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Tax Tips for Musicians

It’s that time of year again – Tax Season. But don’t you fret! We got your guide to some glorious deductions you can receive as an artist. Most likely, you are considered an independent contractor and receive 1099 tax forms from different gigs. This means you are entitled to deduct your business expenses from your taxable income. We’ve made a list of some of unique items you can write off as an artist:

1. Equipment

Because you need speciality equipment to run your business, all your equipment can be written off your taxable income. This includes that new guitar, amps, microphones, music stands, studio equipment and your music library.

2. Travel

Did you hit the road this year? Don’t forget to collect your receipts for airfare, ground transportation (Uber, rental vans), parking, hotel stays and meals while on the road. These can add up to a major deduction and could potentially lead to a sizable return – Cash in your pocket!

3. Memberships & Networking

The music business is all about relationships and growing your community. Joining organizations like The Recording Academy , Country Music Association, A2IM (American Association of Independent Music), Music Business Association, and others will not only help you make connections and foster relationships within the business, but they are also a great write off.

4. Specialty Recurring Expenses

Every business owner has recurring expenses, artists are no different. Your website & domain, social media advertising, booking studio time, purchasing merch, lawyer fees, as well as, help with your taxes, are all deducible at the end of the year.

Pro Tip: Keep those receipts. You will be shocked how fast your deducible expenses add up.

If you have questions about other possible deductions or specific questions about your business, we encourage you to speak to a CPA that specializes in the entertainment industry. Having a trusted accountant in your corner, can make your tax season a lot smoother.

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