Update: You can now see the top 41 WordPress themes for music industry professionals. Check that guide out instead of this one. 🙂
Although there are many great website builders (also known as Content Management Systems / CMS for short) and blogging platforms you could build your website on, WordPress is among the easiest, most popular, and most well-documented systems out there.
In other words, if you’ve selected WordPress as your tool of choice, you haven’t chosen wrong. We even have a step by step guide which will allow you to have your music website up within minutes!
Noting that, not everyone knows where to turn regarding customization, whether you’re trying to figure out what plugins to install, or what themes to use.
I’m here to help. 🙂
This guide shows you some of the best themes you can use for your WordPress site as a musician. If you find it useful, please share with others.
4 Criteria For Determining The Best WordPress Themes For Musicians
If you want to do some looking around of your own, and find themes that are not on this list, you should use the following criteria to narrow down your search. You should look for themes that:
- Look professional. The visual element has never been more important online, especially with the rise of social media. However, don’t mistake professional for complex; the theme can contain plenty of white space and simple design elements so long as it’s easy to navigate.
- Are mobile-ready. A large portion of internet users are now using mobile devices to surf the net. Don’t ask me why; I happen to think it’s pretty inconvenient. However, if your website isn’t mobile friendly, you’ll definitely be alienating a portion of your audience.
- Load fast. Slow-loading themes are bad for SEO, and I would rather you concern yourself with building out the content on your website than spending a lot of time optimizing it. Leave that to the professionals. Find a theme that matches the criteria mentioned here, and you won’t have too much to worry about.
- Are customizable. Technically, every theme is customizable; it’s more a matter of whether it’s easy to make changes or not. Some themes make it easy for you, while others do not. Look for themes that make your life easier.
With that out of the way, let’s start looking at some themes!
1. Lush Theme For Music Markers
This beautiful theme is a great option for musicians. It’s low-cost, stylish, and mobile compatible. With design options like “Hipster”, “Spintable”, “Outlaws”, “Rock”, “Classical” and others, you’re bound to find something to your liking. ThemeForest also offers tutorials for getting set up, letting you know what plugins to install, and how to import demo content.
However, in my opinion, there are a couple of downsides to Lush. One is that it isn’t easy to set up. Even someone with considerable WordPress experience – like me – may not get it all figured out without some research.
The second problem is that it’s almost too stylized. Menus are often tucked away in the corners, and visual elements tend to take up way too much space. This is subject to taste, of course.
2. Genesis Framework & StudioPress Themes
The Genesis Framework is SEO and mobile ready, and uses some of the latest in web technologies. There are a multitude of free and paid child themes to choose from, all of which affect the design, but not the core functionality of the framework.
Perhaps the biggest drawback of going this route is that it can be expensive. The Genesis Framework alone can run about $60, and paid themes can run you another $30 – $40 on top of that.
Just beware; if you end up going with Genesis, you’ll probably have a hard time going back to anything else. There are a lot of little built-in features that you’ll find it hard to do without later.
3. Speaker Is A Top WordPress Theme For Music
Highly visual, easy to use, mobile ready, and quick to set up. What more could you ask for in a WordPress theme? Speaker is clearly a theme for musicians, and best of all, it looks great. Cost-wise, it’s basically the same as Lush, which also makes it relatively affordable.
Shortcomings? Well, it all tends to look the same after a while (from one artist who uses the Speaker theme to another). There are a lot of elements you can customize, but ultimately, it’s just the same package with a different wrapping. However, if you don’t want to spend a lot of time messing around, it’s still a fantastic option.
Like pop music, music-related WordPress themes are kind of going the way of homogeny right now. Visually, Colibri is a very similar option to both Lush and Speaker, though it does happen to be a little cheaper by comparison.
Even so, one of the neat features of Colibri is that it pulls a lot of your content from SoundCloud, Twitter, BandsInTown and Instagram. If you’re a busy musician, and you can’t be bothered to update your website all the time, but you still tend to use social media a lot, this could end up being your Holy Grail. Buyer rating is also quite high, which means most buyers have been satisfied with this choice.
5. TA Music
TA Music is a great-looking free theme, and claims to be “the best free music band & musician WordPress theme”. It utilizes responsive design (which means it’s mobile-ready), it has a built-in event manager, and it has multiple color schemes and other customization options.
There really don’t appear to be too many downsides here. You might run into some minor issues while you’re getting your content set up, but thanks to the documentation and support that’s available, you should be able to work through problems that arises without too much hassle.
6. Our Band
It may not feature the most current design, but Our Band is an otherwise great mobile-responsive theme that you can get more or less for free once you register with Themes4all.com.
Again, it does look like it’s from the early 2000s as opposed to the 10s, but you get what you pay for, and in this case, you’re getting a lot for a little. This is not a bad choice if you’re just getting up and running, and is pretty usable overall.
Take your pick; there are no rights or wrongs here. Once you have a bigger budget, you could always work with a designer to come up with your own custom design. Until then, there are plenty of affordable options to work with, and you might as well get started. Don’t put off getting your website set up. If you don’t have one, start building your online presence right away.