audio tips

Sound engineers don’t work with music, so why should they know music theory?

Howdy SEA fans welcome to another tiptuesday blog post and today we are discussing whether the knowledge of music is advantageous in the professional life of a Sound Engineer or the Sound Engineering career being a technical one, whether one can ignore it completely.

In our previous post, we shared tips on performing Soundcheck in front of an audience and it has received an overwhelming response from the readers and got good reviews as well and today topic is a bit controversial.

In the training as a sound engineer, the point of music theory still plays a pivotal role.

But is the knowledge of reading, rhythm and functional theory important for a technically focused profession like the sound engineer?

What do you think?

If you look at the curriculum of educational institutions offering sound engineering courses like ours (Sound Engineering Academy) it becomes clear that you cannot do without music theory here.

Of course one cannot only consider technical but also artistic aspects of the recording line as the person responsible for sound. There are certain elements of music theory that are worth knowing about like to know about the song structure is quite important it will, in turn, help you navigate your way through a song.

According to many audio professionals who consider the knowledge in music as beneficial has got the opinion that those who know music has got more career options than others.

But there is a big question that how much music theory is needed even though music theory is an optional extra?

Sound Engineers have contrasting perspective on whether to know it or not and today we are discussing the advantages and disadvantages of a Sound Engineer who knows Music Theory and we would like to hear your opinion as comments below.

For the knowledge of notes, bar, rhythm, and melody in the sound engineer training can quickly find arguments.

Working with sheet material trains the ear. And at the latest when it comes to the hearing of four sounds, it shows how well the ears were trained. This is undoubtedly also an important point for sound engineers. Beyond the mere reading of notes and the understanding of musical contexts, sound engineers also get a feel for the differentiation of instrument sounds, for example when they get insight into topics such as orchestration and instrumentation in their training. Last but not least, knowledge of music also enables better communication with the musicians who should be the stars in the studio and on stage.

Contra Arguments
But there is also something against the necessity of knowledge of notes.

After all, sound engineers can use their equipment quite well without any knowledge of music theory. And from the perspective of sound engineers, ignorance can also have advantages. Thus, in practice, they can not and need not participate in detail in discussions that have nothing to do with sound engineering, once it is clear that this is not their “construction site”.

And from a musician’s perspective, this point can be an advantage. If a sound engineer does not get along with music theory, he can talk less into the performance of the artist. The music is then the matter of the musicians, the technique of the technician.

Reality & Opinions
As a musician, did you have good or bad experiences with sound engineers who had particularly good or particularly bad knowledge of music theory?
Or maybe you’re a sound engineer yourself, and knowledge of notes helped you with a job?
Which was that and how did your knowledge bring you benefits?

Yes, your opinion matters. Share it with us as a comment below

Happy Sound Engineering.

sound engineering career

So you love music and wants to develop a career in the music industry.

In today’s world, as a person with interest in music, singing is not the only career option.

With the advancement of technology career options has got diversified for those who have got interest in music to pursue a career in the same.

Other than singing the first thing that enthuse a music lover / a singer is music direction.

Music Direction
Earlier, musicians had little chance of starting their music career if they did not have a record contract in their pockets, or at least had the appropriate contacts.

So it was for many, that they regularly write labels and partly had to perform as many performances as possible, always in the hope of being discovered somewhere. Today the situation looks different.

Not least thanks to the Internet, musicians and bands have the opportunity to take care of their own career and create the breakthrough even without the support of a label.

Of course, the perceived reality with regard to a career in music direction appears too difficult / insecure and it requires a lot of work and commitment to take care of itself to achieve a certain level of recognition.

In order to become a successful “star” in the field of music direction you should possess sheer musical brilliance to entertain the mass.

Apart from that you need to have appropriate contacts within the music and film industry to receive new projects.

Audio Engineer
Sound Engineering Academy is the optimal place to combine your interest in music with audio engineering studies.

As an institute offering audio engineering courses one of the common question that candidates asks during selection process is do we need musical background to become a successful sound engineer. In-fact there no need to have musical background to become sound engineer as audio engineers specifically deal with the technical and the mechanical aspects of music.

As you know sound engineering has got different career options to choose from like in live sound or in studio.

If you are thinking about becoming a recording engineer, mix engineer, re-recordist, broadcast engineer or sound effects editor it is an added value to have an interest in music, sound, creative arts etc.

Moreover your interest / knowledge in the field of music will help you in finding a suitable job in the field in short span of time than others.

Inorder to become a Sound Engineer one has to undergo professional training in the field and with a 1 year course from institute like Sound Engineering Academy can help you to achieve the same.

The 1 year Diploma in Sound Engineering and Sound Recording can be pursued by those who have a basic qualification of 10+2. Students from any stream whether having science background or from people with commerce or humanities background can join the course. Besides that the course has been designed in such a way that those with no background in engineering or sound engineering can become a professional sound engineer after the course completion.

Find the details of professionals who have already working in the field of Sound Engineering after completing the diploma course form the academy and list is still getting updated every week.

Artist Manger
One can imagine the situation in such a way that musicians are mainly interested in music and are often not so concerned about the business aspects of the music industry. And this is where the manager’s role is set. The manager is the business department of the artist. This means that he gets the best deal for the artists in negotiations and contract closures.

An artist manager is mostly involved in the artist’s revenue pro-rata. Forty percent of the revenue is more the rule than the rarity. As a good and capable manager, it is quite possible to become (almost) as rich as the artist without having to accept the fame of the media and fans.

If you want to be a manager, you should be very familiar with the subject area. As a manager in the music industry, you should be familiar with all the usual rules for remuneration and salary. You should also be very well acquainted with the music industry and have a versatile network. In order to become known, it is indispensable to build up references and shine through loyalty and professionalism.

