BA (Hons) Music Entrepreneurship

  • UCAS Code: Not Applicable
  • Course duration: 2 years (full-time) / 4 years (part-time)
  • Direct line: 0203 3888 900
  • Admissions: applications@dime-online.org

Introduction

The BA (Hons) Music Entrepreneurship equips the aspiring music entrepreneur with the knowledge and skills needed to function effectively in the fast-changing landscape of the music industry. The course aims to develop critical, contextually and culturally aware practitioners through the production of a mature body of work.

Under the guidance of today’s working professionals, the course provides you with essential information on the functionality of the industry and how to create and exploit multiple income streams for both the new and established artist. Free-thinking and individuality are encouraged and students can choose areas of specialism within the parameters of the course.

The intensive nature of the course enables learners to become skilled practitioners and provides the freedom for them to develop their own unique and innovative methods of working. The online delivery mode provides you with flexible access to lectures and multi-media course content through an interactive online delivery platform. This allows you to study at a time and place that suits you, whilst providing opportunities to network with peers working nationally and internationally on the same programme of study.

DIME ONLINE courses are offered in full-time accelerated mode, which enables you to complete your degree in two years. We also offer a part-time version for students who have work, family, and/or other commitments, which enables you to study at a less intensive pace over four years.

Benefits

  • World class artists and educators, active in the music industry and educational practice.
  • Direct engagement with the industry through project-based work.
  • A flexible learning model to suit your schedule.
  • Collaboration within a global community, your regular interaction with peers and tutor group is not limited to geographical boundaries.

How is the course taught?

The delivery of the course will take place through a VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) called Canvas. A range of learning and teaching activities take place via this online delivery platform including:

  • Substantial Weekly Lessons embedded into the delivery platform, featuring filmed tuition from the very best artists from around the world, underpinned by text, graphics or additional files as relevant.
  • Signpost Sessions delivered by the Head of Department comprising film and text guidance on progression through the course, context, assessment, timing of feedback and providing inspiration and focus to the academic backbone of the course.
  • Regular one-to-one tutorial guidance from the Head of Education and Head of Department on matters relating to the course, musical performance and student care.
  • Exclusive Masterclasses from world famous artists comprising of bespoke filmed interviews and performances, angled towards supporting the learning aims of the courses.
  • Online Conferencing to conduct real-time events and discussions within the course.

Click on the module titles below to explore the course content:

Stage 1: Level 4

The UK and European Music Industry
The UK and European Music Industry provides you with a comprehensive overview of the UK music industry and its relationship with other major European markets. It explores how record companies, publishers, managers, agents, writers, artists and merchandising interact in the digital age. The module will cover areas such as sponsorship and product placement, discovering how artists and managers organise these income streams into a coherent business strategy. Lecture content will incorporate the use of case study research on important artists, showing how they organise their commercial affairs in the UK and Europe.
Artist Discovery
In Artist Discovery you will develop higher-level A&R skills. You will be given guidance on finding acts, assessing their potential and making a conceptual link between the musical product, the branding associated with an act and a paying audience. Developing the instinct to assess a potential market size, longevity and brand loyalty in commercially viable acts is the central theme of this module. You will examine the negotiation of early-stage deals and strategies to formulate a grassroots approach to building awareness and a ‘buzz’ around an act.
Artist Income Streams
The artist manager (or self-managing artist) will need to have a clear sense of where the act’s income streams are derived from and how to maximise income and minimise expenses. Additionally, investigation into the ethics of management is considered, as well as the commercial and personal relationship between act and manager. You will study historical instances of disputes between act and manager, as well as systems for resolving disagreement. The module also explores examples of long-term model partnerships, financial modeling, forecasting and cash flow management. By the end of the module you should be able to communicate in an authoritative way with finance professionals such as accountants, banks and third-party investors.
The International Music Industry
The International Music Industry builds on the previous study of The UK and European Music Industry by examining the rapidly changing online developments for record companies and artists. The module will cover the increasingly diverse income streams evolving due to interaction between new mediums and formats. Lecture content will incorporate the use of case study research on important artists, showing how they exploit digital formats and organise their commercial affairs worldwide.
Self-Employment
This module examines the requirements of any self-employed professional in the music industry: self-employment tax and National Insurance, company start-up, partnerships, employing other people, time management, goal setting and efficient working.

