in Recording Arts and Technologies
reated with input from music industry professionals and the leading
industry associations, MTSU's innovative Recording Industry curriculum is on
the cutting edge. The department offers a
Bachelor of Science degree with concentrations in Music Business, Production and
Technology, or Commercial Songwriting and
a Master of Fine Arts degree in Recording
Arts and Technologies. A fast track into the
Master of Business Administration degree is
also available. Recording Industry at MTSU is
definitely a high-profile program. The Rolling
Stone college guide, Schools that Rock, recently said, “Middle Tennessee State University–
located in the surprisingly hip Murfreesboro,
Tennessee–boasts one of the preeminent
music business programs in the country.”
The National Association of Recording
Merchandisers (NARM) has recognized the
department as “the most comprehensive
four-year course in music merchandising.”
The Society of Professional Recording
Services (SPARS) visiting team said, “the program is excellent…the facility is impressive.”
For nine consecutive years, the program
received Technical Excellence and Creativity
nominations from MIX magazine. Majors
from the department won a Student Production Award from the National Academy
of Recording Arts and Sciences (the
Grammy organization).
Courtney Blooding (’03) writes, “The
faculty [and] facilities at MTSU helped me
turn my dream into reality. It is because of
my experience at MTSU that my career has
had such a successful beginning…and I know
it will only continue to grow! I am currently
working for producer David Foster. I have
had the opportunity to work with Josh Groban, Cher, Paul Anka, Michael Buble, Richard
Marx, Diane Warren, Joshua Bell, and Laura
“I would not have my job in the music
business if not for MTSU's Department of
Recording Industry,” writes Martha Irwin
(’98), director of A&R, Warner/Chappell
Music Publishing. “Some of what I learned at
MTSU is still applicable to my day-to-day
business. In addition, the contacts with other
alumni have been extremely beneficial. The
diversity of MTSU as a school definitely
made it the right choice. The student body is
more diverse than other programs’.”
Chris Nelson (’00), Studio 4A technical
director at National Public Radio, writes,
“Following graduation, I was hired at
National Public Radio's headquarters in
Washington, D.C. I am currently the techni-
he department also offers an M.F. A.
at the post-graduate level. The purpose
of the M.F.A. program is to prepare practitioners in the field of audio recording
and production for work in an integrated
electronic media environment. The program offers a strong technical component enabling students to realize artistic
endeavors using the latest advancements
in software and hardware. The degree
plan also addresses the need for teachers
at the postsecondary level by producing
terminal degree graduates in the field of
audio recording and production.
MRAT 6010 Recording in Cultural Context.
3 hrs. Designed to acquaint learners with the
evolution of this complex of technologies and
provide tools for cultural analysis and critique
of recorded artifacts.
MRAT 6030 MIDI and Digital Audio
3 hrs. Presents the technical skills and conceptual foundation necessary to undertake
advanced creative projects.
MRAT 6050 Multitrack Recording Seminar.
3 hrs. A systematic examination of technology
used in the modern recording studio.
MRAT 6070. Visual Aesthetics and Technology I. 3 Hrs. Visual Aesthetics and
Technology I is designed to assist the beginning graduate student with the skills to effectively communicate an idea visually.
MRAT 6090 Visual Aesthetics and
Technology II. 3 hrs. Continuation of MRAT
6070 with introduction to visual elements and
technology used in the entertainment industry.
Introduction to creative conceptualization; elements of composition; and how the production
process works.
MRAT 6110 Production Seminar I. 3 hrs.
Applications course in which students use
skills and theory obtained in previous courses.
MRAT 6120 Disk-Based Audio Postproduction. 3 hrs. Advanced practitioner-oriented
approach to the principles of tapeless digital
audio recording on a variety of digital workstation platforms.
MRAT 6130 Production Seminar II. 3 hrs.
Continuation of MRAT 6110.
MRAT 6140 Graduate Seminar in Audio
Recording. 3 hrs. Advanced application of
recording and mixing techniques in a digital
multitrack setting.
MRAT 6150 Legal Rights of the Creative
Individual. 3 hrs. Acquaints creative persons
with their legal rights and duties.
MRAT 6160 Composition for Contemporary
Media. 3 hrs. Provides the conceptual foundation necessary to undertake advanced
creative projects involving the creation and
manipulation of popular music materials.
