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#1152258 - 01/31/06 11:14 PM ?????????HOW??????????
DCshoesGIRL Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/13/05
Posts: 102
How exactly would I become.....uhhhhhhh, whats the work, sponsored? I dont know, but when a company can avertize my music and get it out there for people to hear and stuff, I know they would get a percentage....but how exactly would that work? Is it just some phone calls to make? Help me out here. Any recommendations?
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My music reflects me......and my mood.....[Monica]

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#1152259 - 02/01/06 08:44 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
Actually, you get the percentage. They get the bulk. And it is extremely difficult to get representation in the classical world. It's the same process as getting "published", because in effect, that's what you're accomplishing. If you "know people", it could be as easy as a phone call. Otherwise, it's a long, tedious process of query-and-rejection.
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Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152260 - 02/01/06 11:15 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
Consider music libraries. They’re publishers too. If they like your music they may find placements on TV/film.

You have to have a quality finished product though. They won’t re-record anything.

If you get to the contract stage, ask for a non-exclusive contract. Some will go along with it some won't.

Good luck Monica. Watch out for the "sharks".

Best, John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152261 - 02/02/06 12:13 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
PianoBeast10489 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/17/04
Posts: 830
Loc: Virginia Beach,VA
I had someone from a music library ask me for some of my music. She said we'd have to sign forms through ASCAP and stuff. I am still keeping in touch with her, but I'm a little freaked out at the whole idea (right now). I mean, she said that I'd get money too, and that it would be open to tv/film, etc. but i dunno. It's a little scary. I'm not sure if I feel im old enough to turn over rights to my music yet! (or a good deal of them).

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#1152262 - 02/02/06 12:37 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
 Quote:
Originally posted by PianoBeast10489:
I had someone from a music library ask me for some of my music. She said we'd have to sign forms through ASCAP and stuff. I am still keeping in touch with her, but I'm a little freaked out at the whole idea (right now). I mean, she said that I'd get money too, and that it would be open to tv/film, etc. but i dunno. It's a little scary. I'm not sure if I feel im old enough to turn over rights to my music yet! (or a good deal of them). [/b]
That's why I suggested a non-exclusive contract. You'll still be able to shop your tracks to other sources.

Don't be afraid of ASCAP, BMI, or SESAC - they're the source of your royalties.

John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152263 - 02/03/06 10:23 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
I highly suggest one of two things to ANYONE dealing with contracts.

1. Go to a decent university. Enroll in a business law class that teaches contracts. (Usually it's a "101/102" thing...mine was "201/202".)

2. Figure out what books the professors use (go to the bookstore and ask) and read the books.

The more familiar you are with contract law, the less you have to have someone else explain it to you, and the less-likely you are to be cheated.

The same goes for copyright law. <---It's AMAZING the number of people who don't understand this law. Fortunately, I have the only textbook you need right here.

That's for the US. If you want International, it's a little trickier. At that point, you can probably trust an agency or contact your own (highly-paid) lawyer. (You should have one if you're planning to go international.) ;\)
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152264 - 02/03/06 11:05 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
Also, if you have concerns about a publishing contract you can hire a "music" lawyer (about a $1,000 an hour). Your everyday lawyer isn't usually familiar with the music industry and how it works.

Another option would be to just sign a couple tracks at first to see if your publisher will come through for you.

You can also go on-line and find standardized publishing contracts. I still favor the non-exclusive contract. It allows you more freedom to shop your music (or sell it yourself).

As far as copyrights, Derulux's link is[/b] the only one you need.

Good luck, John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152265 - 02/05/06 12:27 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
DCshoesGIRL Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/13/05
Posts: 102
well, atleast I know theres some hope out there......I do need to learn all that copyright stuff..theres just soooooo much to know, but it will really help me. Well I have your good suggestions, THANX
_________________________
My music reflects me......and my mood.....[Monica]

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#1152266 - 02/05/06 06:19 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
You don't need to learn ALL the copyright stuff. (That's what lawyers are for.) Just the highlights:

1. The minute you "create" a work, it is yours. Copyright exists upon creation.

2. The above rule doesn't mean diddly in a court of law (when seeking compensation) unless you've filed for (and received) an official copyright.

