KLS 3636 The Music Industry


KLS 3636 The Music Industry

Responsible for the course
Audun Molde

Department of Communication and Culture

According to study plan

ECTS Credits

Language of instruction

The music industry is dynamically balancing between long-term and rapid change, between intellectual property and technology, between idealism and business, between art and capital. There are both smaller and larger participants in the industry, which has great challenges and a need for change and development. The course will provide an overview of the industry’s characteristics and structure from a variety of perspectives and approaches like economics, aesthetics, organization and technology. The course is mainly about popular music.

Learning outcome
Acquired knowledge
Students will acquire knowledge of the music industry's characteristics and organization, and they will be familiar with and understand the industry's various players, models of value creation, framework and history.

Acquired skills
Students will be able to explain the music industry’s characteristics and organization. Students will also be able to conduct basic analyses of the music industry's organizational and marketing challenges and develop scenarios.

Students will be able to make independent assessments of the music industry from both artistic and commercial perspectives and understand the interaction between different viewpoints and the dilemmas that naturally follow. This requires that the student has developed respect and tolerance for multiple perspectives.


Compulsory reading
Dalchow, Jørn. 2013. Hjelp, jeg er i popbransjen! Alt du trenger å vite om den norske musikkbransjen. daWorks. 300 sider
Shuker, Roy. 2013. Understanding popular music culture. 4th ed. Routledge

Collection of articles:
Molde, Audun (red.). 2014. Artikkelsamling til Musikkbransjen. Handelshøyskolen BI

Recommended reading
Blokhus, Yngve og Audun Molde. 2004. Wow! : populærmusikkens historie. 2. utg. Universitetsforlaget
Gripsrud, Jostein, red. 2002. Populærmusikken i kulturpolitikken. Norsk kulturråd. Utvalgte kapitler
Passman, Donald S. 2012. All you need to know about the music business. 8th ed. Free Press
Aas, Mikkel. 2007. Spilletid : norsk platebransjes historie i 100 år. Macta forlag

Nettsteder: www.ballade.no (norsk bransjenettsted)

Course outline

  • Historical, technological and aesthetic perspectives (Norwegian, British and American music industry)
  • Industry structure, characteristics and organizations
  • Value chains, the various participants
  • Production of popular music: The producer, author/composer, performer, support functions
  • Distribution, sale and consumption of popular music: Physical and digital distribution channels, marketing strategies, consumer behaviour
  • The record industry and the different business structures
  • The live market
  • Management
  • Framework related to economy and cultural policy
  • The media's role in the music industry
  • The music industry’s relationships with other industries

Computer-based tools
No specified computer-based tools are required

Learning process and workload
The course includes lectures, case group work and case presentations in class. It will consist of 36 hours of lectures in the course topics, and 9 hours will be used for students' case presentations and discussions of these. The course also includes visits from the music industry professionals .
Participation in lectures I - Lectures
Participation in lectures II – Case presentations
Preparation for lectures/self tuition
Total recommended use of hours

    One week individual written assignment accounts for 100% of the final grade.

    Examination code(s)
    KLS 36361 Written assignment accounts for 100% of the final grade in KLS 3636 The Music Industry, 7,5 credits

    Examination support materials
    All support materials are allowed

    Re-sit examination
    A re-sit is held in connection with the next scheduled examination in the course.

    Additional information