“I’m not a singer who plays a bit of drums. I’m a drummer that sings a bit.“
Phil Collins, Musician
Pros and Cons of Working as a Singer
You want to become a professional singer but are still not entirely sure whether this career path is right for you or not? Great!
Make sure to check out the pros and cons of being a singer in this article so that you can get a better impression of what a singer career really looks like and whether you still want to pursue it or rather want to go for a different job option instead.
Singer Job Profile
|Job Description||Singers perform at festivals, music events or also on private occasions like birthday parties. They also earn money from music sales.|
|Salary||While very few singers make millions, most others barely make enough money to pay their bills.|
|Job Security||Almost non-existent since you will often work self-employed.|
|Job Satisfaction||Good if you love singing and it is a real passion for you.|
|Work-Life Balance||Rather poor since you will be on the road quite often and also have to work in the evenings and weekends.|
|Physically / Mentally Demanding?||A career as a professional singer can be mentally and emotionally challenging.|
|Future Outlook||Rather unclear future job prospects with low levels of job security.|
|Requirements||No special educational requirements. Everyone can become a singer if there is enough natural talent and the willingness to work hard for your dream.|
Advantages of Being a Professional Singer
- Singers can work on many different occasions
- You can help out your friends
- You can turn your passion into a job
- Working as a singer can be exciting
- You may become famous
- Singers can leverage social media channels
- You can teach other people how to become a singer
- Singers don’t have to work in a heavy physical manner
- You can avoid classical office work as a singer
- You can give people a good feeling
- You can work for legacy
- You can start your singer career as a side hustle
- Singers can work self-employed
- You can express yourself as a singer
- You will be flexible regarding how much you want to work
- Singers can work solo or in a band
Singers can work on many different occasions
One advantage of being a singer is that you can work on many different occasions.
In fact, good singers can work at festivals but are also booked for private birthday parties or religious purposes.
As you can see, there are many different groups of people who might potentially book you as a singer and if you are really good at what you are doing, you might get more jobs than you could ever complete as a singer.
Due to those many different events you will be a part of, your singer career will also barely get boring since you will see new faces all the time and also always have to adjust to new circumstances quickly.
You can help out your friends
As a professional singer, you will also be able to support your family and friends in case they need someone who sings at their birthday party.
In fact, booking a good singer can be relatively expensive and if you can help out your loved ones in this regard, they will often be grateful for what you do for them and will also be likely willing to help you out in case you need support of those people in the future.
You can turn your passion into a job
Many singers also work in this field since they simply cannot imagine doing anything else.
Singing is a real passion for them and most singers just want to do it all day long.
Hence, if you are also one of those people who loved singing as a child and continued with this hobby for many years, it might be time to turn your hobby into a profession while financial controllers and many other people are just in their jobs for the money and don’t see a higher purpose in it.
However, before you do so, you should get feedback from many different people and see if you are really good enough for it so that you don’t get into serious trouble later on.
Working as a singer can be exciting
Many singers are also quite excited to get back to work. While many other people out there just don’t like their jobs at all and are just in for the money to pay their bills, singers are often deeply interested in what they are doing and will therefore likely stay motivated in the long run.
Moreover, if you work as a singer, you will also get a special feeling every day when you step in front of your audience and this just gives many people who work in this field a certain thrill.
Consequently, becoming a singer can also make quite a lot of sense for you in case you need the adrenaline rush when you go to work every day and don’t want to work in a rather repetitive work environment where you might get bored pretty soon.
You may become famous
Although only a small fraction of singers will become famous, you will still have a small chance to get to this level.
In fact, if you are really talented and are also willing to put in the work, people may recognize you when you walk down the street pretty soon and the longer you put in the hard work, the more likely it becomes that you will finally produce a song that will get viral internationally.
Hence, if your dream has always been to become famous, working as a singer can definitely be one interesting way to go for you.
Singers can leverage social media channels
It has also never been easier to succeed as a singer. Thanks to our advanced technologies, almost everyone on our planet can now leverage social media channels to distribute their work.
In turn, this means that you can just upload your songs to YouTube for free and with a little bit of luck, your song will go viral and you may reach millions of people.
Some of those people who will listen to your songs will also have contact with music producers and you may therefore get additional jobs through those digital channels.
Moreover, also your chance to become famous will be much higher since you can access those channels at virtually no cost while people who just lived a few decades ago never had this amazing chance to distribute their work in such a cheap and yet effective manner.
You can teach other people how to become a singer
Another benefit of becoming a singer is that you can also make additional money on the side by teaching people how to become a better singer.
In fact, many people out there aspire to a singer career, yet they search for qualified people who can get them to the next level.
Consequently, if you are really good at what you are doing and can help those people out, you can make serious money from those side jobs.
Moreover, if you are clever and are also willing to put in the work, you may be able to start your own singing school and may therefore be able to create additional income sources.
Singers don’t have to work in a heavy physical manner
As a singer, you will also not have to lift heavy stuff on a regular basis.
