Top Tips: Work Experience in The Music Industry

As Part of our Rising Stars in Journalism project, we asked Charley Nash to come up with the 10 top tips you need to know about work experience in the music industry.

As Part of our Rising Stars in Journalism project, we asked Charley Nash to come up with the 10 top tips you need to know about work experience in the music industry.

Charley Nash

Charley was given the opportunity of a lifetime last year when she secured a role as a crew member on tour with Manchester band Black Grape. She felt the experience was invaluable in helping her understand the music industry.

Here are Charley’s top tips for anyone who wishes to gain work experience in music:

1) You need to think carefully about what you want to do and what you would like to gain out of the work experience!

Make a list and think about what you are really interested in. The music industry is very broad and consists of so many different opportunities. Think about what would benefit you the most!

2) Seek out addresses and names of those who might help

The industry is teeming with people who can and want to help you. A quick Google search can tell you the head of your favourite record label, or the tour manager of your favourite band.  Their information is at your fingertips and many are keen to help you out!

3) Write or email as many of them as you can

Be sure to include in your message what you are looking for and what you can offer them.  Many of the decision makers are very busy so don’t expect a response from all of them. But the worst they can do is say no or not reply.  Don’t forget to outline your passions and any relevant experience.

4) Be proactive and persistent

Keep writing to everyone and anyone. Contact lots of different people without waiting on a reply for someone in particular. Remember – all experience is a good experience.

So… lucky you! You’ve secured work experience!  What next?

5) Take the plunge!

You might be offered something that’s far away, which could feel overwhelming or a little scary. Be brave!  Networking and experience are key. Keep in mind, this could be the door that opens up a wealth of opportunities for you.

6) Ask as many questions as you possibly can

The people you meet will probably want to tell you all about their jobs, especially if you show interest and enthusiasm.  They will probably also be happy to discuss how they got into their positions and give you advice. The Big Music website also has lots of interviews with key industry professionals that can help too!

7) Get as many hands-on experiences as possible

Not all the jobs are glamorous. You’ll only get the most out of the experience if you do anything and everything you’re offered.

8) Don’t get ‘star struck’

If you’re lucky, you could be mingling or brushing shoulders with some of the biggest names in the music industry, but a flustered fan is neither professional nor helpful. Keep it together!

9) Use opportunities wisely

Look, listen and learn! The advice you are given is likely to be extremely helpful and the skills you learn will be key to your future goals.

10) Enjoy it!

It is the most exciting and incredible experience ever!  You’ll see and learn new things, meet amazing people, have a better idea of what aspects of the music industry interest you the most and, most importantly, have fun!


Thanks, Charlie! Feel inspired? Be sure to check out our Jobs board for all the latest entry-level openings in the creative industry. If you want to be the next Rising Star in Journalism to be featured on our website, apply today!