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Music Industry 101: Free Learning Programs

A Guide for Making Sound Decisions

Free Learning Programs

Free Learning Programs

So, you want to take a class, but don't have a ton of free cash? No problem. Luckily, there are tons of free courses, books, and blogs about all different aspects of the music industry. The only downside to a free course is, generally, you won't get a certificate or degree upon completion and that may be a problem if you're trying to land a job with a major company. For musicians looking to understand more of the business side, self-starters, and others who don't need proof of completion, a free course can be a great option for learning how the industry works.

Coursera Courses

Coursera is an online learning platform where universities host online, self-paced courses. The platform offers an array of available online courses, specializations, degrees aids, certificates, and master track classes. The levels of the courses range from beginner to advanced. The site is free to join, and they collaborate with over 200 companies and organizations to create a wholesome educational experience for all ages and backgrounds. 

Community Programs

Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning presents a free “pop-up” class which is available online to artistic youth through Youtube. The classes are free and vary depending on subjects such as songwriting, music theory, and rhythm. Students have the ability to stay active and creative whilst streaming #jcalPOPUPclasses online. The multidisciplinary arts center has a mission to offer the community educationally accessible programs.

Future Music Moguls is a program created by New York University providing a free 14-week educational workshop program for interested music business high school freshmen to juniors. The program is free and the application includes a reference letter, and GPA from the attending school. Students unveil and  learn about the creative process ventured focusing on musicality and behind the scenes business decision-making skills too. The ideal candidate has an interest in music, high academic achievement, teamwork ethic, and willingness to explore.

Sharpen Musical Skills

MusicTheory.net This website is a free online resource and mobile application that allows individuals to enhance their music theory comprehension. The site offers free practice modules, sight reading exercises, calculation tools, and lessons varying upon skill level. 

Ableton's Learning Music is a free, online module to teach beginners how to make a song electronically. It goes over the parts of a song, like melodies, drums, chords - everything you’d need to compose your first song with no prior experience.

Prison Reformation

 Musical Transformation is a rehabilitative program focusing on anti-recidivism through the arts. Decoda seeks to enable the broadest possible audiences to make personal connections to art regardless of their previous experience or expertise. Prior musical training is not needed, all skill sets are welcomed to the program. Available to all ages seeking rehabilitation following Decoda’s mission of free creative expression, fostering good community citizenship, and enhancing collaborative work skills. The corrections musical reformation program is located in NY, and SC. This program is only applicable to those seeking reformation.

The Justice Arts Coalition: Music This network is a resource to individuals within or around the criminal legal system. The organization lists which they host and or provide multidisciplinary art programs such as music, drama, dance, and creative writing. The music resource they provide is a collection of accessible and credible music related information from books to videos and short films. The JAC and or Justice Arts Coalition provides workshops across the U.S, the programs take place from low to high security prison facilities. The JAC focuses on prison reformation, however their resource archive is free and accessible to all.