No licensing fee–collect royalties only?

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  • #33520 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    So I am being offered a potential placement and the guy says I will collect PRO royalties for the project, but no licensing fee. Never heard of this. Royalties would have to be minuscule if the song is used in one broadcast, yes?

    #33521 Reply
    BEATSLINGER
    Participant

    Sounds like enough money for “Possibly” Lunch..
    That someone would ask to keep all of the sync fee, is not only “Suspect”, it should have been “The Deal Breaker”.

    I personally would pass..

    #33522 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    I know! I mean, for a small cable tv show, how much could the royalty possibly be? I don’t see how this could even buy lunch. Now the claim is not that the person will keep the sync fee, the claim is that there is none.

    #33523 Reply
    BEATSLINGER
    Participant

    Now the claim is not that the person will keep the sync fee, the claim is that there is none.

    1) More than likely, You’re RIGHT in it not making more than a “Fast Food Lunch”

    2) That’s “The Claim” that there is no Sync. 95% of ALL “Cable/TV/Film/Branding” productions have at least a little “Sumthin’ in the budget”.

    3) I can’t explain this enough. Trust Me, there is no such thing as taking lousy contracts, or deals; then think You’ll make things better once You’re “really connected, and locked in to the business”. Bad Deals follow You/I around like “Ass Ugly Luggage”; and it literally will put You at LEAST 5 to 7 Years behind a person that structured their deals “Adequately”. Trust Me, I found these “Lessons” out “THE HARD WAY!!”

    #33524 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    Would love for you to elaborate.

    “Bad Deals follow You/I around like “Ass Ugly Luggage”; and it literally will put You at LEAST 5 to 7 Years behind a person that structured their deals “Adequately”.

    #33525 Reply
    BEATSLINGER
    Participant

    Sure, the deals not ONLY follow you around as attachments.

    1) They “usually” tie up great pieces of music, that you will (Composer Karma.lol) immediately find “Suitable Homes for as soon as You have signed them away”.

    2) In My case, I had some MAJOR issues with my Publishing, and proper Administration of My “Earlier Works, and Older Catalog”.

    3) This can lead to other “Reputable Libraries” not signing You because of Your seeming desperate, and in “The Words of some Libraries I have talked to” (and had to explain WHY they should still sign me) You are considered a “Bottom Feeder”.

    4) The serious Emotional Damage that takes place, and is TOTALLY Counter-Productive to getting more music done; and having the “Self-Confidence” to pursue, and get signed by Bigger/Better & Top-Tier Libraries. (Trust Me THIS Matters)

    Biggest thing is. It takes a LOT of energies to come back from a Bad Start, or signing into bad contracts/deals; and that time could have been used towards “Advancement” and not “Clean Up of Some Crappy Messes!!”

    #33526 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    Thank you. I can’t disagree with you. I will say what I am being offered involves no publishing or other rights to be signed. It’s just as you say, “bottom feeder” rates.

    #33528 Reply
    BEATSLINGER
    Participant

    It’s just as you say, “bottom feeder” rates

    Not My words; these are words from people in “Executive Positions”.

    Also, I have learned to not mention “Certain Companies” that I unfortunately got involved with.

    #33530 Reply
    Art Munson
    Keymaster

    guess I’ll have to be lumped in with the bottom feeders and I don’t necessarily equate that as a bad thing.

    To me, it’s more about practicality. My experience with exclusive high end libraries/publishers is limited but enough to know that I don’t want to go down that road. I want to control my catalog and not run the risk of having our music sitting somewhere on a shelf.

    It also gives me flexibility. If I have music that has not sold in awhile I can play around with different options in terms of marketing. I can lower prices, I can raise prices, it gives me much more control.

    I have heard stories for years about being blacklisted, ruining your name in the business, etc. I don’t really care as playing in the “high end” arena can, many times, mean playing games. Some of us are just not good at that.

    Here’s one recent example I had with game playing:

    A couple of years ago the owner of a large, successful library contacted me about getting together. We agreed to meet but of course his “assistant” had to get with me to set up a time. After two cancellations, on his end, I said why don’t you e-mail me the specifics for your idea and we can go from there. Never heard a thing, poof, disappeared. Just so typical of music biz B.S.

    I have also learned it is possible to get into higher end libraries despite their claim to being totally exclusive. Right now I have three deals with those types of libraries with non-exclusive music.

    So sure, count me as a bottom feeder, I like the control. 🙂

    #33531 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    Art, your reply is an excellent reminder that “they” do not determine what is the top and what is the bottom. They just made that stuff up. Wherever you are you can be at the top–of your game.

    #33532 Reply
    BEATSLINGER
    Participant

    My comments have nothing to do with Exclusive, vs Non-Exclusive.
    I am just referring to reputable, vs non-reputable, and the conversations that I have had.

    I still stand on the fact that accepting bad deals sets you back years, and takes you longer to get ahead.

    #33533 Reply
    Music1234
    Participant

    for a small cable tv show, how much could the royalty possibly be? I don’t see how this could even buy lunch. Now the claim is not that the person will keep the sync fee, the claim is that there is none.

    Not sure how many years of experience you have Kevin, but background usage in reality cable shows rarely pay up front sync licenses. They typically just get used in shows and are cue sheeted. You then are paid the royalty by your PRO for the air date. They also often re-run a lot and create more royalties over time. One and done broadcasts are more for Live Sports broadcasts. And those often are not really “one and done” If sports shows like a cue, they will use them as bumpers across many live sports broadcasts. It seems like we all need more information about your deal before we pass final judgement.

    I agree with everything Art says above too. Having total control over your catalog is increasingly very important. I know many writers can claim that they do very well writing exclusive music for reputable libraries, but one of these days, they will wake up and say…hmmmm….what happened to those 500 pieces of music I wrote over the last 5 to 10 years? I guess they are under the control of ________publisher/ library and I have no way of getting them back. 2 to 3 year reversion clauses are very important.

    #33535 Reply
    kevinjohnston1
    Participant

    Thanks for the reply. Actually helpful. I am am going to let the deal go through, because there is absolutely zero harm to me–I give up no publishing or any other rights. It’s kind of like getting 5% back on my credit card. It doesn’t amount to much, but I’ll take it.

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