Session Musicians

Work with talented session musicians without paying recording studio costs.

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Session Musicians FAQs

What is a session musician?

Session musicians are often referred to as side people when they’re assisting with live shows, studio musicians when they’re providing support in recording sessions, or backing musicians in general. A session musician may specialize in a few genres, instruments, or vocal styles. Some niche session musicians may take on clients for only one or two genres and a limited range of vocal and instrument needs.

What are the advantages of using session musicians?

Session musicians provide a host of benefits including delivery speed, quality of work, and skill diversity. Often musicians and bands hire session musicians because their investment translates directly into reduced spend on studio time. Studio time can cost upward of $500 per hour, whereas the top 10 percent of session musicians make an average of $73 an hour, so their value is substantial.

Session musicians often provide a depth of experience that can prove valuable in aligning music with lyrics at a fundamental level. It’s also not uncommon for session musicians to make more-abstract contributions such as feedback on music as it’s being produced.

Which skill is most important in a session musician?

The most important skill for session musicians is adaptability. When session musicians are adaptable, they are able to provide a more well-rounded experience for their clients. A greater degree of instrumental expertise often goes hand in hand with adaptability.

Where do I find session musicians?

Session musicians are prominent within the music industry. Since their livelihood depends on other musicians, they make connections with as many people as possible. It’s common that asking around can yield a name or two.

Upwork is home to hundreds of session musicians who have used their talents to create records, jingles, and many other forms of music.