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Those writing for music houses: do you retain the royalties?
Old 9th July 2019
  #1
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elambo's Avatar
Those writing for music houses: do you retain the royalties?

I'm wondering how most music houses operate. If Company A has 10 composers, do the composers tend to file for royalties via ASCAP/BMI/etc. for their own compositions? Or does the music house get listed as the writer of everything? I've heard both scenarios, and for varying reasons.
Old 9th July 2019
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by elambo View Post
I'm wondering how most music houses operate. If Company A has 10 composers, do the composers tend to file for royalties via ASCAP/BMI/etc. for their own compositions? Or does the music house get listed as the writer of everything? I've heard both scenarios, and for varying reasons.
at least with ASCAP and BMI, no company can list itself as a writer. Writers have to be individuals. Publishers have to be companies (no person can list themselves as a publisher. It has to be a company, even if the person just does a simple d/b/a).

So there is no way a company can take the writer's share here in the US. In other countries it might be different. And technically the copyright law in the US does allow for a composer to sell off 100% of everything. So technically a composer can sell his writer's share to a company... but ASCAP and BMI won't let that company claim the performance royalty revenue from it. That is why Jared Gustadt listed himself as co-composer on all the in-house Jingle Punks tracks and why David Vanacore listed himself as co-writer on most the in-house tracks written for Vanacore Music. The owners of the company can list themselves personally as a co-writer if the original writer agrees to it through written contract.
Old 9th July 2019
  #3
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elambo's Avatar
That is what I meant when referring to the "house": that an owner of the company would be listed as the writer, but not the composer himself/herself. I'm wondering how prevalent that is.
Old 12th July 2019
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

The actual composer is the only one listed in my experience. (25 years) Usually the publishing goes to the 'client' (Verizon, Coke etc. in advertising) unless the music house negotiated for the publishing as part of their fee. If you are freelancing, there is a 'trend' where the music house may ask for half of the composer credit from the actual composer, but that is a bad way to go... But anything is possible in today's race to the bottom and I guess it depends on the composer's economic situation.
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