Throughout the module, you will research the self-employed environment, identify opportunities and create a personalised business plan that supports individual career aims. You will learn the conventions and forms necessary to create a credible business case intelligible to third parties, which may include private investors, banks and other lenders.

Recognising that the artist manager is likely to receive income sporadically, the module also examines the management of cash flow in both lean and bountiful times. Additionally, personal and business investment options are discussed along with tax management and VAT.

Artist Deal Suite
The manager will have to negotiate many different types of deals, each with multiple variations according to the act, territory and organisation. We will look at the common terms and variables within these deals such as record, publishing, sync, live show and tour, merchandising and sponsorship. By the end of this module you should feel equipped to have a considered conversation with music lawyers and other third parties and be able to take an active and informed role in negotiating various deal points.

Stage 2: Level 5

Breaking a New Artist
This module will focus on the strategizing and implementation of a campaign designed to break a new artist. Getting the most out of traditional marketing tools such as videos and press releases will be studied, along with how to effectively exploit social media and other online platforms. You will examine several case studies of successful campaigns from the last five years, drawing conclusions from noteworthy examples of new acts that achieved rapid success. This is an exciting subject, and our tutors have had first hand experience of bands that have rocketed from nowhere into the national consciousness. Although a phenomenon of this kind can occasionally happen by chance, a smart manager who ensures that the right record is promoted in a cohesive way at the right time usually creates the success.
Tour Management
In the early days of a band or artist’s career, it may be necessary for the manager and/or band to take care of the planning and execution of their own touring logistics. In this module you will examine budgets, processes and logistics related to touring, understanding the roles of the various crewmembers as you do this. The principles of effective promotion will also be discussed, and you will learn how to get the best from a booking agent and a promoter. Finally, we will investigate how the band/artist can create the most effective set list for different situations ranging from short support sets and small venues to festival slots and arena headline shows.
Principles of Record Production
Principles of Record Production describes the process of record production by focusing on the journey from a finished arrangement in the rehearsal room (or demo) to a master recording. Areas covered will include song selection and quality control, pre-production and arrangement, choosing a producer, goal setting, mixing, mastering and the psychology of recording. The lessons will explore the strategy of completely removing the demo stage and producing a fully finished master from the outset of the writing process. You will examine the production on various recordings and draw conclusions as to how the production has impacted on the success of the records.
Managing an Established Artist
Breaking an act is one thing, but maintaining their success is another big challenge. We will learn from managers who have worked with acts over many albums, weathering changing fashions and perceptions in the music industry. Established artists must continually find ways to grow while they endeavor to maintain existing audiences and simultaneously gain new fans. Raising brand awareness utilizing traditional marketing tools will be examined, along with developing a clear strategy for social media and other online platforms. Good management is about making smart choices that maximise the career opportunities available for the artist. Throughout the module, we will examine what these strategies are and how they might be implemented, including the ability to re-establish a familiar name with a definitive record, live show, or press angle.
Negotiation Skills
Negotiation skills are rarely taught or even discussed, but the ability to set up and close a deal is completely essential to the managerial skill set. Your leadership qualities and ability to present your projects as credible commercial propositions are just the starting point. In acquiring the experience to drive through a deal, you must develop the ability to identify the important deal points and know where there is the potential for negotiation and when to concede. Practice will make perfect, and you will be guided and supported in your practice throughout the module.
History and Context of Artist Management
In this module you will examine the post-war history and development of artist management within the context of the social, political and business environments of the time. You will examine the work of the successful managers of the past and their continued influence on today’s practice. The module will cover the personal relationships between successful artists and managers, exploring the concept of interpersonal relationships in business. You will analyse the key events and the changing legal and business framework of the music industry over the last six decades, helping you make connections with past, present and future in the context of an ever-changing industry.

