The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
An open letter: Are you killing the value of your own music?
Old 5th December 2018
  #91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ukiah Bass View Post
I agree with this premise. What about old music -- where the writer(s) is dead? Not so old as to fit into "Traditional" category. But new enough that a publisher is still collecting tolls?
https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ15a.pdf

"Works Created on or after January 1, 1978
The law automatically protects a work that is created and fixed in a tangible medium of expression on or after January 1, 1978, from the moment of its creation and gives it a term lasting for the author’s life plus an additional 70 years. For a “joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire,” the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author’s death. For works made for hire and anonymous and pseudonymous works, the dura- tion of copyright is 95 years from first publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter (unless the author’s identity is later revealed in Copyright Office records, in which case the term becomes the author’s life plus 70 years)."

in that document it also explains the length of copyright for works created before 1978 as well.

After copyright runs out, the piece of music becomes public domain.

collecting tolls? using the term tolls makes me think you might reside outside the US? If so, copyright law is different from country to country. So you will need to look up the terms for copyright in your country.


Quote:
As for "modern requirements," the old processes fit a world of sit-down meetings with lawyers, drafting agreements, negotiating fees etc.
what are you talking about? Today everything is done through email. No old world sitting down with lawyers at a table.

If you want to get a license for a track, you email the publishing company. It's as simple as that. Most publishers have a form you fill out to request a license right on their website...

for example...

Universal Music Publishing Group | US

Quote:
The modern world consists of more automated systems enabling minimum friction and maximum alacrity in implementing ideas and ultra rapid distribution. Numbers for the song writers could be (and possibly are) just as big in the new world. But why should this exclude "small time" operators who could pay what they're worth, which would be a pittance by comparison, but if implemented by electronic systems, could easily scale to fit everyone's needs -- and put in a commensurate amount of compensation. I don't see this as a zero sum game for song writers. If anything, it would be additive, bringing in revenue that would be uncapturable with old, manual processes.

Just trying to be open minded here. There are a lot of creative professions trying to figure out a way forward. Professionally, I am also a creator and have experienced the hammer of forces brought on by the internet. It's not going away. We just have to figure out what will work. What will NOT work is sticking our heads in the sand and insisting the old way is the best way.
you mean like this?

FyrFly-SongFreedom - Real Music. Licensed.

Quote:
SongFreedom (now FyrFly-SongFreedom) began as the bridge connecting visual and musical artists. This bridge now supports over 800 creatives and includes electrifying Top 10 artists such as Lady Gaga and singer songwriters like The Royal Foundry.
I think this is what you are asking for, is it not?
Old 4th June 2019
  #92
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by lewis_foster View Post
Danny - I'm baffled. I'm unsure why you've jumped to the conclusion that my company is offering blanket licenses, has anything to do with earnings from streaming or is undermining the value of the music we represent in any way.

I'd urge you to learn more about our model at Music Vine before you criticise so hastily and damningly. If I didn't care about our industry, I wouldn't have taken such time and care in writing the letter.

The letter I've published today has been supported by a large number of composers and producers already. The sites I'm referring to (Artlist and Soundstripe) have gained an enormous amount of traction in the last two years. If you're not aware of them, that does not mean they have not had a major impact.
I noticed that Soundstripe recently acquired $4M in financing from venture capitalists which "...will allow Soundstripe to continue expanding its presence in the production music space..."

Nashville-Based Soundstripe Picks Up $4 Million Series A Financing to Disrupt Music Licensing for Video
https://www.businesswire.com/news/ho...0513005537/en/

That reminded me of this thread, specifically Lewis Foster's reference to Soundstripe (above) as a player who's contributing to the devaluation of music in production music.

Any thoughts or concerns about this development?
Old 4th June 2019
  #93
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck.dallas View Post
I noticed that Soundstripe recently acquired $4M in financing from venture capitalists which "...will allow Soundstripe to continue expanding its presence in the production music space..."

Nashville-Based Soundstripe Picks Up $4 Million Series A Financing to Disrupt Music Licensing for Video
https://www.businesswire.com/news/ho...0513005537/en/

That reminded me of this thread, specifically Lewis Foster's reference to Soundstripe (above) as a player who's contributing to the devaluation of music in production music.

