The 80% of musicians who freelance or are self-employed need to have an array of transferable skills to make a living.
It isn't easy, but musicians build 'portfolio careers' by being adaptable, multiskilled and willing to learn, so they can pursue creative work that they believe in.
This is America.
The music industry, like all other media, can be censored to some extent. So how does this change its output?
Musicians and athletes have a lot in common when it comes to performing in the glare of the spotlight.
Musicians protesting against government while holding instruments in Caracas, Venezuela.
AP/ Fernando Llano
Musicians who learned how to play through a state-funded program called El Sistema are taking their instruments to the streets to protest the government.
A cross stitch recreation of Nirvana’s classic album cover by Mr X Stitch.
Nirvana's Nevermind was emblematic of the 1990s. But in today's fragmented digital age, can anyone nominate an album that defines the first or second decade of the 21st century?
Is the system broken?
'Record Player' via www.shutterstock.com
After winning his Grammy in 1996, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder said, 'I don't think this means anything.' Was he right?
Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA
Musicians have largely greeted Trump with the sound of silence – and in doing so, they check the normalisation of the current administration.
Punters cheer at the 2016 Glastonbury Festival. Revenue from live performances is growing.
In Australia, musicians' total income actually went up last year. While the music industry still faces many challenges, there is now a world-wide push to boost artists' royalties paid by streaming services such as Spotify.
Janis Joplin in Janis: Little Girl Blue (2015)
Female popular musicians die younger – and from more unnatural causes like suicide, homicide and accidents – than women in the general population. What's going wrong?
After the likes of Joan Jett, Janis Joplin and Debbie Harry, why are women in rock still marginalised?
Why are women still marginalised in the rock industry? There are many reasons - from a male dominated music canon to belittling attitudes - but women are speaking up and lobbying for change.
Bitcoin, blockchain and automatic royalty payments could transform how musicians earn.
The cover of Ray Lema’s album, ‘Nangadeef’.
The Congolese album ‘Nangadeef’ remains largely unexplored, despite its genius. As a rich repository of Afrofuturistic data, it deserves to be delved into by lovers of African art.
Nicki Minaj arrives at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles. She has been largely considered a bad influence on young women.
Musicians and performers have long been considered to influence young people in negative ways.