3. ANYTHING International follows a whole different set of rules depending on which countries are involved (and, of course, what the issue is).

That's pretty much all you need to know to keep your head above water and out of trouble. ;\)

Contract law is more interesting, and better to know...if you wanted to learn one of the two. ;\)
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152267 - 02/14/06 06:56 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Guri Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/28/06
Posts: 11
There's another option which hasn't been mentioned on this thread:

Self-publishing.

You can create discs and MP3's of your music on your computer. You can transcribe your own music into a professional-looking score with software like Finale or Sibelius. And you can distribute your compositions in any form through the internet.

The downside of self-publishing is that you are on your own - it is much harder to reach your audience and somewhat trickier to protect your rights. But the upside is that you don't share your profits with anyone. Every sale you make is 100% yours. And all the rights to the music remain 100% yours.

You still need to overcome the fear of exposing your music to the world. Many people don't realize that this is actually the most difficult step in getting published. Indeed, this is the sole reason I myself don't come forward and self-publish my music: I'm too chicken to do it.

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#1152268 - 02/14/06 10:35 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
Self-publishing is fine, but you should know one thing about the legal aspects first:

When you sign with a record label, the rights to the work you do usually goes to the label and you are paid royalties. Any lawsuits are taken care of by the label. If you publish on your own, you keep the rights, the full profits, and the full burden of any resultant legal action (which can actually cost enough in fees to bankrupt you, regardless of whether or not you're "in the right").

I imagine this has more of an effect in other artistic fields (authoring/writing comes to mind almost immediately), but it's always good to know.

And if you ARE going to self-publish, you MUST ABSOLUTELY read this first: www.copyright.gov . This is U.S. Copyright law. It's everything you need to know to protect yourself. The quick and skinny:

Under no circumstance should you publish ANYTHING without first obtaining an officially-documented copyright (complete with government-issued number). If you were to publish without such a thing, people could very easily re-distribute your work online and never face legal action because your right to seek compensation is directly tied to whether or not you have an officially-filed copyright.

Second thing: Get the "music world" equivalent of an ISBN number immediately. This is one of the fastest ways to get your CD (or whatever) out to the world...and you can't have the CD stocked in any kind of reputable store without it. (Obviously if you know a friend with a store, they'll probably stock it for you, but I'm talking about a "Tower Records" or something similar.) They use these number-trackers for lookups, order, stocking, and inventory/repurchasing needs.

Yes, you have to pay a fee to acquire one of these. Yes, you have to pay a fee to obtain a copyright. Yes, it's worth it.

Well, hope it helps...I think that's all I really need to say on the subject to help you all stay out of trouble. ;\)
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152269 - 02/15/06 12:30 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
 Quote:
Also, if you have concerns about a publishing contract you can hire a "music" lawyer (about a $1,000 an hour). Your everyday lawyer isn't usually familiar with the music industry and how it works.
$1000/hour??? Ouch! How many lawyers do you get for that?
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1152270 - 02/15/06 05:25 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
 Quote:
Originally posted by SteveY:
 Quote:
Also, if you have concerns about a publishing contract you can hire a "music" lawyer (about a $1,000 an hour). Your everyday lawyer isn't usually familiar with the music industry and how it works.
$1000/hour??? Ouch! How many lawyers do you get for that? [/b]
One.
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152271 - 02/15/06 11:08 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
That's pretty unheard of. You're paying too much.
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1152272 - 02/16/06 03:07 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
 Quote:
Originally posted by SteveY:
That's pretty unheard of. You're paying too much. [/b]
I think you're right Steve. I did some checking and I found a music attorney that charges only $125 per hour.