Any thoughts or concerns about this development?
From a musician’s standpoint, it stinks.

From a business standpoint, it is awesome.
Old 4th June 2019
  #94
Lives for gear
 
brockorama's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
From a musician’s standpoint, it stinks.

From a business standpoint, it is awesome.
Which one are you?
Old 4th June 2019
  #95
Quote:
Originally Posted by brockorama View Post
Which one are you?
Business for sure.
Old 5th June 2019
  #96
Lives for gear
 
brockorama's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
Business for sure.
All this time I assumed you were a musician.
Old 5th June 2019
  #97
Quote:
Originally Posted by brockorama View Post
All this time I assumed you were a musician.
I was until I realized that solely focusing on being a musician does not lead to a sustainable income. Well, at least for me. Nothing for me to be angry or sad about.

Music isn't the enemy. Business isn't either. But if I had to pick one, I would go with business first.
Old 5th June 2019
  #98
Lives for gear
 
Jeff Hayat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
I was until I realized that solely focusing on being a musician does not lead to a sustainable income. Well, at least for me.
And for most. You really need to be good at both - musician/songwriter, and business.
Old 5th June 2019
  #99
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hayat View Post
And for most. You really need to be good at both - musician/songwriter, and business.
Be better at business. Then you can hire musicians for the specifics.
Old 5th June 2019
  #100
Gear Guru
 
drBill's Avatar
I'd rather be better at music. Business will follow if you have incredible music.
Old 5th June 2019
  #101
Lives for gear
 

Another option is to assess our own strengths and find opportunities to exploit them, while also assessing our own weaknesses and finding ways to improve or remove them from the equation. This applies to both creative and business skills.
Old 5th June 2019
  #102
Lives for gear
 
ionian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11 View Post
Also, students in colleges and universities majoring in music have access to all kinds of cool music I've never heard - it keeps you young!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
What access do they have that we don't?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11 View Post
Certain pier group, social circle access ...
They must be listening to Handel's Water music.
Old 5th June 2019
  #103
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
Be better at business.
You still haven't analysed those ASCAP sheets we discussed on my Sonoton topic, bro? C'mon, do it and share the results with me or in public, let's take the first step towards being a businessman...and you also made a promise. Let's see what publishers rise at the top for you and we can cross-reference the data.
Old 5th June 2019
  #104
Quote:
Originally Posted by implant View Post
You still haven't analysed those ASCAP sheets we discussed on my Sonoton topic, bro? C'mon, do it and share the results with me or in public, let's take the first step towards being a businessman...and you also made a promise. Let's see what publishers rise at the top for you and we can cross-reference the data.
Analyze what? I got music in 289 TV series based on my Member Services account in ASCAP. And I don’t have any music with Sonoton. So what exactly are you looking for?
Old 5th June 2019
  #105
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
Analyze what? I got music in 289 TV series based on my Member Services account in ASCAP. And I don’t have any music with Sonoton. So what exactly are you looking for?
That's nice, congrats! It doesn't have anything to do with Sonoton; what I did was looking at my ASCAP sheets, not all of them, of course, there are too many. I looked at last 10-15 and tried to see which publishers gets most uses, as you can see them in sheets. It doesn't have to be exact...but if you come up with 5-6 names repeating and after cross-reference with my data we come with a name or two working for both of us, my guess is that those guys are doing good. Of course, if it's too much trouble you can just tell me to f*** off...
Old 5th June 2019
  #106
Quote:
Originally Posted by implant View Post
That's nice, congrats! It doesn't have anything to do with Sonoton; what I did was looking at my ASCAP sheets, not all of them, of course, there are too many. I looked at last 10-15 and tried to see which publishers gets most uses, as you can see them in sheets. It doesn't have to be exact...but if you come up with 5-6 names repeating and after cross-reference with my data we come with a name or two working for both of us, my guess is that those guys are doing good. Of course, if it's too much trouble you can just tell me to f*** off...

We can talk over the phone. Let me send you a PM.
Old 1 week ago
  #107
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
That is no longer a "license". That is a complete buyout. You are not licensing, you are selling your track at that point.



Again, that is no longer a "license" but a complete buyout. A license implies that the original copyright owner still maintains control of the intellectual property. When that control is completely handed over in perpetuity, and the client can do whatever they want with the track after the transaction is complete, then it is a buyout, not a license and not a blanket license.

