In the first blogpost on royalty free music I’ve explained some of the basic terms. In the creation of a piece of vocal or instrumental music, a lot of creative people are involved and they are paid for their work in different ways. Some are paid a flat fee and are thus working royalty free, other have a percentage on the revenue of the record and make their money through royalties. This is important to determine to which level music is royalty free.
Authors and composers of music are in a special position. Every time a musical piece is used for a public performance (radio, tv, internet, youtube; concert, club,..) the author and composer have to be paid because they have so called performance rights. In theory, every radio or television station, every webmaster or every party DJ that wants to use a piece of music should ask permission to the songwriter(s) and pay them a fee for the usage. From a practical point of view this is of course impossible. Can you imagine you wrote a hit song and you have hundreds of requests every day for the permission to use your song? Let alone the administration for managing the performance rights fees. To overcome this time consuming process the performance rights organisations were created. Authors and composers agreed to let the performance rights organisations legally represent them towards third parties such a radio, television and concerts.
Royalty free in general
As we’ve seen in the previous post (where I explained some terms concerning royalty free music) musicians, singers and ever producers can agree to work on a royalty free basis. The music becomes then partly royalty free. But how about the author and composer? If a songwriter is a member of a performance rights organisation (=PRO) he has the obligation to pass every single piece of music he makes to the PRO. He is not free to decide if he want to claim performance rights for a particular piece of music he made. The situation with most royalty free music is that there are indeed no royalties to pay to musicians or producers, but the PRO’s will still claim the payment for the performance rights. These payments can be huge if your project is succesful!
Royalty free music from RoyaltyFreeze.com
My team and I decided to say goodbye to the performance rights organisations, we ended our memberships and now we have full control ourselves over our royalty free music. For every single piece of music we create we are free to negotiate with the end user on how we want to be rewarded for the work, time and effort we’ve put in the creation.
I’ll explain in the next post how this is a good thing, not only for us, but also for the users of our royalty free music.
In the meanwhile,
Stay Tuned !