Hofstra offers BA and BS in Music Business degrees for students interested in pursuing a career in the music industry as a business professional working behind the scenes or a performer/songwriter or music producer.
Hofstra's proximity to New York City provides you with ready access to the heart of the world's music capital, its legendary music venues, the epicenter of the recording and publishing industries, streaming music providers, management companies, concert promoters, and music startups. Our music business faculty and alumni are intrinsically connected to the music industry assisting to provide internship and job placement for our students.
Learn music business terminology and its application to modern day practices
Understand the role and function of key stakeholders in the global music marketplace
Synthesize intellectual property and the legal aspects of the music business
Ascertain rights and revenue models in touring, recorded music, publishing, merchandising, and sponsorship
Gain knowledge and appreciation of music history, theory, harmony, and analysis
Learn and apply modern production techniques to recorded music and sound design
Create innovative marketing and promotional strategies in the music industry
Recognize technologic advances and their application to the music business
Employ an innovative problem-solving approach to future trends in the music industry
Become a future leader in the music industry
Why Music Business?
Students who graduate with a degree in music business work for record labels, publishing companies, concert promoters, artist management companies, music supervisors, entertainment law firms, booking agencies, and many other fields that comprise the music business. These positions include A&R rep, music supervisor, marketing manager, digital promoter, concert promoter, entertainment attorney, and more.
Additionally, graduates with a music business degree can choose to pursue a career as a recording artist, performing artist, composer/songwriter, record producer, sound designer, or live sound engineer.
A Billboard Best Program
Hofstra’s program has been recognized by Billboard magazine as one of the Top Music Business Schools in the United States. Succeeding in the music business requires knowledge, skills, and relationships. The University's music business program teaches students core music business foundations, provides the tools necessary to navigate the ever-changing industry, and cultivates relationships to launch a vibrant career.
In the Classroom
Learn from the Experts
The coordinator of our music business program is a record label veteran credited with discovering and signing Grammy Award-winning artist John Legend. Among our other professors, you will find Emmy and Academy Award-winning professionals who continue to perform, record, and publish. You may have seen them at the American Symphony Orchestra, Birdland, Brooklyn Harmonic, Blue Note Café, Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall, and in countless Broadway musicals.
About the BS
Performer – Audition Required
Students in the BS in Music Business program develop a background in music and musicianship, as well as a comprehensive understanding of the music industry. Students are required to pass an audition to enter the program, enroll in private instrument lessons, study music theory and harmony, as well as perform in ensembles. These students develop advanced skills in the analysis of music in the style of the common-practice and post-common-practice periods and advanced knowledge in repertoire and literature. The BS in Music Business program prepares students to consider a professional career as a recording/performing artist or work in the music industry for record labels, publishing companies, concert promoters, artist managers, booking agents, and many other fields that comprise the music business.
About the BA
Nonperformer – No Audition Required
The BA in Music Business program offers an opportunity for prospective students who possess little or no musical ability to study the music business and pursue a career in the industry as a nonperformer. No audition is required to enter the BA program, nor is there any requirement to enroll in private instrument lessons or to perform in the music ensembles. Students who graduate with the BA in Music Business degree will work for record labels, publishing companies, live music promoters, artist managers, music supervisors, entertainment attorneys, booking agents, and many other fields that comprise the music business. These positions in the music industry (A&R rep, music supervisor, marketing manager, digital promotions, concert promoter, entertainment attorney, etc.) do not require performance as criteria. The BA in Music Business program prepares these students to successfully enter the music business and become future leaders of the industry.
More about the program
Dozens of guest speakers visit our music business classes to share their experiences in the industry. A sampling of recent guests: Marshall Betts, agent, Paradigm Talent Agency; David Boxenbaum, founder + GM of A&M/Octone Records; Craig Cosgrove, Long Island chapter leader/SoFar Sounds; Mike Errico, musician and songwriter; Mike Fordham, streaming and playlist marketing/Primary Wave; Brittany Holloway, artist and industry insights/Next Big Sound and Pandora; Rich Holtzman, senior VP marketing and artist development, AEG Presents/manager, Portugal. The Man; Jon Landman, owner/founder, The Syndicate; and Josh Rabinowitz, SVP director of music/Grey Group.
Exclusive Industry Panels at Primary Wave Music
This is a panel series created exclusively for Hofstra music business students hosted at the New York City downtown office of the music management, marketing, and publishing company, Primary Wave Music. Their artists include Bob Marley, Smokey Robinson, Whitney Houston, Burt Bacharach, Prince, Ray Charles, Aerosmith, Def Leppard, Count Basie, Sly and the Family Stone, Boston, Alice Cooper, Paul Anka, Boy George and Culture Club, Steve Cropper, Glenn Gould, Air Supply, Godsmack, Devo, Donny Hathaway, and more.
Panel Topics: “Artist Management”; “Getting Your First Job Out of College”; “Digital Marketing”; and “Playlists and Streaming Music”.
Workshops and Class Trips
Workshops at Hofstra are focused on specialized topics and taught by high-level industry professionals.
Songwriting – Mike Errico, singer-songwriter, composer, producer, and music supervisor
Analytics in the Music Industry - Brittany Holloway, Next Big Sound/Pandora
Drums and percussion – Jacob Slichter, drummer, Semisonic
Additionally, Professor Tompkins travels annually with 15-20 students from the music business program to the Vegas Music Summit for keynote speeches, panel discussions, workshops, mentor sessions, and live music showcases.
Master Class Series
Hofstra’s music business program launched a master class series in 2018 focused on highly specialized topics in the music industry, taught by experts in their field. Master class topics have ranged from music supervision in commercials to tour management to beat making.
