How to start a career in the music industry in Bristol

If you are considering a career in music and you find yourself in Bristol, what a great place to be. The music scene is vibrant and there is a significant amount to immerse yourself in within the famous city.  Let’s explore the steps you should take to begin your musical journey. 


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1) Get to know the scene

Man playing guitar on stage

What we recommend is for you to immerse yourself in Bristol’s gigs, festivals, club nights and open mic nights. Get a feel for the diverse sounds within the city, allowing you to become more familiar with venues, promoters, record labels and new, emerging and established artists. Getting to know the scene will enable you to network. This is key to getting yourself known and meeting fellow enthusiasts. 


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2) Develop your skills

What are your strengths and weaknesses?  A music course, such as Music Production, Music Performance, Vocal Artistry and Artist Development, or even tuition and private practice are great ways to do this.  Are you interested in music beyond the world of performance?  Are you a decent graphic designer?  Do you have a passion for social media?  Maybe you are an engineer.  Take courses, apprenticeships, training and volunteering opportunities to hone those skills and build on your practice. Don’t be afraid to get things wrong, to try new skills and develop.


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3) Identify the opportunities

Check-in with venues, online jobs boards, websites and social media.  Get a feel for the types of opportunities that there are in a field that you love. Explore local charities, festivals, record shops, and radio stations.  Read music journalism. Are there avenues you haven’t considered which embrace your musical passions?


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4) Polish Your CV and Portfolio

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Craft a professional CV highlighting your relevant skills, experiences, and achievements. Tailor your CV to each job application, clearly identifying how you meet the personal specifications identified within the job description.  How can you stand out from other applicants?  What is your unique selling point? Prepare a diverse range of work to show off your skills within your portfolio. It should demonstrate your own creativity.  


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5) Be brave and network

Now this can be uncomfortable and it’s not a skill everyone has, but develop your skill and experience in holding discussions with people you have not met and do not know. LinkedIn, Eventbrite, social media platforms all provide access to professional networking events. You never know who you might meet and how that may impact positively on your career. 


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6) Prep for the interview

If you get an interview, preparation is key.  Do your research. What do they offer?  What excites you about working there?  What could you bring to the organisation? Here is your opportunity to showcase your own passions and enthusiasm.  Take that opportunity. 


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7) Stick with it and stay positive. 

Female ACC student singing on stage

Securing employment in the music industry is a challenge and you will face setbacks along the way. Stick with it.  Be open to positions that enable you to develop your skills and develop you for the future. This may include entry-level positions or internships.  Stay positive and keep the future in mind. Be confident and determined. 


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Want to start a career in music?

ACC music students performing on stage

If you are based in Bristol and would like to become a music performer or work in music production, Access Creative College have courses that can kickstart your music career.

Apply online today!

Last updated on: 23rd April 2024