A female student sings in front of her band.
Undergraduate, Adult Degree | In-Person

Music Business, BBA | Adult Degree

Immerse yourself in the music business in the heart of Music City, USA. A Bachelor of Business Administration in music business from Belmont sets you up to thrive in a growing industry.

Why Major in Music Business? 

Music business combines the creative expression of a career in the music industry with the business skills to make an impact. A degree in this dynamic field puts you at the center of the action in a booming industry.

Billboard Magazine ranked Belmont in the Top 15 Schools for Music Business, and it’s easy to see why. Belmont owns and operates three of the most historic recording studios in the world — Ocean Way Nashville, Quonset Hut and Historic Columbia Studio A. You'll practice your skills in the same studios where Bob Dylan, Luke Bryan and other stars have recorded.

Am I an Adult Student? 

Adult Degree applicants should be 24 years or older. However, exceptions for those under the age of 24 might include evidence of two years or more of military service, marriage or having a family of your own.

What makes Adult Degree Programs special?

Your Success is Personal: Our students are not one-sized fits all, and neither is our commitment to you. Your path to a college degree is unique, and we take your success as personally as you do. Our staff and faculty will be with you from the first point of contact all the way through graduation and beyond, providing personalized guidance and assistance so you don’t have to go it alone.

Education Designed to Elevate Your Career: Whatever adult degree program option you choose, a career-focused curriculum will help you elevate your current career or prepare you for new professional or personal opportunities. 

Unique Tuition Discount for Adult Degree Program Students: Belmont is dedicated to offering access to high-quality education for busy adults. Students in Belmont’s Adult Degree Program receive more than a 40% discount off of the tuition cost that traditional Belmont students pay for the very same quality, private school education. 

What You'll Learn 

The Music Business (MBU) major develops the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in a range of careers within the music business, such as record company operations, music publishing, artist management, publicity, concert promotion and booking.

Music Business students complete the B.B.A. curriculum, which is accredited by AACSB International, with a major in Music Business and an emphasis focused on specific interests of the student. Particularly, this major combines traditional business courses (accounting, business law, finance, management and economics) with specialized music business courses (publishing, copyright law, artist management, public relations, concert promotion and marketing). Further, students choose an emphasis area, from a general music business emphasis to particularized emphases which allow the student to focus their attention on a more detailed career path.

The seating area of OceanWay Studios. A couch sits in front of a wall of framed records.

Career Possibilities

Major and independent record labels, publishers, agencies, management firms, studios, venues, governmental agencies (eg: Copyright Office) and more.

Jacob Hicks

Jacob Hicks, Class of 2023

"My situation for coming to Belmont is a little more unique than most of the students. After changing from a career on the opposite end of the spectrum (veteran) to the music industry, I chose Belmont's Music Business program because I wanted to learn about an industry I knew nothing about before trying to find my way in it. The classes offered in this program and the opportunities Curb College offers give you the basic knowledge needed and experiences that you can't find anywhere else. It's just on you to take advantage of it!"

Program Details


The music business major is equivalent to a double major in business administration and music business, so you won't need to complete a minor area of study. A major in music business leads to the Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) and requires a total of 128 credit hours of coursework:

  • BELL core requirements: 50 hours
  • Business courses: 33 hours
  • B.B.A. core technical requirement: 3 hours
  • Major area: 13 hours
  • Emphasis area: 15-27 hours
  • General electives: All remaining hours

