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  • Writer's pictureRachel Sellick

Careers in the Music Industry - Podcasting (Part I)

Written By Demi Michelle

The podcasting world has gained a ton of momentum over the past decade or so, and especially during the pandemic. It’s no surprise that podcasts have found their way into the music industry. Being a podcaster is a complex journey and has the potential to open many doors.

I’m delighted to share all it takes to be a podcaster in the music industry across a mini three-part series. It’s my hope that you’ll find my journey and advice useful if you’re considering starting a show of your own.

Why Am I Fit to Speak about Podcasting in the Music Industry?

You may be wondering who I am and why I’m qualified to talk about hosting a podcast in the music industry. My podcast, Write on Track: A Songwriting Podcast, has been around since May 2021 and recently surpassed 100 episodes on February 5. I run this show solo, from scheduling episodes to recording and beyond. There’s a ton that goes into podcasting, and I’ve learned so much over the past almost two years.

Benefits of Hosting a Music Podcast

Hosting a podcast in the music industry has many benefits. First, you’ll expand your network. I’ve made so many connections with such talented and kind people from all areas of the industry thanks to my podcast. The music industry is a place where a lot comes from who you know, and hosting a show will do wonders for your network.

Building your network leads to open doors. Hosting Write on Track has given me opportunities as an artist. I have connections with other creators and those on the business side, and this network has presented me with more chances to grow as a person and artist.

There’s nothing more beautiful than being the one to give a platform to others. Since I have guests on my show, I love giving them the chance to share their stories and experiences. This is a huge benefit because it establishes a level of selflessness and shows how everyone in the industry has a story to tell. Appreciation comes from this as well. Taking time to chat with someone about their life may be all they need to feel seen and heard.

Also, hosting a show can be a great stepping stone to other careers. Doing interviews and building an audio portfolio could lead to a music journalism job. If you demonstrate talent as a host, this could lead to a job as a radio personality. Gaining experience with email communications and scheduling episodes with guests reflects the role of a booking agent or publicist. There are tons of skills needed to host a podcast, and they can be transferred into a wide range of other music industry careers.

This is just a snapshot of some of the best benefits of hosting a music podcast. Now, I’m going to draw back the curtain on what you need to do to get started with your show.

Determine Your Show’s Focus and What Sets It Apart

First, you must determine what your show will be about. More importantly, you must nail down what makes your show different from all the podcasts out there. The best way to grab someone’s attention is to be unique and fresh while finding a way to add a hint of familiarity.

Before I started Write on Track, I did a lot of reflecting. As a songwriter and recording artist, I asked myself what kind of show I’d love to guest on that I haven’t come across. The first thing that popped into my head was topics. There are many music podcasts that focus on an artist’s career and their music. Through structuring my show around topics, my guests are able to speak about something they're passionate about that is relevant to the greater music community as well. This opens the door for artists to weave in their music in meaningful ways. Also, the conversations aren’t time stamped in terms of being relevant to a certain release or project. These topics are universal and hold importance as time passes.

Next, I thought about the atmosphere of the show and settled on it being conversational. As an artist, I’ve had a ton of interviews that are a strict Q&A style. Since my show has such a strong emphasis on topics, I knew that the conversations must flow naturally in order for the magic to happen. So, where my episodes have structure in terms of content, they’re free-flowing in terms of the style, and that makes it unique.

Finally, I realized that many shows are focused on a specific group. For example, only country artists, professional songwriters, or indie artists. I wanted my show to be inclusive and give a platform to anyone in the industry who has a passion and a story to tell.

So, as you can see, I gave a lot of thought to my show and my vision for it. Below are some questions to get you thinking about the direction you’d like to take your show.

Questions to Ask Yourself

  • What kind of podcast would you love to listen to or be part of that isn’t already out there?

  • What do you enjoy most about the music industry? Examples: songwriting and the stories behind songs, live music and attending concerts, the behind the scenes of the music business, social media and promotion, etc.

  • From your chosen area, what kinds of podcasts are already out there?

  • How will you bring a fresh spin to your show?

That’s a wrap on part one. In part two, I’ll get deep into show details and essential materials, like the show’s title, artwork, music, and more.

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