This Is How You Get An Internship At A Recording Studio

by | Apr 21, 2024

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Looking To Intern At A Recording Studio? Bay Eight Has Some Tips For You!

Landing a recording studio internship or job can be as easy as applying to one, but this is rare. We’re here to provide you with some insider tips directly from the owner of Bay Eight recording studios. Will ensure you get and keep that position you’re coveting even when it requires more persistence and creative networking. 

1 Bring In A Client

Most of the time, landing a job in the music industry requires a lot of trial and error and a fair bit of rejection. It may take a while to find someone you’re able to convince someone to take a chance on you. You’ll need to show the powers that be that hiring you is an advantage to them, rather than charity.

Running a recording studio can be quite stressful. Studio owners have to constantly bring clients in in order to sustain their business. So, taking the time to mentor a newbie, trusting them with expensive equipment, and letting them around their clients is a risky move. You’ll want to convince the studio you’re reaching out to for an internship that you have something to offer them. There are many ways to do this, but bringing in a client shows consideration for the business. As a result, the studio will likely take you more seriously as a potential employee.

2 Start Local

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You may have a specific vision in mind of what kind of recording studio you want to intern at. We don’t blame you if you’re daydreaming of rubbing shoulders with the world’s biggest artists. However, the more popular the recording studio, the more competition for an internship. So, if you’re looking to intern at a major recording studio, you may want to get some experience at a smaller studio first.

Look for a local recording studio that’s willing to have you. You’ll likely have a much easier time getting a response, and you’ll have the opportunity to build connections within the local music industry. Despite the perceived glamor of working in music studios frequented by major artists, you’re unlikely to get the same level of mentorship at these places you’ll get at smaller institutions. Nevertheless, if you have a prior internship at a local recording studio before you apply to intern at a major studio, your resume will stand out.

3 Have Samples of Your Work

Aspiring music producer making beats Pexels Cottonbro 7097858

Part of the work of landing an internship begins long before you apply. You need to already be doing the thing you want to do at whatever level you can. If you want to be an engineer, have some samples of work you’ve done with friends, local musicians, etc. With recording technology being so accessible today, interns tend to have a lot more experience than they did in the past prior to ever stepping foot in a recording studio.

You’ll have a much harder time finding an internship if you’re totally clueless about the field you’re looking to get into. So, take the time to learn as much as you can about the gear you’ll be using, as well as the business side of how recording studios work. Youtube is a great resource, and the Bay Eight blog has quite a few articles that will help you get started as well.

4 Plan Ahead and Network Laterally

Producer and friend recording at home studio Pexels Shazardr 11568007

You should plan ahead for your internship as best as you can. Often, the connections you’ve already built are what will lead to the opportunities you seek. Therefore, if you want to intern at a recording studio, reach out to people who can help on LinkedIn, at in-person networking events, via email, etc. But don’t wait until you’re looking for an internship. This way your first interaction isn’t “Hello my name is X, can I get an internship?” Remember, every “big break” in the music industry is a long game.

Know that you have a build a relationship with someone before you ask for an internship. Cold calls and emails are unlikely to get you far. Additionally, remember that your networking attempts are more likely to be successful if you network laterally. Your peers are likely new recording studio owners who are still figuring out how to make their business successful, bands who can’t afford to pay an engineer much, etc. Seek out people who are also learning how to be successful in their chosen field. The relationship is inherently beneficial if you all can learn together.

5 Be Mindful When Sharing Your Aspirations 

Matthew DeFreitas sitting in front of Bay Eight Recording Studios logo music studio rental

“ Make sure you interview for the career and not as a musician!” Matt, Owner of Bay Eight

And now some advice from our founder, Matt. As a recording studio owner and engineer with decades of experience, he is especially qualified to advise anyone looking to intern at a recording studio. He advises against discussing your goals beyond the position you’re applying for. So, if you’re applying for an engineering job, but your ultimate goal is to be a rapper, he suggests keeping those aspirations to yourself, at least in the beginning.

Here’s what Matt has to say on the matter: naturally, we aim to hire those who are passionate about music, however an interview for a position as an intern is not the time or place to mention your mixtape. No studio owner wants an aspiring musician ruining the comfortability the studio offers in an attempt to snuggle up to clients and push their music. Major artists come to the studio for privacy, professionalism, and exclusivity.

All in all, a recording studio is a service-oriented business. Our interns are encouraged to foster the technological savvy to operate equipment, the social skills to mesh with an array of client personalities, all while respecting the responsibility of maintaining the space.  Good luck on your journey!

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