1st Edition

Finding Your Career in the Modern Audio Industry

By April Tucker Copyright 2023
    530 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Focal Press

    530 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Focal Press

    Finding Your Career in the Modern Audio Industry equips the reader with the skills they need to turn an interest in audio, sound, or music technology into a career.

    This book provides insight for aspiring professionals seeking audio-related opportunities in entertainment, technology, education, and more. In the audio industry, there is typically a gap between those in-training and those with professional (and financially sustainable) careers. This book bridges the information gap, offering practical and real-world advice to those in this volatile stage of their career. Including 70+ interviews with professionals from over 20 countries, Finding Your Career in the Modern Audio Industry offers insight into how others (across the industry and the world) have applied entrepreneurial thinking, problem-solving, and creative solutions to build their careers.

    Including international case studies and interviews with diverse professionals, Finding Your Career in the Modern Audio Industry is essential reading for anyone taking their first steps into an audio-related field.



    Part 1 – Planning

    Part 1 helps the reader define their personal preferences, challenges and barriers and how that can affect the direction of a career path. These chapters teach the fundamentals of networking, business relationships, marketing, sales, and finding opportunities, all of which are critical foundational skills towards any career in the entertainment or audio industry.

    1. Industry Introduction
    2. Defining Your Dream & Goals
    3. Defining Your Barriers
    4. Networking
    5. Business Relationships
    6. Preparing to Seek Out Opportunities
    7. The Search for Work
    8. Marketing & Sales (How to Land the Gig)
    9. What Makes You Stand Out?
    10. Part 2 – Operations

      Part 2 addresses the logistics of operating a business, whether doing an occasional freelance gig or making a living off of freelance work. These chapters help readers with common business concerns: learning how to set rates, create an invoice, offers and contracts, and managing financial information.

    11. Rates and Knowing Your Worth
    12. Offers, Bids & Contracts
    13. Accounting & Financial Planning for Your Business
    14. Part 3 - Career Paths

      Part 3 takes the principles and ideas of the earlier chapters and puts them into practice. Each chapter addresses the needs specific or unique to these industries. These chapters are largely based on quotes, interviews, stories, and case studies. What business advice would someone who’s been through it give to someone who’s just getting started?

    15. Live Sound & Theater
    16. Music Production
    17. Interactive Media (Game Audio)
    18. Sound for Picture (Broadcast, Production & Post-Production)
    19. Spoken Word Audio
    20. Beyond Entertainment
    21. Part 4

    22. The Audio Industry Around the World
    23. Q&A
    24. Moving Forward

    Appendix: Bios of interviewees

    Supplemental material available online

    • Recommendations, sample contracts, other resources



    April Tucker is an audio engineer with nearly two decades experience in post-production sound. April’s mixes have been heard by television audiences with over 10 million viewers and at major film festivals including Sundance, Cannes, Toronto, and Tribeca. Based in Los Angeles, April’s clients have ranged from major studios and corporations to composers and concert halls. April has written for audio industry publications and blogs since 2015.

    "When I received word about this book, I first thought "How could anyone write about finding a career in the audio biz?" The possibilities and personal experiences of this lifelong process are simply too big and varied to write about. Then, I started reading and, WOW, through the use of straightforward talk and first-hand excerpts from industry pro experiences, I think she nailed it! I'm a huge fan of anyone who'll take the time to help others find their way in the audio and music production industry. We all need guidance to make it through our own personal maze in life. I'd truly recommend it to anyone who wants to devote their life towards getting and maintaining a career in the music industry."

    David Miles Huber, 4X Grammy-nominated musician and producer

    "April’s book contains immensely valuable information and detailed advice for anyone trying to carve out a career in the audio industry where freelancing is now the norm. The interviews with so many varied professionals are especially informative – they form a tapestry of different experiences from which April draws out the key messages and common themes. It is refreshing to hear from so many different voices in the audio world, and I really wish I had been able to read this book 20 years ago! I can recommend this to anyone currently working in audio, whatever their career stage, but especially to those trying to start out."

    Caroline Haigh, Institute of Sound Recording, University of Surrey

    "You need non-audio skills to succeed in the audio industry. April Tucker’s Finding Your Career in the Modern Audio Industry spells it out, showing a structure and a process for introspective assessments of your goals, your limits, your dreams, as well as essential outward-facing action: networking, job searching, marketing yourself, and more. Business acumen can’t be ignored, and can be mastered: negotiating rates and salaries, contracts, accounting, etc. You might be focused on one career path, but this book widens your view to full range of possibilities in the wide world of audio. With quotes and advice from folks across all facets of the industry throughout each chapter, Tucker’s book is a pleasure to read, and you’ll see there is no mystery to beginning your career in the modern audio industry."

    Alex U. Case, Sound Recording Technology, University of Massachusetts Lowell