Music Industry


The Music Industry major provides training for students seeking an alternative to traditional performance and/or education paths in music. Courses include studies in basic theory and music history, music commerce, music technology/recording, music internships and specific individual performance skills. A minor in Business is recommended by the Department of Fine Arts. Any minor has to be approved by the department.

Career opportunities within the music business arena might include: music publicity, marketing, and artist management; music publishing, merchandising, and physical or online retail/distribution; recording and media development; entertainment law; venue management. The program also allows the student to expanding their personal tools to succeed in a career as a performer, composer, and/or educator.


The mission of the Francis Marion University Music Industry Program is to educate, train and develop students to excel in music as a career. This is done with a solid education in music and an expansive education in the liberal arts. Our curriculum embraces both time honored and contemporary musical styles. Through a course of scholarly and practical learning experiences integrating performance, writing and technology each student is prepared for career opportunities open to today’s music professional. The Music Industry Program serves as the musical center for the university and surrounding community.


Graduation requirements for this degree are 51 semester hours of General Education requirements, 53 semester hours of music industry courses, and 18 semester hours of an approved minor.

It will be difficult for a student to enter this degree program without prerequisite vocal and/or instrumental skills. You must be as capable vocally or on your major instrument as you would be if you were auditioning to be a music performance major. The curriculum is not for persons specifically seeking an audio engineering degree, or seeking a music business designation of any kind. The B.S. degree in Music Industry develops a well-rounded understanding of the music and music industry arts.

Music Performance Courses
Music Theory
Aural Skills
Music History
Applied Lessons

Music Industry Courses
Music Commerce
Intro to Technology
Sound Recording/Reinforcement


Students admitted to Francis Marion University may register as Music Industry majors. There are currently no additional Music program acceptance qualifying standards students must meet to enroll in the Music Industry program.

However, it is helpful for potential students to recognize that this is a rigorous program with high expectation for participating students; the emphasis is on “music.” For example, students are required to complete four semesters of traditional music theory and select a performance specialty (instrument or voice). Applied lessons in the performance specialty stress a conventional approach to performance focusing on scales, etudes, and classic literature.

While the ability to read music and formal training in music are not required to enter the program, students who have participated in a structured high school music program or have several years of study with a private teacher (piano as an example) are in a much better position to succeed than students who have had no prior formal training. Basic music reading skills (pitch recognition in treble and bass clef and understanding of reading rhythms in quarter, eighth, and sixteenth notes) and basic music theory knowledge (key signatures, major scales, chord structure) are of enormous benefit to students starting the program.

If students feel they may need help because they are lacking the background described above, they can take steps to “catch up.” For example, there are some free online courses and tutorials offered on the Internet. Also they can get assistance through basic keyboard lessons offered by private instructional studios or music stores.
Jazz Express – April 98


The purpose of the music minor is twofold. It will provide a viable minor for undergraduate students seeking to reach an early conservatory level of proficiency; and provide the first two years of instruction in music for students not able to enroll in a music major during their first two years of college. USC-C has agreed to accept any student completing this program into their music major program after a successful audition. A student in our program would be two music courses behind in the USC-C music program after completing two years here, but two courses ahead in General Education courses. (Note: This is not a Music Industry Minor.)


Designed by the Boston architectural firm of Perry, Dean, Stahl and Rogers and constructed in 1980, the Fine Arts Center is a Post-Modern building housing educational and performance spaces for the music program.

The John W. Baker Art and Music Wing of the Hyman Fine Arts Center, which includes faculty offices for the department, also houses practice rooms and studios for individual vocal and instrumental instruction. The south wing of the Fine Arts Center includes the 350 seat University Theatre and the Adele Kassab Recital Hall, an intimate 150 seat performance space with infinitely variable acoustics


The Francis Marion University Performing Arts Center, just seven miles from the main campus in downtown Florence, has greatly expanded the Music Industry’s facilities. It houses rehearsal and performance spaces, recording and sound reinforcement facilities, faculty offices, and a music technology lab with keyboards interfaced with computers and software to assist students in composition, transcription, music theory and ear training.

Other campus performance venues are Chapman Auditorium in the McNair Science Building, Lawrimore Lecture Hall in the Cauthen Educational Media Center, Thompson Auditorium in the Lee Nursing Building and Smith University Center Commons and Gymnasium. And of course, there are also the less formal “coffee house” settings which provide an outlet for local musical talent in both invitational and “open mic” formats.