In addition to their knowledge of the processes within the music industry, music managers should be very well versed in the commercial sphere and in the negotiation skills. There is no special training for the profession of music manager.

With smaller and medium-sized bands with a manageable framework of business activity, a manager is almost never worthwhile. While it may be extremely prestigious to refer to its manager at any time, it must also be taken into account that a manager who understands his craft also costs accordingly.

Music Journalist / Critic
If you posses writing skills and a basic knowledge in the field of music then you can become a Music Journalist.

Music journalism is a form of cultural journalism in which the journalists report on music news, interview musicians, review albums and concerts who spends most of his time behind a computer, researching and writing stories.

Many publications whether it is new papers / magazines they do have a column for entertainment and they need to have in-depth articles on music industry. As a person with interest in music and singing you can pursue a long-term career in the field.

Other than singing and music direction the most sought after career in music is Teaching.

Skilled musicians encounter opportunities to teach music privately and at private music schools.

Becoming a music teacher help you in brushing up your own skills and can be guide to next generation of musicians.

In order to be a teacher, basic knowledge in field is not enough; you must possess a valid degree in music.




audio tips, sound engineering career


Traditionally the Sound Engineers are supposed to work in Motion Picture and Video Industries, Sound Recording Industries, Radio and Television Broadcasting, Performing Arts Companies and work with Independent Artists, Writers, and Performers where there is rigid competition and lots of people are looking for jobs in the same industries.

For Sound Engineers some traditional careers pathways which they considered were, Live Concert Engineer, Studio Engineer, Sound Designer, Mastering engineer, Remixing Engineer, Music Producer, Audiovisual Technician, Audio Freelancer etc.

One thing can’t be ignored that the industries mentioned above provided the most no of opportunities for sound engineers and they still outrank other industries in creating jobs for audio engineering professionals.

In the recent years the job market got diversified with the advancement of technology and bestowed sound engineers with new career options.

About 10 years back when Sound Engineers who pass out of our institution looks for jobs in the the traditional market and now a days their career horizon has expanded thanks to the technological advancements and the huge demand for professional quality sound.

App development
Technological advancements in mobile technology and the introduction of OS based mobiles like Android / IOS phones, paved the way for a new arena of career opportunities for Sound Professionals. Major companies had already kick-started the work of various apps that make use of sound like Google Now and Microsoft Cortana. One of our student is working as a recording engineer for Cortana, a audio based app from Microsoft. Many companies are developing / new sound based apps are on the pipe line which creates job opportunities for Sound Engineering professionals.

Sync Sound or Live / Location Recording Engineer
In a country like India where more than 1000 movies are produced every year the dialogues in the movie is still being dubbed in the studio. The application of Sync Sound gains importance when movies turn to live recording. Sync Sound has been widely used in movies since the birth of sound movies. In India the system of live recording have started gaining importance and so the career opportunities of location recording engineer and recording engineer. For becoming a location sound recording engineer a person should have adequate technical expertise as lots of things has to be considered while recording live sound.

System Tuner / Consultant
Unlike in the yesterdays where firms go for rental audio equipment, now they install permanent audio equipment. The job of a system tuner starts here. He has the responsibility to fine-tune the whole system wherein the audio equipment produce quality output. Sound system consultants should have knowledge of room acoustics and environmental acoustics as it affects the propagation of sound. Those who are planning to become a sound system consultant must gain expertise in sound reinforcement products and the installation of those products.

Gaming Industry
Every time people want to get more out of their favorite games. Sound plays a pivotal role in entertaining the person who plays the game. The gaming industry is always on the look out for talent sound professionals who are creative enough to design the audio part of games they develop. The Audio Engineer produces a sound design for the game which involves the composing, scoring and recording of music. They are responsible for sourcing any sound effects that are needed, improving or creating them where necessary. Even though most of the audio jobs in the gaming industry are contract positions you can get regular job if you are skilled.

Parks / Hotels / Malls / Stadiums
In the past decade the people of India have witnessed the surge of malls / amusement parks / entertainment parks / theme parks / hotels in all major cities of India. Events of various types are happening everday in these parks / shopping locations and all these establishments needs Sound Engineers to operate and tune the sound system which are permanent installations. In five star rated hotels / resorts where there is regular programs / events taking place, they used to recruit audio engineers on a permanent basis. In sporting stadiums also the audio engineers has been quite instruments in the controlling the audio system and deliver quality audio for the spectators.

Studio Designer / Acoustic Consultant
The job of an acoustic consultant is diverse and he is supposed to deliver his expertise in variety of fields. For becoming an acoustical consultant you should be having a strong knowledge about the basics of audio engineering. We are living in a world of noise pollution, as an acoustics consultant you would help to manage and control the noises and vibrations that surround us in our home, workplace and environment helping people to lead a life with calm mind. It takes years of experience and to become a demanding yet professional acoustic consultant and he is supposed to be creative personal as well as posses a practical approach to problem solving.

Sales / Marketing of Audio Products
sales-professional-audio-industryThere are many companies in the market which sells quality audio products. For those who are interested in the sales and marketing of audio products can dive into that profession. For students who are passing out of our academy possess strong technical background. The companies dealing with the sales of audio products looks for individuals having technical background in Sound Engineering. Some of our previous students are working in the sales and installation department of world class audio companies.

After sharing the job opportunities listed above we felt that the future of Sound Engineering Professionals is bright if they are having apt technical know-how and if they are well updated on the technical advancements in the Industry.

Article is mainly written on Indian context as many of these career opportunities are prevalent in many of other countries around the world.

If you feel that there are new career options other than those mentioned above, feel free to share your view as a comment.