Curator/Instructor, Paul Falcone, Producer
The master class in beat making provided hands-on experience for students to learn the beat creation process including drum programming, working in sections, various instrumentation, arranging, and mixing.
Paul Falcone (producer, mixer, engineer) has worked with Michael Jackson, Missy Elliott, Luther Vandross, Maxwell, Queen Latifah, R.E.M., Iggy Azalea, Theophilius London (feat. Kanye West), Whitney Houston, R. Kelly, Tom Odell, Robin Thicke, Busta Rhymes, Nas, Jay-Z, Anita Baker, A$AP Rocky.
Curator/Instructor – Emily White, Founder, Collective Entertainment
The master class in tour management offered a deep dive into to the multifaceted role of tour management. The tour management master class was presented in four sections. Class one: advance work for a show, event, or tour. Class two: day of show work and event production. Class three: a panel discussion with industry professionals in the touring world. Class four: Students shadowed tour managers for artists performing at the Brooklyn Bowl. The master class students arrived at the Brooklyn Bowl prior to load-in and participated in all touring activities through load-out and settlement.
Instructor Emily White is a respected artist manager and entrepreneur, who began her career in tour management. As a founding partner at Collective Entertainment in New York and Los Angeles, White currently oversees tour managers for her artists’ global tours. Her experience touring the world at countless venues and festivals includes working as a tour manager for The Dresden Dolls, Nine Inch Nails, Imogen Heap, Regina Spektor, Zoë Keating, DeVotchKa, and more.
Curator/Instructor, Josh Rabinowitz, EVP & Director of Music, Grey Group
Over the past decade and a half, Josh has written and/or produced over 5,000 tracks for brands globally. These include some of the most high-profile initiatives to integrate compelling music with advertising, including Rihanna’s breakthrough music/ad campaign with Cover Girl utilizing her hit song “Umbrella,” Macy Gray’s version of “Walk This Way,” and Los Lonely Boys’ version of “I Walk the Line,” for the SONY Walkman, and an Alana Davis’ cover of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s “Carry On,” which landed her a record deal with Columbia. He has also worked on campaigns for Dr. Pepper featuring artists such as Black Eyed Peas, Run DMC (their last known recording together), LL Cool J, Smokey Robinson, LeAnne Rimes, Reba, Mark McGrath, Celia Cruz, B2K, Anastacia, and Latin heartthrob, Thalia. In addition, Josh worked on music for such films as “Going All the Way,” “Waking the Dead,” “Grand Theft Parsons,” and “Arlington Road.” In 2008, he created the record label PANTENE/GREY MUSIC, the first imprint to release music as a joint venture between a brand and their agency, which released the digital single entitled “Shine” by Rosi Golan on iTunes.
Student-Run Enterprises and Clubs
The Music and Entertainment Industry Student Association (MEISA) is dedicated to educating and connecting students to the music and entertainment industry. It hosts events and conferences with professionals from fields such as touring, marketing, A&R, and more. These industry connections help students secure internships and full-time positions after graduation. Connect with MEISA on Instagram, GetInvolvedHU, and Linktree.
Student-run club that produces a weekly coffee house live performance series and assists with the booking and production of Fall Fest and Music Fest each spring. Past performers at Fest include DNCE, En Vogue, Lil Wayne, and PVRIS.
Established in 2016, Unispan Records provides Hofstra University students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience operating a record label while simultaneously acting as an independent entity in the music industry. The first artist signed to Unispan was IzzeYe, a hip-hop artist and Hofstra alum whose first Extended Play (EP) record, Illusions, was released on all major streaming services.
A three-time winner of the Marconi Award for national College Radio Station of the Year, WRHU Radio Hofstra University – 88.7 FM on the dial – offers Hofstra students valuable connections and preprofessional experience in state-of-the-art facilities. Students broadcast 24 hours a day as they deliver music, news, talk, and sports.
Internships provide music business majors with valuable, real-world work experience that help students enter the field. Student internships take place primarily in NYC throughout many different areas of the industry, including artist management, marketing and promotions, publishing, touring, record labels, streaming providers, recording studios, and other fields.
Our students have interned at the following companies: Live Nation, Atlantic Records, ASCAP, Brooklyn Bowl, Nassau Coliseum, Mondo NYC, Primary Wave, Columbia Records, C3 Entertainment, Songtrust, Crash Studios, The Syndicate, Relix, Universal Music, Warner Music, Downtown Music Publishing, Q Prime, Mom + Pop Records, Legacy Recordings, Tunecore, Korg, Round Hill, Manage This!, SESAC, Spirit Music Publishing, The Wild Honey Pie, PJF Music Studio One, Kobalt Music Publishing, Sony Masterworks, PledgeMusic, Webster Hall, D'Addario & Co., and more.
Many of Hofstra's music business graduates hold positions with prestigious employers. Others go on to pursue advanced degrees at top graduate schools (MBA or JD). Hofstra music business graduates have been employed by Creative Artists Agency, Warner Music, Reservoir Publishing, Live Nation, Brooklyn Bowl, Primary Wave, Downtown Music Publishing, Korg USA, Kobalt Music, Stanhope House, Viacom Media Networks, Tower Records, D'Addario & Co., TuneCore, A to Z Media, and Rebel Sound Records.
In a survey of recent graduates:
reported they were working or enrolled or planning to attend graduate school within a year of graduation
of those who reported employment said they landed their job within three months of graduation
is the mean salary reported for the first year following graduation for students in the School of Humanities, Fine and Performing Arts.