The Chinese website/online resource Musicians’ Guide surveyed 614 self-described local Chinese musicians from around China and compiled the results into a snazzy PDF file, which you can download here (if you read Simplified Chinese).
If you don’t, we’ve translated and broken down some of the more interesting facts and figures from the survey:
Not too many surprises in the demographics: 86.3% of respondents are male, 72.26% are under the age of 30 and 37.19% live in either Beijing or Shanghai (32.95% of respondents live in “other cities”; besides Beijing and Shanghai, the other cities included in the survey were Guangzhou, Wuhan, Chengdu, Nanjing, Changsha, Xi’an, Hangzhou, Shenzhen and Tianjin). 37% of respondents identify themselves as “rock” musicians.
Half of the respondents are either full-time musicians or work part-time in a music-related business. The other half are part-time musicians with a full-time job in a non-music industry. 63.78% have never released an album or LP but 70.58% spend 1-5 hours on music-related activities. 58.78% rely on either independent or commercial performances for their music-related income whereas only 5.52% receive income from album sales.
36.36% of musicians responded that they are paid between 100-500 RMB per show. 55.96% of respondents say their monthly income from music is under 2000 RMB. 26.1% say it is under 100 RMB per month.
If they discovered their songs had been used without credit or licensing, 41.93% of respondents would use online channels to express their displeasure whereas 31.16% would pursue legal advice. We’ve definitely seen online shaming work, whereas legal measures tend usually to get settled via large-scale ‘agreements’ or monetization models ‘to be implemented’ at a future date.