As experienced entertainment accountants, we understand the industry and will always make sure you’re being properly compensated. We know how to examine copyright and licensing agreements to uncover discrepancies and scrutinize royalty accountings to find missing payments. When necessary, we’ll work with your attorney to collect unpaid royalties and will keep you in compliance with current tax regulations. Gone are the days when accountants would work alone at a desk and remain in solitude for most of their careers. Today, bookkeepers and music accountants in specific provide better value by working with teams. It is generally easier to achieve positive results by collaborating with a musician’s team of specialists.
For instance, if you want to invest in new equipment, you can expect your music accountant to consider all variables before offering guidance. A royalty is a payment to a company or individual with creative assets that are being used by a third-party. Music royalties come from copyright or intellectual property and the owner is paid before stockholders, company executives, etc.
Music Business Accounting Versus General Accounting
When performers have original material and recordings, music accountants must track royalty streams that come from sales of records, streaming revenue and other sources of income, as well as make sure they are properly copyrighted. Yes, QuickBooks is a very helpful tool for musicians and music industry professionals to use. It offers features such as tracking expenses and income, managing invoices, budgeting and forecasting, and connecting with payroll services to help streamline the financial side of their business. Additionally, its user-friendly interface and built-in reporting features make it easy to use. Unlike regular certified public accountants (CPAs) who merely need to be intelligent and personable, a music accountant must also be articulate and creative-minded.
Before settling on this field, many arts and entertainment accountants work in other capacities in their arts-related industry—often similar roles to those held by their eventual artist clients. This experience supplies them with professional connections—a source of potential clients—and powerful insight into the financial concerns of their artist clients. You can expect your specialist to handle recordkeeping, bookkeeping, tax preparation and planning, budgeting, contract review, and bill paying, among other duties. While these duties are not so different from those of a typical accountant, the difference is that you will receive boots-on-the-ground kind of services.
Tax Deductions for Musicians
This allows them to provide invaluable advice when making crucial business decisions. For instance, if you want to buy a car for your touring plans, a skilled CPA may advise you to buy it under your brand name instead of your name. Such a move can make a significant difference in your personal and business finances. I was interested in the accountancy side of the music industry music industry accounting because I love attending festivals throughout university life, and I still try to get one or two festivals in a year. I have over 30 years of experience in Accounts and Bookkeeping as I ran my own accounting company while my Children were growing up. I have also spent many glorious years touring with bands on the road and lots of summers in the festival fields as a manager.
For instance, competence in matters specific to the music industry will allow your accountant to offer specialized services when handling ledgers, trial balances, initial public offerings, and more. I originally worked with one of the top DJ booking agencies and learned about all aspects of the music industry. I decided to go solo with my own company to focus specifically on the music industry when I had gathered enough experience across artists and event accounting so that I can add value to my clients. We provide professional accounting services to the Music Industry; working with festivals, promoters, touring artists, artist management, booking agencies, music labels and PR.
Jobs in the Music Industry other than Recording Artist
I was hoping that one of y’all in this subreddit either had/has experience working in that industry or performing audits for that industry and could give me some first hand insights. A few years ago, a famous client sold his producers’ rights to another organization. However, a relative of the client’s former wife reached out to The Music CPA to let them know she still held some rights through the music that her ex-husband made, and asked what their basis was in this deal.
- There are a lot of musicians who are not taking advantage of the expenses they are incurring.
- Get your finances in order with QuickBooks – the leading accounting software for small businesses.
- I have over 30 years of experience in Accounts and Bookkeeping as I ran my own accounting company while my Children were growing up.
- Accountants generally work during standard business hours, although odd hours and travel may be involved if a client lives and works in a different time zone, or if meetings must be planned around a difficult performance schedule.
- For example, most late-night talk shows’ music played after midnight because it cut the royalties in half, and Catalano said the job of an accountant is to solve these recurring “mysteries” on clients’ paychecks.
Atlanta-based Alexis Louis (fka Alexis Kimbrough) is the founder of Growth Group, a music-focused accounting firm that works with musicians, record labels, and recording studios. A musician herself, she has served as featured panelist at the International Music Conference, Driven Music Conference and as a panelist at the Xero Roadshow. Her academic background includes stints studying Accounting and Taxation at Howard and American Universities. Miller Kaplan draws upon decades of industry experience to help clients identify new revenue streams, maximize opportunities, and safeguard their creative and financial interests.
Taking an accounting degree to the music industry
Johnson explained how they could inherit those producers’ rights, as well as how to save a lot of money on taxes. Catalano explained that streaming platforms offer unsigned artists the opportunity to expose their music to the world, but it’s seldom profitable. Most of the money now comes from live performances, and from licensing original compositions for TV, movies and commercials. With music labels losing money on 90% of the artists they sign, Catalano said they are even less willing to take risks.
What are the best industries for accounting?
The top-paying industries for accountants include finance and insurance, management of companies and enterprises, tax preparation, and the government.
The idea is to grow your revenue streams and fan base before you can consider expanding your team. If you also happen to have some mathematical skills, the chances are that you can handle your financial affairs in person. Furthermore, you may already be working with a team of business https://www.bookstime.com/articles/double-declining-balance-method savvy specialists, including music managers. Such experts can lend a hand with your accounting, especially before your records become overwhelming. Even though music CPAs are qualified and accredited, some of the duties they handle can be managed by your in-house team.
Music Industry Accounting
Accountants generally work during standard business hours, although odd hours and travel may be involved if a client lives and works in a different time zone, or if meetings must be planned around a difficult performance schedule. Networking and maintaining a reputation in the industry is vital for drawing in new clients. Fortunately for arts and entertainment accountants, the best networking might come from attending a concert, play, or movie release. It’s this, along with the opportunity to work closely with artists and arts-related organizations, that draws most to this field. Acumatica is a cloud-based accounting software that provides financial management, inventory management, and order management features.
- Accountants may be self-employed, work for an accounting firm, or be employed by a music company or film or television studio.
- An accountant who does music business accounting needs to be familiar with the pay structure of different types of royalties to ensure that the client is getting the money they deserve and that the client is accurately paying their taxes.
- As a steadfast advocate for small business success, my mission is to pave the way for a new generation of innovative and driven entrepreneurs who are ready to make their mark on the world.
- Fortunately for arts and entertainment accountants, the best networking might come from attending a concert, play, or movie release.
- Even though retaining an expert is a significant investment, it’s not the only way to ensure your accounts are in order.