While working as a singer can be emotionally demanding, you will just not have to stress your body as much as welders, roofers or construction workers and this means that you will have more physical energy left when you come home from work.
Moreover, also your risk of suffering from long-term health issues might be lower since you will not have the same likelihood to suffer from back pain and other spinal problems.
You can avoid classical office work as a singer
Another upside to a career as a singer is that you can also avoid working in a classical office environment.
While some people like to work in these offices, many others don’t like the idea of sitting in front of a computer screen all day long and rather want to work in a more creative manner.
Hence, while many other people just have to work on presentations all day long, you will have more freedom as a singer and will also have more options regarding how you want to structure your day.
You can give people a good feeling
As a singer, you will also have the chance to give people a good feeling with what you are doing.
Music can be a great way to make people happy and if you have a real talent for singing, you will touch peoples’ feelings and will let them remember what really counts in life.
Moreover, you will also be able to give people a chance to unplug from their stressful daily life by listening to your songs.
You can work for legacy
Some musicians will also be remembered forever. Hence, if your goal is that you want to leave a part of your soul on this planet and that your name will never be forgotten, chances are that a singer career will be right for you in this regard.
You can start your singer career as a side hustle
You also don’t have to decide for a singer career right at the beginning. Instead, you can just work in a different field and make some money to pay your bills and start your singer career as a side hustle.
This will give you much more financial flexibility and also peace of mind since you know that you will have a backup plan in case your singer career might fail and you will still be able to pay for your basic expenses.
Singers can work self-employed
Most singers out there also work self-employed. While this means that you will not have a steady income, it will still give you lots of freedom since you will be your own boss who can decide when you want to work and when you want to take some time off.
Some people are just born for working self-employed and if you are one of those people, you will likely become much happier as a singer compared to just working in a classical office job as a normal employee where you have to follow certain rules all day long.
You can express yourself as a singer
Another advantage of becoming a singer is that you can express yourself at work.
In fact, you can work on the songs and types of music you are most interested in and you will also be free to decide what you want to wear for your gigs.
Hence, while many other people have to follow certain dress codes, you will be free to do what you want to do in this regard.
You will be flexible regarding how much you want to work
As a singer, you will also have a high level of freedom regarding how and how much you want to work.
For instance, you might have periods in your life when you are just busy with private things and don’t have the time to work on your singer career.
In such a case, you can just cut back the hours for your singer job and rather spend your time on more important things.
Singers can work solo or in a band
You will also be free to work solo or in a band. In fact, band life can have many advantages since you will be on the road with like-minded people quite often and you will just be able to share your problems with people you really trust and who will become your second family.
As you can see, being a singer can have many important upsides. However, you should still note that there are also some issues with a singing career that I want to discuss for you in the following.
Disadvantages of Working as a Singer
- Only a small fraction of singers makes decent money
- Many singers need a second job
- You may not be able to afford any luxury
- Singers often can’t safe enough for retirement
- You may not be able to afford good medical treatment
- Almost no job security at all
- Hard to plan your life as a singer
- Singers are away from home quite often
- Many people don’t consider singing a real profession
- You have to be spontaneous as a singer
- Singers often have to work in the evening
- You frequently have to sing on weekends
- Singers often can’t work remotely
- You may get in contact with certain substances
- Pressure can be enormous
- Can be problematic once you get older
- Singers don’t learn many important hard skills
- Hard to work in a different field
Only a small fraction of singers makes decent money
One problem with being a singer is that you will often just not make good money.
While a small fraction of talented and lucky singers makes really good money, you will often barely make enough money to pay your bills.
You will even have to work for free at the beginning of your career until you build some reputation in this field and people will be willing to pay for your singing services.
Many singers need a second job
Due to the rather low salary and the swings in income many singers have, they will often even have to work in a second job to pay their bills while people working in private equity and other well-paying fields don’t have to worry much in this regard.
In turn, you will often not have lots of leisure but will have to work long hours every day to pay your bills.
Consequently, due to the many hours you have to work, you may also become more vulnerable to mental health issues and you may just lose faith in succeeding as a singer sooner or later.
You may not be able to afford any luxury
If you don’t become famous as a singer, chances are that you will also not be able to afford any luxury.
Thus, while some of your colleagues will be able to afford almost everything you want, you will often watch them with a certain level of envy since you will often only get gigs that will barely cover your costs.
Singers often can’t safe enough for retirement
Due to your rather low income as a singer and your swings in salary, you will also often not be able to save and invest enough money for retirement.
In turn, once you get older and will no longer be able to work, you will often get into serious financial difficulties and may even no longer be able to pay your rent.
Consequently, old-age poverty may become a real issue and you may even end up homeless in the streets.
You may not be able to afford good medical treatment
In many parts of the world, the quality of medical treatment still greatly depends on how much money you can spend.
Hence, as a singer, you will often not be able to afford decent medical treatment and may therefore have a lower life expectancy compared to people who make more money on average.