MRAT 6180 Introduction to Film Scoring.
3 hrs. Overview of the film scoring process.
Discussion of the aesthetic relationship
between music and film.
MRAT 6210 Production Seminar III. 3 hrs.
Continuation of MRAT 6110 and 6130.
MRAT 6320 Directed Research. 3 hrs.
Research in recording techniques and related
MRAT 6340 Directed Production. 3 hrs.
Independent advanced audio productions.
MRAT 6360 Graduate Internship. 1-3 hrs.
Practical experience for advanced students
in a professional recording industry setting.
MRAT 6650 Final Project. 1-9 hrs. Directed
production project of substantial size and
scope proposed, developed, and realized
under the guidance of the major faculty
cal director for NPR's showcase recording/
production facility, Studio 4A…and I owe
much of my career success thus far to
MTSU's Department of Recording Industry.
The department's strong focus on audio theory, troubleshooting, and new technology
has proven to be an invaluable asset.
Between the experienced and diverse faculty, practical curriculum, and extensive access
to superb facilities, [MTSU] provided the
tools I needed to succeed.
“The list of musicians
I've recorded recently is
extensive. Here is a
small sampling: John
Mayer, Yo-Yo Ma (with
both the Silk Road
Ensemble and with musicians from Obrigado
Brazil), Placido Domingo,
Natalie Merchant, Vince
Gill, Michael McDonald,
Jonathan Brooke, Orli and Gil Shaham, Jimmy
Lin, Charlie Hunter, Lang Lang, Chanticleer,
Duncan Sheik, Manuel Barrueco, Roseanne
Cash, Patty Larkin, and Chuck Leavell.
“I could go on and on about the impressive facilities (an excellent hybrid of learning
atmosphere and professional configuration)
and the affordability–my Bachelor of Science
degree cost less than a year at some trade
James Porte (’96), who has worked as
an engineer for many artists, had his first
commercially released song on the Luther
Vandross album Dance With My Father. Wrote
James, “It [was] a proud moment for me
because everything encompassed within the
song stems from what I learned in the RI
Chris Yoakum (’00), Yellow Elephant
Music, Inc., and the Bennett House Recording Studios tells us, “I can't say enough about
what MTSU gave to me. I was just a
mediocre musician looking to land a job in
the industry. While at MTSU, I found I had a
knack for just about anything technical: from
the audio recording process, to MIDI, to signal flow and synchronization. The program's
open curriculum allowed me to find my specialty in the industry while achieving a wellrounded overall education within a Bachelor
of Science degree. That is something you'll
not get from a two-year recording school.”
Jim Scherer (’84) feels MTSU was a
“good match.” Scherer says, “I cut a song
written by a guy I went to school with–a
song that was pitched to me by a guy I went
to school with, which was engineered by
another guy I went to school with; and then
I dealt with an A&R guy on the same project
who I went to school with! It's not like it was
planned; it's just how it happened.”
Lacy Privette (’97), district manager,
Yamaha Corp. of America, writes; “MTSU provided me with a strong foundation to build
my career on and to take it in any direction
I wish to pursue.”
“Graduating from the Recording Industry
program at MTSU is a great source of pride
and it instilled in me skills
that have transferred into
a usable commodity in a
rather specialized industry,
the world of classical
music. The Nashville
Symphony records for
Naxos, the world's leading
classical music label,”
writes Mark A.
Blakeman (’93), vice
president and general manager, Nashville
Symphony Orchestra.
From Orlando, alumni and recording studio
owners (Ridenour Productions, Inc.) Mark
Hornsby (’00), Jimmy Blankenship (’00),
and Spencer Secoy (’99) tell us, “The staff
at MTSU gave us the networking skills we
needed to become successful in the everchanging recording industry.”
Recent graduates are excelling in careers
ranging from live sound for Cirque de Soleil
in Las Vegas (John Kessler, ’05), to engineering with major bluegrass producer Gary
Paczosa on artists such as Alison Krauss,
Dolly Parton, and Nickel Creek (Brandon
Bell, ’05). Recent music business graduates
are finding careers as developing recording
artists (Eric Paslay, ’05) or writing hit songs
for major artists like Darryl Scott, Alan
Jackson, and Randy Travis (Erin Enderlin,
’05). And the list gets longer every year!
