Skip to main content
Book an open day

About the course

Would you like to understand music contracts, manage artists, plan events or create your own music company? Maybe you are an aspiring artist who would like to know more about making money from your music? If so, this course is for you.

Solent’s innovative music business degree will provide you with a thorough understanding of the music industry, including artist development, live events, festivals, financial management, legal contracts and copyright. We will support you to develop the entrepreneurial skills to succeed in this fast-paced industry.

As part of the course, you will promote your own live event(s), work with artists and launch a new music business project. Solent’s collaborative culture also encourages you to work on projects with students from other courses, reflecting the working practices of the music industries. You’ll also have the chance to work with Solent’s in-house creative agencies including Solent Music and Solent Productions.

The course is led by an experienced, well-connected team of lecturers who regularly publish academic research into music business, culture and history, while maintaining excellent links with industry professionals and employers. Recent guest lecturers have included Gillian Fleet (Domino Records), Lucy Wood (Latitude Festival), Annie Nightingale (BBC Radio 1) and Dani Sawyerr (Universal Publishing).

Throughout the course you will be provided with real-world learning opportunities and the essential music business skills for a wide range of music business careers after graduation. The course has a strong emphasis on gaining hands-on work experience, which we encourage at local businesses, venues and festivals. We also retain official academic partnerships with the national trade bodies UK Music and the Music Managers Forum (MMF).


You have the opportunity to study abroad in one of our partner universities for a semester on this course.
Study abroad
You have the opportunity to obtain a professional membership as part of this degree.
Professional memberships
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
If you have an appropriate Level 5 qualification, you can top it up to a degree in just a year.
Top-up option

Teaching is delivered by an academic team of music business professionals and researchers who have extensive experience of the industry.

What does this course lead to?

Our music business degree prepares you for a wide range of careers within the music, media and creative industries including record labels, publishing companies, artist management, events management, venue management, digital marketing, public relations and the creation of independent music companies.

Graduates of our previous music business courses have gone on to work with companies such as Sony, Universal, Warner, Live Nation, The Orchard, Spotify and TaP Management. Others manage their own record labels, artist agencies and live promotion businesses.

Who is this course for?

Solent’s music business course is ideally suited to students who want to build a career within the music industries. This could take the form of an artist developing their own career, or a manager working with other musicians, venues and businesses to achieve their goals.

Students come from a wide range of subject backgrounds, from art and photography to business studies and music. The unifying theme is a passion for music. We also support mature students who may have previously worked in music and now wish to formalise their experience with a degree qualification.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2020/21 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £13,260 per year

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact

Optional costs

Optional overseas trips may be available, with the cost based on current air fares and hotel prices.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our  bursaries and  scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

96 - 112 UCAS tariff points from A-levels or equivalent

  • A minimum of two completed A-levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma at MMM or BTEC Diploma at DM or equivalent qualification, or a combination of qualifications which comply with the minimum entry requirement of 96 UCAS points.
  • Direct entry into the second or third years may be considered for this course.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Please click the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time 3 year Apply
Top-up route:

We welcome applications from students currently studying a Foundation Degree, DipHE, HNC, HND or modules of an undergraduate degree course at another university, who wish to enter directly into Years 2 or 3 of one of our undergraduate degree courses. Please contact our admissions team for more information: contact us

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core modules
  • Understanding the Music Industries
  • Music Business Strategy and Planning
  • Digital Marketing and PR
  • Music, Society and Culture
  • Making Money from Music
  • Artist and Business Branding

Year two

Core modules
  • Global Music Industries: Trends and Issues
  • Live Music and Festivals
  • Audio-Visual PR
  • Music Law: Contracts and Controversies
  • Events Management and Marketing
  • Professional Development

Year three

Core modules
  • Individual Research Project
  • Pitching and Planning a Business
  • Managing and Developing a Business
  • Copyright, Publishing and Sync


  • Festival Cultures
  • Pop, Politics & Protest

Please note: Not all optional modules are guaranteed to run each year.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Martin James academic profile Martin James Professor View profile
James Hannam academic profile James Hannam Senior Lecturer View profile
Johnny Hopkins academic profile Johnny Hopkins Senior Lecturer View profile
Louise Morrell academic profile Louise Morrell Senior Lecturer View profile
Chris Anderton academic profile Chris Anderton Associate Professor View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


The University provides excellent learning resources and facilities to its students, from campus-wide wireless to extensive library services and dedicated student working spaces with plenty of laptop points. The course uses industry-standard Adobe Systems applications, and access is provided to a wide range of other programs and equipment needed to complete coursework, including radio studios for making podcasts, and camera and sound equipment for making videos.

