Sally Podrebarac on Post-Music Degree Options

According to Sally Podrebarac, a music degree can be used in multiple job settings. A degree can help prepare individuals for a career that fits naturally drawn to playing or listening to music. Sally Podrebarac has a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Horn Performance, but there are many options to choose from.

What Is A Musical Career?

A musical career can consist of a variety of different jobs or one focused path. While musical performance is often thought of as the “main” musical career, there are many facets to consider. Sally Podrebarac is a professional music teacher who also performs. Many instructors enjoy a combination of musical outlets throughout the year.

A musician’s description is usually described as an individual who plays one or more musical instruments in a group or soloist. Instruments can be from several sections, including strings, woodwinds, percussion, voice, and brass. In recent years, synthesizers have also been considered musical instruments.

Musical careers are not limited to musicians. Those that work within the industry are also included in this category. The income earned from a musical career can drastically vary depending on the employer and music.

Career Options for Those With Musical Degrees

The average salary for a musician is approximately $48,000 per year in the United States. This number, however, can be misleading. Musicians that play in nightclub venues may make significantly less depending on the place. Those in the music industry but who do not perform as musicians have a range of options.

Recording Engineer

An audio engineer combines technology and music for a job that can be done in multiple settings. Audio engineers are taught to manipulate sound in a recording studio to enhance the quality. Both analog and digital knowledge are necessary to understand a variety of available choices. Equipment that is frequently used includes compressors and microphones as well as the latest in technological advancements.

An audio engineer has several responsibilities in addition to the sound quality of a musician or group. Many recording engineers organize sessions to repair any possible technical problems. Addition training can involve mixing and editing.

Tour Manager

Tour managers may not be directly involved with music, but they are essential for the industry. A tour manager handles on-the-road logistics when it comes to performances and musicians. Transportation and lodging accommodations are not the only aspects of tour management. A successful manager must also know how to budget.

To create a smooth tour, managers are in charge of the schedule and finances. Contacting staff along the way may be necessary, as well as foreseeing potential causes for change. Accounting principles and business management programs are available for those who are interested. The estimated salary depends on the actual tour time, yearly budget costs, and particular employer.

Music Teacher

Teaching music can be accomplished through many platforms. Virtual music teaching has been a popular job for musicians during the pandemic. Teaching out of the home is also a possibility. A public school music teacher can earn approximately $42,000 per year.

Depending on the type of music teacher, hours may vary. Teaching music is one way to work fewer hours while working on other projects at the same time. It can also be taught full-time at certain colleges around the country. Some employers will hire music teachers for a yearly position, but other jobs can take the form of gigs or freelancing. It is possible to have a significant amount of freedom with this career.

Booking Agent

A booking agent is different from a tour manager because they are responsible for the venue setting. While a manager and agent often work together, their roles are for specific purposes.

A booking agent secures concert venues. This can involve using negotiation tactics while having a firm understanding of the overall budget. An agent can work with multiple people in the industry, including venue owners, audio engineers, musicians, and managers. Music management includes a sense of marketing and accounting to ensure the success of a musician or band.


Composers are needed for more than just classical music. Composers frequently write music for film, TV, and even certain video games. Creating music involves having a keen sense of pitch and imagination to assess sounds and arrangements accurately. Music theory is often necessary for musical composition.

A typical composer can write and arrange live music. Multiple instruments are usually used and must be guided through specifically-timed melodies. To successfully write music for multiple genres, many composers have experience playing a variety of instruments. Composition software knowledge is important for practice and recording.


Musical degrees can achieve careers throughout the industry. A Bachelor of Music is an intensive program designed for musicians. Classes can be taken within a university and typically taken for four years. A Bachelor’s of Music Education is another college route that prepares students for a career in teaching K-12 music. States have different requirements for licensure and should be checked before enrolling.

Audio engineering focuses on scientific and technical aspects of the sound industry. There are typically three different levels of degrees that one can earn to become a professional sound engineer. An Associate in Applied Science can cover the basics of the audio industry. For a more in-depth look at the technical aspects, a Bachelor of Science is recommended.

Lasting Opportunities

A music career often involves a steady musical education. Even after completing college-level classes, many industry specialists will continue their education on an informal basis. By learning new technology and practicing an instrument, musical education can evolve naturally.