I hope this is the right forum.

I would like to know if anyone has any recommendations of any detailed books on having a career in music and the music industry in general. Also I would like to know of any good books on indie distribution of albums and all that.

Indie Band Survival Guide. It's legit and it's easy to purchase, barnes and noble and the like have it. It covers distribution too, but I'm sure there are other books that have more detail about distribution.
"everything you need to know about music business" by don passman... best money anyone interrested in a career in entertainment could spend.
Whilst the books are great for the fundamentals and concepts, there is never any substitute to talking to musicians after their sets and seeing how they're going and what they've done to achieve their current status. You'll also make some contacts in the process and be able to see how the concepts from the books apply in reality to your local area.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
^More true than anyone not experienced would know. There is no substitute for getting out and talking to people. Even messages on the internet don't come close.
i agree with alan, but in perhaps a different way...

local bands that you see floundering, playing the same venue over and over with the same crowd at every show (and i mean you're starting to remember dozens of people's names/faces with minimal new audience members), playing the same set list each time... these might be guys who give you a good example of what NOT to do. their "how we made it" story might not include much, maybe the bar owner is a buddy or a brother-in-law... that's kinda' the point. if you want positive information, that is examples to follow, you need to talk to the people that are active and WORKING towards their goals.

the book i mentioned is extremely useful for getting the "jist" of the industry, what kinds'a businesses are in bed with each other, how royalties are calculated, discusses a bit on distribution... mainly a general overview of the money side of the house, and an enjoyable read. Passman keeps the conversation humorous. i'd call it mandatory reading for anyone serious about a career in the music industy if for no other reason than every entertainment lawyer, label rep, manager, promoter, etc. worth their salt has read it already... maybe a few times.
Quote by GrisKy
i agree with alan, but in perhaps a different way...

I agree with that. Even if they're floundering it's good to see what they're doing so you can do it better Or just networking, or if there's a hot girl in their band.

But you do have some interesting conversations along the way.

I once talked to a guy who just played a set as a duo who was getting decent work around my area. He said that even though he was playing as a duo on the night, his band could be ordered as a two, three or four piece to accommodate the payer's wishes. The instruments were singer/rhythm guitarist (him always part of the band), lead guitarist, violinist and pianist.

Now can anyone guess what happened in his band next?
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Quote by AlanHB
Now can anyone guess what happened in his band next?

they made a thread on bandleading forum, "help, I can't find a drummer."

I have one book that totally solidified how I look at the business of music and how it works, only without all the hyperbolic pessimism that floats around out there. (yeah, that Albini article...)

Breaking into the Music Business - Alan Siegal.

Another good one (but not as good) is The Real Deal. Dayelle Schwartz


They're both entertainment lawyers, IIRC. Siegal is. The Siegal book is more in depth, but both of them are written in a very user-friendly fashion - not all full of legal speak.

Aside from that, books aren't everything. Talking to other musicians is often useful, but when you're talking to other musicians out there slugging it out in your local bars, it usually boils down to a case of the blind leading the blind.

I have learned a lot about how the realities of the music business work from a guy I know who is in a multi-platinum-selling rock/metal band. 30 years in the same band, with the ups and downs.... from opening for KISS, to getting punched out while working as a convenience store clerk after it all went downhill, to rebuilding the band as a viable indie act back touring internationally, he has seen it all. So, yes, talk to musicians, but try to talk to those who you know will have something to offer - from people who are or have been there, rather than from people who wished they were there, or resent not being there or whatever.

I also learned a lot by attending a lecture by a guy named Bruce Allan. He manages Brian Adams, and his management company has managed almost anyone who is anyone in the Canadian music industry. Although he's one of the most arrogant people you'll ever hear speak (you could say he has certainly earned his bragging rights though), I left a changed person after that one hour. Go to industry lectures. For real.

Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.