The Studio Business Book, 2nd Edition

  • Mitch Gallagher
  • Jim Mandell
  • ISBN-10: 1592007473  |  ISBN-13: 9781592007479
  • 376 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 1997
  • © 2006 | Published
  • List Price = $ 34.99
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  • For single copy purchases, visit



All studios, both large and small, spend a lot of money every year in an unending quest to attract clients-- whether they are upgrading equipment, tweaking acoustics, or adding that big leather couch for the back of the control room. But merely throwing money at a studio may not be enough to keep it competitive. As with any other business, a recording studio must be properly managed in order to be profi table, or merely to break even. This all-new and expanded edition of The Studio Business Book is the bestselling step-by-step guide to operating and managing a professional recording facility. Used by studio owners, managers, and as a text for university courses, it begins with the basics: formulating a business plan, estimating studio startup costs (from small project studios to world-class rooms), finding a location, getting funded, and making equipment purchases. From there, the book takes you through the necessary details of business operation: accounting, phone, network and utility services, insurance plans, promoting your venture, and increasing revenues. Other chapters cover the fine art of studio management: scheduling sessions, dealing with clients, hiring and firing employees, maintaining and upgrading equipment, and how to cope with all kinds of disasters. The authors combine decades of insider experience and knowledge of the subject in this solid, well-written and carefully organized text. As an added bonus, numerous interviews with leading experts in every facet of the business are interspersed throughout the chapters, providing rare insights and fi rst-hand advice from successful industry veterans who deal with studio operations every day. This is truly a must-have book for anyone interested in starting a recording business.

Features and Benefits

  • Written for business managers and entrepreneurs who operate for-hire recording studios.
  • Teaches important basic business skills and how to apply them to running a recording studio.
  • Get in-depth, specific information on all aspects of putting together and managing a recording studio.
  • The only comprehensive book that features studio-specific training information.

Table of Contents

1. Looking Out from the Inside
2. Writing a Business Plan
3. How Much Does it Cost? How Much Have You Got?
4. Making It Happen
5. The Project Studio
6. Expense Planning
7. Putting a Price on Value
8. Income Sources: Getting Creative
9. Developing Contracts
10. Advertising and PR
11. The Art of Schooling
12. Keeping Track of Things
13. Politics and Psychology
14. Equipment, Money, and Strategy
15. On Being the Boss
16. Hiring and Firing
17. The Employee Manual
18. Coping with Disaster
19. Betting on the Future
Appendix: The Manager's Quick Reference Guide

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Mitch Gallagher

Mitch Gallagher has been chasing guitar tone for more than 30 years. He toured as a lead guitarist/vocalist in rock and country bands and has played with big bands, with fusion and experimental music groups, and as a classical and steel-string guitar soloist. As a music technology specialist, he has taught college courses, lectured, given clinics, consulted with manufacturers, and spoken at festivals, conventions, and conferences around the world. His musical compositions cover genres from classical to experimental to heavy metal. His work Prophecy #1: At First Glance, an experimental percussion ensemble/synthesizer work based on the Fibonacci number series, received a 1991 NARAS (Grammy) award in the Best New Music/New Classical category. The former senior technical editor of Keyboard magazine and former editor-in-chief of EQ magazine, Mitch has published well over 1,000 articles in music, guitar, and recording publications. His monthly column, "Guitar Tracks," currently appears in Premier Guitar magazine. He appears in well over 100 YouTube videos. In addition to freelance writing and editing, he is an adjunct faculty member at Indiana University/Purdue University Fort Wayne; he operates The Sound Sauna/MAG Media Productions, a recording and mastering studio; and he is the editorial director for Sweetwater Sound in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Jim Mandell

Jim authored the previous editions of The Studio Business Book and has been involved in the recording studio business and the music industry for more than 25 years.