See All Program Requirements

Courses You'll Take

  • MBU 1110. Survey of Music Business
    This course is a general overview and a study of the major functional areas of the music business. Attention is given to the theoretical foundations and practical application of current business practices in the music industry including supporting organizations and the revenue flow from music consumer to creator.
  • MBU 2000. Internship and Career Foundations
    This career development course addresses personal and professional development, career and job strategies, interviewing and networking skills, and internship participation expectations.
  • MBU 2120 Digital Music Marketing
    A study of best practice strategies for digital marketing in the music industry.
  • MBU 2130. History of the Recording Business
    A study of the history of the recorded music business from 1877 to the present with emphasis on the development of independent and major recording labels, popular recordings, social, cultural, economic and political influences, and the stylistic differences of notable historic time periods.
  • MBU 2131 Venue Management I
    A study of venue and event management that provides a practical and theoretical understanding of public assembly venues and how they operate.  Whether part of a sport administration, event management, hospitality or other related discipline, this class will address the functions common to all venues, as well as how different disciplines apply to venue management.  
  • MBU 2520. Copyright Law
    This course provides an in-depth study of copyright law in the entertainment industry including its origins, rationale, protections and limitations.
  • MBU 2610. Radio Promotions
    A study of the major areas of radio promotion as it relates to the music industry. Students receive an in-depth look at the label’s use of charting, demographics, release plans, sales and the role of research in the life of a radio single.
  • MBU 2620. Influencing Culture as a Christian in the Entertainment Industry
    This course examines the role and influence of Christianity within the entertainment industries with an emphasis on how the Christian faith and Christian ethics influences, business practices, marketing and the development of entertainment products and the creative arts, and the role that Christians play as creatives and in professional entertainment workplaces. Emphasis will be placed on raising awareness of strategies for maintaining one’s Christian identity and influencing culture when working in the entertainment industry.
  • MBU 2730. Electronic Media in the Music Industry
    This course investigates the integration of electronic media and the media’s role in promoting music-oriented artists. Emphasis is given to current events, personal, and professional change, and predicting the future influence of electronic media industries.
  • MBU 3000. Music Business Internship
    This formal career education experience enables students to intern at entertainment business organizations for a selected period of time. Grade is pass/fail. (May be repeated up to a maximum of 6 credit hours.)
  • MBU 3210 DIY Creative
    Examining Creative Innovation, DIY Creative helps engage highly personalized self-development, evaluating key professional topics such as: artistic and creative techniques; vocal and instrumental frameworks for health and efficiency; self-publishing; strategic planning for brand development in the music industry, and more. DIY engages reflective discussions, interdisciplinary pedagogical approaches, and foundational content pertinent to any creative.
  • MBU 3330. International Music Business
    An exploration of issues confronting entertainment and Music Business firms in a competitive global environment. Particular emphasis includes the manufacturing, marketing, management or financing of entertainment and promotion of the music and entertainment industries which are additional areas of study.
  • MBU 3360. Entertainment Career Development
    A study of personal entertainment career development and management including educational, promotional, and financial concerns of the professional entertainer. Various unions, guilds, and associations are studied from the entertainer’s viewpoint.
  • MBU 3450. Music Publishing
    This course is a study of music publishing income streams, contracts and licensing, foreign publishing, catalog development and setting up a publishing company.
  • MBU 3550. Music Industry Contract Law
    This course examines the background and principles of contract law as applied to the negotiation, creation, interpretation and enforcement of binding agreements in the music industry.
  • MBU 3460 Tour Merchandising
    A study of the business of touring merchandise, including related tour entities, production, merchandise, VIP/Sponsorships, and tour management.
  • MBU 3620. Marketing of Recorded Music
    A study of the theories and techniques used in the marketing of recorded music by major and independent labels and artists to consumers. Topics include market structure and analysis, distribution methods, promotional strategies, charts, airplay, pricing, research and legal issues specific to entertainment marketing.
  • MBU 3720. Public Relations in the Music Industry
    An applied based overview of the functions and tools of public relations (PR) techniques used to affect public perception and image of an artist within the music industry. Topics include the analysis of media strategy and crisis control, the development of press releases, print and electronic press kits, promotional events and artist-oriented news for media distribution.
  • MBU 3740. Music Supervision In Film and Television
    This course presents the role of the Music Supervisor through an analysis of scripts and the exploration of the musical, financial, legal, and production aspects of placing music in film, television, and other entertainment media.
  • MBU 3760. A & R Administration
    This course presents the artist and repertoire (A & R) operations of recording companies including how contractual obligations impact activities and profitability and how music products are delivered and archived for future re-purposing.
  • MBU 4015. Senior Capstone
    This course is a culminating experience in the major, which also addresses the goals for the Senior Capstone as defined in the course description for GND 4015. These goals include reflection on the students’ whole educational experiences and on their transition from the university setting to post-graduation.
  • MBU 4200. Record Company Operations
    Practicum-based course applying the operational principles of independent record labels.
  • MBU 4210 Venue Management II
    A study of who, what, why, when and where of opening and running a successful live music venue, including examining the inner-workings of establishing and running nightly shows from a venue owner perspective.  This course will emphasize the entrepreneurial aspects of the development and operations of a live music business.  
  • MBU 4630. Legal Issues in the Entertainment Industry
    This course presents an overview of current and emerging legal trends that have significant implications in the entertainment industries.
  • MBU 4800. Entrepreneurship in the Music Industry
    Entertainment entrepreneurship is based on the process of identifying opportunities in the entertainment marketplace, exploring potential resources to pursue those opportunities and committing to action the resources necessary to exploit the opportunities for long-term gain.
  • MBU 4820. Artist Management
    An analysis of the various aspects of artist management including talent agencies, personal management, performance and recording contracts, tours and artist promotion.
  • MBU 4830. Concert Promotion and Booking
    A study of the role of the concert promoter and the organization of concert promoting, including contracts, riders, venues, audience projections/demographics and finance (budgets, corporate sponsorships, gate receipts, etc.).

The admission decision process for the Adult Degree Program is different from what someone might experience right out of high school. To be eligible for an Adult Degree program,  applicants must be 24 years or older or provide evidence of two years or more of military service, marriage or having a family of your own.

Even if you struggled academically when you first attended college, the Belmont Admissions Committee looks at more than just your academic history. We also consider your professional experience and personal accomplishments as we review your application materials.

Learn more about Adult Degree Admissions & Financial Aid

Beyond the classroom, you’ll have a wealth of opportunities to explore the business of music, make connections and discover your purpose.

  • Get insights from industry leaders like Brad Paisley, Ashley Gorley, Ben Vaughn, Vince Gill and Amy Grant. Our Seminar Series gives you access to the inner workings of the music business.
  • Study away and abroad programs in NYC, LA and across the world in England, Ireland and beyond
  • Take on an internship through our expansive network in Nashville, Los Angeles, New York or beyond. Our internship programming puts you in the center of the music & entertainment business
  • Connect with classmates and gain hands-on industry experience by joining one of more than 10 clubs devoted to the music and entertainment industry – such as CMA EDU, GRAMMY U and Women in Entertainment.
  • Get hands-on experience working events like the Grammy Awards, Sundance Film Festival, CMA Awards and many more.

aacsb.pngBelmont University’s B.B.A. programs are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the premier agency for bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs in business administration and accounting.

Fewer than 5% of business schools worldwide achieve AACSB accreditation, and Belmont is the only private college or university in Tennessee that is accredited by AACSB International for BBA, MBA and accounting programs.

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Application Deadlines

Apply by August 1

Start on August 23

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Tuition & Aid Info

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Adult Degree Program

Sara Gibson
Admissions Coordinator
Email Sara