Congratulations, and welcome to a stressful yet exciting industry. Its a wonderful feeling to make music that ends up being heard by thousands or even millions of people. A few words of caution however, you should be aware of some important issues when doing music for broadcast or advertising. I highly
recommend you join the Association of Music Producers (AMP: Association of Music Producers
). I have been a member for many years, and it has provided me with invaluable guidance and insight into the business of making music for advertising, broadcast, film, etc.
Some areas of concern: 1. Liability:
I am assuming you don't have E&O insurance. Who will protect you (indemnify) if you get sued? Will someone be paying for a Musicologist report? Was there the music reference track given to you before you started working? There are serious implications regarding the use of commercially available CD's for advertising production.. Caution must be exercised in the use of existing music as “direction” for companies and composers. Copyright laws apply not only to the literal notes of music compositions, but to the sound of the musical arrangement and the lyrics, as well. Thus, there can be great risk—to the advertiser, the agency and to the music company—in making something “sound like” someone else’s song or soundtrack...
You might consider contacting a musicologist on your own to understand this better, I have been very happy with Sandy Wilbur at Musiodata Musicology Services and Music Copyright Services - Musiodata 2. Musicians Union:
you should join, you will be missing out on residual payments. Also, there are as of yet no Union buy-out agreements for this kind of work, and it is currently a huge issue in the industry. Home :: American Federation of Musicians 3. Music Rights Agreement: ..a widely-used, variously-worded document or Contract, signed by the “Supplier” (music company) along with the Composer(s) and the Agency (on behalf of itself and its Client). In general, the document constitutes a complex “Purchase Agreement” which assigns Rights to ownership of the music composition (the “Work for Hire”) to the Client, or provides for a license of rights to use the music composition for specific periods and specific purposes, in exchange for a previously agreed-upon sum of money, to be paid to the Supplier. The Rights Agreement may define the acquisition by use (radio, television, etc.), by duration of use (i.e., one year, two years, in “perpetuity”), or by geographical definition (U.S. Rights only, Foreign use only, Worldwide, etc.). Music companies and composers are encouraged to review Rights Agreements carefully. 4. Composer's Royalties: Composers and Publishers of original music for radio and television commercials (songs, underscores, etc.) have a legal right to receive “writer’s royalties,” which are paid by networks and individual stations into funds governed by three principle “distribution” bodies—ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Many major advertisers maintain their own publishing companies for the purpose of collecting the Publisher’s portion of these royalties (Proctor & Gamble, Kraft General Foods, Coca Cola USA, for example). BMI.com | Welcome ASCAP SESAC Home 5. How will they pay you?
There are tax implications especially if you are hired as an independent contractor. Talk to your accountant.
See this link for a complete breakdown: AMP: Association of Music Producers: Members Guidelines - Music Production Guidelines