The RI Internship Program allows students
to learn the business from the inside, gaining
valuable experience and professional contacts
by working for established firms in Nashville,
Los Angeles, and New York. Available to seniors, internships provide opportunities for
students to earn academic credit while working with record labels, booking agencies, artist
management firms, concert promoters, music
publicity firms, publishing companies, postproduction companies, live sound firms, multimedia companies, performing rights organizations, and recording studios.
MTSU is an accredited, state-supported institution comprising
five undergraduate colleges and a College of Graduate Studies.
The Colleges of Basic and Applied Sciences, Business, Education and
Behavioral Science, Liberal Arts, and Mass Communication together
contain thirty-five academic departments and schools. More than 23,000
students are registered and are taught by a faculty of more than 930.
For an application for admission, housing, or financial aid, contact:
Admissions Office
Middle Tennessee State University
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
(615) 898-2111
In Tennessee 800-331-MTSU
Outside Tennessee 800-433-MTSU
For more information, check the department Web site at
Or write to us at
Department of Recording Industry
MTSU Box 21
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
Fax: 615-898-5682
[email protected]
tudents from certain southeastern states may qualify for in-state
tuition rates. If you are from Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky,
Louisiana, Maryland, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia, or West
Virginia, check out the following Web site for information about the
Academic Common Market: www.mtsu.edu/~admissn/acm.htm.
Six student organizations, each focused on its members' specific
interests, provide networking and leadership opportunities.
The Association for Recording Management Students (ARMS)
sponsors guest panels of professionals who discuss topics related
to the industry. Members work with Grammy University, the National
Association of Recording Merchandisers, the Country Music Association,
the Organization of Country Radio Broadcasters, and the Nashville
Entertainment Association. They also assist with national seminars held
annually in Nashville.
The Audio Engineering Society (AES) student chapter sponsors
field trips to recording, mastering, and production facilities in the
area; promotes involvement with the Nashville AES chapter; facilitates
participation in national AES meetings and conventions; and hosts
discussion panels of industry speakers.
The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) student
chapter is for students interested in becoming professional songwriters.
Members hold workshops, sponsor writers' nights at local clubs, and
provide a forum to hear and critique one another's material.
Omega Delta Psi, a professional fraternity for recording Industry majors,
helps students achieve excellence in their studies and in their lives.
The Christian Music Society (CMS) follows Christian music and
the gospel music business in general and sponsors discussion panels
and workshops with such groups as the Gospel Music Association.
The Society for Electronic Music promotes personal and professional interest in all forms of electronic music. It sponsors and conducts
activities to enable members and the campus as a whole to learn more
about electronic music.
MTSU, a Tennessee Board of Regents university, is an equal opportunity, non-racially identifiable, educational institution that does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities.AA121-1107
Recording Industry
Middle Tennessee State University
BACHELOR OF SCIENCE in Recording Industry
The Recording Industry major is a 120-semester-hour program leading to a
Bachelor of Science degree. Students may elect a concentration in Music
Business, Production and Technology, or Commercial Songwriting.
Requirements include 44 hours of General Education courses, 48 hours of
Recording Industry courses, and one minor. Please refer to the current
Undergraduate Catalog for official degree requirements and course descriptions.
oes the recording industry appeal to you?
Are you interested in working for an independent label,
recording studio, talent agency, music publisher, concert
promoter, or other recording industry business? Would you like to
be a producer, engineer, songwriter, promoter, manager, or agent?
If so, Middle Tennessee State University has the right major for you!
As the largest and most comprehensive recording program in the
nation, the Department of Recording Industry offers unique
opportunities for anyone wanting to be part of the action!
Students are required to be admitted to
candidacy as a prerequisite to enrollment in most
upper-division courses within the department and
college. To apply for candidacy, students must
1. completed 45 hours;
2. received a grade of C (2.0) or better in
MATH 1710 College Algebra, EMC/JOUR/RIM
1020 American Media and Social Institutions,
RIM 3000 History of the Recording Industry,
RIM 3010 Audio for Media, and RIM 3600
Survey of the Recording Industry;
3. completed all high school deficiencies and any
required Academic Enrichment courses; and
4. maintained good standing (not on probation).
