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The Average United States Musician Makes Less Than 25K a Year

The Average United States Musician Makes Less Than 25K a Year

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Photo Credit: Vickey Ford of Sneakshot Photography

It’s hard being an artist in the music industry

It’s been years since the music business has been this robust. This mostly has to do with the rise of streaming services, like Spotify and Apple Music.

However, that doesn’t mean it’s rosy for everyone. A new study from the nonprofit Music Industry Research Association shows that musicians, on average, aren’t raking in the cash you would think.  

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The survey got information from 1,227 musicians based in the United States. The organization found that the median musician made around $35,000 in 2017. However, on average, only $21,300 of that amount came from music-related avenues.

Comparing that number to a couple of years ago: from 2012 to 2016 the median U.S. musician made between $20,000 to $25,000. So there has been a rise in pay, but it hasn’t been much. And while the new streaming money is flowing fluidly, it hasn’t made a big dent in the average artist’s bottom line. This is displayed in the survey: more than half the musicians asked, 61%, say music income isn’t enough.

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Things seem to be even direr for women artists. Women made up about 34.2 percent of U.S. musicians in 2016. Seventy-two percent of women musicians say that they dealt with gender discrimination; sixty-seven percent of women say they have experienced sexual harassment.

To read the entire survey, which is pretty illuminating, head here.

H/T: Rolling Stone


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