Inside MMC Careers: Artists & Repertoire

Are you a media, marketing, or communications student wondering what to do when you graduate? Do you want to discover what’s out there? We invite you to read this series of blog posts featuring unique careers in your industry – starting with this one!

Today, our topic is a career as an A&R Scout. Check out an interview with a scout, and our answers to questions about the field below.

Q: What does A&R stand for?

A: Artists & Repertoire. Common job titles you will find are A&R Coordinator, A&R Assistant, A&R Manager, or A&R Executive.

Q: What does an A&R Scout do?

A: A&R are talent scouts for record labels. They frequent clubs and performance venues seeking the next best band, singer/songwriter, or musician that has what it takes to make it big. Once an artist signs with a label, scouts oversee their artistic development. This includes developing and marketing their brand, finding producers, and even choosing songs for them to record. A&R reps are known as the “gatekeepers” of the music industry. It is their job to find marketable music for their label and nurture the talent.

Q: Which U.S. cities do A&R Scouts work in?

A: Major record labels are located in Los Angeles, Nashville, New York, and Atlanta. There are other smaller labels around the country.

Q: What can I do as an undergrad to prepare for this career? 

A: Get involved on campus and look for internships. Working in the production studio on campus or volunteering at the local music festival can be a great way to build your resume. You will also want to look for internships to help build the hard skills that are needed for working in the music industry.

Q: What type of internship should I do while an undergrad for this role?

A: There are A&R internships that are available but they can be very competitive. Working in the industry and meeting people is very important when thinking about this career path. Look for an internship in the industry like production, engineering, and even cataloging. Be open-minded and meet as many people as possible.

Q: What skills do I need to work in A&R?
Here are some of the skills that are needed to be successful in A&R:
Utilizing mixing and mastering equipment
Ability to network with artists and other industry professionals
Knowledge of Microsoft Office especially with Excel to keep artists organized
Manage social media accounts to find new artists and attract new talent
Lead and create presentations on various artists

For more information on this career and others in MMC, you can schedule an appointment with one of your career coaches! Reach out to Sam Karpiloff at skarpiloff@mercy.edu or Liam Ross-Fitzgibbons at lrossfitzgibbons@mercy.edu to schedule an appointment.

Sources: https://www.musiccareers.net/industry-terms/a-and-r/

By Samantha Karpiloff
Samantha Karpiloff Career Specialist Samantha Karpiloff