Admission to candidacy is based on a formula
score that includes cumulative GPA, candidacy
course GPA, College Algebra grade, and total
hours earned. The number of candidates is limited
to approximately 250 per year.
Candidacy Formula
Score = (cumulative GPA x 3) + (College Algebra
grade x 3) + (candidacy course GPA x 4) +
(total hours x .05)
With more than 3,500 majors, the MTSU College of Mass Communication is one of the
largest and best equipped in the country. Majors can specialize in Advertising-Public
Relations, Media Design and Graphics, Journalism, Photography, Media Communica-
Bragg Mass Communication Building, a $15 million complex. Facilities available to
lab, and a digital editing/dubbing room. Other Mass Communication facilities include
digital imaging and animation labs, extensive high definition video production areas,
graphics and newswriting labs, and a video remote truck. The Bragg Building is home to
the Center for Popular Music, the John Siegenthaler Chair in First Amendment Studies, faculty
offices, and advanced technology classrooms. See our facilities brochure or Web site for details.
RIM 3720 Artist Management
RIM 3900 Music Publishing
RIM 4320 Concert Promotion and Touring
RIM 4620 Marketing of Recordings
Electives: Students select 18 additional hours
of elective courses.
Covering all aspects of audio recording and production, this concentration’s 22 courses are on
mixing, recording, post-production, sound design,
studio operation, MIDI, sound for picture, live
sound, critical listening, music ship, and more.
Subcore taken by all Production and Technology
concentration students:
RIM 1230 Musicianship for Engineers
(or MUTH 1110 Theory amd Aural Skills I)
RIM 4190 Principles and Practices of Electronic
RIM 4200 Applied Digital Audio
RIM 4400 Techniques of Recording
RIM 4440 Critical Listening
or Commercial Songwriting. The Recording Industry Department is housed in
dio, a MIDI lab, a digital audio lab, a postproduction lab, a mastering lab, a listening
Covering all aspects of the music business, this
concentration includes publishing, management,
marketing, law, touring, label operations, international industry, and more. Subcore taken by all
Music Business concentration students:
Electives: Students select an additional 15 hours
of elective courses.
tion, Digital Media Communication, Music Business, Production and Technology,
students include five audio recording studios, a cinema-style surround mixing stu-
[taken by all Recording Industry majors]
EMC/JOUR/RIM1020* American Media and
Social Institutions
RIM 3000* History of the Recording Industry
RIM 3010* Audio for Media
RIM 3600* Survey of the Recording Industry
RIM 3700 Copyright Law
RIM 4700 Legal Problems of the Recording
*These are the candidacy courses used in the candidacy formula
Courses in commercial songwriting, music publishing, publishing administration, musicianship, project studio recording, copyright law, and more are
incorporated into this concentration. It is designed
to prepare students not only as songwriters but
also for jobs in the creative side of the industry.
Subcore taken by all Commercial Songwriting
concentration students:
RIM 1230 Musicianship for Engineers
(or MUTH 1110 Theory and Aural Skills I)
RIM 3020 Commercial Songwriting
RIM 3900 Music Publishing
RIM 4020 Advanced Songwriting
and one of the following:
RIM 4190 Principles and Practices of Electronic
RIM 4200 Applied Digital Audio
RIM 4400 Techniques of Recording
Electives: Students select an additional 15 hours
of elective courses.
Students in all concentrations may select up to
9 hours of electives from courses in the other
One minor is required for all Recording Industry
Music Business concentration students must
select one minor from among; Business Administration, Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Management, or
Mass Communication (Journalism, Media Management, or Public Relations).
Production and Technology concentration
students may select any minor at MTSU. Suggested
minors are Computer Science, Electro-Acoustics,
Electronics, Entertainment Technology, Entrepreneurship, Film Studies, Mass Communication, Music,
Music Industry, and Entertainment Arts Design.
The Commercial Songwriting minor must be
selected from Music, Creative Writing, or Entrepreneurship.
Minor Descriptions
Business Administration. Preparation for general
business careers. The study of accounting methods,
management, finance, and marketing.
Computer Science. A blend of theory, abstraction,
and design in the application of computers and
computer programming.