The teaching team have excellent music business links which allow students to benefit from guest lectures, conference events, and work experience opportunities.  

The curriculum is built around a mix of practical insights and research perspectives into music business and management.

Your future

Following the successful completion of the course, graduates can go on to study at postgraduate level, including master’s degrees or industry-accredited qualifications.

Suitable career paths for music business graduates include:

  • Music management
  • Artist management
  • Artist and repertoire (A&R)
  • Recording companies
  • Publishing companies
  • Music agencies
  • Live events management
  • Venue management
  • Event and conference management
  • Tour management
  • Public relations
  • Music marketing
  • Social media management
  • Brand management
  • Arts administration and management

Industry links

We have strong links with music industry employers, and enjoy official academic partnerships with both UK Music and the Music Managers Forum (MMF).

Our guest lecturers have included:

  • Marcus Russell (manager of Oasis and Noel Gallagher)
  • Lucy Wood (Latitude Festival)
  • Gillian Fleet (Domino Records)
  • Dani Sawyerr (Universal Publishing)
  • Mandy Wickham (Live Nation)
  • Cerne Canning (manager of The Vaccines and Franz Ferdinand)
  • Speech Debelle (Mercury Prize-winning rapper)
  • Colin Lester (manager of Craig David and Arctic Monkeys)
  • Nick Halkes (Incentive Records and Management)
  • Andy Copping (Vice President of Live Nation UK)
  • James McMahon (former editor of Kerrang!)
  • Kate Head (PR for Taylor Swift, Tinchy Stryder and many others)
  • Rob Da Bank (Sunday Best, Camp Bestival)
  • Amanda Maxwell (Boiler Room)
  • Gary Powell (drummer, The Libertines)
  • Anabella Coldrick (CEO, Music Managers Forum)
  • Annie Nightingale (BBC Radio 1)
  • Danny Howard (BBC Radio 1)
  • Fabio (drum and bass DJ)
  • Glenn Matlock (The Sex Pistols)
  • Sarah Robertson (Bristol Music Trust)
  • Joel De’Ath (Sony Music)
  • Laura Barton (The Guardian)

Advice is regularly sought from our music industry guest speakers and from our many professional contacts. We also maintain good relationships with our past graduates who have gone on to work in a variety of music businesses, and who share their experiences with current students.

There are opportunities to work on a variety of projects through our in-house Solent Music initiative which works with a range of local and national music businesses. It is also instrumental in supporting guest speaker conferences and events, and Southampton’s SO: Music City festival – an annual collaboration with local industry partners.


In your coursework assessments you will engage with the music business through the creation of public-facing projects in a professional manner, thus building both your own contacts and your own portfolio. You will also be encouraged and supported in undertaking work experience, but this is not a compulsory element of the course.

There are opportunities to work on artist management and development, live gigs, club nights and more through our in-house Solent Music initiative, which works with a range of local and national music businesses, including Southampton’s vibrant live music scene. Local venues and events have provided past students with fantastic opportunities to perform, promote, manage and engage with the local industry. Solent Music is also proactive in bringing music to a wider audience and recently extended our long-running SMILEfest brand to launch the SO: Music City Festival alongside local industry partners.

Solent’s involvement with the world of music festivals stretches back almost ten years through our work at Glastonbury festival where, through Solent Productions, we are one of the major broadcast media producers – giving students the opportunity for a range of professional and practical opportunities to build experience in a range of festival roles. 

Solent University Open Days

Experience Solent for yourself. Meet our staff, students and explore our amazing facilities.

View our events