Best, John \:\)
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152273 - 02/16/06 09:00 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
See. I just saved you $875 per hour. The least you could do is buy me dinner… ;\)
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1152274 - 02/16/06 09:11 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
 Quote:
Originally posted by SteveY:
See. I just saved you $875 per hour. The least you could do is buy me dinner… ;\) [/b]
Do you like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?

Actually, I'm not looking for a music lawyer. This is something I was considering once and found the rate to be $1,000 an hour. I guess things have changed since then.

Best, John \:D
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152275 - 02/16/06 09:28 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Steve Chandler Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2760
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
That sounds like the difference between an established music lawyer for the stars and one "just gettin started." Something tells me Jessica Simpson pays more than $125/hour.

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#1152276 - 02/16/06 10:03 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
That's one expensive PB&J!!!
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1152277 - 02/16/06 10:28 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
What do you expect? It's Skippy peanut butter!
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152278 - 02/16/06 06:24 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
DCshoesGIRL Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/13/05
Posts: 102
LOL......ok....what did I miss......haha
_________________________
My music reflects me......and my mood.....[Monica]

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#1152279 - 02/16/06 07:28 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
 Quote:
Originally posted by DCshoesGIRL:
LOL......ok....what did I miss......haha [/b]
Sorry Monica the peanut butter's all gone.

Best, John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152280 - 02/18/06 05:52 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Guri Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/28/06
Posts: 11
 Quote:
Under no circumstance should you publish ANYTHING without first obtaining an officially-documented copyright (complete with government-issued number). If you were to publish without such a thing, people could very easily re-distribute your work online and never face legal action because your right to seek compensation is directly tied to whether or not you have an officially-filed copyright.
Aren't all artistic works protected by copyright automatically upon their creation? If I remember correctly, this has been the case in the U.S. for about 15 years now.

Do I remember wrong?

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#1152281 - 02/18/06 09:00 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
DCshoesGIRL Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/13/05
Posts: 102
I think your right Guri.....but then wouldn't there be no proof if someone tried to copy it and claim it as their own?
Derulux would be able to answer that.
_________________________
My music reflects me......and my mood.....[Monica]

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#1152282 - 02/19/06 02:15 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
With regard to the lawyer, you get what you pay for. But if you have a contract with a major reputable label, they use their own lawyers and you don't have to pay jack ****. ;\)

Aren't all artistic works protected by copyright automatically upon their creation? If I remember correctly, this has been the case in the U.S. for about 15 years now.

Do I remember wrong? [/b]
Like I said before, any and all U.S. copyright questions are answered at the website I provided (www.copyright.gov). However, I've taken the two seconds to look up the specific answer to your question, appropriately, in the "FAQ" section. And I've provided some "extra" below, in case you don't like reading... :p ;\)
Official answer to your question

I forget the exact date the law changed, but you are correct. The work is protected to the limit that you created it and it is yours. But you cannot seek compensatory damages in a court of law without an officially-filed copyright (for which you get a 5 year "deferral", so if the infringement occurs in the first five years, you need to obtain a copyright no later than the end of the 5th year and you can still file a claim...but wait any longer than that and you're SOL & JWF).

I think your right Guri.....but then wouldn't there be no proof if someone tried to copy it and claim it as their own?
Derulux would be able to answer that.
[/b]
Close. It's actually more of a "you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours" thing with the government. (You don't "put in" [money], they don't "put out" [use your imagination]. :p ;\) )

Sure, they claim all sorts of reasons, but it basically boils down to that...and the lack of any ambiguity whatsoever.

For how cheap a copyright is, I still can't believe people actually wrestle with the question of, "Well, should I file for one?" There is one overly-obvious answer: YES! Every time!
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152283 - 02/19/06 06:22 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
SteveY Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 1820
Loc: NJ
 Quote:
With regard to the lawyer, you get what you pay for. But if you have a contract with a major reputable label, they use their own lawyers and you don't have to pay jack ****.
Totally untrue. Every artist needs their own attorney. Otherwise the label can (and will) take advantage of you.
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PianoWorld disclaimer: musician, producer, arranger, author, clinician, consultant, PS2 aficionado, secret agent...

