Tag Archive: Music Business

  1. An Introduction to the Music Industry – Part 1

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    The music industry can be a mysterious place. It’s important to what what each area of the industry does and how you can earn a living.

    An Introduction to the Music Industry - Part 1

    Intellectual Property

    Intellectual property is based around Copyright. Copyright is present in all forms of intellectual property, from film to music to journalism. Although the specifics can vary from country to country,  usually the creator owns all the rights. Unless the creator is employed to create something, in which, the employing company would own the rights. In each creative industry, especially the music industry, there are many rights that can be owned by different parties (the artist, songwriter, record label etc.).

    There are several rights involved in a singular release (single, E.P., Album). Here is an explanation to what they grant the rights to and who would own these rights:

    • Song Rights: Covers Musical Composition, Lyrics, Performance rights and Publishing Rights (mechanical rights, print rights, synchronisation rights).

    Often owned by the artist or the band. These rights can often be split amongst band music partners, i.e. Elton John (composer) and Bernie Taupin (lyricist), or have joint owners amongst a band, i.e. John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

    • Recording Rights: Covers Recorded Rights, Mastering Rights and Music Videos.

    Often owned by whoever pays for these services, i.e. the record label.

    • Artistic Rights: Covers Artwork and Photography.

    Often owned by the artist or photographer who creates/takes these.

    Making Money and Licensing

    If you own all the rights on a song (excluding artistic rights), you can control:

    • Re-production = re-recording your music.
    • Distribution = distributing your music to stores and streaming platforms.
    • Public Performance = your music being played publicly.
    • Adaption
    • Communication/Broadcasting = your music being played on radio
    • Synchronisation = your music being in film, TV, video games, advertisements and other forms of visual media.

    As the rights holder, you make money by Licensing these. Licensing means giving permission to others to use your property, and so as an artist, songwriter, record label etc. you can sell licenses (permission) for the above actions to other artists and industry members.

    NOTE: Copyright does not last forever i.e. in the UK copyright for recording rights last 70 years, becoming public domain afterwards. However, owners of these rights have found ways to renew these rights. For instance, as the recording rights for specific songs have started to run out, record labels have begun re-releasing music to renew the recording rights (which will last for another 70 years in the UK).

    Trademark

    People often get Trademark and Copyright mixed up, however unlike Copyright (which is automatically in place), to trademark something registration is required.

    There is no copyright in the name of an artist or band, however artists and bands can register their names for trademark (requesting which sector you are protected, i.e. Oasis – Band, Oasis – drink and Oasis – clothes retailer). Artists who trademark their name in entertainment can license their name to fashion, perfume, beer etc. For artists that reach a certain level of ‘success’, a lot of money can be made from trademark licensing.

    Artists and Bands may look to have the following trademarked:

    • Names
    • Logos
    • Slogans

    NOTE: Certain words cannot be trademarked, for example: swear words, key religious figures, city names.

  2. How to Pitch your Music to Influencers

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    So, you’ve got some killer tracks laid down in the studio and produced by a top quality engineer. You’ve been gigging regularly and have built up a respectable fanbase on your social media pages too. You’re looking to take the next step and get a manager, label deal and maybe a publisher too.  Essentially, you’re ready to take the next step and pitch your music to influencers.

    How to Pitch your Music to Influencers

    Pitch your Music to Influencers in Person 

    Where do you start? In the music industry, relationships are key. As a musician it’s very important that you’re out there meeting people and making the right contacts for your music. Go to industry events and work the room! Don’t accost every person there with your CD’s, USB’s etc. straight away, but if they ask for music be prepared to be able to provide it. Have some CD’s handy in case this is their preferred method, or get contact details and follow up with links to your music. That last point is especially important – contact details!

    Make sure you have business cards of everyone you’ve spoken to. If they don’t have any ask them to write it in your phone or in a notebook for you. It’s good to also have a business card or leaflet for yourself to give to any contacts you meet; it serves as a little reminder. In these situations, remember to be polite and also concise. Have an elevator pitch about your music ready in order to summarise what you do and who you sound like.

    Pitch your Music to Influencers Online

    Check the websites of the types of company you’re looking to get a deal with. Take a look over their roster and see whether they tend to sign similar sounding artists to you. Does it say that they are accepting submissions? Great! Now, are there specific guidelines to submit music? If yes, even better but make sure you follow them! If you don’t, the harsh truth is that your submission will end up in the trash or at the bottom of their to-do list.

    Some things to look out for:

    • Do they accept physical CD’s in the mail or digital only submissions?
    • Do they want a bio?
    • Do they ask about your social media stats or links to these pages?
    • Who is the right person to send your submission to? Check for an email address or office address in the case of sending a CD – if it’s not clear then give them a call.

    If there aren’t any specific guidelines, it can be a little more tricky. But if you remember to be professional and succinct (without being too vague!) you’ll stand in good stead. There are no hard and fast rules as all companies like to receive music in different ways. Tools like SoundCloud and file sharing sites, like Dropbox and Box are a great way to send music. This way influencers can stream tracks before downloading them.

    General Tips When Sending Emails

    • Make sure you open and sign off your email politely and professionally. Don’t just email a link to your music without at least saying hi and signing off with your name and contact details.
    • Absolutely do not email every company in one mass email. Ever. No excuses.
    • The follow up. This is key, but please give people time to respond. Don’t call them the minute their office opens when you emailed them at 9pm the night before. And don’t be too persistent. They will get back to you, you don’t need to contact them every day to see whether they’ve listened to your tracks. If after a few weeks you haven’t heard a response, this is a good time to check in again.

    Best of luck!

     

  3. Horus Music welcomes PPL and PRS for Music move

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    PRS and PPL Leicester move

    Earlier this week it was announced that Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL) and PRS for Music will be moving their national headquarters from London to Leicester city centre.

    Their new joint venture will begin around July 2017 and will be based in Mercury Place.

    Here at Horus Music we are very excited about this move to join us in Leicester. This has been our home for almost 10 years now and amongst the vibrant music that is played here we enjoy the Midland Mainline service meaning it takes us less than an hour to get into London city centre; less time than many those that are based around London itself.

    We have been partners with both PRS for Music and PPL for many years, and we have seen the benefits that their service provides to our many independent artists and record label clients, which includes the licensing of musical composition and lyrics on behalf of songwriters, composers and publishers as well as the licensing of recorded music for record companies and performers which is played in public or in digital media.

    CEO and Managing Director of Horus Music, Nick Dunn, adds: We’re very happy to see that more and more companies are realising that there are opportunities for business, especially in the music industry, that are available outside of London and have the additional benefit of being both financially and environmentally friendly. We welcome PPL and PRS for Music to such a diverse and growing city.”

    Everyone at Horus Music looks forward to many more years of a successful partnership with both of these companies and hope that our relationship with grow even further as we work together in the city of Leicester to help the musicians, songwriters and record labels of Leicestershire and beyond.