Almost no job security at all
Since most singers work self-employed, you will also barely have any job security at all. In fact, if your gig is canceled, you will also not make any money and if this happens quite often, you may run into serious financial issues.
Therefore, while many other people work in rather secure jobs with good future job prospects, you will always have to worry about the next weeks or sometimes even days as a singer and this constantly high level of insecurity can really lower your quality of life quite a lot.
Hard to plan your life as a singer
Due to your varying income and your low level of job security, you will also really struggle to plan your life way ahead.
Moreover, also banks will often not be willing to grant you a mortgage and you will therefore never be able to afford to buy your own home and may have to rent for the rest of your life.
Singers are away from home quite often
Another downside to working as a singer is that you will also be away from home quite often.
Once you reach a certain level of fame, you will have to travel the country or even the world to maintain your high level of popularity and this means that you will often not have time for your kids and your family in general.
Many people don’t consider singing a real profession
You may also have to deal with snarky comments regarding your profession as a singer since people will often not consider singing a real profession and those people may therefore also often belittle you.
You have to be spontaneous as a singer
You should also not become a singer if you are the type of person who really wants to plan your life way ahead and always wants to know what the next day will provide for you since you will just not have this security as a singer but you will rather have to be pretty spontaneous regarding what gigs you want to work on.
Singers often have to work in the evening
Most of your performances will also be in the evening or at nighttime.
Consequently, many singers will also destroy their natural sleeping rhythm and sleeping problems are quite common in this industry which can greatly lower your quality of life in general.
You frequently have to sing on weekends
Another disadvantage of becoming a singer is that you will also have to work on weekends quite often.
If you sing at festivals, it will be the standard rather than the exemption to work during Saturdays and Sundays and you should make sure that you are fine with this before you decide for a singer career.
Singers often can’t work remotely
If you make most of your money with live performances, you will also not be able to enjoy the privilege of working remotely as many other people who work in office jobs often have.
Hence, while many other people are able to work from home, you will be present at work in person and this will take some flexibility away from you.
You may get in contact with certain substances
Musicians are also well-known to take certain substances to deal with stress and if you are not careful, you may get addicted to those substances pretty soon and addictions are never fun in the long run.
Pressure can be enormous
You should also not underestimate the pressure that comes along with a career as a professional singer. People will only book you if you perform well on stage and this knowledge will cause lots of emotional stress.
Moreover, some people are just not comfortable with performing in front of a huge audience and if you are a rather introverted person, chances are that you should not go for a singer career but for a job where you will not have this high level of public exposure.
Can be problematic once you get older
Most singers also have to quit their careers once they get older. In fact, if you haven’t managed to start your singer career until you are 40, chances are that you will have a hard time making any breakthroughs in the future.
Moreover, also your level of energy will decrease over time and this will often also force successful singers to quit.
Singers don’t learn many important hard skills
While you will learn quite a lot about singing, you will often just not learn many important hard skills as a singer and may not become familiar with important technologies that are developed right now and you may therefore not be able to benefit from those new advancements.
Hard to work in a different field
You may also have a hard time finding a different job in case you want to quit your career as a singer since you will often lack the skills to find someone who wants to employ you and singers also have a certain image that may prevent you from getting a job in a more conservative industry.
Top 10 Being a Singer Pros & Cons – Summary List
|Being a Singer Pros||Being a Singer Cons|
|Singers don’t need fancy education||Singers have no job security at all|
|You may become famous as a singer||Poor work-life balance|
|Singing can be a real passion||Most singers don’t make good money|
|You can avoid hard physical work||You may need a second job|
|Some singers make a fortune||Singers often have to work on weekends|
|You can play for legacy||Sleeping problems are quite common|
|Singers can be creative at work||Use of certain substances|
|You can leverage digital channels||High level of insecurity|
|Singers can make money on the side||Hard to plan your life as a singer|
|You can give people a good feeling||Hard to get out of this industry|
Should You Become A Singer?
Now that you know what working as a singer really looks like, you should evaluate all the advantages and disadvantages of being a singer so that you can better decide whether you still want to work in this field or if you rather want to go for a different career instead.
If you still want to become a singer, you should also get detailed information on the salary, prospects, future outlook, work-life balance, educational requirements, duties and job satisfaction of singers.
Also make sure to check out the following articles to get more information on other job options:
Own research and interviews.
About the author
My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people about the different career paths that are possible in our current state of the world. In my opinion, people often make the mistake to choose their profession solely based on how much money they can earn from it instead of doing what makes them really happy.
This is quite sad and I just want to give people a more objective picture of how a fulfilling career could look like. I did the same when I started working in consulting after finishing my Master’s degree in Economics. However, I’ve quit pretty soon after that since I haven’t found true meaning in my job.
Now I can do what I really love to do and I want to enable as many other people as well to go this exciting path towards happiness instead of money.
I conducted various interviews with employees to give you a good impression of what working in different fields will look like and that you can make the best possible decision regarding your future career choice.
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