Electronics. The study of electrical circuits, electronic
components, circuit design, microprocessors, and
Electro-Acoustics. The study of physics, electronics,
and acoustics.
Entertainment Technology. Cross-departmental
study intended to give the student a broad background in technology used to produce a variety of
media including theater and
Entertainment Arts Design.
The design and application of
theater technology in the entertainment industry.
Entrepreneurship. Preparation to
organize and assume the risk of a business
or enterprise.
Film Studies. An interdisciplinary minor dealing
with the theory and criticism of films.
Mass Communication-General. May include
study in any of the Mass Communication areas:
Advertising, Digital Imaging, Graphics, Journalism,
Media Management, Public Relations, Video
Production, and Photography.
Mass Communication-Media Management.
Broadcast management, advertising, and
Mass Communication-Public Relations. Writing
for print, electronic, and digital media; broadcasting; media design; public relations. Includes
Mass Communication-Journalism. Reporting,
writing, and editing. Includes accounting.
Marketing. Preparation to assume marketing responsibilities including sales management, retailing, advertising and promotion, market research,
and product development.
Management. Small and large business management skills and techniques.
Music. Application of musical principles intended
to further the study of students with formal music
backgrounds. Emphasis on commercial music.
Music Industry. Application of musical principles
intended to further the study of students with for
mal music backgrounds. Emphasis on commercial
Writing. An interdisciplinary minor offering writingintensive selections across the curriculum.
RIM 3200 History of Country Music. 3 hrs.
A detailed introduction to the history and culture
of American country music.
RIM 3450 Advanced Musicianship for Engineers. 3 hrs. Further study of music theory and
form as applied to popular music.
RIM 3500 Lecture Series. 1 hr. Hear industry
professionals tell it like it is.
RIM 3580 Recording Industry Practicum.
1-3 hrs. Gain on-campus experience.
RIM 3600 Survey of the Recording Industry.
3 hrs. Overview of music business careers including artist development, songwriting, record promotion, publishing, record companies, and performing
RIM 3650 Free Expression, Mass Media, and
the American Public. 3 hrs. History, philosophy,
and controls associated with freedom of expression.
RIM 3700 Copyright Law. 3 hrs. Learn about
copyright law and how it applies to the music
industry including issues of piracy, sampling,
infringement, and protection.
RIM 3720 Artist Management. 3 hrs. A look at
what it's like as an artist's manager, highlighting
career development and tour management.
tries plus international trends in the music business.
RIM 3900 Music Publishing. 3 hrs. Learn about
the music publishing industry including the songwriter/publisher relationship and how royalties are
generated, collected, and distributed.
RIM 4000 Recording Industry Internship: Business. 1-6 hrs. The opportunity for advanced students to actually work for the world's top record
companies, publishers, and other entertainment
RIM 4010 Recording Industry Internship: Technology. 1-6 hrs. Opportunity for advanced students to actually work in the top recording studios
in Nashville, New York, Los Angeles, and other
cities throughout the U.S. and abroad.
RIM 4020 Advanced Songwriting. 3 hrs. Builds
on concepts learned in RIM 3020. Students will
work closely with mentors from the songwriting
and publishing community and co-write with professional writers.
RIM 4190 Principles and Practices of Electronic Music. 3 hrs. The history and techniques of
electronic music. Covers analog and digital sound
generation, MIDI, synthesizers, and sequencers.
RIM 4320 Concert Promotion and Touring.
3 hrs. Covers talent selection, contracts, production, venues, ticketing, and budgeting.
RIM 4400 Techniques of Recording. 3 hrs.
Learn modern multitrack recording and mixing.
RIM 4440 Critical Listening. 3 hrs. Develop
your listening skills.
RIM 4480 Mastering. 3 hrs. The final creative
step in album production.
RIM 4570 The Art of Soundtrack Design.
3 hrs. Study and listen to the masters of
sound design.
RIM 4580 Disk-Based Audio Postproduction. 3 hrs. Hands-on approach to tapeless
digital recording, including digital audio, synchronization, and audio for video and film.
RIM 4590 MIDI Studio Techniques. 3 hrs.
MIDI system design, synchronization of sound
to picture, advanced sound design, and music
scoring for film and video.
