Pro tip: If you hire a formation service rather than an attorney to file for your California LLC, you’ll save some money.

Start a YouTube channel

If you don’t already have one, a YouTube channel can be invaluable for bringing in income, especially right now when many venues still aren’t open and those that are don’t have full capacity. Not only can you bring in ad revenue with enough subscribers and clicks, you can upload videos of your live shows and make them available to your fans with pay-as-you-can donations. Many musicians have gone this route during the pandemic, with some even playing through early albums in order to generate some buzz among their fanbase. This is a great avenue to explore even if you do end up starting your own business, as you can cross-promote.

Put your writing skills to good use

While not all musicians are songwriters, they can still make money by writing about music. If you’re still building up your subscriber list on YouTube and need to generate revenue elsewhere, plenty of music-based websites and magazines pay well for informative articles about various scenes, instruments, and equipment. If you want to boost your writing chops, look for online courses that will help you get more comfortable with article structure and flow. Be sure to do some research by reading several examples of the type of pieces you’d like to write, and get familiar with the website or magazine to find out what they typically publish. In some cases, you might find some great promotional connections by reaching out to these sites for reviews of your music.


If writing isn’t your thing, don’t worry! There are plenty of other ways to make money as a freelancer. Take a look at job boards to find out what’s available in your preferred field, keeping in mind that many companies are hiring remote workers right now. This means you can write, perform, or design from the comfort of your own home. Make your online profile as detailed and professional as possible so employers can see how good a fit you are for their needs.

Making extra money as a musician can be challenging, especially during these times. Reach out to your contacts and make new connections so you’ll always be in the loop about upcoming gigs and promotional opportunities, and think outside the box a bit when you’re assessing your skills. As a creative, you have a wide variety of talents that can help you move forward during the tail end of the pandemic.

Interested in recording a performance for Noisy Cavern or having an album reviewed? Reach out and get in touch. 714.851.6108

Photo via Pexels


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