Stage 3: Level 6

Publishing and Copyright Law
Publishing and Copyright Law provides you with a detailed look at the publishing industry and the opportunity to gain an understanding of the major income streams available to songwriters. The module will examine the content and terms of various types of publishing deals – and how to protect song rights through knowledge of copyright law. You will also explore other scenarios such as songwriting splits and how to agree them without conflict.
Personal Skills in Business Development
This module deals with the personal and interpersonal ‘soft skills’ that are fundamental to success in both independent and team contexts. Team role approaches and theory such as Belbin team development and psychometric testing used in business are examined and applied to music industry models (e.g. the members of a band). This module will support your progression towards the Professional Project and Professional Practice Portfolio through developing your objective awareness of your own working style, strengths and weaknesses. Favoured working styles are discussed and the module seeks to foster an awareness of differing personality traits and how they can impact on the performance and outcome of collaborative project work.
Professional Project
The Professional Project will see you taking the concepts studied in previous modules and applying them into a practical context. You will again be asked to look after a band or solo artist of your choosing and organise either a significant studio session (e.g. an entire album) or a set of live dates that cover more than the local area. This could also involve organising a full campaign based around a national tour or a record release, including the use of various forms of social media combined with traditional marketing methods. Your critical reflections on performance and the creative and commercial outcomes from the recording or gigs will underpin the reflective element of the project.
Professional Practice Portfolio
The Professional Practice Portfolio module requires you to research and report on the career opportunities available within your specialist area. You should also comment on how your craft can be contextualised in professional opportunities that will monetise your skills and inspire entrepreneurial practice and artistic excellence. Your Portfolio will also include a personal website and various forms of social media to support your professional work.

Explore a free sample lesson in ‘Canvas’,
our interactive online learning environment

Staff

Throughout your studies with DIME you will come into contact with a range of artists, practitioners, educators, support and administrative staff. Your key contacts will be the Head of Education for DIME ONLINE and the Head of Department. You will enjoy regular contact with these people during your time with DIME.

In addition, your education will be enhanced by input from a range of experts whose contributions include the provision of masterclasses, participation in Q&A and interviews and input to the design and writing of specific modules.

Assessment

The modes of assessment used in this award include:

  • Portfolio of work
  • Small in-lecture tasks (solo and group)
  • Essays (critical, reflective, research-based)
  • Case Studies
  • Podcasts and digital media
  • Project Presentation
  • Project Documentation

In some cases, more than one mode of assessment will be used within a module to ensure that the learner can demonstrate that they have met all of the learning outcomes. The work produced for these assessments develops graduate outcomes required in employment, such as a high level of managerial and entrepreneurial competency, time management, written and oral communication, portfolio production, and team working. This is alongside self-motivation, independence and creativity of thought.

Careers

DIME ONLINE is deeply committed to providing career advice and support. This starts in the recruitment of a roster of tutors who exemplify the values of a successful self-employed music professional in today’s music industry. DIME ONLINE courses and learning outcomes reflect the music business as it is today, and our commitment to course development will ensure their currency in the future. Students are encouraged through the course to form realistic and achievable career goals, underpinned by research and experience, providing a genuine understanding of the structure and operation within the industry. The philosophy is described as ‘designing your own professional life’ and a musician will see this theme recurring throughout the course.

Further career opportunities/destinations may include:

  • Artist/band manager
  • Music entrepreneur
  • Concert promoter
  • Industry negotiator
  • Tour manager
  • Industry consultant

Further study opportunities include:

  • Postgraduate Diploma or Master of Arts
  • PGCHE (teaching course)

Questions? Ask a Student!

At DIME ONLINE, we recognise that studying entirely online may be an unfamiliar format and that you might have some questions. To help with this, we’ve assembled a team of some of our previous graduates who are here to tell you about their online learning experience. Simply click on the address below to send an email.  Students will endeavour to respond within 24 hours.

 

Name: Kostas Koukourikgos

Location: Berlin

Program: BA (Hons) Music Entrepreneurship

Email Addresskostas_23990@hotmail.com