RIM 4620 Marketing of Recordings. 3 hrs.
Strategies of getting the public to buy a
recording. Covers product marketing, promotion, and distribution.
RIM 4200 Applied Digital Audio. 3 hrs. Current
trends in digital audio with hands-on experience
on digital audio workstations.
RIM 4290 Electronic Music II. 3 hrs. Advanced
techniques in sound manipulation, sampling,
sequencing, and MIDI automation.
RIM 4300 Digital Audio Workstation Theory and
Techniques. 3 hrs. Intermediate audio technology
and skills plus theory and techniques of DAW
production and editing.
RIM 4630 Recording Industry Research.
3 hrs. Conduct research for major recording
industry companies.
RIM 4650 Advanced Technology of Analog
Recording. 3 hrs. The systems used for
recording and mixing in a contemporary
analog multitrack recording studio.
RIM 4651 Advanced Technology of Digital
Recording. 3 hrs. In-depth study of technology, equipment, and techniques of contemporary digital multitrack recording.
Please refer to the current Undergraduate Catalog
for official course descriptions and prerequisites.
EMC/JOUR/RIM 1020 American Media and
Social Institutions. 3 hrs. Content and context of
American mass media and how they affect individuals and society.
RIM 1230 Musicianship for Engineers. 3 hrs.
Introduction to basic music theory and form as
applied to popular music. Course includes keyboard skills, ear training, and written theory.
RIM 3000 History of the Recording Industry.
3 hrs. Traces the development of recorded music,
record labels, business, and technology.
RIM 3010 Audio for Media. 3 hours. Gain a basic
understanding of audio technology.
RIM 3020 Commercial Songwriting. 3 hrs. Craft
words and music into popular songs and analyze
RIM 3100 Music as Popular Culture. 3 hrs. An
introduction to a range of scholarly approaches to
the study of popular music.
RIM 3770 Publicity in the Recording Industry.
3 hrs. Experience in music publicity including
press releases and kits, media relations, and
publicity campaigns.
RIM 3780 Entertainment Writing and Reporting.
3 hrs. The fundamentals of entertainment journalism including music industry writing, features, and
RIM 3890 International Recording Industry.
3 hrs. Learn the differences in media, marketing,
and promotion of recorded music in other coun-
RIM 4660 Advanced Music Engineering.
3 hrs. A project-based class emphasizing
creative and aesthetic aspects of multitrack
music recording.
RIM 4670 Studio Production. 3 hrs. Obtain
the hands-on experience and abilities needed
to be an independent producer of commercial
RIM 4680 Disk-Based Music Production.
3 hrs. Using digital audio workstations
to record and mix commercial
RIM 4690 Internet for
Music Business. 3 hrs.
Advanced theory and
practice in promoting
the services and products of the recording
industry through the
RIM 4700 Legal
Problems of the
Recording Industry.
3 hrs. Emphasis on
recording and producer
contracts and starting your
own business.
RIM 4720 Record Retail
Operations. 3 hrs. Problems and
practices of record retailers, including
pricing, inventory, advertising, operations,
and retail locations.
RIM 4730 The A&R Function. 3 hrs. The role
and responsibilities of the artist and repertoire
RIM 4740 Studio Business Operations.
3 hrs. How recording studios operate. Looks
at financing, accounting, marketing, personnel,
and planning.
RIM 4800 Understanding the Nashville
Music Business. 3 hrs. Study the structures
and relationships of Nashville's music industry.
RIM 4810 Topics in Recording Industry.
1-3 hrs. Explore different aspects of the industry through alternating topics not covered in
other classes.
RIM 4820 Record Label Operations. 3 hrs.
How record labels make the deals and find the
RIM 4830 Recording Studio Maintenance.
3 hrs. Troubleshooting techniques including
soldering, wiring, machine alignment and
system architecture.
RIM 4840 Music Publishing Administration.
3 hrs. Licensing and protection of copyrighted
RIM 4900 Individual Problems in the
Recording Industry. 3 hrs. Design and
conduct an independent project of personal
RIM 4910 Advanced Production Seminar
(same as EMC 4910). 3 hrs. The conceptualization, management, and production of a
specific program format integrating theory and
skills from other RATV/RIM courses.