How To: Bag Yourself An Internship

Here, at The Big Music Project, we are dedicated to helping you get your foot in that big scary door to the Music Industry. One of the ways we do this is by offering internships and job opportunities, but there are only a certain amount of openings we can offer and, occasionally, there may be a job opportunity that even WE miss that might be perfect for you!

To help you on your internship search above and beyond The Big Music Project, we spoke to Hannah -an International Promotions Assistant Intern at Domino Records. She told us how she found her internship and her top tips for bagging your dream internship.

internships

How did you realise you wanted to work in the industry?

“When I went to my first gig towards the end of my school years- it was Youmeatsix and it was amazing. The feeling you get from live music is just incredible, however I didn’t start to pursue it til the end of college when I was studying Photography and was going to a lot more gigs. I got used to the structure of gigs and wanted to surround myself with live music all the time. When it was the time to apply for Universities I found a Music Industry Management course and everything from there seemed to make sense.”

Do you believe university is important to getting a role in the music industry?

“I think the connections and opportunities that University gives you is important because in this particular field it is all about experience and internships and they can give you the contacts. However, I felt that I’ve learnt more from my experience rather than my course. I’ve changed University twice and still feel there is a lot of pressure and unorganisation. To add to that, I’ve been to a lot of industry talks and the professionals have said multiple times “it’s not about your grades, its about your experience!”

What other experience have you undertaken in the industry?

“I started really small from photographing and promoting local bands back home but it wasn’t until I went to University where the opportunities were bigger. My first experience was a runner and VIP assistant for a Bon Jovi concert in Birmingham. Then, I worked various music events. One of the production companies kept me on for more events.

I then interned at an underground record label as a Label assistant, which was also advertised through my uni Facebook page, this was mainly admin but I didn’t enjoy it as much as the live event work.

I found my next role from a past interviewer who I made a good impression on (but didn’t get that particular role) who forwarded me the position of reviewing and writing for a music website. I also got this particular role because I started my own blog in my first year of Uni. This was the best position I had so far as I learnt a lot about the Music Industry as I was liaising with management and PR online but at the gigs networking.”

How did you find the role at Domino?

“I found this opportunity on my uni Facebook page as well, but it was advertised on Domino’s website and Facebook page too.”

Where else would you advise someone looking for a music industry internship to look?

If you’re at uni then definitely get to you know your teachers and let them know what sector you’re interested in, and obviously the social pages.

If you’re not at uni then keep an eye out online. Facebook have pages and groups that aren’t necessarily linked to uni’s but to musicians and professionals, LinkedIn is another great way to find opportunities as it’s an online CV and you can connect with people who can help you get to the position you want to be in. Then there’s always google, I spent hours each night just typing “music internships london” but it does help to be specific in what you want to do.

Getting away from the computer and going out and networking is also helpful and fun, the Young Guns Network do great networking events with industry professionals and young people in the same position. But if you want to be in the Music Industry then networking at gigs is always a strain but can be successful.

What are three top tips you’d give someone looking for an internship?

  1. Be passionate!

“When applying for internships I’m always passionate and state how much I love music and the feeling- these people love it. Whenever I’ve gotten an interview or even the internship they’ve often credited me on my passion and that’s the main reason why I’ve gotten the positions.”

  1. Dont Stress!

“There have been so many times when I’ve been rejected from a position or given false hope and I’m left moaning to my friends and family feeling pretty beat down. But you will get there, just be patient. It also helps to slowly and surely build up your CV, I’ve met so many people who have said “I’m just lucky, I was in the right place at the right time”, however I don’t think I am one of those people. I’ve had to work really hard and build up my CV, it may have taken a while but I’m definitely feeling positive for the future.”

  1. Be Fun!

“Try and show your personality in your applications, if you get an interview, smile and laugh a lot. Try to talk to the interviewer as if they’re your friend because then they can see they are going to enjoy having you in their workplace. I’m often complimented on my upbeat personality and build good friendships- hence the woman who forwarded me on the position to write for a music website. It’s better to have made a positive impression and they keep you in the back of their mind than immediately forgetting about you.”

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

“I graduate next year so hopefully in a full time job that relates to what I want to do, the live sector of the Music Industry is definitely where I see myself. If things go well with other internships then Events management is definitely on the cards, if not then I would still like to be in the live industry, working my way up to being a Tour manager or Events Manager. But obviously still going to a lot of gigs and one day being the creator of one.”

If Hannah’s story has inspired you to get a move on with your music career, check out our articles on starting your own music blogthe good, the bad and the ugly of internships or our job search section!