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#1152284 - 02/19/06 08:45 PM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
For how cheap a copyright is, I still can't believe people actually wrestle with the question of, "Well, should I file for one?" There is one overly-obvious answer: YES! Every time!

$30 isn't cheap. However I send in a collection with maybe 10 pieces, that will knock it down to $3 per piece.

Best, John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152285 - 02/20/06 12:18 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
Totally untrue. Every artist needs their own attorney. Otherwise the label can (and will) take advantage of you.[/b]
The only time an artist really needs a lawyer with regards to a label is during the signing of a contract, if the individual does not trust the label, or does not understand "normal business practices" (which seems to happen quite a bit with musicians until they get burned a couple times). Two things, now: 1. If you don't trust the label, why work for them? and 2. What you would normally consider needing a "lawyer" for can easily be accomplished by a good agent (contracts, etc).

The only time you really need a lawyer is if you want to sue the label....


$30 isn't cheap. However I send in a collection with maybe 10 pieces, that will knock it down to $3 per piece.
[/b]
You're right...when you're talking possible infringements in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, $30 is huge.

Here's a clue: If you're really worried about $30, then you need to step back and ask yourself just how good is whatever you wrote? And if $30 is such a big deal, then maybe you should consider an alternative career path that doesn't have anything to do with protecting intellectual property. While you're at it, cancel the life insurance plan from Colonial for $6 a month, because that's ridiculous to pay, too...especially for what it offers...I mean, you won't even benefit from it! Man, what a scam.... :rolleyes:
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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#1152286 - 02/20/06 12:54 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Johnny-Boy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 661
Loc: PA
I've copyrighted a couple hundred tracks. That $30 multiplies quite quickly.

Besides these government monopolies annoy the hell out of me. I can just imagine all the screw-ups that will occur if one ever needed the original manuscript from the copyright office for a lawsuit.

Just last year one of my copyrights came back. The copyright office informed me there was no check with it. Of course I knew there was. A week later I got my check back from them stating there was no copyright form, just a check – duh.

That place must be a chaotic nightmare. And this was just one of many times they screwed up. And another thing, they’re as slow as molasses in January. Why should it take 6-7 months to get a copyright back?

It's time the courts start honoring other means of copyrights. Of course that won't ever happen since they all work for the same boss (Uncle Sam).

John
_________________________
Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

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#1152287 - 02/20/06 01:10 AM Re: ?????????HOW??????????
Derulux Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/05
Posts: 5321
Loc: Philadelphia
You've pointed out two very important things:

1. If you don't ever intend to make more than $30 off it, and don't think it has the potential to do so, then don't bother filing for a copyright.

2. The government works extremely efficiently. In fact, we know the following must be true, that, if the opposite of pro is con, we know the opposite of progress is... ;\)

2a. Here's an interesting tidbit for those who have credit problems: Lexington Law Firm .

The above link takes you to a law firm that will "guaranteed" repair any and all credit problems you may have (regardless of whether or not it was your fault). Here's the law they take advantage of to do it:

They write to the credit agencies requesting proof of each item on a person's credit report. By law, the credit agency has 30 days to respond. If they fail to respond (and you can see from the copyright office how great these institutions are at "paperwork"), they must take the item off of your credit report.

The law firm will write them every month until the office fails to respond...and they are successful because they blitz the office with hundreds or even thousands of these letters at a time. Sooner or later (usually within 3-6 months), the credit bureaus f* up and fail to respond within the time limit. And you win. ;\)
_________________________
Every day we are afforded a new chance. The problem with life is not that you run out of chances. In the end, what you run out of are days.

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