Anyway... I don't have a problem with these types of companies. The reason being is they make what I do MORE valuable. If you are trying to directly compete against them, their own sales "tactic" is to simply slash the price. That is it. But instead of allowing them to make price the only selling point... I change the subject and the direction of the client to things like production quality, composers' status accomplishments, etc.

If the licensing staff doesn't know anything about the music they are licensing, then all they can do is cut the price because they have no way to show the value. I've found that clients CAN perceive the difference when listening but they can't "quantify" those difference. For example... if I did a blind taste test between Starbucks Coffee and Cup 'O Joe or cheap diner coffee... do you think you can taste the difference? If yes do you think you could objectively quantify that difference? Is the starbucks coffee better? If so by how much? 10%, 20%, 300%?

The general untrained public can still be good at discerning a difference but they lack the knowledge and experience to quantify that difference. That is where savvy sales comes in. It's how Starbucks can charge $4 for a $0.50 cup of coffee. It's how VW can sell a Porsche for $90,000 even though the same car with minor changes and a VW logo on it sells for $60,000.

the general public is good at discerning differences, they suck at quantifying them. Marketing is what tells them that product X is 10 times better than product Y. How many people spend THOUSANDS of dollars on digital to audio converters (Prism, Apogee, RME, Meitner, etc) thinking their converters are 10's or 100's of times better than cheaper brands like Focusrite or Behringer... and pay 100 of times more money for their better converters, when in reality, there is only maybe a 5 or 10% difference between them... Once the manufacturer can identify the difference the consumer hears, THEN they can put a price tag on it.

And that is ultimately how music publishing works too. One man's trash is another man's treasure. A Nirvana track may only be worth $1 to one client but might be worth $300,000 to another. Same goes for Production Music. The marketing efforts of the library is what controls the narrative about their own product and their relative position against competing products.

like if you said to me you are looking for orchestral music... I could just say yeah, whatever and give you a bunch of different orchestral tracks with some being better than others... but then what if I showed you this video...



And then told you the composer was the orchestrator and additional writer for Danny Elfman, James Newton Howard, John Debney, Bruce Broughton, Christopher Young, etc...

If you were to just hear these tracks mixed in with a playlist of midi orchestra, you might think, "wow, that one sounds pretty good" and then just move on to the next... but by separating it out, and changing the topic from just "how much" to where it was recorded, what went into making it, and who is behind making it... I've now just quantified the differences you heard... so now it justifies a much higher price tag to you and you will feel more comfortable spending the extra money because you know you are getting something a cut above the rest.

So... I say "bring it on" to all these super cheap bottom feeder libraries... they make what I do worth ten's, if not hundred's of times more than it would have been had there not been so much cheap and mediocre music available in the market. The creme always rises to the top... and when there is a race to the bottom, the ones who win are the ones who turn around and sprint to the top.
I couldn't agree with this more. One man's treasure is another man's trash. So the trick is (and it's not an easy one) is to find the people that care and will value your music.

I made a record a few years back that cost me a dedicated year of work and $15K paying out top notch musicians, studio time, and I made some accompanying films. Thankfully I got a composition grant that allowed me to pull it off. After I finished the project I began to look into licensing since part of the purpose of the record was to try and get some film scoring work. I had no idea what I was doing and submitted it to Getty/Pump Audio where it sat for a year doing nothing. If I did get a placement it would have been for $30 or something. I also sent it to a more local library that asked me to write something a bit more dumbed down and eventually passed on the record. They valued it at nothing. Then I sent it to Downbeat Magazine and they gave me a great 4 star review, right next to Nels Cline. My record is not really jazz, so this was a welcome surprise. Then out of nowhere a director who has an Academy Award for co-writing song of the year, asked to use one of my pieces in an upcoming show on Amazon with a sync fee of $6500, plus I have all writer and publishers share.

Moral of the story is that our music can be worthless or valuable to different sets of ears.

The race to the bottom libraries don't really value music, it's a commodity to sell like anything else. They could be selling used cars, dish soap, whatever it's just a business model to them. So I think dealing with the blanket license folks is suicide to composers. I'm new to all of this and figuring a path to make a career out of it, but it seems that if you don't value your music in the first place, no one else will.
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump